Vitamin C is a potent skin-care component that may decrease inflammation, combat free radical damage, brighten skin, smooth fine lines and wrinkles, and lighten the appearance of discoloration and dark spots. While vitamin C can be extremely beneficial in treating a variety of skin-care issues, bear in mind that not all vitamin C is made equal.
Because vitamin C is an unstable component, dermatologists we talked with all agreed that obtaining correctly prepared serums is critical to reaping all of the antioxidant’s advantages. Our experts typically advise looking for serums that include ascorbic acid, also known as L-ascorbic acid, and storing whatever you purchase away from sunlight to prevent oxidation. Their top vitamin C serums for every skin type are listed below.
SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic
Skinceuticals CE Ferulic is recommended by four of our experts as the gold standard vitamin C serum for all skin types. “I believe it is the finest available,” says Dr. Kenneth Howe of the Wexler Dermatology Group. According to him, it has a light, non-greasy texture while yet delivering “the greatest quantity of its active components to the skin.”
Maelove Glow Maker
Russak offers Maelove Glow Maker as a more affordable choice. The antioxidant serum was developed by MIT scientists and “contains a basic recipe that has been proved to protect, moisturize, and nourish the skin.” The serum contains skin-brightening L-ascorbic and ferulic acids, as well as a relaxing botanical mix of aloe, grape, magnolia, and orange peel to nourish the skin. The lotion is also intended to act as a makeup primer, so you won’t have to worry about your items pilling beneath your foundation in the morning. Click here
Revitalift Derm Intensives Vitamin C Serum
This “effective” vitamin C serum from L’Oréal Paris, made with 10% ascorbic acid, is an even more affordable choice. Dr. Joshua Zeichner, head of cosmetic and clinical research at Mount Sinai Hospital, recommends it, saying it “has been clinically researched and is accessible at your local pharmacy at a very reasonable price.” It contains no scent, parabens, mineral oils, or synthetic colors as well, so basically, it’ll not irritate your skin or create breakouts at all.
Drunk Elephant C-Firma™ Day Serum
Drunk Elephant’s Day Serum is another effective and reasonably priced serum. According to Dr. Noelani Gonzalez, a dermatology expert at Mount Sinai Health System, it includes a comparable composition to Skinceuticals CE Ferulic, so you receive all the skin brightening advantages for “half the price.” On the other hand, Drunk Elephant’s serum, unlike Skinceuticals, is cruelty-free. Its composition comprises L-ascorbic acid, pumpkin-ferment extract, and pomegranate enzyme, all of which target dead surface skin cells and aid in exfoliation.
PCA Skin C&E Advanced Serum
Dermatologist Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi recommends the PCA Skin C&E Advanced Serum, which contains 20% L-ascorbic acid, since the lightweight serum can “easily integrate into a skin-care regimen” and does not “cause irritation,” making it a safe option if you have sensitive skin.
SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF
If you have oily skin, Russak suggests trying this often-overlooked sibling product to our best-overall serum. Its composition is comparable to CE Ferulic in that it includes L-ascorbic acid and ferulic acid, but it lacks pore-clogging vitamin E, making Phloretin CF a better choice for oily skin types. According to Russak, Phloretin CF is also an excellent choice for people suffering from melasma, a common skin pigmentation condition, because the light serum is especially efficient at fighting “increased pigment production, which generally happens due to UV exposure.”
Marie Veronique’s Vitamin C+E+Ferulic Serum
“Aging is unavoidable,” dermatologist Dr. Keira Barr says, “but preserving your skin from environmental factors that accelerate the aging process is completely within your control.” She adds that collagen, the most important structural ingredient in your skin, is what keeps your complexion young and firm. While it normally declines with age, UV rays and air pollution “can hasten its breakdown and interfere with production,” according to Barr. She recommends “applying a topical vitamin C serum like Marie Veronique’s Vitamin C+E+Ferulic” to “boost mature skin’s defense against the elements.” Its blend of vitamins C, E, and ferulic acid operate synergistically to combat free radicals, DNA damage, and enhance penetration into skin cells.