Fade dark spots, protect complexion from UV rays, restore natural glow, vitamin C can do a lot for your skin .
But the type of vitamin C cosmetic you choose, as well as the way you use and store it , can significantly affect the amount of active you get from it.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps smooth fine lines and wrinkles, reduce blemishes, brighten the complexion, and most importantly, eliminate environmental free radicals, pollution, and UV radiation.
Over time, those free radicals can damage the dermis, leading to premature signs of aging and increasing the risk of skin cancer.
Therefore, it is important to protect against the damage of these UV rays with an antioxidant and, of course, with a daily sunscreen.
However, not all vitamin C products are created equal, and they can be irritating and difficult to use in some cases.
It’s important to read the product label and know what you’re really buying – which isn’t always an easy feat when it comes to cosmetics – especially if you have sensitive skin.
So, before you start looking for a face product, read these tips to get the most out of your vitamin C serum .
1. Use the vitamin C serum in the morning
There is no law that prohibits the use of vitamin C products at night, but you can maximize their benefits by using them in the morning.
In general, vitamin C products should be applied in the morning, before going outside, when UV radiation is highest .
But this ingredient becomes less effective when exposed to light, so it is important to give it time to absorb into the dermis before going outside.
No need to wait a specific time, as long as it is absorbed, it can go out.
2. Incorporate it into the correct step of your skincare routine
The right time to use the cosmetic depends on the type of product it is.
In the case of serums, you should apply them on freshly clean and dry skin , but before hydrating it.
But moisturizers that contain antioxidants are also increasingly common, and these should be used at the end of the routine , after the serums.
3. Use the correct concentration of vitamin C for your skin type and needs
Each cosmetic has a different concentration of vitamin C. In general, they range from less than 1% to 30% .
This can be verified by reading the ingredient list. The higher the ingredient is, the more concentration it will have, and vice versa.
Obviously, depending on its concentration, its effects will be different .
People who have dry or sensitive skin probably want to start with lower concentrations, around 5% , which are less likely to be irritating.
But those with oilier skin or more extensive pigmentation problems will need higher concentrations.
After 20 percent, there is a kind of stagnation, which means that, say, 30 percent is not going to give you more benefits than 20 percent, so there is no reason to use a higher concentration.
4. Don’t mix vitamin C with certain ingredients
Vitamin C is normally quite safe and well tolerated; But if you have sensitive skin, it can be a bit itchy, especially if you use it in conjunction with scrubs or acids in your facial routine.
Obviously, if you are sensitive or allergic to any of the botanical ingredients that vitamin C can come from – like oranges, for example – you should definitely proceed with caution.
The only ingredient to avoid when using vitamin C is benzoyl peroxide , which can oxidize it and therefore make it less potent.
You can continue to use your benzoyl peroxide products, but not in the same routine.
Try using vitamin C in the morning and benzoyl peroxide in the evening, or use them on different days.
5. You can use it with retinol, but be careful
It has always been thought that the use of vitamin C products with retinoids should be avoided at all costs. And this is still true.
They work best in different skin environments, so using them at the same time can make both less effective .
And because they can have similar effects on your skin, experts still advise against using these two ingredients together.
Using them in the same routine can cause irritation, although you can use them on the same day at different times.
Experts generally advise using vitamin C products in the morning and retinoids in the evening.
6. Make sure you store your products correctly
In topical skin care products, vitamin C is sensitive to light and air . When exposed to these factors, it is oxidized to dehydroascorbic acid, which is less stable and less effective.
Therefore, these cosmetics should be stored in opaque containers that are airtight or airless, rather than in a dropper jar or bottle that has to be fully opened.
Fortunately, many products already come in opaque packaging for this very reason.
7. Take a look at the general formulation of the product
There are different types of vitamin C that can appear in different types of products.
Some are more stable than others, which means they won’t rust as quickly, and some of them have different properties that can make them more suitable for certain complexions.
The L-ascorbic acid , also known simply as ascórbico- acid is one of the most common forms found in the products of vitamin C.
This form, along with sodium ascorbic phosphate, is water soluble, which means it is more likely to appear in lighter products and better suited for a more oily complexion.
If you have dry, mature skin, you’d better try moisturizing products that contain lipid-soluble forms of vitamin C, such as ascorbyl palmitate and tetraehexydodecyl ascorbate .
8. See if the product has changed color
The vitamin C serum should be colorless or light straw in color. If it rusts, it turns yellow or brown and will likely be less effective.
You can still use it if you want, but it won’t do as much for your skin and, very rarely, oxidized vitamin C products can even cause a slight yellow discoloration of the skin.
So consider getting rid of any cosmetics that have drastically changed color since you bought it.
Especially if it is brown, in which case it is better to throw it away.
9. Don’t limit yourself to serums
The most common way to get vitamin C in a skincare routine is in a serum. But you don’t have to limit yourself!
If you prefer not to add one more step to your regimen, know that you can also get vitamin C in cleansers, moisturizers, scrubs, masks, and even sunscreen .
Some of my favorite ways to get vitamin C include:
Kathie Sand always saw the world of beauty as the terrain on which to build her professional career, a goal that was clear to her when she was only 15 years old. Her great concern to expand knowledge led her to settle in Paris where she studied hand in hand with the best beauty professionals and with the most advanced techniques for skin care.