oxidized vitamin c

Vitamin C: Skin Benefits

Vitamin C is a cosmetic active who has published extensively on pigmentation spots and the prevention of skin ageing. In this article, we'll take a look at vitamin C's action on the skin, how to choose an effective serum, and how to incorporate it into our skincare routine. facial carethe products I suggest, and finally we'll take a look at the vitamin C derivatives.

Vitamin C mechanism of action

Vitamin C is naturally present in the body, but cannot be produced or stored. It helps reduce spots and wrinkles, and brightens the complexion. Here are the actions of best vitamin C serums

1) Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that fights the damage created by free radicals all day long. Free radicals create oxidative stress and damage the skin's collagen and elastin. The result: visible signs of aging such as fine lines, wrinkles, sagging and loss of skin firmness increase.
You can see how the application of a vitamin C serum will protect this apple from oxidation. Guess on which apple a vitamin C serum has been applied.

2) Vitamin C protects against sun damage: one study showed that the application of an antioxidant in addition to sun protection increased protection against UV damage by 30%. This additional protection against free radicals was shown to prevent deep cellular changes in the skin. These cellular changes are responsible for the appearance of wrinkles, blemishes and even cancer.

3) Increased collagen production: Vitamin C has a preventive action, but also increases collagen concentration in the dermis via two different mechanisms. On the one hand, it facilitates the entanglement of collagen molecules in the skin, and on the other, it prevents the destruction of existing collagen. As you know, collagen production diminishes over time, but the daily application of vitamin C will boost collagen concentration to improve skin texture and, above all, reduce wrinkles.

4) Action on hyperpigmentation: Another powerful action of vitamin C is to reduce blemishes and hyperpigmentation by regulating the action of melanocytes. So vitamin C is very useful for treating post-acne, post-sun hyperpigmentation and melasma, but also for brightening the complexion and bringing radiance to the face.

How to choose a good vitamin C serum?

I'll give you 5 tips:

1) Pure vitamin C, known as L-ascorbic acid, is highly unstable and can rapidly oxidize, i.e. it will become ineffective if exposed to light or contact with air, so you need to pay close attention to the quality of the vitamin C bottle. Does it let in light? Can air get in? If the vitamin C has oxidized, it turns dark orange or brown and you can throw the bottle away. You can see here a normal vitamin C serum and here an oxidized vitamin C serum. Needless to say, using an oxidized serum is very bad for your skin.

2) The second thing to know is that pure vitamin C is hydrophilic, i.e. soluble in water, whereas the skin is made up of a layer of lipids, making it hydrophobic. This makes it very difficult for vitamin C to penetrate the skin.

3) For vitamin C to penetrate deep into the skin, the PH must be low. This chart shows the importance of PH on vitamin C absorption, and shows that the optimum PH for absorption is 3.5. A serum with such a low PH tends to cause tingling in some people, but you have no choice if you want to use pure vitamin C. Using a less acidic vitamin C serum will be ineffective, and you'll have spent money for nothing.

4) Another important criterion for vitamin C penetration is concentration. In this diagram, we can see the importance of concentration on absorption, which is optimal when vitamin C is concentrated at 20%. However, vitamin C can be irritating, and I recommend a concentration of 15%, with an average ranging from 5 to 20%. I recommend starting with a low concentration and then increasing according to your skin's tolerance and your needs.

5) The final criterion is that the effects of vitamin C are enhanced tenfold when combined with vitamin E and ferulic acid, so vitamin C serums containing these two active ingredients should be preferred. Other active ingredients, such as ceramides and hyaluronic acid, may also be of interest, particularly for people with reactive skin.

Suggestions for cosmetic products with pure vitamin C 

C15 Booster by Paula's Choice

This concentrated booster is formulated with a powerful blend of pure vitamin C 15% and potent antioxidants, including vitamin E, ferulic acid and peptides, to brighten and even out your complexion while reducing the signs of fine lines and wrinkles. Its lightweight formula penetrates quickly for easy application. It's packed with antioxidants for maximum anti-ageing benefits, and helps reduce the appearance of skin blemishes on the face.

C Firma Drunk elephant

Are you frustrated by early signs of aging and photodamage? It's time to try the C-Firma™ Fresh Day serum from our Drunk Elephant skincare range. Formulated with 15 % l-ascorbic acid, 0.5 % ferulic acid, 1 % vitamin E and pumpkin ferment extract, this revolutionary serum is packed with powerful antioxidants that will protect your skin from environmental aggressors. What's more, it's designed to be mixed by you just before first use, so you can maximize its potency and keep it as fresh as possible at all times.

