Vitamin C is a naturally occurring organic compound which is necessary for a number of body function. Human beings cannot produce vitamin C in the body and it has to be supplied from outside.
Vitamin C not only works from the inside, but it can be made into preparations to be applied on the skin. It is easily absorbed & has the following benefits-
1. AS AN ANTIOXIDANT (PHOTOPROTECTION)
Advantage of vitamin c over a sunscreen is that vitamin c can be absorbed into the cells and is generally still present about 30-36 hours after it has been applied on the skin.
2. FOR EPIDERMAL BARRIER
Vitamin c supplementation increases epidermal ceramide production, and enhances barrier function.
3. WRINKLES AND AGING
Vitamin c plays an essential part in the incorporation of proline into collagen and is also involved in the formation elastin. With deficiency of vitamin c impaired collagen is created and the skin can become more wrinkled.The replacements of vitamin c boosts the manufacture collagen and so wrinkle can become less noticeable after using vitamin c.
4. AS DEPIGMENTING AGENT
Vitamin c can lighten up the skin ,both used topically and orally too.
5. FOR COLLAGEN SYNTHESIS AND SCAR
Vitamin c is essential for collagen biosynthesis. When high doses of vitamin c are delivered to the skin, there is increased collagen formation which makes the scars less noticeable. It can be used in acne scar and chickenpox scar.
6. AS ANTI-INFLAMMATORY
It can be used in acne vulgaris and rosacea.
It can promote wound healing and prevent post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
DIETARY SOURCES OF VITAMIN C
Vitamin c is sensitive to light, air and heat. So most of it is obtained if fruits and vegetables are eaten raw or lightly cooked.
AVAILABILITY OF VITAMIN C:
It is available as tablets/capsules. Chewable tablets is most popular form. (Doses: 25-1000 mg/day)
VITAMIN C AS A CLINICAL POINT OF VIEW:
Vitamin c is available in market as a variety of creams, serum and transdermal patches. Of these, only the serum contains active form of vitamin c is L-Ascorbic Acid. The half-life in the skin after achieving maximum concentration is 4 days. As ultraviolet light lowers tissue vitamin c level, so topical vitamin c is best used after exposure to UV light.
It is better to get your vitamin C serums from a qualified dermatologist, as not all forms are active and usable for the skin. Some do not penetrate skin properly while others do not chemically convert to the biologically active form of vitamin c in the skin.
SIDE EFFECTS OF TOPICAL VITAMIN C:
- Minor adverse reaction,induce a yellowish discoloration of skin,hypopigmented hair and staining of clothes occur due to oxidative changes of vitamin c.
- Rarely stinging, erythema and dryness are observed after topical use of vitamin c
Vitamin c is a naturally occurring antioxidant,may used in photoaging, hyperpigmentation,tissue inflammation and promotion of tissue healing. It has been incorporated in many cosmetic formulation and exhaustive research is ongoing to improve its delivery into dermis for stimulating collagen production and scavenging free radicals.