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Topical Vitamin C For More Vibrant Skin

Better Nutrition
January 1998
Henrietta Spencer

Topical Vitamin C For More Vibrant Skin
Unlike creams formulated with Retin A and AHAs, which work by exfoliating the older, outer skin layers, vitamin-C formulations work within the skin layers, inhibiting the production of free radicals and spurring the synthesis of collagen. Working at this cellular level, vitamin C helps “reweave” the skin fibers. As cells bind together, skin looks more smooth and youthful.

Volatile free radicals consist of molecules that speed aging by destroying collagen, the gluelike substances that, along with firming strands called elastin, make skin resilient, firm, and less prone to wrinkles. As the free radicals become neutralized with antioxidants, like those in topical vitamin-C products, skin remains more plump and elastic.

Some claim vitamin-C preparations not only prevent damage, but also repair skin. Louise Bianca, Los Angeles-based facialist, says, “Vitamin-C creams are very effective antioxidants that not only protect the skin from environmental damage, but also stimulate the production of collagen.” The more we exercise, travel on airplanes, and get exposed to pollution, for example, the greater the risk of premature aging from free radicals, and the higher the demand for antioxidants.

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