Vitamin C 101: Benefits and Skin Types
Updated: Jun 24
Vitamin C is the ultimate legendary and proven solution for nearly all skin types to achieve natural, glowing, healthy skin. It is a water-soluble antioxidant, and skincare products that contain this powerful ingredient will help replenish your depleted epidermis and dermis levels as you age, leaving your skin feeling bright, firm, toned, and giving you a much more youthful appearance. With that being said, there are several different types of Vitamin C, all of which are excellent for your skin and host wonderful benefits.
8 Different Types of Vitamin C Used in Skincare Products
1. Ascorbic Acid (AA)
This form of Vitamin C is what you often find in foods and dietary supplements. It is also a key ingredient in many skincare products because of its prime role in collagen synthesis, slowing skin deterioration from air exposure, and helping control the product's pH balance.
For oily or normal skin, Ascorbic Acid is the most potent form of Vitamin C and can be the most beneficial.
2. Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate (SAP)
The next is Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate. This type of Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that helps you obtain bright, even skin tone. It is also said to reduce breakouts in products that contain both 1% and 5% concentrations of this ingredient.
For acne-prone skin, there is research showing that Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, a water-soluble Vitamin C, can inhibit factors that cause breakouts while working to rid dark spots.
3. Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (MAP)
Do you suffer from oily skin? If so, look for skincare products that have Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate. This Vitamin C form is a stable and effective antioxidant for excessively oily skin types. It works as a calming factor for the skin to reduce oils from forming while increasing skin hydration levels at the same time.
4. Ascorbyl Palmitate (AA-PAL)
If you tend to have sensitive skin, then going with a product with Ascorbyl Palmitate is ideal. This fat-soluble Vitamin C derivative is known to be less irritating and more stable than straight, pure Vitamin C is (which means it is suitable for skin that's extremely sensitive). Overall, using this will protect your skin from free radicals and oxidation.
5. Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate (VC-IP)
Another non-irritating Vitamin C that is suitable for sensitive skin is Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate. From using this, you can expect to fight free radicals that's linked to premature aging, boost your collagen production, keep your skin firm, and reverse the effects of sun damage. A cool thing about this one is that because it is less harsh than pure Vitamin C, it can be used in higher dosages for up to 18 months of use without oxidizing.
6. Ascorbyl Glucoside (AA-2G)
Derived from ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), Ascorbyl Glucoside can be found in many dietary plants, green veggies, and citrus fruits. In beauty products, its primary purpose is to increase collagen production, prevent pigmentation, and give your skin that healthy glowing appearance for a radiant appeal.
In general, as Ascorbyl Glucoside is known to be a less potent version of Vitamin C, it is safe for all skin types.
7. Trisodium Ascorbyl 6-Palmitate 2-Phosphate (APPS)
This form is a valuable beauty product resource because it significantly improves cellular AA levels in skin cells, regardless of whether there are any inhibitors present. APPS can penetrate through the skin not only to the epidermis but also to the dermis, and can be converted to ascorbic acid after delivery.
So, if you have any skin damage, look for a product that has this in it to drastically enhance the physiology of your damaged skin. Due to its superior skin penetration qualities, APPS is recommended for mature skin.
8. 3-O-Ethyl-L-Ascorbic Acid (EAC)
Last but not least, 3-O-Ethyl-L-Ascorbic Acid is a modified ascorbic acid molecule. This modification targets more stability and enhancing transport through the skin features since pure Vitamin C can quickly degrade. This compound works very well at restoring darkened skin from UV exposure and uses a slow-release, which ensures your skin is not being subjected to toxic effects when using a Vitamin C derivative, and makes it suitable for all skin types.
It is inevitable that our bodies and skin changes as we go through life. The aging process, the UV rays from the sun, and toxins in the environment you live in all play a role in how your skin reacts and changes over time, potentially leaving it dull, uneven, and less firm. But by using Vitamin C, you can proactively fight against that reality and give yourself a valuable solution so your skin looks healthier and younger for much longer.
Keep in mind that every form of Vitamin C mixes and layers well with other skincare ingredients, such as exfoliating acids and retinol. So, don't be afraid to mix up your solutions to get the best results for your skin type as you possibly can.
Products we love that have different forms of Vitamin C:
About us: We are Skintelligence, a team focused on a 'skin-first' approach to beauty through artificial intelligence. We match products to you based on your unique skin type and needs. Results are highly accurate and personalized with AI and machine learning. It's fun, convenient, and it works. Try it here.
As featured in Her World, CLEO, FEMALE, Shape, Nuyou, Singapore Women’s Weekly, Daily Vanity, Layers of Skins.