Do you really need a Vitamin C Serum?
If you want clear, young looking skin, then the answer is yes.
Vitamin C is one of nature’s most potent antioxidant and depigmentation agents. You can find it in most citrus fruits, berries and dark green leafy vegetables.
However, although potent, Vitamin C may have a limited effect on your skin when taken orally. Bioavailability and mechanism transport are some of the factors that can restrict its benefits.
To get the most out of this powerful vitamin you need to apply it directly on your skin. Topical application of Vitamin C is known to be 20 times more effective than taking the vitamin in its oral form.
Your best option includes applying Vitamin C as a serum on your skin. It’s lightweight, easily absorbed and highly effective.
3 Benefits of Using Vitamin C Serum on Your Skin
Vitamin C can do a lot of good things to your skin. To narrow down the list, we present the top 3 benefits of Vitamin C serum application you should know:
Protects Against Skin Cancer
Vitamin C can help prevent skin cancer by offering a certain amount of protection against UV damage. It supplements the effect of your sunscreen by creating a barrier from within the skin’s layers.
Unlike your sunscreen, Vitamin C doesn’t have the capability to absorb UV lights. Its work is limited to reversing UV damages caused by unstable free radicals.
For best protection against the sun and skin cancer, always make it a habit to use both sunscreen and Vitamin C serum on your skin whenever you’re going out.
Vitamin C should be applied on your skin before any other product. Putting something else before it can prevent full absorption.
As for your sunscreen, we recommend applying it after your moisturizer and before your makeup.
Prevents Wrinkles and Fine Lines
Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant. This is one of the reasons why a lot of products are including it as one of their main ingredients.
As an antioxidant, Vitamin C creates a barrier to prevent and neutralize free radicals from causing damage to your skin. Aside from these properties, the vitamin is also essential in the synthesis of two important skin proteins- collagen and elastin.
Collagen and elastin are responsible for the structure of your skin. Once these proteins deplete in amount, the structure of your skin changes and it becomes loose and saggy.
Fades Dark Spots and Blemishes
By limiting your skin’s melanin production, Vitamin C can help lighten up your skin color. It can also help clear any dark spots and acne scars on your entire body.
Vitamin C helps speed up the process of cell renewal and healing by supplying the skin with collagen.This doesn’t just aid in reducing the appearance of scars but it also helps create a filler for indented acne scars
Things You Need To Consider Before Using a Vitamin C Serum
Vitamin C serums offer tons of benefits. However, these benefits tend to be different from one person and brand to another.
Before you go grab just about any bottle of Vitamin C serum, here are some special considerations you need to keep in mind.
Vitamin C serum is not an absolute for everyone. While it can work wonders on someone else’s skin, it doesn’t mean it will readily have the same effects on yours.
Typically, the application of Vitamin C serum can cause redness and a bit of irritation. Although these reactions are considered normal, it’s not always a positive thing.
The stinging sensation and redness usually go away on their own. If the irritation does not subside, there’s a good chance your skin can’t tolerate topical Vitamin C well.
Aside from tolerance, the base ingredient of Vitamin C serums can also cause potential allergic reactions. This happens most commonly to highly sensitive skin.
Because Vitamin C is likely to stay on your skin for a couple of days, it’s important that you know how well your skin can tolerate it. Any allergies or negative reactions can stay on your skin until all of the Vitamin C you’ve applied has been used.
Vitamin C serum works well whether you have oily or dry skin. You have to be cautious, however, if you have sensitive skin.
- As a general rule, if you have normal to oily skin, you should consider looking for a serum that has L-Ascorbic Acid as its main component.
- If you have dry skin, it’s better if you stick with Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate which is a derivatives of vitamin C.
When to Expect Results
Vitamin C serums, although effective, is still not an overnight miracle. Repair and renewal can take days, weeks and even months.
Most people are able to see results in as early as two or three weeks. The longest you can expect results is around six months.
There are a lot of factors that can lengthen or shorten the time it takes before you see visible changes in your skin. Some of the most common factors include:
- Method of application
- Strength of the formulation
- How religiously you apply the product
- Your skin’s condition
More work that needs to be done means the longer time Vitamin C serum can take in reverting your skin back to its best health. Because each person’s skin is different, it might be helpful not to make comparisons.
How to Choose the Best Vitamin C Serum For Your Face
Choosing among the long list of Vitamin C serum today can be overwhelming. To save yourself and your wallet from paying for the wrong product, here are the criteria you should keep in mind:
The potency of a product depends on the amount or concentration of Vitamin C it has. The higher the content means the more potent the serum is.
Although, in general, you do need a serum that has high concentration, you should still be wary of picking the highest one. If you are just starting out with using vitamin C serum, you should start with the lowest to determine your skin’s tolerance.
If there’s no adverse reaction to the serum, you can start working your way towards a higher concentration or until you’ve achieved the most beneficial percentage for your skin.
