As the barrier between the outside world and your body, your skin bears the brunt of your daily activities. Ultraviolet rays, wind, free radicals, and acne are just a few of the many elements that can damage and age your skin. Using vitamin A and vitamin C for skin can naturally and effectively heal this damage.
Knowing your skin’s enemies will help you understand how vitamins A and C benefit your skin. Cuts, scrapes, and acne obviously damage—and may scar—your skin, but there are other invisible forces at work, too.
Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays damages skin cells. Getting sunburned occasionally or keeping a summer tan might not seem like a big deal, but accumulated UV exposure can cause wrinkles, age spots (patches of darker skin), actinic keratosis (rough scaly patches on the skin), and solar elastosis (thickened, yellow, wrinkled skin), and, in some cases, cancer.
Polluted air is full of free radicals. These unstable atoms are in a frantic search for a stabilizing electron. In their volatile state, they react quickly with other substances. This creates a process called oxidative stress, which damages your body’s cells (including skin) over time. This damage produces visible signs of aging and may initiate serious medical conditions.
Your body’s ability to fight free radicals and produce collagen slows as you age. Accumulated skin damage becomes more visible and can be more difficult to repair.
Your skin is under a constant barrage of damaging agents, so it needs a hero. Enter vitamin C. Vitamin C is a powerful, water-soluble antioxidant that helps neutralize free radicals and regenerate your skin cells, resolving common skin problems, including:
Vitamin C does more than improve your skin’s appearance. It may also protect your skin from more serious changes.
Vitamin C is helpful for all skin types and it is generally safe to use. If you have sensitive skin or allergies, you might notice a yellowish discoloration of your skin when you use vitamin C. Begin with a low concentration of vitamin C and increase it gradually.
You can also test for vitamin C sensitivity by applying it on the thin skin of your wrist before you apply it to your face. Once you apply vitamin C to your face the first time, wait a couple of days to see how your skin feels.
You can add vitamin C by:
Your vitamin C serum should contain ascorbic acid. This is the most effective form of vitamin C for skin care. Additionally, vitamin C will work better when combined with vitamin E (tocopherol). If you add vitamin C-rich foods to your diet, be sure to also add vitamin E-rich foods such as nuts and seeds for added potency. When you are shopping for serums, check the ingredients for both vitamin C and E. Our Vitamin C Complex Serum has both, plus many other natural ingredients to soothe and repair your skin.
Vitamin A is your skin’s superhero. The most common form of vitamin A is its active form: retinol. Vitamin A has three states: retinol, retinal, and retinoic acid. Each has the same benefits but each has a different potency and slightly different absorption process. Retinol, the least potent of the three, is commonly found in commercial cosmetics. Retinoic acid is prescription strength.
Vitamin A supports many body functions including vision, cell division, reproduction, and immunity. When you apply vitamin A to your skin, it stimulates collagen production and cell turnover, slows oil production, and reduces inflammation. What does this mean for your skin?
The only caveat with vitamin A is that consuming too much of it can be toxic. Most people get all the vitamin A they need through their diet. Because of the toxicity risk, capsule supplements are not recommended unless you have a specific medical need. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should not take any vitamin A supplements. Here are some tips to get adequate amounts of vitamin A for your skin:
While it might seem that combining vitamin A and C serums would create a super-serum, most experts advise against them together because their effectiveness may decrease and your skin irritation may increase. If you want to use them both, the best method is to use vitamin C products on your skin in the morning, and vitamin A products on your skin at night.
Vitamin A and C serums take time and consistent use to repair your skin. Numerous studies show that topical vitamin C and A application can dramatically improve the texture, tone, and elasticity of your skin and further protect it from environmental damage.
So, how will you know if it’s working? Remove all your makeup, and take a picture before your first application. Set a reminder on your phone to take another picture each week, at the same time of day, using the same lighting. Skin repair won’t be immediate, but if you are consistent, you will gradually see wrinkles and dark circles fade—and brighter, plumper skin emerge.
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