Essential Things to Know About Vitamin C Serums

Vitamin C is one the most widely used cosmetic ingredients as it has multiple skin-beneficial properties. But it’s also an unstable substance with the tendency to oxidize over time, and its effects depend on what form is included in the composition formula. Learn how to pick the best Vitamin C serum for your skin type and beauty goals and how to fit it into your skincare routine.

How to pick the right Vitamin C serum for your skin type?

Vitamin C serums have various properties depending on which particular form is included in the product. The activeness of the ingredient also depends on its form. So, serums are not universal and do not fit everyone the same way. Choose a Vitamin C serum that will work for your skin type and skincare needs.

Among the most popular Vitamin C forms used in cosmetics are:
L-ascorbic acid. The most active and unstable form. It will work for oily and combination skin.
Ascorbyl Palmitate. The main property is antioxidants.
3-O-Ethyl Ascorbate. It is highly stable and penetrates well into the skin. It’s suitable for all skin types, even sensitive ones, helps to brighten pigment spots, post-acne, and has an antioxidant effect.
Ascorbyl Glucoside. It lightens and even tones skin and has an antioxidant effect.
Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate. Stable but less active in terms of Vitamin C properties. It possesses a hydrating effect.
Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate. Stable form, the main effect is antibacterial. This form is suitable for acne-prone skin.
Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate. The stable, fat-soluble form of Vitamin C and the most expensive one. It penetrates deep into the skin and stimulates collagen production.

How to fit a Vitamin C serum into your skincare routine?

Vitamin C serum application follows the “thinnest to thickest” rule. Serum should be applied right after skin cleansing and toning steps. Moisturizer, sunscreen, and makeup layer on it, in respective order.
Note that Vitamin C is an unstable substance that can oxidize over time, affected by factors like air, light, heat, and humidity, and lose its efficiency. The tendency to oxidation depends on the Vitamin C form used in the product. Ensure to store your serum (and other cosmetics with this component) in a dark, cool place. Products should have water-free composition; the bottle should be airtight and opaque.

What is the best time to use Vitamin C serum?

Recommended time of the day to apply Vitamin C serum depends on the ingredient’s concentration in its formula. Higher concentrated options (over 15%) with very acidic pH should be used in the evening as they can increase skin’s sensitivity to ultraviolet light and cause irritation. Lower concentrated products can be safely incorporated into the morning skincare routine, and your skin will be reaping its rejuvenating, brightening, and protective effects throughout the day. Daytime use of Vitamin C serum is more common as most products are sustainable for that.