Why you should be using Vitamin C

Written by:  Dr Lauren Knight

For a while now it seems the buzzword or product seems to be Vitamin C. While many routines are no stranger to various vitamins and supplements, this one seems to be here to stay, well at least in my routine, and for good reason.

Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that we as humans don’t produce and need to acquire through dietary intake or topical supplements.

So why do you want to be using vitamin C you may ask?

Vitamin C as an antioxidant neutralizes damaging free radicals by electron donation. Free radicals are produced in the skin from UV rays, infrared light, pollution and smoking.

These free radicals “steal” electrons from the healthy molecules in the skin causing oxidative stress and ultimately result in the signs of ageing (fine lines, wrinkles, discoloration and skin laxity).

The great thing about vitamin C, unlike many other supplements, is that there is good scientific evidence to the benefits of its use. Proving that it is more than just a fad and like retinol a product that is definitely worth the added cost to your regimen. While you want to include vitamin C in your regimen, not all vitamin C serums are made equal.

When choosing your vitamin C serum there are a few key points to look out for:

  • Check that you are getting L-ascorbic acid, which is vitamin C in its purest form and the form that is best absorbed by the skin.
  • It should be formulated at an acidic pH (<3.5).
  • The concentration of vitamin C should be between 10-20%. 20% reflects that maximum that your skin can absorb, so higher than that you are probably paying more for product your skin wont absorb and less than 10% you are not receiving the full benefit of vitamin C.
  • Make sure your serum comes in an amber or dark coloured bottle and protect the contents from light as the active ingredients are denatured on light exposure. If the serum discolours (becomes tan or brown) throw it out.

sliced oranges and grapefruit, vitamin c

Vitamin C is best used in the morning to protect your skin from the day’s exposures. Once you have cleansed and dried your face. Apply 4-5 drops of the Vitamin C serum to the palm of your hand and using the other hand tap the serum onto your face massaging the serum in until it is absorbed.

Skinceuticals has a formulation which is scientifically proven in keeping with the above mentioned parameters, but I have really enjoyed the more budget friendly Vichy alternative that ticks the “what to look for” boxes.

vitamin c serum skincare

Have you tried Vitamin C?

If so what is your go to serum? Comment below.

Image credit: goop.com | junglekorea.com

Lauren Knight

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