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How Important Is Vitamin C to Your Skin?

We all know Vitamin C is an essential nutrient for humans.  But why is it so vital to our skin? 

Vitamin C is often regarded as a wrinkle fighter, antioxidant or an anti-aging agent. The main objective of ‘Vitamin C skincare’, in scientific terms, is to increase the synthesis of collagen which provides support and strength to the skin. This causes a decrease in fine lines and wrinkles and can also improve the texture of the skin. Vitamin C can also help to lighten skin discolorations caused by sun damage.  The additional benefit of Vitamin C skincare is related to its capability of countering free radicals which cause damage to the skin.

I started appying Vitamin C serum 6 months ago and taking Vitamin C supplement 3 months ago.  I notice the improvement of my skin - pores are smaller, skin tone is more even and scar is lightened too. 

However, Vitamin C Skincare faces a major challenge today. This is related to the oxidation tendency of Vitamin C skin care products. Have you ever applied lemon juice to a cut apple to prevent it from turning brown? The brown colour in cut apples is from oxidation (much like aging skin) and the vitamin C in the lemon juice is what prevents it from oxidizing, or turning brown.

Vitamin C is not very stable and is easily oxidised by exposure to air and sunlight; thus making the Vitamin C skincare product useless and in fact counter-effective.  The oxidised Vitamin C imparts a yellowish-brown colour to the Vitamin C skincare product. This is something that you need to check before buying a Vitamin C skincare product.  Even after you buy a Vitamin C skincare product, you need to store it properly and keep checking that it has not attained a yellowish-brown texture. 

The manufacturers of Vitamin C skincare products have tried multiple ways to deal with this oxidation problem.  One of the methods is to keep a high concentration (e.g. 10%) of Vitamin C.  However, this makes the Vitamin C skincare products even more expensive.  To be effective, vitamin C should be also packaged in tubes, capsules, pumps or powders that do not repeatedly expose the product to air and light.

Apart from applying Vitamin C skincare products, I strongly encourage you to take a dietary supplement of Vitamin C at least 500 milligrams a day, in addition to eating five servings of fruits and vegetables. If you are not able to achieve the recommended servings of fruits and vegetables every day, you may want to take a higher dosage of Vitamin C supplement e.g. 1000 milligrams.

 Last but not least, always wear sunblock with broad-spectrum protection at daytime!

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