What to know about vitamin C, the ultimate dullness killer - REMAKE

What to know about vitamin C, the ultimate dullness killer

We all know that vitamins are good for our internal health, but did you know they’re just as precious and potent for our skin health, too? Vitamins A, B, D and E are all mainstays in the world of skincare, as is one particular fave – yep, we’re talking about vitamin C. 

If you’ve ever woken up, taken one look at your skin, and thought ‘blah’ – turned off by dullness, uneven tone, or just a distinct lack of glow – then vitamin C is the ingredient you should incorporate into your skincare routine next. It’s a bonafide skin saviour known to hydrate the skin, minimise physical ageing signs, even out the skin tone, and best of all, brighten and boost glow like no other. 

So you can make the most of vitamin C yourself, it’s important to understand how it works, who should use it, and how to incorporate it into your routine – let’s dig into all things vitamin C. 

What is vitamin C? 

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that’s naturally found in the body, as well as in nature, via various plant sources such as berries, algae, and of course, citrus fruit. If you were ever told to eat your oranges for vitamin C growing up, you weren’t lied to – acidic fruits like these are a great source of this beneficial ingredient. However, because there are a bunch of different types or forms of vitamin C, many of the vitamin C products you’ll see on the shelf at your favourite beauty store have actually been formulated with a synthetic alternative. 

Types of vitamin C often found in skincare include L-ascorbic acid, ascorbyl tetraisopalmitate, ascorbyl palmitate, and tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate. L-ascorbic acid is the purest form of vitamin C, but in high concentrations, is also the most unstable. So, if you have sensitive skin and still want to reap its benefits, you should ensure you’re using a product that has been formulated perfectly for no adverse reactions, likely with a low-ish concentration of 10% or less. This is why certain types of skincare, including moisturisers, are formulated with a different, less active form of vitamin C, as this will minimise the risk for irritation or inflammation if used incorrectly. 

How does it work to brighten the skin? 

Vitamin C has long been known as a total dullness destroyer – it’s one of the most effective and well-loved ways to restore a youthful glow to your skin. But, how does this actually work? Well, it’s a multi-layered process of brightening discoloured and dark spots on the skin, as well as delivering optimum hydration for smooth, supple skin texture. 

Importantly, vitamin C impedes the production of melanin, the pigment that gives our skin its colour. Overproduction of melanin can lead to darker spots and hyperpigmentation, which is why topical vitamin C application is a fantastic route to go down if you’re looking to address these concerns. By using vitamin C regularly, you’ll have a better chance at fading those dark spots and evening out the skin tone.  

The other piece of the puzzle is hydration – better moisture levels mean skin that looks plumper, smoother, and healthier overall, which can add to the illusion of a brighter complexion. Vitamin C hydrates the skin by decreasing moisture loss and locking in all the good stuff to ensure you stay quenched for longer.  

What are the other benefits of vitamin C skincare? 

While vitamin C is best known for its brightening properties, it’s got even more to offer when used topically and regularly. Like other essential vitamins, vitamin C is an antioxidant, which means that it can protect the skin against the free radical damage we all experience by just living in the world, being exposed to UV radiation from the sun, and encountering pollutants. Protecting the skin against this kind of damage is absolutely key when it comes to anti-ageing, as free radicals can majorly contribute to the formation of fine lines, wrinkles, and those pesky hyperpigmentation spots. However, it’s important to note that everyone regardless of their skin type should be protecting their skin against the elements, making vitamin C an undoubtedly excellent choice. 

Vitamin C, ever the show-off, has also been found to benefit collagen production, which in turn makes it the perfect ingredient to incorporate into your anti-ageing skincare routine. Collagen is the protein that keeps our skin elastic and supple, but decreases as we age – so to stop fine lines and wrinkles in their tracks, we need to stimulate or supplement that collagen. Vitamin C does just this, encouraging the skin to stay fuller and more youthful for longer. 

Lastly, vitamin C is a great ingredient if you’re looking to calm and soothe redness on the skin. As a natural antioxidant, it’s both anti-inflammatory and ultra-gentle, meaning it will reduce inflammation without causing any additional irritation. While vitamin C shouldn’t be the sole product you use for redness – especially if you have rosacea or persistent irritation – it’s totally worth adding your routine for a boost alongside other calming ingredients. 


Who should use vitamin C? 

Skincare lovers rejoice – you can milk the benefits of vitamin C, whoever you are. Vitamin C skincare is gentle enough not to cause irritation, which means it’s suitable for most skin types, including dry skin and sensitive skin. As we’ve already highlighted, the only issue you may encounter is when using vitamin C in a high concentration, so we recommend most people stay well away from products with over 20% vitamin C unless they have tested for side effects for a prolonged period. As always, be sure to patch test your product away from the face to ensure you have no adverse reactions before adding vitamin C to your daily skincare line-up. 

Does vitamin C have any conflicts? 

When you’re incorporating any active into your routine, it’s crucial you check out potential conflicts prior to use. Vitamin C, while gentle, does conflict with a few common skincare ingredients – because it is an acid, it should not be used directly with other acidic ingredients like AHAs and BHAs (think salicylic, glycolic, and lactic acid). Vitamin C also conflicts with retinol, and might cause irritation if used directly before or after niacinamide. 

How should you use vitamin C?

To help you build your skincare schedule, here’s our advice – apply your vitamin C of a morning, as this also means you’ll have the best chance at protecting your skin against free radicals throughout the day. Then, use your niacinamide and/or retinol of a night time – retinol especially, as it can cause irritation when exposed to the sun. 

There are so many fantastic ways to make the most of this active ingredient, including vitamin C serums and vitamin C moisturisers. Our go-to for unparalleled skin benefits is the Remake Skin OJ Antioxidant Moisturiser, which pairs skin favourite vitamin C with hyaluronic acid for a super hydrated, bright complexion that’s, well, juicy! Because of the concentration of vitamin C, you can apply this baby morning and night if you so desire, as long as you aren’t using any conflicting ingredients. If you’re looking to wake up your skin from its slumber, we can’t go past Skin OJ.