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37. Dry Skin? Try Topical Vitamin C!

With so many “must-have” ingredients used in dry skin care today, what will actually work on your skin? If we narrow it down to just vitamins, there are several options. So, what vitamins are proven to be good for dry skin?

Base vitamins such as A, B-complex, C, D, E, and K are all absorbed by the skin and can have a range of positive effects when applied topically. We’ll look at some of the most common skin complaints and discover which vitamins work best to combat them.

Hydration to Relieve Dry Skin

Used topically, both vitamins C and E help to improve the barrier function of the skin. A healthy skin barrier keeps just the right amount of moisture locked into the layers of the skin, keeping your skin well hydrated and moisturized. When too much moisture is lost, your skin can become dehydrated, leaving it looking dry, dull and uneven. Dehydrated skin also contributes to dark circles and under-eye bags. Collagen improves skin hydration and vitamin C increases the natural production of collagen.

Vitamin D has also been shown to combat dry skin. If your body has low vitamin A levels, you may notice dry and flaky skin. While topical vitamin A can help, ingesting it in your diet can also be effective. Topical vitamin B, especially in its niacin form, will work in a similar manner to vitamin C and E by helping the skin retain moisture and helping to soothe dry, irritated skin quickly.

In all these common skin complaints, vitamin C has proven to deliver effective and long-lasting benefits. The American Academy of Dermatology states that topical vitamin C should be used by everyone, every day.

Aging

Seemingly, every dry skin care product claims to have anti-aging properties, but which vitamins actually work? Vitamin C is a workhorse ingredient, delivering multiple beneficial effects to a range of skin ailments. Signs of aging such as fine lines and wrinkles can be reduced. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant. It helps to fight and neutralize free radicals that attack the healthy skin cells within the body and helps to slow the appearance of aging.  It also helps to stimulate the production of collagen. Collagen strengthens, hydrates and increases elasticity in the skin, reducing fine lines and leaving the skin looking smoother and firmer. Vitamin E, also a powerful antioxidant, works to reduce the signs of aging by protecting skin cell membranes and preventing damage from free radicals.

Sun Damage

The sun is one of the principal causes of premature skin aging and hyperpigmentation. UVA and UVB rays cause damage to skin cells, destroy collagen and elastin, cause epidermal mutations, cause sunburn and certain skin cancers. Vitamin C is a photoprotective antioxidant, protecting the skin from drying sun damage, working to neutralize free radicals. By combining topical vitamin C with sunscreen, protection levels are multiplied, reducing the risks of sun exposure.

Vitamin A in its most common skincare form, retinoids, also helps fight premature aging caused by the sun, as does vitamin E. Vitamin B3, or niacinamide in its topical form, helps prevent UV induced skin aging by reducing the appearance of hyperpigmentation, yellowness, redness and wrinkles, also helping improve skin elasticity.

Dark Spots

Hyperpigmentation – dark spots, sunspots and liver spots – are patches of skin that appear darker than the surrounding areas. Usually this occurs because of a build-up of melanin in a localized area due to excessive sun exposure or hormonal changes. Vitamin C can help to reduce and regulate the production of melanin, correct hyperpigmentation and balance the skin color and tone. By promoting collagen production, skin appears smoother and firmer. Exfoliating dead skin cells improves cell turnover, fading dark spots faster. Vitamin A is a proven exfoliator. Vitamin B12 also boosts collagen production and like vitamin A, supports the growth of new skin cells. Vitamin E also works to treat scarring and lighten dark spots. When combined with vitamin C, its effects are multiplied.

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