It’s officially vitamin C day — my favorite beauty holiday ever. There’s a reason why vitamin C has become the skin-care ingredient every dermatologist swears by. It not only leaves you with a visibly brighter complexion, but it also aids in fading dark spots and evening out skin. These skincare needs are especially important for women of color with olive complexions or darker, as we tend to be more prone to developing hyperpigmentation and uneven skin.
If you have brown skin, your chances of developing dark spots especially after a breakout — even if you don’t pick at your pimples — are higher than those with fairer complexions. While sun exposure can often result in sun spots and uneven skin.
“I am a big believer in antioxidants like vitamin C or vitamin E. They help you to prevent a lot of environmental damage to your skin that can influence dark spots,” dermatologist and Dove spokesperson Dr. Rosemarie Ingleton tells HipLatina. “I think of it as armor. You’re putting on your skin armor before you go out in the morning: A cleanser, an antioxidant and sun-protecting moisturizer. You’re hitting the things that are major issues during the day. That’s when you’re going to hit pollution and car exhaust and cigarette smoke, people talking to you all day and spitting on your face, and then the sun. Those are the things that are attacking you when you’re out and we’re just trying not to allow for those free radicals to form in the skin and start breaking down your collagen which can affect dark spots.”
Fortunately, there are a lot of high-quality vitamin C skincare products filling up department store shelves these days that work on all skin types and skin tones — even if you have super sensitive skin like mine! Here’s a look at some of the best vitamin C products for brighter, smoother and much more even skin — check them out!
SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic
There’s a reason why so many dermatologists and skincare experts swear by the SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic serum and that’s because it does more than just lighten dark spots. It also smooths wrinkles, leaving skin looking brighter, even, and youthful, Sure, it’s on the pricer side but a little can go a very long way. Apply a pea-size amount in the morning to a cleansed face then follow with a moisturizer and sunscreen. At night, apply a pea-size amount and layer underneath a hydrating evening cream or overnight mask that doesn’t contain vitamin C, AHAs, BHAS, or retinol. You’ll notice a difference in just a matter of weeks. Oh and fun fact: SkinCeuticals actually owns Vitamin C day.
SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic, $166, skinceuticals.com
Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin C Serum
If you have super sensitive skin like me, skin care products with high percentages of vitamin C or other anti-aging acids, could cause redness or irritation. But the Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin C Serum features 5 percent vitamin C, making it strong enough to brighten skin and quickly fade dark spots but gentle enough for sensitive skin types. In other words, it was formulated just for us. It also keeps the skin firm and reduces visible fine lines — all at a very reasonable price. It’s a cult favorite among beauty experts and bloggers for a reason. You really can’t go wrong with this one.
Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin C Serum, $22, Sokoglam.com
Neogen Real Vitam C Powder Lemon
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When life gives you lemons… 🍋⠀ ⠀ Neogen Real Vita C Powder Lemon is our new favorite form of Vitamin C that you can mix into any of your skin care products. ⠀ ⠀ It contains 17% ascorbic acid which helps brighten, protect, and improve the skin’s tone and texture, along with lemon extract to soothe and nourish the skin. Head over to our stories to check out the other key ingredients that make this powder your new Holy Grail!⠀ ⠀ 〰⠀ ⠀ #kbeauty #skincare #koreanskincare #asianbeauty #skincareroutine #healthyskin #vitaminc #beautycommunity #skincareaddict #skincarejunkie #onlygoodskindaysahead #bblogger ⠀
What sets this DIY powder apart from vitamin C serums is that there’s no chance of oxidation (which is a common issue with most vitamin C formulas), allowing it to last for much longer. It contains 17 percent of pure vitamin C and leaves skin brighter, smoother, and significantly more hydrated. It’s travel-friendly and can be used on ALL skin types — even those with sensitive or oily skin. You can add it to your favorite toner or watery essence for best results. Just make sure not to add it to any skincare products that already contain vitamin C, AHAs, BHAs, or retinol to avoid irritation.
Neogen Real Vitam C Powder Lemon, $20, Sokoglam.com
Laneige Vitamin Brightening Cleanser
Unlike most micellar waters, this one doesn’t just rid skin of dirt, makeup, and other impurities. It also contains a compound of vitamin C, panthenol, and vitamin B3 derivatives along with super berry extracts that work to instantly brightening skin, leaving you with a much more radiant and even complexion. Use it in the first step of your cleansing routine and then follow with a gentle foam cleanser, or you can be extra like me and use it as your makeup remover before double cleansing with an oil cleanser followed by a gentle foam cleanser. Either way, you’re bound to reap the benefits.
