When I think of vitamin C, I think of three things. The first (and most important) is swaying along to Vitamin C’s inimitable track, ‘Graduation (Friends Forever)’, with my ~BFFs~ at the conclusion of our Year 6 graduation. Most of those best friendships have faded, but the memories will live on in our hearts and scrapbooks forever.
The next is travelling. Chewy vitamin C tablets are the first thing I pack when I leave the country, because in my mind, they counterbalance all the abuse that comes with living life to the fullest. Sometimes I stop to wonder if this is just a placebo effect, before popping another chewy orange tablet and continuing to march down that well-beaten, hedonistic path.
The third thing that springs to mind is how much my skin has changed since I introduced this miracle ingredient into my life/beauty cabinet. I spent a good portion of my childhood, teens, and early adult life in the sun, and while the heavy hand of ageing is yet to properly beat down on my face, I’ve definitely noticed a big improvement in my pigmentation and the brightness of my skin tone since I started using vit C. My first foray into the anti-ageing wonder ingredient came in the form of Mario Badescu’s Vitamin C Serum, and I haven’t looked back since. In fact, I’ve looked forward. Forward to trialling every damn vitamin C product I could get my paws on, that is! More dad jokes/product reccos later, but first, let’s roll through the benefits.
There are heaps of forms of vitamin C. Many of them are heaven for the skin, with their powerful antioxidant and anti-ageing benefits. Vitamin C can be used as both a preventative measure and a solution to all your skin problemos — it’s perf for skin visibly damaged by UV exposure, dehydration, and scarring. It helps with photoageing, reducing the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and redness. Vitamin C is essentially the Gandalf of the skincare ingredient world – here’s why:
It Boosts Collagen
As we age, our skin becomes more susceptible to oxidative damage, which alters the structure of our skin. Fun! Our skin also begins to decrease its collagen production, and vitamin C helps to promote the healthy production of collagen. It can also increase the quality of the collagen created in the body, and aids the turnover of cells. Get. In. My. Cabinet!
It Brightens And Moisturises Dry Skin
Vitamin c puts some srs moisture back into dry skin, as it’s super easily absorbed. The ascorbic acid helps to decrease trans-epidermal water loss in the skin, helping it to retain moisture.
It Reduces Brown Spots
For anyone lucky enough not to need this information in their arsenal just yet, good on you. For everyone else, arm yourself with knowledge (and some vitamin C). Vitamin C is a pro at helping the skin heal itself. As such, it’s the perfect ingredient for saying “laters” to your red and brown spots. It’s also a good one for evening out skin tone.
It Reduces The Appearance Of Fine Lines And Wrinkles
The topical application of vit C decreases wrinkles over time by reducing protein fibre damage, increasing collagen production, and reducing the roughness of your skin.
It Heals Sun Damage (!)
One of vitamin C’s best uses is for limiting the damage caused by overexposure to UV rays. It contains high levels of antioxidants, helping to protect the skin from free radical skin damage caused by the sun’s rays – a major win for all of us living Down Under! UV rays deplete the levels of vit C in the body, so topical and oral consumption of vitamin C is crucial.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, you’d probably like to know about the products we recommend. Whether you’re just starting out, or looking to expand your preexisting empire, these are the clear winners:
Dr Dennis Gross C+ Collagen Perfect Skin Set & Refresh Mist
This mist by Dr Dennis Gross is not only delightfully refreshing, but will hydrate yo’ skin, shield it from environmental damage, and revive it of fatigue. It can also be used over make-up to help it set. And they say dreams don’t come true?
Mario Badescu Vitamin C Serum
This serum is perfect for protecting the skin against free radicals, and is the perf choice in aiding discolouration and brightening skin. It’s also formulated with hyaluronic acid to hold onto the skin’s natural moisture.
Dermalogica C-12 Pure Bright Serum
Dermalogica’s Pure Bright vitamin C serum is the one you want to help you combat hyper-pigmentation (brown spots, discolouration and uneven skin tone). It’s super light-weight, and absorbs really easily.
Glossier Super Glow
Glossier’s Super Glow should be your new BFF if you’re suffering from dull skin, or if you’re on that sleep deprivation tip. Those at Glossier are the masters of making us glow, and this is one of their best weapons to help you get there. It helps to even skin tone, and creates a light-reflective complexion.
Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum
Drunk Elephant’s C-Firma Day Serum is great if you’re after a slow-burner that’ll pass the test of time when it comes to minimising fine lines. It reduces the effects of photo-ageing by targeting cellular UV damage, encouraging cell renewal and refining skin tone.
The Ordinary Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%
This serum is the friend to all beauty fiends on a budget. It does just as good a job as the more expensive products on the market, and doesn’t oxidise due to an absence of water. Yew!
Murad Essential-C Day Moisturiser
A vitamin C moisturiser is good to have in your artillery if you’re after a super hydrating product that will help to protect your skin from UVA/UVB rays and free radical damage.
Goldfaden MD Brightening Elixir
It’s all in the name — this elixir helps to fight the appearance of photoageing, wrinkles, and redness. A good one for sensitive skin!
SK-II Facial Treatment Repair C
SK-II’s Facial Treatment Repair C is concentrated with hyaluronic acid, helping to refine skin texture and elasticity. It’s akin to wearing a treatment mask all day, and will leave skin deeply moisturised for up to 24 hours. Delish.
Words, Madeleine Woon.