How Often Should I Use Vitamin C Serum?

How often should I use vitamin C serum?
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Trying to figure out how often you should be applying your newly purchased Vitamin C serum? We have all the information you need to ensure that you are getting the maximum benefits from your product. 

How frequently should you be using vitamin C serum?

The anti-aging, UV-protecting, and healing properties of Vitamin C make it a great addition to your skincare routine. As a general rule for the best results, you should use vitamin c serum once daily.

What to know before using your Vitamin C Serum

  • Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid. Because these serums are acidic, they can easily be irritating to your face if you are not using the right product the right way.
  • Ascorbic acid serums contain differing concentrations of the active ingredient. If you have sensitive or dry skin, you may want to use a serum containing around 5%. Concentrations can contain up to 30%, which might be better for you if you have oily skin.
  • Vitamin C is a highly unstable ingredient when it is in its purest form, so you should use a product that contains vitamin E and ferulic acid because they can help balance it out.
  • The way that vitamin c is absorbed into your skin largely depends on the pH level. If you have a normal skin type, you should go with a product that has a skin pH of around 3.5, but if you have sensitive skin look for a formula containing a pH of 5/6.
  • Vitamin C comes in a few different forms, such as ascorbic-6-palmitate, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, and L-ascorbic acid. L-Ascorbic acid has been researched the most and is the most active vitamin C derivative, according to a 2017 study published by the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology.

“A study published in September 2015 in Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology found applying vitamin C topically increased collagen production among study participants in all age groups. The study participants noticed the effects after 40 days of treatment and were even more pronounced at the 60-day mark.”


What are the benefits of Vitamin C Skincare Products?

The benefits of vitamin C serums include protection from sun damage, photoaging, hyperpigmentation, reduction of acne scars, dryness, sagging, improved skin texture, and uneven skin tone.

Immediately after using a vitamin c serum, you will notice an added radiance to your skin.

Our skin only receives a minute amount of the benefits when ascorbic acid is ingested through food/drink. That’s why adding a topical vitamin in the form of a serum to your skincare can improve your overall skin health much more quickly and productively.

The acidity of vitamin c acts as a chemical exfoliant and removes dead skin cells. Once the dead skin cells are removed, your face appears smoother and brighter.

The antioxidant properties of vitamin C smooth fine lines, lighten dark spots and protect against free radicals from pollution and UV radiation in the environment. Free radicals cause damage to your skin which can lead to premature signs of aging or even skin cancer.

Vitamin C also speeds up the process of cell regeneration by causing the skin to increase collagen production.

If you want to know more about all of the fabulous benefits that serums have to offer, read here: 9 Crucial Facial Serum Benefits and Must-Have Ingredients

How to incorporate Vitamin C Into Your Skin Care Routine

Start Slowly: It is best to go with a gradual approach when you begin using vitamin C products. You may need some time to adjust to this new ingredient depending on your skin type.

If you have sensitive skin, it’s a good idea to start out by using it every three days or every other day, Eventually, your skin will be used to it so that you can use your serum daily. 

Use it in the A.M.: In order to get the most benefit from your vitamin C serum, it’s best to apply in the morning with your sunscreen, because that’s when UV exposure is at its peak. There is no harm in using ascorbic acid twice daily, but applying it at night time is not as effective.

Keep in mind that Vitamin C becomes less effective when it’s exposed to sunlight, so give it some time to absorb into your skin before heading out for the day. 

Be cautious about using Vitamin C Serum with certain ingredients: Retinol and vitamin c can both do wonders for your skin, but using them together can easily cause irritation.

The retinol can also make the ascorbic acid more unstable, which will make it less likely to penetrate your skin to give its benefits. It is recommended to use these ingredients separately, such as vitamin C one day and then your retinol product the next day. 

You should never use vitamin C with the ingredient benzoyl peroxide because it can oxidase vitamin c which reduces the potency. If benzoyl peroxide is an essential part of your skincare routine, try using your serum in the morning and the benzoyl peroxide at night.

Make sure you are applying your products from thinnest to thickest during your routine. Say you have a slightly thicker gel-like Hyaluronic Acid serum- you would want to apply the vitamin C serum before that product. 

Steps for Using Vitamin C

Knowing the correct order in which to apply your skincare products is important for getting the maximum benefit from your routine. Vitamin C products are mostly recommended to be applied at the beginning of the day, so this is an example of what your morning would look like using a vitamin c serum:

  • 1. Wash your face using your favorite facial cleanser.
  • 2. Apply toner if you already have one included in your routine.
  • 3. Apply the serum to your freshly cleansed skin. A little bit of product goes a long way, but you can pat the excess product on your neck and hands. Let it dry for a couple of minutes before applying your moisturizer.
  • 4. Apply a moisturizer.
  • 5. Apply eye cream.
  • 6. Use sunscreen. It is very important to use sunscreen every day to protect your face from UV rays. This will also help you get the most benefits from your vitamin c serum.

You can learn more about applying face serums by reading this article! – How to Apply Face Serum

How should you store vitamin c serums?

Apart from knowing when and how often to apply your serum, you should also know how to store your product correctly.

Vitamin c is sensitive to air, light, heat, and certain chemicals, so it is important to store your serum in a cool, dark area that is out of the sun. 

You should also make sure to pick a vitamin c serum that comes in an opaque, air-tight container. Avoid vitamin c serums that come in a tub or dropper bottle, because they will cause your serum to oxidize much more quickly.

Your serum should be an almost clear, light yellow color. You will know when it has oxidized if it becomes yellow or brown. At this point, it’s best to throw away that product and purchase a new one.

Once it has oxidized, vitamin c is much less effective and can even cause a yellow discoloration to your skin.

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that can do wonders for your skin. Just make sure that you are using a good quality serum with the right concentration before incorporating it as part of your daily skincare regimen. Using a product with a well-formulated ingredient list is even more important than using the correct application process. 

Once you have a great product with the knowledge of how and when to apply it, you can enjoy the many benefits that vitamin C has to offer. Read here for more information about serums!

CeraVe and Cetaphil both have great vitamin C serums at a very reasonable price. Find out which one is best here.

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