Most of us know that Vitamin C boosts our immune system, promotes growth, helps us absorb iron, keeps our cartilage, bones and teeth healthy, and increases our collagen production. It’s the last benefit, though, that also makes topical Vitamin C for skin so useful.
Even if you’re taking vitamin C supplements, it may not be making its way to your skin. Topical vitamin C is a great weapon in any anti-aging arsenal and also improves complexion, so it’s a good idea to add a Vitamin C serum to your skincare regimen. Here are nine things to know about Vitamin C and your skin:
- Vitamin C for skin is safe
Vitamin C is safe for most skin types. Even when Vitamin C serums are used for a long time most people never experience negative effects. People with hypersensitive skin, however, need to be careful of irritation – as with most products. If your skin is very sensitive, use a test patch or ask your dermatologist for advice. In general, vitamin C serums with L-ascorbic acid may be gentler on the skin, so a good product to consider is SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic, which contains both Vitamin C and L-ascorbic acid.
Vitamin C also works well alongside other skincare products like retinols and SPF sunscreen, with little risk for bad interactions.
If you’re concerned about adding a serum to oily, breakout-prone skin, SkinCeuticals Silymarin CF is oil-free and formulated specifically for this skin type.
- Vitamin C boosts hydration
One of the primary derivatives of Vitamin C is magnesium ascorbyl phosphate. Research shows this to improve skin hydration. It does this by reducing our skin’s water loss. Hydrated skin is always healthier skin, and has a smoother, glowing appearance.
- Vitamin C gives a youthful glow
Speaking of glowing appearance, Vitamin C fades pigmentation and restores brightness. It also smooths the surface of your skin, which makes it less dull and more youthful.
- Vitamin C evens skin tone
If you have uneven skin tone such as hyperpigmentation like sun spots or age spots, Vitamin C has been shown to positively impact skin where melanin production is too high, which makes the skin dark. Vitamin C does this by slowing the production of melanin where the serum is applied, which can fade dark spots.
- Vitamin C brightens your eyes
If you have dull, sunken or dark skin around your eyes, Vitamin C is an excellent option to reduce the appearance of these troublesome under-eye circles. Vitamin C serums can smooth the fine lines in these areas, plumping skin and keeping it hydrated.
Vitamin C is good at reducing redness too, and works on dark discoloration as well.
- Vitamin C helps you make more collagen
Like we mentioned before, one of the major benefits of Vitamin C and your body is it helps our bodies make more collagen. Collagen is a very abundant protein in our cells, but it decreases with age. It is a major building block of bones, cartilage, skin and more. Less collagen means your skin becomes less firm and supple, leading to wrinkles and fine lines. Using a vitamin C serum can help your skin cells produce more collagen and your skin look better overall.
- Vitamin C prevents sagging
Sagging skin is common as we age, and is another symptom of lessening collagen. Our skin loses elasticity and firmness and you may see skin sag under your eyes, on your cheeks, on your neck and elsewhere. Using Vitamin C can help tighten skin anywhere the serum is applied.
- Vitamin C fights sun damage
While SPF sunscreens and protective clothing are absolute must-haves for defending your skin against the harmful effects of the sun, Vitamin C also does a lot to prevent sun damage. Because Vitamin C is rich in antioxidants, it fights free radicals, which our skin is exposed to by the sun’s rays.
A powerful Vitamin C serum that protects against free radicals from the sun and environmental exposure is SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF with Ferulic Acid.
- Vitamin C can soothe sunburns and wounds
If your skin does incur sun damage and you end up with a burn, vitamin C might help soothe it. Vitamin C does this by encouraging the production of healthy new cells to replace damaged and dead cells. For this same reason, it is also useful in healing skin wounds. The faster your skin heals, the less vulnerable you are to inflammation and infection, and you may scar less, too.
Using Vitamin C for skin
While Vitamin C has been shown to be safe for most skin types, to safeguard against irritation or allergic reaction you should always patch test Vitamin C serums before using them fully. To do this, pick a small patch of skin in a place that’s easy to conceal and apply the serum to it. Wait 24 hours and observe the patch for any signs of a bad reaction, such as rash, hives or redness. If you don’t see any of these signs you can move on to using the serum as directed. If you do see them, discontinue use and speak to your dermatologist about other options.
Topical Vitamin C is usually applied one or two times a day. A good rule of thumb is to apply it after you cleanse your skin, but before you moisturize it. Each product has its own directions for use, however, so it’s advisable to follow the label.
If you find it easier to use vitamin C for skin with a lotion, Revision Skincare’s Vitamin C 30% Lotion is a daily antioxidant lotion that provides all the benefits of vitamin C while also moisturizing skin.
While Vitamin C works well with other products, watch out for products containing niacinamide, because this can lessen vitamin C’s effectiveness. If you are using multiple products for different purposes you may find an advanced formulated vitamin C serum that’s made to specifically address multiple concerns like skin tone and texture, protection, repair and more, try Revision Skincare’s C+ Correcting Complex 30%.
We sell the Vitamin C products mentioned in this post at our four locations. If you’re in doubt which product is best for you, schedule an appointment with one of our Board-certified dermatologists or estheticians to develop a skin care regiment that’s tailored to your needs and goals.
To get the maximum effect of Vitamin C, consistency is vital. Keep up with your skincare routine daily and enjoy all the rejuvenating effects!