People Always Ask Me If Vitamin C Skincare Is Worth the Hype—These 12 Products Definitely Are

Glance over the skincare products on your bathroom shelf and chances are at least one of them contains vitamin C. Known for its skin-brightening benefits, the ingredient has (alongside the likes of retinol and hyaluronic acid) been a staple in our skincare routines for years, and most of the major skincare brands (both high end and affordable) have a vitamin C product within their lineup.

So, what’s all the fuss about? If you’re not already using vitamin C then you may just know it for its immunity-boosting properties, but the ingredient also has a number of skin-specific benefits. As a topical antioxidant, vitamin C helps to protect skin from environmental damage, neutralising the free radicals in the environment which cause oxidative stress to cells—leading to skin damage and accelerated signs of ageing. Vitamin C also works to brighten skin by reducing excess melanin production which, in turn, helps to fade the appearance of discolouration and dark spots. Finally, it also helps to maintain and stimulate skin’s natural collagen production, helping to reduce signs of ageing skin like sagging, fine lines, and wrinkles.

Best vitamin C products

(Image credit: @vikilefevre)

No matter what your skin type, there are multiple benefits to adding a vitamin C product to your routine. I myself use the ingredient daily to help fade the stubborn pigmentation that my breakouts always leave behind. While the ingredient can be found in everything from cleansers and moisturisers to face masks and eye creams, I prefer using a vitamin C serum in order to get maximum benefits from a potent formula. I apply it in the morning so that it can help to provide my skin with antioxidant protection throughout the day, and because it’s best not to layer vitamin C with retinoids (which I use in my evening skincare routine).

Skin in need of a brightening boost? Scroll down to shop my favourite vitamin C skincare products.

1. Dr. Sam's Flawless Vitamin C Nad+ Serum

2. Dermalogica Biolumin C Serum

3. Revolution X Sali Hughes Must-C Anytime Daily Serum

4. Drunk Elephant C-Firma Fresh Day Serum

5. Medik8 Vitamin C Tetra Serum

6. Paula's Choice 25% Vitamin C + Glutathione Clinical Serum

7. The Inkey List 15% Vitamin C and Egf Serum

8. Naturium Vitamin C Complex Serum

9. Skinceuticals C E Ferulic Vitamin C Serum

10. Vichy Liftactiv Supreme 15% Pure Vitamin C Brightening Serum

11. Sunday Riley CEO 15% Vitamin C Brightening Serum

12. Allies of Skin 20% Vitamin C Brighten + Firm Serum

Freelance Beauty Editor

Grace Day is a beauty editor and content creator. She has over 10 years of beauty-industry experience, spanning editorial, retail, and e-commerce, which gives her a unique understanding into how people shop for their beauty routines. While studying for a history degree (specialising in the history of beauty) and working as a beauty adviser in department stores, Grace started writing her own beauty blog in order to share the products she discovered while dealing with acne. After graduating, she moved to Beauty Bay as beauty editor and content manager. Grace is currently a beauty contributor to Who What Wear. She has also written for Hypebae and PopSugar and works as a brand consultant and copywriter.