We know vitamins contribute to health and vitality and vitamin c is no less different. When it comes to skin health, vitamin C has shown numerous benefits and the topical application (application on the skin) of it also contributes to this.
Normal skin naturally contains high levels of vitamin c compared to other body tissues (Pullat et al 2017) and research has shown this is depleted in aged skin or skin with photodamage. Low concentrations of vitamin c in the skin are also due to oxidant stress due to pollutants or UV irradiation (Rhie et al 2001).
So if the skin naturally contains high levels of vit c, why do we need the topical application of it? Because of the depletion due to damage and two because topical application actually benefits the upper layers of skin(epidermis) and the lower levels of the skin(dermis) is best supported by nutrients(e.g. vit c) via the bloodstream.
Types of Vitamin C
There are many types of Vitamin C and its derivatives used in skincare. The Ordinary has an amazingly in-depth and simple guide which offers a lot of information about vitamin and how best to choose it. I will encourage you to read it. Direct link to the article here
Benefits of vitamin C
There are numerous benefits of topical application of vitamin c to the skin. At the forefront, are its excellent antioxidant properties, binding to free radicals so that your cells don’t. It also offers brightening properties which make it excellent for hyperpigmentation. (I have a post on this here) and increases collagen production for firmer skin. It also supports the regeneration of healthy skin and enhances sunscreen protection.
Recommendations and how to choose a vitamin c product
My interest in vitamin c has grown over the last year and as I have paid more attention to ingredients and my skin concerns. As hyperpigmentation is my biggest issue right now, it was no surprise I have introduced vitamin c to my routine.
Choosing a true vitamin c product can be tricky: too high a percentage and it can use irritation, too low and there are no benefits. Also, it has to be packaged properly to prevent it from destabilizing.
For me, I use a lot of water in my skincare so I needed something that could work with it (pure vitamin c is not soluble in water) so I turned to vitamin C derivatives e.g. Ascorbyl glucoside that is a water-soluble derivative and highly effective when treating hyperpigmentation
This was probably my 1st introduction to vitamin c in skincare and it was entirely by accident. Still, I noticed improvements in my skin and since then I have been buying it once in a while and when I go on holiday. ( I can’t see it online anymore!! I hope they haven’t discontinued it!)
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Glucoside 12%
A highly potent vitamin derivative that is compatible with water. I experienced no irritation with this. My full review here
The Ordinary Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate 10%
This is a more recent addition to my routine but I really love it so far! It’s hydrating and gives my skin immediate glowing results and somehow manages to reduce my texture overnight. My full review will come after I have finished my (1st) bottle
Garden of Wisdom Vitamin C Serum 23% plus Ferulic Acid
This is a very recent buy, I’m yet to test drive this serum. I bought this as I love mixing my MAP with ferulic acid so I thought a higher concentration of Vit c plus ferulic acid will offer better results. This contains high strengthen pure L-ascorbic acid which I haven’t used before so I think it would be interesting to see if I will experience any irritation with this.
Update- I have tested this out on the back of my hand. There was no irritation but there is also no hydration. It’s a very watery light serum which feels nice on the skin
I hope this brief post gave you some insight into vitamin c and the wonders it can do your skin. I would also recommend you combine your great skincare routine to an active and balanced diet/lifestyle.
If you have been hesitant to try vitamin C, I also hope this post was able to encourage you to do so. Start with derivatives; they are just as potent with less to no irritation. Check out my recommendations too, they are ones I can personally vouch for but do further research into other products too. The Ordinary has an excellent range of vitamin c products and the wonderful post on them!
Catch you later
More posts on skincare ingredients