We know Vitamin C is necessary for fighting the common cold, but it wasn’t until recently that we started slathering it all over our faces, too. Why you ask? Well, according to a study by Oregon State University, it’s basically the holy grail of anti-aging products thanks to its ability to help reverse UV- and environmental-induced photodamage. When applied topically to skin, it enhances collagen synthesis to bring back youth in the form of a brighter, firmer, more glowy complexion. Intrigued? We got you. Here are three all-star products at every price point.
15% Vitamin C easily absorbs into skin for optimal results
Creamy formula moisturizes skin
Visibly brightens and evens skin tone
“As a 20-something year old, aging skin is always on my mind. So when retinols didn’t seem to do anything for me, I turned to Sunday Riley’s Rapid Flash Brightening Serum. I’ve heard of other Vitamin C serums smelling like hot dog water (seriously), but all I got was the scent of freshly squeezed oranges with this one. It has a thick, creamy consistency, which helped to hydrate my skin on contact, but its true power showed in the morning when I woke up to brighter, more glowy skin. It literally took years off my complexion by fading signs of sun damage. I don’t even need to wear foundation anymore.” – Brianna, Commerce Editor
BEST VALUE: TRUSKIN NATURALS VITAMIN C SERUM FOR FACE, TOPICAL FACIAL SERUM WITH HYALURONIC ACID & VITAMIN E
Targets visible signs of aging
Vitamin E and Hyaluronic Acid hydrate
Thousands of positive reviews on Amazon
Is there anything better than skincare that actually works? Yep, skincare that works and doesn’t break the bank. This serum’s trio of Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamin E gets rave feedback on Amazon—we’re talking over 7,000 five-star reviews with photos to prove its effectiveness. The ingredients work together to help fade the visible signs of aging including brightness, firmness, fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots and sun spots. If you’re looking for a heavy-duty product that doesn’t dig into your morning cold brew fund, this one is about to become your new go-to.
Neutralizes free radicals to protect skin from environmental damage
Visibly fades the appearance of wrinkles
Keeps working for 72 hours
When your skin isn’t exactly aging as gracefully as you are, it’s time to bring in the big guns. This one-ounce bottle of Vitamin C serum is basically worth its weight in gold, visibly fading the most common signs of aging including fine lines and wrinkles, loss of firmness and dullness. But this formula is especially effective for those of us that live in cities, because it provides advanced environmental protection from damaging free radicals like UVA/UVB rays, infrared radiation and ozone pollution. One bottle should last you a few months, so when you think about it, the cost is almost justifiable.
RELATED: Habits that are ruining your skin
Bad beauty habits that are giving you wrinkles
Bad beauty habits that are giving you wrinkles
Smoking is the most common cause of wrinkles that we see. “There have been studies of twins that showed proof of this in stunning detail. So skip cigarettes and lose the wrinkles!” says Dr. Joel Schlessinger, a board certified dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon and founder of LovelySkin.com.
If you want to keep your skin healthy and young, the old saying that you are what you eat has never been more true. Aside from adding extra pounds to your weight, eating too much sugar and high-glycemic foods may also be aging you. “Through a damaging process called glycation, sugar molecules attach to the proteins (including collagen) in your skin, causing them to become stiff and malformed. This results in a loss of facial elasticity and contours, puffiness and fine lines. Refined sugar and other simple carbohydrates also trigger inflammation throughout the body by causing insulin levels to skyrocket. Inflammation produces enzymes that break down collagen and elastin, which leads to sagging and wrinkles,” says Dr. Roshini Raj, co-founder of TULA.
“Alcohol is a hepatotoxin, meaning it specifically damages the liver. It’s a toxin to the cells that detoxify your body,” explains Dr. James C. Marotta, a dual-board certified facial plastic surgeon. All alcohol dehydrates the skin. This means your skin will appear less plump and fresh the next morning. Over time, your skin will lose elasticity and form wrinkles due to a lack of hydration. “Additionally, alcohol can have a huge negative impact on your vitamin A level, which is a very important antioxidant for your skin/body, and it is vital in the regeneration of new cells. Vitamin A is also extremely important in the production of collagen. When you have lower amounts of collagen, you lose elasticity in your skin,” says Dr. Marotta. Collagen and elasticity are what keep your skin supple, taut and looking young.
“Gum chewing produces a type of wrinkle that I see quite often on the lower mouth,” says Dr. Schlessinger. Additionally, it causes other issues in the mouth structure. This is an easy habit to give up in the name of looking better.
When you sleep in your makeup, you are basically inviting wrinkles to your skin. The makeup and environmental pollutants you accumulate during the day seep into your pores, breaking down collagen and elastin. This can speed up the aging process, leaving you with fine lines and wrinkles. Cleanse and moisturize your skin every night before bed.
Exfoliation removes dirt, debris, excess oil and dulling skin cells that can make your skin appear old and wrinkled. By exfoliating regularly, your skin will appear more radiant and youthful, and it will help your anti-aging products penetrate your skin easier.
At the same time, don’t exfoliate too much. Did you know that scrubbing away at your skin can cause aging? By over-exfoliating you’re actually removing the only protective barrier that your skin has. If you remove the barrier then your skin is exposed to environmental toxins, not to mention the sun which causes the most damage to your skin. “Any damage, inflammation, and harm done to your skin will bring aging faster, including loss off hydration, elasticity and wrinkles. So the key is to use products that encourage a natural cell turn over,” says Dr. Ben Johnson, MD, founder of Osmosis Pur Medical Skincare.
Stop picking at those pesky zits and let them come out on their own, or use natural products to help eliminate them. Any time you pick or pull at your skin, you’re causing damage and creating irritation, scars, and yes, even wrinkles.
This is bad for creating more wrinkles but also just bad makeup practice in general. “You should do your makeup how everyone else is going to see you and hopefully its not with your mouth stretched opened and eyebrows lifted so you can put on your mascara. Don’t pull on your eyes and stretch them so you can put on your eye liner. It is about moving your whole face when you are applying makeup, not stretching it so it is flat,” says makeup artist Donna Kelly.
We’ve all been told to never skip the sunscreen, but it’s often tempting when many of us spend our days indoors. Exposure to the sun for even a few minutes can lead to a breakdown of collagen, leading to fine lines and wrinkles. “Wear sunscreen every day, rain or shine, so that you don’t get sun damage. Choose an SPF 30 and one that has zinc oxide or titanium dioxide,” says Dr. Debra Jaliman, a New York-based dermatologist and author of Skin Rules.
If you sleep on your face you can get sleep wrinkles from the pillow. “It’s best to sleep on a satin pillowcase that slides across your face. The other alternative is to sleep on your back,” says Dr. Jaliman.