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Ingredient Spotlight: Vitamin C

Why should you love Vitamin C?

Vitamin C (a.k.a. ascorbic acid) is a safe, naturally - occurring anti-oxidant that brightens and protects the skin. Eating vitamin C- rich foods (lemons, oranges, green-leafy vegetables) is a great way to reap the health benefits inside the body. But to see the results on the skin, it works best when we apply it topically.

Let's get into the science

When the skin becomes exposed to UV radiation, free (oxygen) radicals are formed. These free radicals damage the healthy skin cells. When enough of the skin's cells become damaged, the tell-tale signs begin to appear such as sun spots, wrinkles and hyperpigmentation.

Vitamin C is an anti-oxidant. Which means that it neutralises the free oxygen radicals, preventing them from causing as much harm.

Have you noticed that fruit goes brown when it's exposed to air, however, if you dip it in vitamin C, this browning process takes a lot longer? On the left, these apple slices are dipped in lemon juice (full of vitamin C). The ones on the right are not.

The vitamin C, prevents the oxygen in the air from turning the apples brown, and a similar thing is happening on our skin.

So exactly what is it doing for the skin?

Vitamin C reduces melanin production in areas of hyperpigmentation. A meta-analysis showed that vitamin C safely reduces the the build up of melanin in areas of hyperpigmentation without being toxic to the melanin producing cells and bleaching the skin.

It has anti-inflammatory properties, that help dampen down the inflammatory response improving the appearance of acne and rosacea. It also helps improve post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

It stimulates the production of collagen in the skin and stabilises the collagen molecule. The collagen is what keeps our skin supple and firm.

UV protection: Its anti-oxidant properties help reverse the damage caused by UV radiation. It prevents the free radicals from damaging cell proteins and DNA, reversing the signs of ageing.

So Vitamin C is a must for those serious about skin.

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