Vitamin C: Stabilized Vs. Unstabilized

Vitamin C is a leading antioxidant that helps protect the body from sun damage, which can result in wrinkles, sagging, and sun spots, among other signs of aging.

Despite this vitamin's ability to produce firmer skin cells, prevent hyperpigmentation and defend against free radicals, vitamin C oxidizes very quickly (especially when exposed to air), becoming unstable. Once it becomes unstable, it can no longer carry out its beauty benefits, in turn allowing free-radical damage.

When vitamin C is stabilized and in a high-enough concentration, it can preven dicoloration by slowing the production of pigment-producing cells and stimulating collagen.


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  • Jennifer

    Arbonne has patented stabilized Vitamin C in their anti-aging line. Their line is also based off of European Skincare standards so it is 100% botanically based, Vegan certified and there are no mineral oil based ingredients, parabens or other harmful chemicals. I loved the line so much, I started carrying it;-)

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  • Anonymous

    Nerida, What is the difference between vitamin C esters and vitamin C? Can a vitamin C serum or high levels of vitamin C cause the skin to become discolored having a suntanned look or reddish brown in color? Thanks, Jessica

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  • Anonymous

    Gosh, our skin really does show us what goes on inside the body. Recent stress has left my skin in a mess and now I know why. Thanks again Nerida Joy, as always you are a wealth of information.

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  • Anonymous

    Vitamin C or ascorbic acid exists naturally in certain fruits and vegetables, such as oranges and carrots. This vitamin is necessary for the growth and repair of tissues in your body. It is required for the formation of collagen and is essential for healing wounds. One of many antioxidants, Vitamin C is significantly compromised by physical and emotional stress and by smoking. Similar to Vitamin E, Vitamin C’s absorption into the bloodstream from our stomach and intestine is generally very low, only about 20%-30% of our intake. To be safe and effective, a good topical Vitamin C should contain stable Vitamin C derivatives with a minimum 5% concentration of active ingredients and a pH value between 4.0-8.0. If you use your Vitamin C product daily, in either serum or cream form, you should see an improvement in the tone, texture and overall health of your skin within a month. A “scavenger” of oxygen free radicals, Vitamin C also helps to lighten hypo-pigmentation and can repair sun damage. About 5% of my clients are either allergic to topical Vitamin C or very sensitive to it — a condition that causes small red bumps to appear very quickly. If you experience this, a topical Vitamin C may not be for you.

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  • Anonymous

    Owning Veronica Skin & Body Care Center for over thirty years, I'm always looking for the best products to help my clients with their skin problems. For many years there were many companies that tried to stabilize vitamin C. One of the best companies to come out with a stabilized form of Vitamin C is SkinCeuticals. They use pure, pharmaceutical grade ingredients with proven scientific results. Their research team have numerous federal and state grants to help them with their clinical trails at major medical institutions such as Duke University Medical Center and the National Institutes of Health. Their study of topical vitamin C inspired me to carry their full line at my clinic. Phloretin CF is one of SkinCeuticals best corrective topical antioxidant treatments. Phloretin with vitamin C and ferulic acid in a biodiverse formulation conquers damage at every level. Phloretin CF protects against not only free radicals, but the range of other reactive molecules known to cause damage and DNA mutations among the integral cell types. Phloretin CF prevents premature sign of aging and corrects existing photodamage. It also inhibits hyperpigmentation. This is advanced skin care backed by science and one of my best sellers at the spa. Be sure you're not wasting your money on unstabilized Vitamin C.

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