How to test at home whether vitamin C ampoules or serums are really effective? Hello I’m Dr. Judy, a board certified dermatologist in Korea. I have a special skincare product that I put on when the sunlight is strong and air pollution (fine dust) is serious like these days. It’s the Vitamin C serum. In the three anti-pollution skin care videos I uploaded, a lot of my subscribers asked about the vitamin C serum that I use. Today, we will explore (1) Why Vitamin C Serum is good for your skin (2) How to test at home whether vitamin C ampoules are really effective and (3) How to apply Vitamin C serum. (1) Why is Vitamin C Serum good for your skin? If you apply a really well-made vitamin C ampoule, you will experience whitening effects, and improve skin texture and wrinkles. This is because Vitamin C acts as an ‘Anti-Oxidant’. Then, what is ‘Oxidation’?
Oxidation basically means aging. When our skin ages, we see that freckles and wrinkles appear. It’s because our skin is ‘oxidized’. Anti-oxidants prevent oxidation, hence it’s called ‘anti-oxidant’. For example, if we leave apples and bananas outside, the fruits turn brown. Our skin too will become ‘oxidized’ if it reacts with oxygen. Applying vitamin ampoule like vitamin C serum will prevent it from oxidized to brown color. There is a catch, however!
Will lots of vitamin C serums on the market will have the same effects? I’m sure many of us have at least one vitamin C serum or ampoule, right? Now I will teach you guys how to test at home to see your products have antioxidant effects such as whitening and wrinkle improvement. When apple and bananas are exposed to the air for a long time, they turn brown. We call this ‘the browning effect’. We are going to test whether your vitamin C ampoule can prevent this effect. On one side, apply some distilled water (tap water). On the other side, apply the vitamin C ampoule. Then we will check the degree of brownness changing over time. I have brought some of the popular vitamin C ampoules and serums in the market. I’ll apply the ampoules to one side only and see how it changes over time. (2) By the way, is there any way to know if there is a real effect before buying a vitamin C cosmetic? I can predict whether the ampoule will have a real effect just by looking at the color of the container (package) No matter how good the review is, or how cheap,
I will never buy vitamin C serum or cream sold in transparent container or jar type container. It’s simply because the vitamin C effects will highly likely to be lost if the Vitamin C is stored in transparent or non-sealed container. A brown bottle or sealed container is important to preserve the efficacy of Vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid) for a long time. L-ascorbic acid, which has the best absorption and effects on our skin, is weak against the light and oxygen. So if it’s contained in transparent container, there is a higher chance to be destroyed. Also, the concentration of the content of vitamin C is important. You may think the higher the vitamin C concentration, the better. Beep~~~~~~ Nope! According to some studies, the absorption of vitamin C is enhanced up to 15 ~ 20%, but then decreases anywhere above the concentration. Therefore, the most effective vitamin C concentration is 15-20%. It’s also good to have other antioxidants besides vitamin C There are many ingredients that have good antioxidant effects on our skin. As well as vitamin C, there are vitamin E, coenzyme Q10, and ferulic acid. In particular, when using vitamin C with vitamin E and ferulic acid, there is synergistic effect and stabilizes vitamin C. So, it’s better to use products with Vitamine C ampule with other ingredients such as vitamin E, coenzyme Q10, and ferulic acid. Which Vitamin C ingredient has better anti-oxidant (anti-aging) effect? Tangerine extract vs L-ascorbic acid There was a teenage patient who claimed that her skin did not brighten after using vitamin C serum. I thought in my mind, ‘She’s only in her teen! How clever!’ So I asked her which product she uses. I was shocked after looking at the ingredients. The product was made from citrus tangerina extract, which we cannot know how much vitamin C ingredient actually is in the solution. We all know that citrus fruits such as oranges and lemon have plenty of vitamin C, right? The thing is, however… The vitamin C in such extracts are rather unstable. In other words, if they are exposed to the air or light, the effects may be lost. Suppose we compare applying orange juice to the face and L-ascorbic acid, which is a purely synthetic ingredient. Which one do you think is more effective? Of course, it’s the pure vitamin C, which was stabilized in the lab. So, if you decide to buy a vitamin C serum,
You should choose L-ascorbic acid, not a tangerine extract. Or, there are more stabilized substances, like sodium ascorbyl phosphate magnesium ascorbyl phosphate ascorbyl palmitate and tetra-isopalmitoyl ascorbic acid, It’s much wiser to buy products with these ingredients. Lastly, the pH level is an important factor. You may have people talking about how good the weak acidic cosmetics are. For the cleansers or moisturizing cream, weak acidity is good. However!!!