Laneige Vitamin Brightening Cleanser, $24, Sephora.com
Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Vitamin C Serum
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Shout out to the C + Collagen 🍊 collection for #VitaminCDay! Tell us how you incorporate this key ingredient in your daily skincare regimen (& orange juice doesn't count 😉)! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 💡 DID YOU KNOW? Vitamin C is one of the most potent anti-aging ingredients. It's an antioxidant that destroys free radicals (which lead to wrinkles) that break down collagen! #drdennisgross
This light-weight gel serum is formulated with vitamin C, collagen amino acids, and proprietary energy complex to help fades dark spots and even skin, while brightening, smoothing, and improving the texture of skin. It’s super hydrating but also fast-absorbing, leaving skin moisturized and supple, making it appear dewy because who doesn’t want that, right? While it’s a little strong for sensitive skin types, it works perfectly for anyone who is trying to even out their complexion, while also fighting signs of aging. Girl, meet your next holy grail and thank me later!
Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Vitamin C Serum, $78, Drdennisgross.com
Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum
This super potent vitamin C serum is loaded with pumpkin ferment, pomegranate extracts, powerful antioxidants, ferric acid, and vitamin E, that work together to brighten dark spots, sun spots, and unevenness. Did I mention it even works to diminish the appearance of photo-damage? This serum is recommended to wear during the day and if you’re wondering what C-Firma is — because I totally didn’t know at first — it means that the vitamin C in the serum stays active on the skin for up to 72 hours, even after washing your face. In other words, it’s always working. But as good as this formula is, I don’t recommend you stock up. In fact, Drunk Elephant doesn’t even recommend you stock up because the pure L-ascorbic acid only works best when it’s fresh, so you definitely want to start using this baby ASAP!
Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum, $80, Drunkelephant.com
Murad Rapid Resurfacing Peel
A peel might be more effective on those older dark spots that don’t seem to go away. This at-home peel contains a powerful blend of glycolic acid and vitamin C that works to instantly brighten and even skin in just a matter of weeks, without the irritation that’s normally experienced from extra-strength peels. The textured towelettes make them super easy to use and are perfect for targeted application. All you have to do is wipe over the skin, allow three minutes of full absorption, don’t rinse, and then follow with a moisturizer and sunscreen. Try using two to three times a week for best results. If you have sensitive skin try using it just once a week.
Murad Rapid Resurfacing Peel, $46, Sephora.com
Fresh Vitamin Nectar Glow Face Mask
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Winter skin in desperate need of a glowing boost? Enter: Vitamin Nectar Glow Mask. 🍊🍋 The fruit-packed mask is formulated with a concentrated citrus blend and potent vitamin fruit complex that gently exfoliates to reveal a vibrant glow. Use 2-3 times a week. ✨ Fresh tip: Use in the shower for easy removal!
This vitamin C face mask is formulated with a concentrated citrus blend and potent fruit complex that works to gently brighten skin. It fades dark spots and improves clarity, while also polishing and exfoliating skin, leaving it smoother, softer, and significantly more radiant. In other words, it doubles as both an exfoliator and face mask. Simply massage onto cleansed skin using gentle circular motions and leave on for no more than 10 or 15 minutes — especially you have sensitive skin. Rinse off with warm water and follow with a toner, moisturizer, and sunscreen. It’s pricey but so worth it. This is my face mask jam right here!
Fresh Vitamin Nectar Glow Face Mask, $62, Fresh.com
MyChelle Perfect C Serum
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Carrots aren't just for the reindeer! Carrots (and other vegetables) are rich in Beta-carotene, which can boost the skin’s immune system. We formulate our Perfect C™ Serum with Beta-carotene where it delivers antioxidants for the skin. #PerfectC #ingredientspotlight #cleanisbeautiful
Our Editor-in-Chief Mariela Rosario swears by this serum. She calls it her truth, as it keeps her skin clear and glowy, leaving dark spots and manchas at bay. This advanced formula contains 17 percent L-ascorbic acid vitamin C and works to even skin while also combating signs of aging. Think fine lines and wrinkles. It’s also free of toxins as it’s formulated without GMOs, gluten, parabens, petroleum, phthalates, silicones, sulfates, artificial fragrances, and artificial colors. Did we mention it’s also vegan and cruelty-free?
MyChelle Perfect C Serum, $44, mychelle.com
TruSkin Daily Facial Moisturizer
Looking for a vitamin C product that legit works but cost you less than 20 bucks? This daily moisturizer is loaded with vitamin C and vitamin B5 and targets everything from dark spots, age spots, uneven skin tones, fine lines, wrinkles, dark under eye circles. — even acne. It’s light-weight enough to use for both day and night and the pure organic jojoba oil and green tea extracts make it gentle enough to use on even the most sensitive skin types.
TruSkin Daily Facial Moisturizer, $16, Amazon.com