Should you use Vitamin C or Not?
If you are in your 30's you will nod and agree that we all grew up with the recommendation of Vitamin C tablets through winter to boost your immune system and plenty of fresh orange juice to ward off bugs, germs and keep us all healthy. Things haven't advanced that much with Vitamin C still being a popular nutrient for your diet to ensure a healthy immune system, however we are not here to talk about health but more a focus on skin.
There are two trains of thought on the use of Vitamin C in your skincare routine. The PRO's and AGAINST are all valid and i recommend based on the following information.
Here is a little list of WHY and WHY NOT when it comes to Vitamin C...
First you have to understand Vitamin C and its different formats
What Is L-Ascorbic Acid (LAA)? This is vitamin C in its most potent form, and LAA has the most research backing it to show effectiveness. However, it’s less stable than other forms and can cause skin irritations in high doses. If you try it, and your skin is cool with it, then this is your best bet for results.
Best for: potency and results, normal or oily skin
What Is Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate? This water-soluble derivative of vitamin C is more stable (meaning it won’t degrade as quickly as other forms). It also causes less skin irritation, so this is the best form if you have sensitive or dry skin.
Best for: dry or sensitive skin
What Is Ascorbyl Palmitate? This is a more stable form of vitamin C and is commonly used in oil-based skincare formulas. While it’s not as potent as other forms, its power move is fighting free radical damage to protect against signs of aging and repairing skin.
Best for: repairing free radical damage
What Is Ascorbic Glucosamine? This is a water-soluble derivative of vitamin C. It’s often used for its antioxidant and skin-brightening properties, although more research is needed on its actual effectiveness.
Best for: hyperpigmentation
What Is Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate? This is the newest member of the vitamin C family. It’s more stable than the other members, and its fat-soluble makeup makes it easier to penetrate into deep layers of skin.
Best for: general skin treatment
What Is Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate? A stable, water-soluble derivative, this form of vitamin C is gentle on skin and converts to ascorbic acid after it’s absorbed. It effectively brightens skin and battles free radical damage with antioxidants. I’ve personally chosen this form of vitamin C in my own moisturizer formula.
Best for: brightening and fighting free radical damage
THE PRO'S - SOME BENEFITS OF VITAMIN C
Boosts Collagen Production Age and sun damage cause us to lose collagen, leading to wrinkles and sagging skin. Vitamin C boosts your skin’s collagen production to give you firmer, more plump skin and smooth out fine lines and wrinkles.
Fights Free Radical Damage and Signs of Aging The antioxidant properties of vitamin C help fight free radicals and damage caused by UV radiation.
Brightens Dark Spots Vitamin C helps lighten hyperpigmentation and brown spots. It also inhibits melanin production for evening skin tone and brightness. Its a must have ingredient to be used whilst undergoing laser treatment for pigmentation.
Skin Repair It helps to repair damage from sun exposure and collagen loss by encouraging healthy cell turnover and regeneration.
Helps Protect the Skin Against Sun Damage Vitamin C gives you some added sun protection by thickening the dermis layer of the skin to help guard it against harmful UV rays and sun exposure.
CON'S - The Negatives to consider when being recommended Vitamin C
Sensitive Skin Typically Vitamin C hosts itself in a low PH Level which for most sensitive skins can be quite irritating. For best absorption the low PH is necessary - so hence the dilemma. I suggest avoiding unless absolutely necessary.
Mixing of Ingredients Vitamin C should avoid being combined with ingredients such as Nicinamide (B3) as they do not like one another
Packaging It must be kept in an air tight container for best efficiency long term - this should be a air pump dispenser
And, it must always be kept in a dark container.
The Skin Condition that should avoid Vitamin C
Acne Rosacea is characterized by intense and frequent flushing, and the appearance of broken blood vessels on the cheeks, chin and nose. You can also get acne-like pimples in these areas as well.
Firstly, its important to understand not ALL rosacea suffers disIike Vitamin C, some see huge improvements within their skin once added to their routine but its most commonly included when the skin is calm and stable from treatment and introduction of other major skincare ingredients.
First you must understand triggers and often Rosacea skin suffers have an impaired skin barrier meaning heat, moisture and texture are all impaired. A low PH based skin ingredient will only further irritate the skin, where our main focus is to build resilience and support.
Once the skin is strong and stablised, less likely to have flare ups Vitamin C can be included and used to help treat other skin conditions often present beyond the Rosacea.
My favourite Vitamin C product is:
SupremaC+ delivers stable ethyl ascorbic to target cells, with a 86% conversion to active L-ascorbic acid. This powerful antioxidant-rich serum reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation and tackles photo-ageing at the source with 20% CMF Triacid Complex™, a trademarked blend, unique to Synergie Skin. A synergistic complex of vitamin C, mandelic and ferulic acid is your ultimate boost for youthful, balanced and radiant skin.
"A powerful anti-oxidant, Vitamin C plays a role in counteracting damage and protecting our skin. It is a proven and long standing skin ingredient and always worth considering as an addition to your skincare routine. Ensure you seek advice from a professional in regards to which style of C will suit you best"