This advanced serum not only offers maximum antioxidant protection, but also enzymatically breaks down dead surface cells, while moisturizing and soothing the skin. Your complexion has never looked so radiant, firm and even! Signs of aging and sun damage are visibly reduced, and your complexion is incredibly luminous and radiant.

C GLOW Vitamin C

Get ready for brighter, firmer, healthier skin with C GLOW Vitamin C! This 3-in-1 formula is designed to defend your complexion against environmental aggressors, stimulate collagen production and even out skin tone. This light-as-water blend contains 15 % of pure vitamin C, plus additional antioxidant protection, to give your skin a radiant glow and a feeling of lush health. And this isn't just any vitamin C.

How do you incorporate vitamin C into your skincare routine?

5 tips for applying vitamin C like a pro

The good news is that vitamin C is much easier to use than retinol, but there are certain principles to respect.

In fact, with vitamin C, there's no question of age or skin type: everyone can and should use it. If you're just starting out with vitamin C, there are several possibilities: either start with a small concentration of pure vitamin C, or start with a derivative. Once your skin is accustomed to vitamin C, you can move up to a concentration of 15 or even 20 %.

Vitamin C can be used in the morning or evening, but I recommend using it in the morning with sun protection for its ability to fight free radicals and UV aggression.

Step 1: Cleansing the skin, and there are certain subtleties to be aware of. When starting to use vitamin C, I recommend using a gentle cleanser before application, but if you want to go further and increase the penetration of vitamin C once you've got the hang of it, you can use a cleanser with an acidic ph that will increase the effectiveness and penetration of vitamin C, such as salicylic acid or glycolic acid.

The disadvantage of this technique is that it can aggravate the irritation caused by the vitamin C, and you'll have to stop.

The mistake not to make is to use a soap that will increase your skin's PH, as this can cancel out the action of the vitamin C by reducing its penetration.

Step 2 Application of vitamin C.

Step 3 Apply a moisturizer, such as hyaluronic acid gels.

Step 4: Don't forget sun protection in summer and winter.

The effects of vitamin C can be seen after one month for complexion radiance, 3 months for increased collagen and, above all, a lifelong preventive effect.

When should I be careful with pure vitamin C?

You must be very careful in 4 cases:

1) If you have very sensitive skin, prone to irritation and cannot tolerate the acidic PH of pure vitamin C serums.
2) If you are starting a retinol treatment, it's best to stop taking vitamin C initially.

3) If you have rosacea, vitamin C can make it worse.

4) If you have a severe outbreak of acne, your skin barrier is damaged and vitamin C can irritate the skin and aggravate the inflammation.

Among the examples I've given you, there is no formal contraindication to using pure vitamin C, but you need to go slowly and start with a small concentration or use a vitamin C derivative.

Vitamin C derivatives :

Are vitamin C derivatives effective, and when should I use them? The pure form of vitamin C, L-ascorbic acid, penetrates the skin best and is the most effective.

But it is highly unstable and requires a very low PH, which is why vitamin C derivatives exist. Vitamin C derivatives are not as effective as pure vitamin C, but they can be useful.

They are very stable, can be mixed with other active ingredients, do not create inflammation and can easily be used by people who cannot tolerate pure vitamin C.

Another major advantage is that derivatives can be both water- and fat-soluble. On contact with the skin, the vitamin C derivative is transformed into pure vitamin C. That's the theory, but we're not sure; I'm going to introduce you to three vitamin C derivatives.

One of the best derivatives is ASCORBYL TETRAISOPALMITATE. It is renowned for reducing hyperpigmentation and improving skin tone, and is also fat-soluble and much more stable than pure vitamin C.

Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F

This vitamin derivative is excellent for people with dry skin and concerns about hyperpigmentation such as melasma.

These properties make it excellent for people with dry skin and concerns about hyperpigmentation such as melasma.

Ascorbyl Glucoside Solution 12%

A water-soluble, very stable product that combines very well with Niacinamide. A good product to combat facial blemishes.

Another derivative is Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, which is water-soluble. An example of a product with this derivative is The Ordinary Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate 10%, which also contains omega 6, vitamins A and E and lenoleic acid, making it effective for people with clogged pores.