Vitamin C only recently came on our radar. Sure, we’ve all heard about exfoliating, retinol, hyaluronic acid, etc., and was incorporating them into your daily skincare routine, but it’s only been in the past year or so that we’ve been fully turned on to the myriad Vitamin C benefits for the skin. Turns out, we were missing out on a lot.
Did you know that vitamin C can be used every day?
It’s gentle enough for daily use. However, if you also like to use retinol, feel free to alternate it by applying it every other day or conversely, use vitamin C in the morning and retinol at night. Luckily, most skin types tolerate this popular active ingredient well, but if you have extremely sensitive skin, you may want to skip it. And as always, be sure to talk with your dermatologist about Vitamin C benefits for skin if you’re concerned.
Keep scrolling to read the latest news this wonder ingredient. Not only do we recommend daily Vitamin C application, but using a Vitamin C serum every morning on clean, bare skin — it is the first topical application to the face, neck, and upper chest.
What is Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is an antioxidant molecule that plays a vital role in our skin’s health by protecting it against free radicals caused by pollution and the sun’s radiation—it’s also an important ingredient for the production of collagen. When free radicals penetrate the skin, they break down our collagen, contributing to sagging skin and wrinkles. Free radicals also stimulate the formation of brown spots and skin cancer. An antioxidant is a molecule that can collect these free radicals and neutralize them before they damage our cells. This protection is different from the protection sunscreen provides and can and should be used together daily to slow the signs of aging and prevent the formation of skin cancers.
Another great thing about vitamin C is that it’s the most well-studied antioxidant in topical skincare products. Many multiple studies show that antioxidant serums with Vitamin C that are stabilized with Vitamin E protect your skin against photo-aging. Since the skin is very good at keeping things out, these antioxidants need to be in a well-formulated, easily absorbed vehicle to ensure these essential and expensive vitamins get deep enough into the skin to protect it. Formulation is key!
Who can use Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is very safe for most people, but since it is an acid (ascorbic acid), it can irritate sensitive skin types. If you have very sensitive skin, you need to pick a lower percentage of vitamin C because your skin is too good at absorbing ingredients, which makes it more sensitive.
How long does it take to see results?
There are several factors when it comes to seeing results but generally, you may see improvement at two weeks. However, most clinical studies measure results when using a product with vitamin C after 12 weeks. But that all depends on how damaged your skin is, how consistently you use the serum, how well formulated it is, and how young you are—since that dictates how quickly your skin turns over.
Vitamin C application tips:
- Use it in the right order — your Vitamin C treatment is a serum, use it after cleansing or toning and before moisturizing. If it’s in your moisturizer, use it as your last step.
- Use Vitamin C in the morning — you can totally use it at night, but you’ll get the most benefit from applying in the morning. It heals sun damage and protects against UV radiation, so you’ll have an extra layer of protection with a morning application.
- Pick the right concentration — you have sensitive skin, look for something around 5%. If you have more extensive issues you can handle higher concentrations.
- More is not better — just more expensive in the long run. A small amount goes a long way, but be sure to use it regularly for best results.
- If the product changes color, toss it — oxidized Vitamin C tends to lose its power. It can vary in color from colorless, to straw-colored to pale orange. If it’s turned brown it might be time to say goodbye.
There are Vitamin C-packed picks which includes an eye serum, non-toxic options, face oil, and more! However if you like your skincare delivered, there’s a little something for everyone.
Read on for some of the best Vitamin C products:
This serum has won beauty awards and the favor of editors and dermatologists alike for good reason. You’ll love it for its ability to fight fine lines and wrinkles while dramatically lightening sun damage and dark spots. The formula contains complementing antioxidants like vitamin E and ferulic, which help increase the efficacy of vitamin C. It’s on the pricier side, but a couple of small drops go a long way.
Vitamin C is an essential part of skin health as a small molecular weight antioxidant and as a critical factor for collagen synthesis; it also contributes to photo protection, decreases photo damage, and is needs for adequate wound healing. We can’t stress enough how important it is to take care of your skin. Having a flawless complexion not only gives you a total boost of confidence but is also a sign of good health, lessening your chances of skin-related diseases in the future.