What Is Vitamin C Serum Made Of – You can find vitamin C in a variety of skin care products, but experts say serums are one of the easiest ways to incorporate it into your routine.SkinCeuticals; CeraVe; La Roche-Posay
In the growing sea of skin care launches, it can be hard to tell which ingredients are truly trusted by experts versus just trends. Vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant, has long been popular among health professionals because of extensive research supporting its benefits. When consumed in food or drink form, it can protect all of your body’s cells from damage that can lead to conditions including cancer; When applied topically, the best vitamin C serum delivers protection directly to your skin cells. In fact, research shows that vitamin C can help prevent signs of aging, hyperpigmentation, and UV damage that causes cancer.
What Is Vitamin C Serum Made Of
But not all vitamin C skin care products are created equal. You’ll often see vitamin C in skin care products in its acid form—in certain concentrations, it can cause irritation, especially for people with sensitive skin. Vitamin C is also a highly unstable ingredient, according to experts—the same chemical properties that allow it to work as an antioxidant in your body also make it susceptible to oxidation that will render it inactive in your skin.
Vitamin C Face Serum
To help you find the best vitamin C serum for your skin type and learn more about who gets the most out of it, we spoke to three board-certified dermatologists for their buying advice.
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You can find vitamin C in various skin care products, but the experts we mentioned recommend using it in your daily routine through serums. Dr. “Serums are lightweight and easy to mix with moisturizers, sunscreens, and makeup products,” says Erum Ilyas, M.D., FAAD, a board-certified dermatologist from the Schweiger Dermatology Group in Pennsylvania. For vitamin C serums to be effective, dermatologists say there are a few things to consider:
To get the antioxidant benefits of vitamin C in your skin care routine, our experts recommend looking for a serum with a concentration between 10% and 20%. Below, they share their favorite recipes for all skin types.
Dr. Barbara Sturm The Good C Vitamin C Serum
All three experts we spoke to recommend Skinceuticals CE Ferulic, a serum with 15% L-ascorbic acid. It is often called the gold standard in vitamin C serums by dermatologists. “It probably has the most evidence behind it,” Castilla said, referring to a clinical study conducted by the brand that showed a 41% reduction in oxidative damage to the skin.
It’s also one of the more stable formulas on the market, thanks to the inclusion of vitamin E and ferulic acid, according to Dr. Sejal Shah, MD, a board-certified dermatologist and founder of Smarter Skin Dermatology in New York. “This combination makes vitamin C stronger,” says Ilyas, and helps prevent L-ascorbic acid from oxidizing before it gets into your skin. One thing our experts call out is the packaging: the bottle means that this serum is exposed to more air. According to the brand, however, the formula should be stable and effective up to six months after opening.
As a more affordable option, all three of our experts also recommend this drugstore serum. In addition to 10% L-ascorbic acid, CeraVe’s serum also contains ceramides that help strengthen and strengthen the skin, and hyaluronic acid, an antioxidant that helps the skin attract and retain moisture. Castilla especially likes its packaging: “It’s in a bottle with fresh water, which is a little better in preventing oxidation,” she said.
Another dermatologist-recommended vitamin C serum, this 10% L-ascorbic acid formula also contains salicylic acid. This can be a pro or a con, depending on your skin type, according to our experts. If your skin can tolerate it, the exfoliative benefits of salicylic acid can work together with vitamin C to break down dark spots faster, Ilyas says. If your skin is sensitive, however, the combination may be too irritating, according to Shah.
Made By Kinder
Shah also likes the vitamin C and salicylic acid ingredients found in this Kiehl’s formula, which specifically targets dark spots, acne scars and hyperpigmentation. It contains a stable form of vitamin C called 3-O-ethyl ascorbic acid, which is more easily absorbed by the skin, according to research published by the National Institutes of Health. You can use it both morning and night after cleaning.
