A-Z of Vital Skin Vitamins

[By Jessica Hall]

Research shows that certain nutrients are essential for preventing and reversing many signs of skin aging. A well-balanced diet is important,, that’s why consuming a variety of healthy foods helps keep skin supple and glowing. But the fact is, the body delivers only a certain percentage of vitamins to your skin, no matter how much you ingest. Plus, there’s no way to send them straight to your crow’s feet or brown spots. So it makes sense to apply some of these vital vitamins directly to your skin. Here’s the shortlist of the most vital vitamins that will make a difference to your complexion.

Read more: Skin Vitamins uncovered Click here

Vitamin A


Best overall age-fighter

Proven to: Reduce wrinkles, fade brown spots, and smooth roughness. “There are more than 700 published studies on Vitamin A, also known as retinoids—they’re tried-and-true ingredients. Anyone who wants younger-looking skin should use one, according to dermatologists.

How to use: Apply your retinoid at night—sunlight inactivates most forms of vitamin A. Prescription retinoids work fastest, within four to eight weeks. The downside: They’re irritating, causing redness, scaling, and flaking that can last for weeks or longer. OTC products are best for beginners; you’ll experience fewer skin care side effects because the retinol they contain is slowly converted to retinoic acid, the active ingredient in prescription creams. To avoid irritation, apply an OTC or prescription retinoid every second or third night, at least for the first two weeks, and build up to nightly use. Apply sparingly; a pea-size amount is enough to cover your entire face.

Try: Dr. Brandt Glow Overnight Resurfacing Serum (Click here) or Sloane Inc Age Defy (Click here).

Vitamin B3


Boosts hydration to reduce redness

Proven to: Increase production of ceramides and fatty acids, two key components of your skin’s outer protective barrier. “As that barrier is strengthened, skin is better able to keep moisture in and irritants out—making B3 a great ingredient if your complexion is dry or sensitive. In one study, a moisturizer with niacinamide improved the flushing and blushing of rosacea, a common condition that can worsen with age. Another B3 skin care benefit: It inhibits the transfer of pigment to skin cells, minimizing dark spots.

How to use: For maximum results, apply B3 vitamins in the morning and evening. To reduce irritation from your retinoid, use it in conjunction with niacinamide. Besides decreasing side effects, the combo produces superior anti-aging benefits.

Try: La Roche-Posay Rosaliac Skin Perfecting Anti-Redness Moisturizer (Click here) or Sloane Inc Miracle Lift (Click here).

Vitamin C


All-around skin brightener

Proven to: Mop up the free radicals that trigger wrinkling, sagging, and other aging changes. Vitamin C also helps smooth and firm skin and fade brown spots. In one study, women who treated sun-damaged skin with a C cream for six months saw significant improvement in fine lines and discoloration. Though the benefits of retinoids (see vitamin A) and vitamin C sound similar, using both delivers more complexion perfection. Tip: Look for C near the middle of the ingredients panel to help ensure the 5% or higher concentration needed to see skin care benefits.

How to use: Apply vitamin C in the morning before sunscreen to shield your skin from any UV-generated free radicals that get by your sunblock.

Try: SkinMedica Vitamin C+E Complex (Click here) or Sloane Inc Vitamin C Elixir (Click here).

Vitamin D


Mega anti-ager.

Proven to: Also known as the “sunshine vitamin’, we already know that skin is a crucial catalyst and gateway for vitamin D to get to where it needs to in the body. Vitamin D is primarily synthesized in skin exposed to UV light, if not obtained by diet or supplements. And since over time, the skin’s ability to create vitamin D decreases (up to 75 percent from the age of 20 to 70) you’ll eventually have to pop more vitamin D supplements to reach standard levels than when you were younger. But does D play a much more superficial role? Having sufficient vitamin D in the skin helps minimize acne, boost elasticity, stimulate collagen production, enhance radiance, and lessen lines and the appearance of dark spots.

Find it in: Your skin can make Vitamin D when exposed to the sun, but for those of you surviving a long winter, consider getting it from your diet or from a supplement. Vitamin D is only in a few foods and often in ver/y small amounts. Foods that provide vitamin D include: Fatty fish, like tuna, mackerel, and salmon, foods fortified with vitamin D, like some dairy products, orange juice, soy milk, and cereals, beef liver, cheese, egg yolks.

Vitamin E


Eases dryness and bolsters skin’s UV defense

Proven to: Quell dryness by helping skin retain its natural moisturizers. Also, vitamin E’s potent ability to neutralize damaging free radicals has earned it the moniker “the protector.” A slew of skin care studies document its superstar status. In one, E significantly reduced the number of these unstable molecules created after exposure to cigarette smoke. Others show that when it’s used before UV exposure, skin is less red, swollen, and dry.

How to use: Apply before and after serious sun exposure. A single strong blast of UV light can destroy half the skin’s natural supply of E, so shore up defenses by slathering on a sunscreen supplemented with E and C before going into the sun—the C helps ensure effectiveness. Some studies show that the anti-inflammatory action kicks in to reduce damage even after you’ve been in the sun. Tip: The best anti-aging products contain at least 1% vitamin E, so it will be listed near the middle of the ingredients panel.

Try: L’Oreal Paris Sublime Sun Face Lotion SPF 50+ (Click here), Clinique After-Sun Rescue Balm with Aloe (Click here).

Vitamin K


For younger, brighter eyes

Proven to: Possibly help lighten under-eye circles. Fragile capillaries that allow blood to leak into skin are considered one cause of under-eye circles, and vitamin K (aka phytonadione) may put the skids on this seepage by controlling blood clotting. Daily use of a K cream significantly lightened circles after 4 months in one study, but because the cream also contained retinol, researchers aren’t sure which ingredient deserves credit for the improvement—retinol alone thickens the translucent under-eye skin (making it harder to see the dark blood vessels below) and lightens melanin that makes circles more prominent. Still, it can’t hurt to try a cream that contains vitamin K and retinol, the retinol may enhance K’s ability to penetrate skin and knock out darkness.

How to use: Apply nightly. First allow skin to become acclimated to the retinol—use once or twice the first week, and add a night every week after.

Try: NeoStrata Bionic Eye Cream (Click here) or Peter Thomas Roth Power K Eye Rescue Dark Circle Eye Treatments (Click here).

Read more: 5 Good Eating Habits You Must Adopt Now Click here


* Selected as Editor’s Choice Nov 2013*



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20 thoughts on “A-Z of Vital Skin Vitamins”

  1. I love using Dr. Brandt Glow Overnight Resurfacing Serum. It leaves my skin glowing and smooth in the morning. Sometimes I wear it during the day too.

  2. I am a fair skinned red head with oily skin. I have tried a zillion sun screens for the face. L’Oreal Paris Sublime Sun Face Lotion SPF 50+ is by far the best! It really does go on like silk. My face does not get greasy and make up goes over it beautifully. By the end of a long day my face feels great! I am not a very loyal skin product consumer. I am always looking for the next best thing. I will keep buying this over and over!!

  3. I have sensitive, acne-prone skin and Dr. Brandt Glow has not made me breakout! Best of all, it does what it says, even after one application. I put it on right after I cleansed my skin and applied moisturizer afterwards. I didn’t change my routine except for adding Dr. Brandt. The next morning, my skin was noticeable smoother and brighter. Pores and pimples looked smaller! The smell isn’t exactly attractive (smells like a medical product) but I don’t mind it.

  4. I have never used Dr. Brandt’s products before but tried this because my skin was looking kind of dull. I have used it for 3 nights so far and wake up to beautiful glowing skin!!!! I will definitely keep using this and am going to order more products from his line. