Does Vitamin C help acne? The answer is yes, and it does so in a number of ways. It not only helps treat acne, but it can help to prevent it too. And, Vitamin C can help prevent and heal the scarring caused by acne. Finally, Vitamin C aids in fading the dark spots on the face caused by acne lesions as well as even your skin’s overall tone.
How does Vitamin C Help Acne?
First, it would be helpful to understand what acne is and what may cause it. Acne Vulgaris, commonly called acne, is a very common skin disorder. It affects teenagers and young adults mostly, but can also affect pregnant women and older adults. Acne can be caused by hormonal changes, such as with puberty. A person’s genetics are also a risk factor. A weakened immune system and free radical damage have also been implicated as potential causes.
Acne lesions are caused in part by the excess production of sebum, an oily, waxy substance that normally keeps the skin and hair moisturized. This substance builds up in the shaft around a hair follicle and the pore becomes clogged with dead skin cells and sebum. A bacterium called Cutibacterium acnes (previously called Propionibacterium acnes) typically gets into this mix from the surrounding skin, causing an infection and inflammation.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, known to boost the immune system. Since your body can’t make its own Vitamin C, you must take it in with the foods that you eat, and/or through supplementation. A healthy diet containing leafy greens, citrus fruits, and other fruits and vegetables high in Vitamin C is the best way to provide your body with what it needs.
Boosting your immune system may help to prevent or lessen the severity of acne by reducing the inflammation associated with it. And, Vitamin C promotes the overall health of your skin.
Because Vitamin C is such a great antioxidant, it can fight off the free radicals that attack the skin and cause damage, including acne. Free radicals are unstable atoms lacking an electron. You encounter them in your environment from pollution, cigarette smoke, UV rays, and even the processes of your own metabolism.
These free radicals attack healthy skin to steal the electron that they need, thus causing deep damage to the skin. Vitamin C neutralizes free radicals by giving them an electron before they can do harm to your skin.
Vitamin C also reduces hyperpigmentation or dark spots. Acne often causes such areas to develop on the skin. Vitamin C interferes with the production of melanin, the substance that gives your skin its color and that produces these darkened spots. Also, Vitamin C brightens the skin, helping to diminish the darkened areas and even out your natural skin tone.
How does Vitamin C Serum Help Acne?
Does Vitamin C help with acne better through your diet, or by using it topically, such as with a serum? While getting enough Vitamin C in your diet is paramount, and can only help, the best results for acne come with topical treatment. Vitamin C serum for your face provides the antioxidant, free radical fighting power right where it is most needed.
Oxidative stress has been found to be one of the causes of acne. When the skin’s antioxidants are overwhelmed by the number of free radicals attacking it, this creates oxidative stress. One of the most powerful Vitamin C serum benefits is its ability to scavenge and neutralize free radicals, thus relieving or even preventing oxidative stress from occurring. In this way, Vitamin C serum for your face may be able to prevent new acne lesions from cropping up.
Vitamin C’s antioxidant properties contribute even more to the prevention of acne because these antioxidant properties help to control the production of sebum. When the sebaceous glands aren’t overproducing sebum, there are fewer acne lesions.
Vitamin C serum benefits don’t end there. Its anti-inflammatory properties reduce the inflammation and redness associated with acne. This helps in the overall healing process, and reducing the inflammation can keep the acne from becoming more severe.
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation often occurs with acne lesions. This can cause you emotional distress. Vitamin C serum for your face will help fade post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and its brightening ability will help even out your skin tone.
In a 2005 study, a Vitamin C precursor, sodium ascorbyl phosphate was used to make sure the subjects’ skin got a steady supply of Vitamin C, and this was found to be efficient both in the prevention and treatment of acne.
So, it’s clear that Vitamin C is a powerful force in the fight against acne.
Of course, when you have acne, you should always consult your physician or dermatologist before beginning any new treatment on your own.
Does Vitamin C Help with Acne Scars?