U Beauty’s resurfacing ingredient is a serum that combines retinol, glycolic acid, and hyaluronic acid with vitamin C to target hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and uneven skin texture, according to the brand. It uses a milder form of vitamin C, called sodium ascorbyl phosphate or SAP. “The penetration [into the skin] is not as good as L-ascorbic acid, but SAP has been shown to help with collagen production and it can even be a little better for acne-prone skin types,” says Castilla. Use the resurfacing compound on dry skin immediately after cleansing and massage into the skin before applying other products.
Mad Hippie’s vitamin C serum also uses sodium ascorbyl phosphate, but comes at a lower price. “This is great for treating hyperpigmentation,” says Castilla. Like the top-rated (and more expensive) Skinceuticals CE Ferulic serum, Mad Hippie’s version also pairs illuminating vitamin C with vitamin E and ferulic acid; When combined, research shows that these three antioxidants can double the serum’s ability to protect skin from sun damage. To make things even better, it also moisturizes thanks to ingredients like hyaluronic acid and aloe, according to the brand.
This formula contains tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, a more potent but less irritating form of vitamin C, which penetrates the skin deeper than L-ascorbic acid. “It also has glycolipids, which are beneficial for collagen production,” says Castilla. (Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body and is responsible for giving your skin strength, texture and elasticity, according to the Cleveland Clinic.) As a bonus, this serum comes in an opaque, pump bottle to help reduce oxidation and preserve. The effectiveness of the formula.
Guide To Using A Vitamin C Serum In Your Skincare Routine
Shah recommends using a serum-moisturizer hybrid mixed with 15 percent tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate. This stable lotion comes in a squeeze bottle and contains squalane, an oil with anti-inflammatory benefits, making it especially good for those with sensitive or acne-prone skin. It comes in two concentrations: 15% and 30%. If vitamin C is a new addition to your skin care routine or your skin is easily irritated, start with a low concentration and make sure your skin can tolerate it before trying a formula with 30% vitamin C.
You can use this 15% L-ascorbic acid formula, recommended by Castilla, on its own as a serum, or as a brightening agent by adding a few drops to your favorite moisturizer, according to the brand. Like many other serums recommended by our experts, it is formulated with the antioxidants of ferulic acid and vitamin C.
This multi-tasking serum, recommended by Shah, targets pigmentation, redness, and skin elasticity. Formulated with 15% ethel ascorbic acid, a stable form of vitamin C, it also includes probiotics, which studies show support skin health by protecting the skin microbiome and increasing the skin’s immune response.
You should use this stabilized vitamin C serum (which turns into its active, i.e. the strongest, free radical antioxidant form when used, Shah says) after cleansing and before moisturizing and SPF, according to the brand. In addition to 15% ascorbyl glucoside (vitamin C), Shah often contains a plant-derived peptide designed to support skin elasticity.
Vitamin C Serum
When used as a consistent part of your skin care routine, vitamin C can be very beneficial. Below, we have summarized the most reliable benefits, according to our experts:
Not all vitamin C serums are created equal, according to the experts we spoke to. To get the most out of your products, they recommend understanding the type and concentration of vitamin C in a formula, keeping in mind how packaging can affect a serum’s effectiveness, and looking for ingredients that help protect skin.
You’ll generally find vitamin C included in medicinal products in two ways: in the active form as L-ascorbic acid, or in the inactive form that needs to be converted to L-ascorbic acid in the skin, Shah says.
Castilla says that in control, L-ascorbic acid is the most effective, but in reality effective of vitamin C serum may depend on many factors, including your skin type. “L-ascorbic acid can be very unstable, so whatever bottle you get, you have to use it quickly or it will oxidize,” she says. “Secondly, it has to be produced at a low pH, which means it’s very acidic and it can be very irritating for skin types, especially skin types prone to rosacea.”
Rohto Obagi Vitamin C10 Serum
Other types of vitamin C – such as 3-O-ethyl ascorbic acid, sodium ascorbyl phosphate, and tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate – are more stable. Shah especially likes tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate since it converts to L-ascorbic acid well and also penetrates.
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