Vitamin C: The Holy Grail of Skincare

Hello again, welcome back for another post on random information that I store in my brain. This week, I’m gonna tell you all about Vitamin C in skincare products. How it works, the benefits and if its right for your skin type!

It’s literally everywhere- the topical ingredient that promises glowing, healthy skin. I’ve seen it in serums, exfoliators, cleansers, moisturisers…. The list goes on. But let’s take a step back to look at the many benefits of Vitamin C, and really decide if it’s actually what our specific skin type needs.

First of all, what is Vitamin C?

Well, in a nutshell, it aids the skins regeneration process and helps to repair damaged skin cells. Vitamin C is a type of antioxidant that can help to fight off free radicals. Be warned… its about to get science-y.

Free Radicals

Free radicals are basically unstable molecules that can damage the skin cells. They are tiny- literally the size of atoms. What makes them unstable is that they are missing electrons from their outer shell, which causes them to search for other atoms and molecules to cling to and make them feel whole again. They are everywhere, but mainly they are found in the following:

  • Air pollution

  • Sunlight (UV rays)

  • Alcohol

  • Smoking

  • Poor nutrition

Have you ever walked through a big city and noticed that by the end of the day your skin feels dry, tight or just plain dirty? Thats the free radicals in the air pollution. And I know I’m not the only one who has terrible skin after a big night of drinking- that’s the free radicals found in alcohol.

There is no way to completely avoid them, they are everywhere. However, there are some steps you can take to keep your skin (and body) healthy. This is where antioxidants come in.

Antioxidants are also extremely small, and they work by binding to the free radicals, preventing them from clinging to our skin cells! These clever little compounds are also found everywhere. We can easily incorporate them into our diet- and amazingly they are not only found in fruit and vegetables. A few examples of antioxidant rich foods are blueberries, argan oil, green tea, dark chocolate (!) and even red wine (!!) in moderation.

So now we know how it works, what are the actual benefits of Vitamin C?

As I mentioned at the beginning, Vitamin C helps to repair damaged skin cells. But its wonders are not just limited to its antioxidant status!

Because it is highly acidic, when used on the skin, Vitamin C actually triggers the skin to heal itself, increasing the production of collagen and elastin. As we all know, collagen is the key to healthy, younger looking skin.

Another fun fact about Vitamin C- it contains a property which inhibits the skins melanin production, which is what causes discolouration. In other words, if you use it continually, Vitamin C can help to reduce dark spots and pigmentation, which is where it gets its reputation for brightening.

How to use Vitamin C

As I mentioned at the start, Vitamin C comes in any and all types of skin care, however I would recommend that the best way of using it would be as a serum. If you are new to skin care, especially.

Ideally, we should be leaving this ingredient on rather than washing it off so it can work its magic, which leaves us with serums and moisturisers. Serums have a much thiner consistency than moisturisers, meaning that they are able to penetrate deep into the skin. They are often more potent too, with lots of key ingredients which can help multiple skin conditions. Serums should be applied lightly (most of the time you only need a couple of drops) and layered underneath a moisturiser, to seal it in.

Ideal skin types for Vitamin C:

If your skin is:

  • Showing premature signs of ageing

  • Dull, dry and lacking radiance

  • Sun damaged

  • Uneven in tone

  • Uneven in texture

then Vitamin C will be a great addition to your skincare! If your skin is a little more sensitive, try using a lower concentration to start off with. Of course, consistency is key, so you need to keep up with all of your routines! If you are just starting out on skincare, then try incorporating a serum into your evening routine. It’s always best to have the more complex routine in the evening, as your skin repairs itself while you are sleeping! So any products you apply before you go to bed are going to assist this process.

Anyway, thanks for joining me once again. I hope you learnt something today! Have a great week.

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