Go to the top of the class, vitamin C: you've earned it. Vitamin C is one of the skincare world’s all-rounders, boasting an impressive set of anti-aging benefits and leading some beauty experts to anoint it a Holy Grail. High praise indeed - but what is vitamin C, and what’s all the fuss about? Here’s your need-to-know guide.
What is vitamin C?
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that you’ll find in many bright-coloured fruits and vegetables (oranges are the most well-known example, but you’ll also find it in broccoli, peppers, berries, and even potatoes). We need to get our vitamin C fix from food, as the body can’t synthesis vitamin C on its own.
What does vitamin C do?
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, which means it helps neutralise the effects of free radicals – the molecules that damage our skin, causing inflammation. In doing so, vitamin C can help to boost our immunity and even lower the risk of disease. In turn, the benefits of vitamin C for skin keep our complexions looking healthy, glowing, and youthful.
Three benefits of vitamin C
Vitamin C’s powerful antioxidant abilities help to defend skin against environmental aggressors that cause skin to become dull, discoloured, and prone to showing wrinkles. Vitamin C for skin works by helping to prevent damage as well as slowing down the rate at which it occurs. Vitamin C is also key to the formation of collagen, which is one of the building blocks of skin that keeps it plumped and firm.
Vitamin C can help inhibit the production of tyrosinase, which is an enzyme that produces melanin – the substance that causes our skin to darken and change colour. As a result, vitamin C serums and other products help to target redness and pigmentation, even out the skin tone, and reduce dark spots for skin that looks bright and fresh.
Vitamin C has a balancing effect on skin by helping it to retain water, preventing skin from becoming too oily or too dry. It may also help to improve skin’s resistance to UV exposure, which makes a product such as a vitamin C serum an excellent partner for SPF.
Why we need vitamin C skincare
Consuming plenty of vitamin C-rich fruit and vegetables is essential for our health. Unfortunately, these benefits are not able to make their way to the top layer of our skin (the epidermis), which is why Vitamin C for skin is so crucial. Leave-on formulations like a Vitamin C serum or moisturiser can penetrate this top layer, so they are more easily absorbed by the skin – allowing the benefits to go where they’re needed most.
Natural versus synthetic
Vitamin C can be synthetic (made in a lab) or natural (sourced from nature). Natural Vitamin C is the most bioavailable form of Vitamin C. Unlike synthetic sources, it is more likely to contain the full range of phytonutrients - such as bioflavonoids and enzymes - which help the body use the nutrient the way nature intended. To be stable for use in skincare products, synthetic Vitamin C is formulated with a low pH level, which can cause irritation – and some forms of synthetic Vitamin C, such as ascorbyl palmitate, can even be toxic. Products with natural forms of Vitamin C are more likely to be gentle on skin.
The best vitamin C serum for luminous, dewy skin
Serums’ low molecular weights make them ideal for delivering the benefits of vitamin C to your skin. Glow Ritual Vitamin C Serum instantly illuminates while helping to protect against the environmental damage that leads to early aging – and it does this by harnessing a powerful natural source of vitamin C, the Kakadu plum. Native to Australia, Kakadu plum contains up to 100 times the vitamin C of oranges, helping to protect, plump, and brighten the skin.
The science behind Glow Ritual
In-vitro testing shows that Glow Ritual helps to inhibit oxidative stress in fibroblast skin cells*. That means it helps to defend skin against the effects of free radical damage that can break down the skin and lead to fine lines, age spots, discolouration, and a dull appearance.
How to use
This certified vegan vitamin C serum is formulated for daytime use so that skin can get the benefits of vitamin C for skin - but Glow Ritual is also gentle enough to use as often as you wish! Start with clean skin and massage a few drops all over your face, neck and décolletage (the area covering your collarbone). The lightweight gel glides over the skin so it’s easy to layer under makeup, use as a primer, wear on its own for a natural luminous complexion, or mix into moisturisers or liquid foundations for a long-lasting healthy glow.