Vitamin C in skincare had a huge moment about a year ago. Several skincare lines started rolling out products with vitamin C as their base. Moisturizers, face wash, serums - It was overwhelming and seemingly endless. What caused this avalanche to flood the market?
Here is an impressive list of some of its reported benefits:
May defend against UV damage
May lighten dark spots and brighten skin
Has a host of anti-aging benefits and may reduce the appearance of wrinkles
Boosts collagen production, which slows down with age
Promotes wound healing
Diminishes the appearance of scars
There are some things to know before adding vitamin C to your regimen in order to have the best outcome for your skin.
Concentration: In order to reap the benefits of vitamin C, it's important to have a concentration that is potent enough without irritating the skin. Some experts recommend serums with a percentage between 10%-20% of L-ascorbic acid, which is the most researched and active form of vitamin C. Finding that balance could prove to be tricky, and it may take some time to find the right one. Keep in mind with a very high percentage that some adjustments in terms of usage may be needed. Testing the product out on a small area of the skin would be an excellent first step.
When to Use: vitamin C should be applied right after cleansing the face. It may be used morning or night. Some prefer to use vitamin C in the daytime to reap the protective and antioxidant benefits when the skin is most exposed to the elements.
Combinations: Skincare has become much more science-driven and high-tech with products that include chemical and physical exfoliators, retinol, and acid toners. All of which contain many active ingredients that are beneficial to the skin. However, the skin barrier is very delicate (ideal pH is between 4.7 to 5.7), and aggressively layering products can disrupt its balance. Signs of an imbalance may include redness, acne, itchiness, dryness, and rough, discolored patches. It is essential to use products safely and effectively; therefore, vitamin C should not be used together with acids, retinol, etc. A good rule is to use vitamin C in the morning and use other active ingredients at night. Consider alternating their uses based on how your skin is looking and feeling.
Storage: vitamin C can destabilize and oxidize very quickly when exposed to air and light, thus rendering it less potent. Choose products that come in a pump (air-tight) that is dark-colored to protect it from light. Another fantastic packaging option would be vitamin C capsules. Typically, each capsule has a twist-off neck for daily use guaranteed to maintain the freshness and integrity of the serum. Each capsule usually contains a proprietary blend of vitamins C and E and other nutrients and actives.
Vitamin C is a powerful, skin-beneficial ingredient to use in your routine. Finding the proper balance, the right product, and the correct usage can leave you with a bright, glowing complexion.