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Here’s Why Your Skin Needs Vitamin C

August 2, 2021

News

Here’s Why Your Skin Needs Vitamin C

When it comes to your skincare routine, vitamin C is one ingredient that everyone talks about. It’s hyped up just as much as retinol and SPF – making it a superhero for your routine. Vitamin C is one ingredient that brings dozens of benefits for your skin. It’s infused with everything from antioxidants to properties that rejuvenate your skin’s collagen to prevent pigmentation. We’re taking a deep dive into the world of vitamin C to find out everything you need to know about this ingredient.

Whether you’re a newbie to the ingredient or a longer-term user, this guide takes you through everything you need to know about vitamin C. If you’ve landed on this article, you’re probably considering adding vitamin C to your skincare routine. Spoiler alert: it’s one ingredient that everyone can benefit from using. You want to make sure to bookmark this page as a reference once you start using vitamin C.

What is Vitamin C and what does it do?

Vitamin C is a natural ingredient that is safe for most skin types, and you can layer it with other products, like AHAs and sunscreen. Vitamin C does virtually everything that your skin needs. It’s one of the most powerful and potent antioxidants on the market, protecting your skin from environmental damage. As an antioxidant, vitamin C protects your skin from pollution, brightens its complexion, boosts your collagen production, and helps inhibit pigmentation. It’s one ingredient that every dermatologist raves about, with most of them recommending that you should use it topically.

While vitamin C is something that you can get from your diet, you have to consume a toxic level of it to get the same antioxidant benefits as using it topically in your skincare. Vitamin C is able to stimulate your collagen, because your fibroblasts that create new collagen have receptors for vitamin C. These receptors enhance your skin cell’s DNA, encouraging it to produce more collagen to transform your skin.

One of the benefits of vitamin C that most people talk about is its skin-brightening properties. With all the trends focusing on the idea of natural skin with a dewy glow, it’s no surprise that vitamin C has become increasingly popular. It helps to brighten your skin’s complexion by preventing the production of pigmentation to keep your skin looking clear and smooth.

Another one of the most popular uses of vitamin C serum is as an anti-ageing treatment. It stimulates your collagen and elastin production to prevent skin sagging by tightening your skin. The antioxidative properties of vitamin C protect your skin from oxidative stress, such as sun damage, by preventing free radical damage.

What to look for with vitamin C

Just like other active ingredients – such as retinol – there are things you want to look out for. Not all vitamin C products are made equally, meaning that you want to find the one that works best for your skin. Ascorbic acid – also known as L-ascorbic acid – is a natural form of vitamin C that is also the most highly researched. Ironically, it’s also the most unstable form of vitamin C.

The type of vitamin C that is used in a product depends on the rest of the formulation and the way that the formula is delivered to the skin. Packaging is something we often tell you to ignore when looking at products. The cliché of “don’t judge a book by its cover” is usually correct, but not when it comes to vitamin C.

When you’re shopping around for vitamin C, you want to look for the correct packaging for your product. Keep an eye out for a sealed container that has an airless pump and that comes in a darker tinted bottle. You can also use an encapsulated powder or vitamin C that is delivered in single or short-use shots that keep the active ingredient at its most potent before it is delivered to the skin.

You also want to consider how you use and keep your vitamin C products. It’s always best to keep the lid on the product and you want to make sure that you don’t leave it sitting in your bathroom. The fluctuation in heat from the bath or shower will degrade and destabilise your vitamin C. You’ll notice that your vitamin C will have oxidized if the product starts to change slightly in colour. You can still continue to use it in this state as it shows that there is still a good concentration of vitamin C. Any changes that are more obvious will mean that you have to discard your product.

Know the % of your vitamin C in the product you’re using

Vitamin C is proven to be active when it has a concentration of just 0.6% and above. The higher the percentage of the concentration, the more serious the effects of the vitamin C. As you go higher with the concentration, the skin begins to become more sensitive. Whatever way you want to use your vitamin C, you need to start with a lower concentration and slowly move to a higher concentration overtime. These are the golden rules for using any active ingredients that can cause a reaction to your skin.

Potential skin irritation is the only major downside that comes from using vitamin C. If you use it as part of your daily skincare routine, you can expect to see your skin tone and complexion start to brighten over time. It also acts as an antioxidant in partnership with your daily SPF. You want to avoid going over the 5% concentration threshold without good reason. If you want to start small and avoid irritation, it’s a good idea to use a face wash or a mask with vitamin C.

Depending on the sensitivity of your skin, you might feel your skin start to tingle even with a concentration of 2%. If you think that your skin is more sensitive, it’s a good idea to use it alongside a face cream to prevent irritation. When your vitamin C concentration hits 10% or above, the ingredient becomes more active.

Vitamin C is one ingredient that you don’t need to be using every day. Most people choose to incorporate into their skincare routine two to three times a week. The key to seeing results is to be consistent with your vitamin C use and to keep it as part of your routine for at least eight weeks. It’s after the eight-week mark that you will start to see results from your vitamin C.

If you’re planning on using vitamin C as a way to tackle sunspots, you need to gradually work your skin up to a 20% concentration. This level is clinically shown to be effective for treating sunspots.

How to use Vitamin C in your skincare routine

Vitamin C is one skincare ingredient that you’ll usually want to incorporate into your morning routine. It can help to protect your skin from pollution and it’s a multitasking ingredient that is amongst the most flexible of any active ingredient. There’s no hard and fast rules about using vitamin C, meaning that you can also incorporate it as a part of your night-time routine if you prefer to. The key is to make sure that you’re being consistent and keeping your vitamin C as part of your regular skincare routine to start seeing results.
One of the easiest and most effective ways of using vitamin C is through a serum or in a powder form that is mixed with your serum. Most dermatologists will recommend using a serum as the form of delivery. You want to be careful with which ingredients you’re using alongside your vitamin C. Vitamin E is one ingredient that it is often paired with to help boost its antioxidant properties.
If you’re making the effort to incorporate vitamin C into your skincare routine, then you want to make sure you’re also using a daily SPF. If you’re using vitamin C to tackle pigmentation, you want to make sure you’re protecting your skin with an SPF to prevent it being exposed to further sun damage.
One ingredient that vitamin C is often used in partnership with is hyaluronic acid. These two ingredients are the duo that your skincare routine has been waiting for. Both have powerful anti-ageing properties and work together to hydrate and protect your skin. Using the vitamin C and hyaluronic acid together can reduce the risk of any irritation that might be triggered by your vitamin C by keeping your skin moisturised and aiding the healing process.
Adding vitamin C to your daily routine can help protect it from premature ageing and keep it hydrated to give you a brighter complexion and radiant glow. If you’re thinking of adding it to your routine, it’s a good idea to wrap your head around the complexities of the ingredient. Like any active ingredient, you want to start small and slowly work your way up. Trust us. You won’t regret adding vitamin C to your routine.

What do you think of vitamin C? Is it a part of your skincare routine? Let us know in the comments below!

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