For Vitamin C cosmetics, it’s better to have strong acidity The reason is that Vitamin C is best absorbed to the skin at strong pH level, around pH3.5~4.0. So, let’s find out vitamin C serums that meet these five criteria! If you remember the point I mentioned and go to the product website, the products that have been scientifically proven to have the effects. Some of us may have experienced burning sensations when using Vitamin C products, right? If you get a stinging feeling when using Vitamin C, it means that you have bought an effective product. If the product has strong acidity, not mild acidity, people like me, who has sensitive skin, will definitely get a stinging or burning feeling. As you may already know, I have been suffering from eczema (atopic dermatitis) since birth, and I have a very dry, sensitive skin type. Most of the vitamin C serums sold in the market that I have bought do not have a 3.5~4 pH. Even I didn’t feel any burning or stinging sensation on my skin. It may be easy to put on your skin, but it will not have the Vitamin C effect. How to apply vitamin C products for sensitive skin types? Should we hold in the pain, and just use the vitamin C serum? For the first timers, if it is irritationg when using the serum, they might not use it. Especially for people with sensitive skin types like mine, we get skin trouble and eczema when air pollution is serious. The vitamin C serum can cause burning sensation on the ezcema skin or sensitive skin. While I was a dermatologist resident, I learned that Vitamin C is very important for skin. Since then, I have been researching ways to use vitamin C. Let me show you how! 1. Avoid eczema / skin trouble areas These areas with inflammation can be stinging a lot, unlike normal skin. But it can be better for your skin if you can hold in the stinging sensation. 2. Immediately after applying vitamin C serum, apply a moisturizing cream or Mix a moisturizing cream with vitamin C serum. In fact, the good moisturizing cream is usually slightly acidic or neutral, so the acidity of vitamin C can be weakened when applying like that. So the effect of vitamin C reduces. But once you apply and your skin is somewhat adapted, you can apply vitamin C serum wait 30 seconds to 1 minute, and then apply your moisturizing cream Dermatologist Dr. Judy Skincare Routine When I wake up in the morning, after cleansing, I apply vitamin C Serum first. After about 30 seconds I apply moisturizing cream, and then apply the sunscreensun cream on it. When the ultraviolet rays are strong and air pollutionis serious like nowadays, I always remind myself to put on vitamin C serum. In the anti-pollution skincare videos, I pointed out that the bad guys called free radicals or Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) destroy the collagen. Because of that, air pollution cause wrinkles and pigmentations on our skin! The reason that UV rays are bad for our skin is the free radical or ROS, as well. Unless we use sunscreen, our skin will become pigmented and wrinkled. Vitamin C acts as an anti-oxidant to prevent oxidation from free radical or ROS. It also ‘double’ protects our skin from UV rays that penetrates the sunscreen. The result of First Vitamin C serum experiment with an apple Apply a Vitamin C serum on one side of an apple, then on the other side just put on water. Later, on the side with Vitamin C serum showed less brownish color changes than the side with water. The result DPPH test of several Vitamin C serums on the market DPPH test=Anti-oxidant ability test Anti-oxidant serums change to yellow color after DPPH test. Water & several Vitamin C serums Divide DPPH solution on each plate. Only two vitamin C serums changed into yellow color after DPPH test.