Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin essential for the synthesis/maintenance of collagen. The human body is incapable of synthesizing or storing Vitamin C, relying instead on dietary and/or supplemental replenishment. Also known as Ascorbic Acid (Synthetic), L-Ascorbic Acid (Natural), or AA.
- Brightens: Fades pigmentation/discoloration. Diminished dark spots by 62.5% in 16 weeks with 5% ascorbic acid applied daily.
- Firms: Supports Collagen Production. Improved collagen production by 800% (in vitro).
- Protects: Antioxidant function defends against environmental aggressors (UVA/UVB, pollution, et. al.)
- Smooths: Decreases Roughness. In 3-month blind study (in vivo) of 10% ascorbic acid applied daily:
- Improved smoothness and tone by 57.9% based on photographic assessment.
- Improved smoothness and tone by 84.2% based on self-assessment from participants receiving active treatment.
- Effective in topical applications ranging between 5-20% concentrations.
- Combinations with Vitamin E (Tocopherol) and Ferulic Acid help to boost photoprotective capabilities.
- Ascorbic Acid degrades quickly with exposure to light, heat, and alkalinity, so choose airless/opaque containers and acidic formulations (4.0 ph or lower).
- Avoid any vitamin C skincare that has an orange tint. As ascorbic acid oxidizes, it takes on an orange to brown tint.
- Whether pigmented from oxidation, dyes, or additional ingredients, it is best to stick with vitamin c skincare that is clear or colorless.
- If you notice a change in color, discard the skincare.
- Sensitive skin may better tolerate lower concentrations, especially naturally sourced extracts or seed oils, or alternative Vitamin C derivatives.
- Power Combinations include Alpha Lipoic Acid, Ferulic Acid, Glutathione, Green Tea, L-Arginine, Peptides, and Vitamin E.
- Don't mix Ascorbic Acid with:
- Algae, Blackberry, Broccoli, Cranberry, Goji Berry, Grape, Hibiscus, Honeydew, Kelp, Pomegranate, Red Raspberry, Seabuckthorn, Watermelon
Journal of the America Academy of Dermatology, November 2012, pages 1103–1024.
International Journal of Dermatology, 2004 Aug, 43(8):604-607, A double-blind randomized trial of 5% ascorbic acid vs. 4% hydroquinone in melasma.
Archives of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, 1999 Oct 5:125(10):1091-1098, Use of topical ascorbic acid and its effects on photodamaged skin topography.
Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 1981 May; 78(5): 2879-2882, Regulation of Collagen Synthesis by Ascorbic Acid.
Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, Vol. 11 (4) – Dec 1, 2012, Stability, Transdermal Penetration, and Cutaneous Effects of Ascorbic Acid and its Derivatives.
Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, Vol. 4 (1) – Jan 1, 2005, Relevance of Vitamins C and E in Cutaneous Photoprotection.
The Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 2005 Oct, 125(4), Ferulic Acid Stabilizes a Solution of Vitamins C and E and Doubles its Photoprotection of Skin.
Experimental Dermatology, 2003 Jun, 12(3), Topical Ascorbic Acid on Photoaged Skin.
BMC Dermatology 2004;4:13, Topically Applied Vitamin C Increases the Density of Dermal Papillae in Aged Human Skin.
Clin Nutr 2005;24:979-987, Treatment with supplementary arginine, vitamin C and zinc in patients with pressure ulcers.
Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, 2017 Jul, 10(7).