Thanks to its impressive résumé of anti-ageing benefits, vitamin C is one of the most-searched for skincare ingredients on Google. Here’s why it’s worth looking for…
What is vitamin C?
Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that helps tackle some of the most common skincare concerns, from dull skin to fine lines and an uneven skin texture. Although our bodies don’t naturally produce it, it can be applied topically to the skin to give all skin types a boost of radiance and protection.
5 vitamin C benefits for skin
It would be quicker to say what vitamin C can’t do. Fortunately for us, its list of skincare benefits is as long as it is impressive.
• Reduces dark spots
Hyperpigmentation, sun spots or dark patches on the skin occur when melanin (the pigment that gives skin its colour) is overproduced. This can be a side effect of sun exposure, changes in your hormone levels during pregnancy or even acne. Vitamin C helps to reduce melanin production and prevent the oxidation of existing pigmentation, stopping it from becoming darker.
• Evens skin tone
As an antioxidant, vitamin C helps to protect against the effects of sun damage and free radicals, which can damage cells and cause inflammation. The anti-inflammatory properties of vitamin C can also help to reduce puffiness and redness, to encourage a smoother, more even complexion.
• Smooths skin texture
As we get older, our body produces less collagen, an important building block of the skin – it’s what keeps its plump and firm. To slow down unwanted sagging, applying a daily dose of vitamin C can help to stimulate and maintain your body’s natural collagen synthesis.
• Provides a healthy glow
Skin looks at its healthiest when it’s naturally glowing. And when it comes to glow-giving ingredients, they don’t come more potent than vitamin C for skin. As well as helping to encourage a younger, firmer-looking complexion, adding a vitamin C serum into your daily routine can also help to brighten your day in every way possible.
• Helps fight harmful toxins
Vitamin C not only helps to encourage a brighter, plumper complexion, it also provides antioxidant protection from free radical damage. Without it, environmental aggressors including the sun and pollution can cause your cells responsible for skin elasticity and collagen production to break down.
Our best vitamin C serum
Lancôme Rénergie H.C.F Triple Serum
What’s better than one active ingredient? How about three? Our Lancôme Rénergie H.C.F Triple potent serum gets its name from its combination of hyaluronic acid, vitamin C+ niacinamide, and antioxidant ferulic acid. The powerful triple dose is designed to help reduce a whole host of signs of ageing including the appearance of lines, sagging skin and dark spots. Each formula is housed in its own chamber in the bottle and freshly mixed on the hand to maintain higher levels of potency and stability than if the ingredients were formulated together.
How to use vitamin C serum
To take advantage of vitamin C’s protective benefits, incorporate a vitamin C serum into your morning skincare routine to help prevent damage from free radicals. Massage the lightweight formula into your skin after cleansing, which will help to remove any overnight sweat or bacteria and help the active ingredients penetrate deep into the skin. Follow with a layer of moisturiser to trap in all the nourishing ingredients and finish with a protective barrier of SPF – it may be the final step but it’s the most important of any skincare routine. A high factor, broad-spectrum SPF helps to protect your skin from UV damage that can cause sun damage and premature skin ageing, undoing all the good work your vitamin C is designed to do.
• Can you use glycolic acid with vitamin C?
These glow-giving hero ingredients work great together, brightening your skin and encouraging a more even skin tone. To avoid any irritation, especially if you have sensitive skin, split your doses out during the day, applying vitamin C skincare products in the morning and glycolic acid at night.
• Can you mix salicylic acid and vitamin C?
Combining vitamin C with salicylic acid beauty products, which penetrate deep into the skin to exfoliate and clear pores of dead skin cells, can also help to brighten your complexion. Use topical vitamin C products in the morning to make the most of their antioxidant protection, and salicylic acid at night when your skin’s natural exfoliation process is at its most productive.
• Can you use vitamin C with retinol?
This anti-ageing skincare power couple can also complement each other when used at the right times. As retinol and vitamin C operate best at different pH levels, splitting them up helps to prevent irritation and keep them at their most potent and effective. Use radiance-boosting vitamin C in the morning to help brighten your skin and protect it from environmental stressors. As retinol boosts cell turnover, which can cause photosensitivity, it is best applied at night when the sun has gone down. It’s also essential to follow with a layer of SPF the morning after.
• Can you use niacinamide with vitamin C?
Another multitasking powerhouse ingredient, niacinamide helps to hydrate your skin, encourage collage production and improve your skin barrier function. It can also be layered with vitamin C morning and night. Apply in the order of thinnest to thickest, so if you’re using a vitamin C facial serum and niacinamide-rich moisturiser, your lightweight serum goes on first.