The most important Antioxidant to combat UV damage in your skin is … you guessed it…Vitamin C! However, it actually does so much more…
This amazing, well-proven ingredient is an essential part of anyone’s routine who is truly creating a healthier, better-looking skin that ages incredibly slowly – isn’t that what we all wish for?
The Action of Vitamin C in Your Skin
- Is essential for the action of many other vitamins in the skin to occur
- Repairs the redness from too-long exposure to the sun
- Slows sunburn cell formation whilst in the sun and minimises UV damage in the skin when applied soon after exposure
- Slows the formation of pigment (brown spots) by inhibiting the enzyme tyrosinase
- Stimulates collagen and elastin production – slows wrinkle formation
- Fights free radicals (damaged cells) and is, therefore, anti-ageing
- Gives a brightening effect to the skin – removes dullness
- Decreases cellular inflammation – helps fight photo-ageing (sun damage) and so truly is anti-ageing
It is easy to see why topical Vitamin C is an essential part of your skin care regime, not just so you look great, but so your skin is healthier! A healthier, thicker skin that shows fewer capillaries is smoother, more even-toned and simply feels and looks younger.
How to Best Use Vitamin C
Generally, it is recommended that your Vitamin C serum is applied every morning, with your other super antioxidant –Vitamin A serum applied at night. However, after a day or any period of time in the sun and therefore any UV exposure, also applying it liberally after cleansing will assist your skin to recover and minimise any damage you may have done. Apply it directly to clean skin under your daily sun block for best effect.
Some Facts About Vitamin C and Your Skin
- It doesn’t matter how much Vitamin C we eat, only a small amount will reach our skin. Oral Vitamin C has an inadequate gut/skin transport system and, as the body cannot make its own, we do need to eat it, but this also means that we MUST apply it topically in the form of a serum to our skin – if we want it working in our skin.
- The body doesn’t store Vitamin C very effectively either, which means every day we do need to both eat more and apply it topically onto our skin.
- Once in the skin, Vitamin C loses efficacy when exposed to UV. However, it also protects the skin from the ageing effects of UV exposure by neutralising free radicals and slowing the cascading effect of their formation.
- Vitamin C is water-soluble and so, finds it very difficult to penetrate the skin. It is also quite unstable and loses its “goodness” very quickly when exposed to air and light. To overcome these problems, Vitamin C serums need to be either in dark bottles or in a crystalline form which are then mixed with serums.
- Manufacturers formulate it in various ways to help it be more stable and to improve its ability to penetrate the skin. What you should read on packaging are words such as: L-ascorbic acid, esterified Vitamin C, ascorbyl-6-palmitate, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate. Although there are more, these ones should all be stable for you as well as able to penetrate, so smile if they are in your cupboard, but also check that there are no SLS’s, parabens or other nasties. That way you know you have a perfect product!
- The % of Vitamin C is not so important; it is more relevant that you apply it to your skin at least once a day. Differing % of Vitamin C actually work differently in your skin, so you benefit either way.
- By combining a Vitamin C serum with Vitamin E, zinc and other plant-based antioxidants, such as ferulic acid, its efficacy can be increased by up to 20 times.
A Bit About UV Protection and Vitamin C
Vitamin C does not absorb UV light and so is equally effective against both UVB and UVA in the skin.
- UVA changes and destroys skin cells, including collagen, elastin and other structures in the dermis. Therefore, it causes ageing and possible melanoma formation.
- UVB causes you to turn red and be sunburnt, creates free radicals and possible skin cancers.
- It has been shown that when Vitamin C is added to a sunscreen or applied directly to the skin prior to any sun exposure, there will be reduced sunburn and, therefore a reduced ageing effect in the skin.
Specific Vitamin C Serums
You’ll actually find that many, if not almost all, of our products contain Vitamin C, it is so essential for healthy skin. However, some serums are focussed on giving you the best:
- CosMedix Pure C Mixing Crystals mixed with CosMedix Benefit Balance – brilliant combination for all ages and skin types as your skin receives a high dose of Vitamin C, plus a hydration mist full of restoring antioxidants. However, Pure C can actually be added to any antioxidant serum or cream. It’s an easy way to provide added Vitamin C to your skin.
- Osmosis MD Catalyst AC11 and Catalyst Plus – ideal for highly sun damaged skins
- Osmosis MD Replenish – all skins, except the most reactive
- Aspect Dr Active C Serum – all skins, though best for 20-30’s
- Aspect Dr Redless – dryer, reddened sensitive skins, all ages
- CosMedix Affirm – normal ageing, generally 35 years plus
- CosMedix Elite Pepoxide (formerly Results Rx) – normal ageing, generally over 45 years
- Aspect Extreme C – late teens into early 20’s,
So you can see that, whether just having a healthy skin or having one that ages really well are your priority, adding a Vitamin C serum to your daily regime – from your 20’s – is essential!
Still not sure?
If you need more help or would like personalised advice on what skincare products are best for you, book now for your consultation with a skin care advisor:
Or fill in the Online Skin Consultation and Gaye, our registered nurse, will happily help you to choose the right treatments and products for your skin type or concern.