October 22, 2019

The top benefits of adding this potent antioxidant to your skin care routine

Any well-versed skin care enthusiast understands that a healthy glow comes down to a lot more than applying the right creams and serums. It’s also about a healthy lifestyle in which the individual exercises, drinks plenty of water, and eats a diet rich in leafy greens, fruits, and healthy proteins.

However, these two forms of self-care have a way of overlapping, and this is especially true in the case of vitamin C.

Vitamin C is an antioxidant known for its versatile set of properties. These assist in healing and restoring our bodies, namely in the immune system and the skin. Vitamin C is typically consumed either as a dietary component or as a topical vitamin.

Is your primary experience of vitamin C is in the form of a fizzy powdered beverage to curb flu symptoms? Then this article is an excellent starting point for learning about the numerous vitamin C benefits for skin, health, and more.

3 Vitamin C Benefits for Skin

Vitamin C is one of the most popular options for targeting skin symptoms like dullness, dark spots, and loss of elasticity. With its impressive antioxidant properties, vitamin C is esteemed for three major benefits for skin:

Defense Against Free Radicals
Free radicals come from pollution, stress and sun damage, and are acknowledged as one of the biggest factors in the aging process. Luckily, vitamin C fights against free radicals, thus preventing its damaging effects.

In fact, studies have shown that vitamin C may even assist in repairing sun damage. Keep in mind: that doesn’t mean that vitamin C can act like a sunscreen, as it cannot absorb or refract light in the UVA or UVB spectrum. Instead, it prevents the buildup of oxidative stress in skin, caused by free radicals caused from UV rays and pollution.

In fact, studies have shown that vitamin C may even assist in repairing sun damage. Keep in mind: that doesn’t mean that vitamin C can act like a sunscreen, as it cannot absorb or refract light in the UVA or UVB spectrum. Instead, it prevents the buildup of oxidative stress in skin, caused by free radicals caused from UV rays and pollution.

On that note, vitamin C can render your skin more photosensitive, so if you apply any kind of topical vitamin C during the day, you should wear it under sunscreen. Studies have also shown that using a vitamin C product under a zinc oxide sunscreen can actually enhance the protective benefits of your SPF.

Supports the Formation of Collagen
Collagen is one of the main structural proteins which compose healthy skin tissue and maintain elasticity. This means that by encouraging the production of collagen, vitamin C can help heal and repair damaged tissue more quickly. Support of collagen synthesis also promotes more youthfully supple, bouncy skin.

Helps to Fade Dark Spots
As demonstrated in a 2017 study, vitamin C can act as a melanin inhibitor to help brighten the skin. Melanin, a contributor of skin pigment found in the stratum basale of the epidermis, is naturally present in skin but can build up as a result of oxidative stress. Sun damage and oxidative stress may appear as freckle-like dark spots after too much time in the sun. Vitamin C suppresses this irregular hyperpigmentation, meaning that it keeps skin looking even and bright.

How to Receive the Benefits of Vitamin C

Vitamin C in Your Diet
Thankfully, there is a wide variety of fruits and vegetables which contain large amounts of vitamin C. The most popular sources include citrus, tomatoes, kale, broccoli, kiwi, green and red peppers, and berries. In addition to consuming plenty of raw fruits and vegetables, you can also load up on vitamin C by eating fermented foods such as pickled vegetables, kimchi, and kombucha.

Vitamin C in Your Skin Care Routine
Applying vitamin C to the skin is easy in this day and age, with a skin care market laden with vitamin C products. While this means that the consumer is offered a wide variety of choices, choosing the right one for you can be overwhelming! Luckily, there are a few key characteristics in a product that can help you determine its level of quality, to reap the maximum vitamin C benefits for skin.

One of the characteristics to look for is the form of vitamin C listed on the bottle. You’ll rarely see this antioxidant listed on packaging as simply “vitamin C”; it will normally be referred to as its derivative. There are three types of vitamin C derivatives spotted most commonly in skin care products:

Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate
Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (MAP) is another water-soluble derivative of vitamin C that can be effective in diluted concentrations, and is especially hydrating to dry skin.

Ester-C is a trademarked vitamin C derivative that’s been enriched with calcium ascorbate; this derivative comes with a lot of claims, but not much third party research to back them up.

Ascorbic Acid
Ascorbic acid absorbs the most quickly and has the highest potency when applied topically.

Plant-Based Ingredients
While each of these may work differently on some individuals, the most reliable form of vitamin C to keep an eye out for is ascorbic acid. That being said, vitamin C can also be in natural ingredients, often found in plant-based skin care:

Sea Buckthorn
Sea buckthorn (also known as seaberry) is a superfood harvested not from the ocean, but from trees high in the Himalyan Mountains. Along with vitamin C, sea buckthorn contains a wealth of antioxidants and minerals, which help to fight free-radicals and repair tissue.

Moreover, sea buckthorn contains a plethora of phytonutrients which additionally help to brighten the skin. Sea buckthorn receives its well-earned spotlight as one of the main ingredients for Puristry’s Seaberry Moisturizer for giving your skin a dewy, glowing complexion.

Along with vitamins A, D and E, rosehip oil contains a wealth of vitamin C. This powerful vitamin infusion makes rosehip oil an excellent supplement for anti-aging. We combine it with the extracts of superfoods, like pomegranate oil and acai oil, in our Restorative Facial Oil to create a cold-pressed blend with truly reviving properties.

Nopal Cactus
Nopal cactus is high in vitamin C, as well as vitamin A, vitamin K, and riboflavin. These nourishing elements make cactus a suitable ingredient for restoring and rejuvenating skin, which is why we featured it as the star of our Nopal Cactus Cleanser.

Vitamin C is a high-quality skin care ingredient, suitable for those seeking to prevent the onset of fine lines and wrinkles, brighten their skin, and protect against environmental damage. There are multiple ways to tap into its benefits, whether it’s at the breakfast or in your bathroom cabinet. If you do buy skin care that features vitamin C, it’s recommended to make sure that the product contains gentle, plant-based ingredients – no toxins here, please!

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