Are All Vitamin C Skin Care Products the Same?


vitamin C and skin care products; Jeune Skin Care; Madison, WisconsinSkin care tips and advice from our UW Health Transformations Jeune Skin Care aestheticians:


Unfortunately, all vitamin C products are not created equal. First of all, vitamin C is L-ascorbic acid. Many products claim to be vitamin C and have names such as magnesium ascorbyl phosphate or ascorbyl palmitate, but are not truly vitamin C.


Actually, studies have shown that these other ingredients do not significantly increase levels of vitamin C in the skin and are not even recognized as vitamin C by our bodies. In order for vitamin C to be truly effective in repairing signs of aging or give us other benefits, it must be able to penetrate and be absorbed by the body.


What should I look for in my vitamin C product?

  • Is there enough vitamin C in the product for it to work? Studies have shown that L-ascorbic acid must be at least a percentage of 10 percent to benefit the skin, and 20 percent is optimal for absorption.
  • Is the PH low enough to allow absorption? To be absorbed, the PH level needs to be very low. If the PH is too high, lower amounts of vitamin C can be absorbed. 
  • What does the label say? Look for L-ascorbic acid. L-ascorbic is the purest, most potent and easily absorbed vitamin C. Remember, in order for it to be effective, it must be formulated with the right ingredient.

As you're developing your skin care regimen, keep in mind - vitamin C has a unique status:

  • Vitamin C helps with collagen production and maintenance
  • It's a potent antioxidant that can neutralize free radicals in the skin
  • Vitamin C reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Skin care products containing vitamin C help brighten dull skin

Need more help?


Some vitamin C products also contain other ingredients that may help other skin conditions. Seek the advice of our UW Health Transformations Jeune Skin Care aestheticians for the optimal product for you: 


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