Vitamin C serum benefits include working to reduce acne scarring. When acne lesions begin to clear, they may leave a scar. But Vitamin C promotes the production of collagen in the skin. Collagen is a protein that naturally occurs in your body. In fact, it is the most plentiful protein in your body, found not only in your skin, but also in your muscles, bones, ligaments, blood vessels and more.
As you age, you begin to lose collagen which can cause your skin to weaken and become more susceptible to damage. But Vitamin C stimulates collagen production, and one of the best Vitamin C serum benefits is that it brings that collagen boost directly to your facial skin.
Since Vitamin C activates your body’s natural collagen production, collagen fibers can begin to repair acne scarring and promote skin regeneration.
Vitamin C can also help prevent the formation of acne scars when used early enough. Again, it’s Vitamin C’s ability to stimulate collagen production that drives this healing.
This is especially true in the case of atrophic scars. These are scars that result from a loss of skin tissue from the damage caused by the acne lesion and inflammation. These include what are called icepick scars and boxcar scars. Icepick scars, as you would imagine, look like small, deep holes in the skin. Boxcar scars are shallower, but can appear as large indents in the face.
Another type of scarring caused by acne is called hypertrophic scarring. This type is caused by the body producing too much collagen in response to the wound and forming a thick, possibly raised scar. Even so, research has shown that this type of scarring may be helped by Vitamin C.
A 2013 study on Asian skin, employing a silicone gel containing Vitamin C for 6 months after the removal of stitches, found a significant decrease in the height of scars and erythema (abnormal redness caused by injury) as well as a more normal appearance post-hypo- and hyperpigmentation of scars occurred.
That means that Vitamin C was able to reduce the normal ridges that occur with surgical scars. Since hypertrophic scarring is also ridged, it stands to reason that Vitamin C, especially started early enough, may be able to help reduce the appearance of these acne scars.
The best Vitamin C serum for acne scars is Beautystat’s Universal C Skin Refiner. This is the world’s only Vitamin C formula, containing 20 percent, stable L-ascorbic acid. This is the active and purest form of Vitamin C.
Universal C Skin Refiner also contains squalene which hydrates the skin without clogging pores. And, it contains a natural exfoliant, tartaric acid, which helps to unclog pores.
The pH level of your skin has a lot to do with how well Vitamin C absorbs. Tartaric acids help prepare the skin’s pH level to absorb this Vitamin C formulation, for faster and more lasting results.
Do Vitamin C tablets cause Acne?
No. Vitamin C supplements, even in large amounts, do not cause acne.
Vitamin C and Cystic Acne
Cystic acne is the most severe type of acne. It occurs when the infection and inflammation of acne go deep into the skin. It is characterized by pus-filled sacs or cysts that can last from several weeks to several months.
This type of acne is painful and is more likely to produce scars, both atrophic and hypertrophic. But because Vitamin C stimulates both collagen and elastin production, it helps the skin regenerate and heal the damaged tissue causing the scar.
Of course, Vitamin C is just one treatment to aid in the healing of cystic acne. Because cystic acne is so severe, antibiotics and other medications are often prescribed. You should always discuss adding Vitamin C to your treatment regimen with your physician or dermatologist before doing so. They are in the best position to tell you how to add Vitamin C for the utmost results.
The best Vitamin C serum for acne scars caused by cystic acne is Beautystat’s Universal C Skin Refiner. Not only does its stabilized Vitamin C stimulate collagen formation, but its squalene soothes the skin without further clogging the pores.
This Vitamin C serum will help fade the post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation associated with acne scars as well as smooth out your complexion with its brightening effects. Further, tartaric acid will aid in unclogging pores, helping to reduce the chances of more becoming infected and forming new cysts.
Vitamin C Serum Side Effects
The most common side effects of Vitamin C serum are
- a tingling sensation when applied to the skin,
- skin irritation,
- itching and
These should resolve in a short time. However, if you experience burning or any signs of an allergic reaction, such as hives or swelling, immediately wash off the serum and seek medical advice or attention. The best practice before starting any new skincare ingredient, such as Vitamin C, is to do a patch test on a small area of skin, such as on the inner arm, for at least 24 hours to see how your skin reacts before applying it to your face.