- The antioxidant properties of vitamin C or ascorbic acid make it a vital molecule for skin health.
- The antioxidant activity of vitamin C can provide protective effects against UV-induced damage caused by free radicals.
- Vitamin C antioxidant serum can have a brightening effect, leaving your skin replenished.
Environmental irritants such as UV rays, pollution, radiation, cigarette smoke, and other toxic chemicals trigger the formation of free radicals, which can target skin cells for an overall negative effect on your skin’s health.
The inclusion of antioxidants in your skin care regimen can help your skin fight free radical damage by limiting their production.
Vitamin C’s Antioxidant Benefits
The beneficial antioxidant effects of vitamin C are significant, and an important part of many people’s skin care routines for these reasons.
- Vitamin C serum’s powerful antioxidant properties have been shown to protect against signs of ultraviolet-induced photoaging such as wrinkles and dry skin.
- Vitamin C acts to reduce pigment disorders at various stages of melanin formation, inhibiting melanogenesis or hyperpigmentation in the form of sun spots.
- The antioxidant defense offered by vitamin C offers anti-carcinogenic properties that may help prevent skin cancer.
Mechanism of action
Exposure to UV light reduces the availability of vitamin C in the skin. When skin is exposed to UV light, Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) are generated. ROS, in abundance, cause what is known as oxidative stress, which in turn causes skin damage. Vitamin C antioxidant serum’s properties protect skin from oxidative damage by providing the electrons needed to neutralize free radicals, rendering then ineffective.
Skin care applications
Since topical vitamin C serums offer protection from daily skin irritants like pollution, UV light, and free radicals, preventative morning use is understood to be the most effective time to apply it.
Some recommend applying it before bed for better absorption since most people apply fewer products to their skin at night.
Still others apply vitamin C twice a day in order to maximize its skin care benefits. Fnd what works for you and properly follow the instructions and recommendations on your chosen vitamin C antioxidant product.
Do Vitamin C Antioxidant Serums Really Work?
Choosing a vitamin C serum that will work for your skin involves a bit of product research.
When browsing products, look for a serum that includes l-ascorbic acid at a concentration of 10–20%. Concentrations higher than this can irritate sensitive skin. Although it is commonly believed that vitamin C serums with concentrations under 15% are ineffective, studies show that even at 3%, vitamin C can improve signs of photodamage.
Products which include tocopherol or vitamin E and/or ferulic acid tend to be more effective at providing antioxidant benefits to your skin.
Be sure to choose a vitamin C antioxidant serum packaged in a dark or tinted glass bottle as clear bottles do not properly protect it from sun exposure and preserve its potent effects.
If you’re looking for an alternative to vitamin C to include in your skin care regimen, there are several other effective options out there, most of which also work to increase the effectiveness of vitamin C when used in combination. These include:
- Niacinamide or vitamin B3 is a powerful antioxidant that improves the skin’s texture and tone. It can also be combined with vitamin C to boost its performance, particularly with regard to UV-induced hyperpigmentation.
- Vitamin E is an antioxidant widely recognized for its ability to accelerate the skin’s healing process. It is often found in moisturizers, creams and lotions formulated to treat dry skin. Combined with vitamin C and ferulic acid it can also provide significant photoprotection.
The role of vitamin C in offering potent antioxidant activity beneficial to the skin has been well-studied and is well worth exploring for anyone interested in boosting their level of UV protection against potentially harmful free radicals triggered by exposure to the sun.
The regular topical application of topical antioxidant vitamin C offers a number of tangible benefits that protect skin from the damaging effects of free radicals for overall brighter, healthier looking skin.