Because of this, taking note of how much vitamin C percentage your skin needs is more important than what percentage works best for most people.
The form of vitamin C in a serum helps determine its shelf life and stability. To better understand, here are some of the most common forms you should know:
This is Vitamin C’s most potent form. Unfortunately, because ascorbic acid is less stable and more irritating, it’s not what most companies use in their serums.
Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate
This derivative is less irritating but more stable than ascorbic acid. As such, it’s best suited for people with sensitive skin.
Ascorbic Acid Polypeptide
This form is highly stable. It can readily do the conversion of Vitamin C on the skin. Aside from this, Ascorbic Acid Polypeptide is also water soluble.
This is one of the most common derivative of Vitamin C you’ll find in skin care products that’s fat soluble. It’s non-irritating but highly effective in protecting your skin against free radical damage.
It’s another water-soluble derivative of the vitamin.More often, you’ll find this derivative used as a skin whitening agent with antioxidant properties.
Tons of companies opt to use this derivative in their serums because it poses less risk to the skin. Despite the low risks involved, it’s highly effective in giving you the results you want.
The right pH level can help you determine if you’re using a good product or not. To make sure your serum is able to reach the deeper layers of the skin, you should aim for a lower pH.
A lower pH level in a serum means it’s highly acidic. If your skin is not able to tolerate the acidity, it may result in sensitivity issues.
For a safer shot at topical vitamin C, you can choose to use its derivatives. They are equally effective even with a higher pH.
The recommended pH for magnesium ascorbyl to be effective for the skin is around 5 or 6. This, in theory, is within the range of the skin’s normal pH level of 4 to 7.
Because it’s close to the normal skin pH, irritations and allergic reactions are less likely to happen.
Color and Smell
Vitamin C serum should be colorless or white. Any alteration to its color should be a cause for concern.
For one, cloudiness or brownish tint can alert you of possible oxidation. When vitamin C has already oxidized, it’s no longer beneficial.
You should also be wary of brands that sell colored serums. Most of the time, colors are used to either attract consumers or to prevent people from noticing oxidation.
Color, however, is not the only criteria you can base possible oxidation on. Because the early oxidation stages don’t readily alter a serum’s color, make sure to smell it, too.
Normally, vitamin C serum is odorless. If it starts to smell sour and rancid, it’s time to take them out of your shelf.
- Vitamin E is another ingredient you want your Vitamin C serum to have. Studies have shown that Vitamins C and E are more effective together at keeping your skin healthy than relying on one alone.
Ferulic acid acts as a booster to the benefits of Vitamins C and E. It stabilizes both of these vitamins and protects elastin and collagen in your skin.
It also doubles the blockage of UV rays which protects your skin from photoaging. The potency of ferulic acid is actually boosted when exposed to UV light!
Hyaluronic acid offers a lot of benefits to the skin. Because aging tends to deplete HA level, finding a serum with a good HA content is helpful in keeping your skin young looking.
HA moisturizes and improves the health of your skin. It also promotes healing and lubrication.
Vitamin C is photosensitive. Light and air easily affect its quality.
This makes packaging an important consideration when buying vitamin C serum. In looking for the best product, stay away from serums packed in transparent bottles.
Your good options include bottles that are brown or blue in color. Airtight containers are also good in keeping vitamin c in its best quality.
Most vitamin C serums are expensive. This, however, doesn’t mean that you can’t find a product that’s both affordable yet effective.
Typically, a $20 serum can give you your money’s worth. Brands that advertise quality vitamin C content for $3 or $4 are likely not laying everything on the table.
Mass production of vitamin C serum is already costly. Aside from manufacturing and packaging, companies spend a big chunk of money in shipping them quickly to consumers.
How to Store Vitamin C Serum
While it’s tempting to keep your bottle of Vitamin C serum in the bathroom, humid places tend to affect its quality. You should also avoid storing the product where direct sunlight exposure is expected, such as any cabinets placed near your windows.
For better storage, always keep in mind to tightly close your serum’s bottle. This is to prevent air from coming in contact with its vitamin C content.
Most people find it useful to keep their serums inside refrigerators. Other consumers find aluminum covers helpful in keeping their vitamin C serum fresh for longer.
When looking for the best vitamin C serum, it’s not enough that you consider the best selling or most popular brand. As every one’s skin is different, you have to listen to your own body to find the right fit.
If a serum doesn’t give you the results you’re looking for or if negative reactions occur, do not hesitate to change the product. There is always a better brand or a better formulation that can sufficiently meet your skin’s need.
Because we know how frustrating it can be to spend your money on the wrong product or to develop breakouts and allergic reactions, we’ve created this guide to help you easily find the perfect match.
Through our in-depth research, we found Serumtologie to be the best vitamin C serum for your face. With such a low price and a handful of potent ingredients, this serum can give you the best bang for your buck.