The Truth About Vitamin C Creams
One of the biggest breakthroughs in anti-aging skin care was the discovery of the remarkable power of vitamin C to help restore luster and resilience to aging complexions. This super-antioxidant can do just about everything required to repair and protect damaged skin: reduce wrinkling, fight inflammation, stimulate collagen renewal, lighten brown spots, and brighten skin tone. According to some studies, vitamin C may even serve as a mild photoprotectant that helps boost the effectiveness of sunscreens.
No wonder the skin-care market is flooded with vitamin C anti-aging treatments. With so many choices ranging from inexpensive drugstore moisturizers to deluxe serums and night creams that cost hundreds of dollars an ounce, you may be puzzled about the differences between products.
Are all vitamin C treatments the same? Or does the steepest price tag automatically guarantee the best results?As it turns out, the scientific facts behind vitamin C's widespread reputation as a miracle skin-care ingredient are more complicated than they appear at first glance.
Vitamin C: The Downside
What’s not to like about a compound that’s proven to repair and revitalize environmentally damaged, lifeless complexions? First of all, topical vitamin C in the form of ascorbic acid can cause skin irritation and redness. Second, ascorbic acid is highly susceptible to oxidation—the same destructive process that rusts metal and spoils fruit. As a result, ascorbic acid often degrades to the point where it not only fails to reverse free-radical damage, but can actually increase the cell changes that speed premature aging.
Even the longer-lasting stabilized forms of vitamin C used in many super-expensive anti-aging formulas may oxidize during storage or on the store shelf. Unfortunately, many cosmetic manufacturers take precautions against this risk by adding artificial coloring to their products to mask the telltale yellowing that indicates spoilage.
The Good News: Vitamin C Derivatives
Skin-care scientists have recently discovered several vitamin C derivatives that avoid many of the drawbacks of ascorbic acid, while delivering comparable anti-aging benefits. One of the most effective and easily tolerated of these derivatives is magnesium ascorbyl phosphate. Upon application, the skin’s own enzymes convert this more stable compound into active vitamin C.
Maximize Skin Rejuvenation with All-Natural Skin Foods
Research has shown that treatments that combine vitamin C derivatives with other antioxidants such as vitamin E and beta-carotene are not only more beneficial, but also gentler on your skin. The reason? In combination, antioxidants have synergistic effects. In other words, the total benefit of a group of antioxidants is greater than the sum of effects of the individual nutrients.
Synergy explains why eating oranges will do a much better job of keeping you healthy and youthful-looking than vitamin C tablets. The dosages in synthetic vitamin C supplements are typically far too high for our bodies to use and, in some people. may even cause unpleasant side effects, such as stomach cramps, nausea, and diarrhea.
Vitamin C-rich fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, are designed by nature to replenish depleted skin cells with the perfect balance of ascorbic acid and other complementary nutrients. That’s why plant-derived face creams are such a safe and efficient way of capitalizing on the rejuvenating effects of vitamin C. The best choice? A 100% green vitamin C cream that not only feeds your complexion a healthy blend of phytonutrients, but also provides the added risk protection of natural preservations to retard spoilage.
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