If your skin has an uneven complexion, rough texture, acne scars, a dull appearance or fine lines, vitamin C is the solution! Vitamin C is the best-researched cosmetic ingredient that truly improves skin. Vitamin C is essential for the formation of collagen and therefore the firming of the skin. Skin therapist Isla explains all about this powerful ingredient in this blog.
Vitamin C is actually an umbrella term, as there are many different types. Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid. Unfortunately, ascorbic acid does not work well enough on its own because it is water-soluble and therefore quickly loses its efficacy. Fortunately, ascorbic acid can be stabilized with various substances so that it retains its efficacy. Below are the other names that fall under vitamin C and you will encounter more often on ingredient lists:
Vitamin C is an antioxidant. Antioxidants are vitamins and minerals that prevent free radicals from causing damage to our bodies. Free radicals are aggressive molecules that are created in our bodies during oxidation processes. Oxidation has to do with oxygen and oxidation is a normal process in our body. Another word for oxidizing is rusting, and skin blemishes such as pigment spots are actually rust spots. Vitamin C counteracts this harmful effect of oxygen and slows down the oxidation process.
Because vitamin C has antioxidant properties, it aids in the skin’s natural regeneration process, allowing our bodies to repair damaged skin cells. This can be a godsend when you are left with red and brown pigmentation spots (Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentations) after an acne outbreak. Vitamin C is helpful in preventing scarring.
In addition to treating existing skin blemishes, vitamin C may also have other preventive effects. For example, it can help against premature aging of the skin and limit the damage caused by exposure to UV radiation.
However, it is important to know that vitamin C only works in high concentrations (at least 4%). To know if a product contains enough vitamin C, you can look at the ingredient list on the back of the package. The higher in the list the vitamin C is listed, the higher the percentage.
In addition, you should pay close attention to the packaging of the product; Vitamin C is not resistant to light and oxygen. Therefore, it is best to buy vitamin C in a sealed bottle with a pump system or in a bottle with dark processed glass. So preferably not a jar with a lid. By doing so, it loses its efficacy and can actually have a counterproductive effect.
Moreover, vitamin C has been shown to do an even better job when combined with other antioxidants, for example, vitamin A, or E!
My favorites are the antioxidant serums from SkinCeuticals. Fun fact: in SkinCeuticals’ names, the C stands for vitamin C. For example, you have the CE ferulic, Phloretin CF, and the Silymarin CF.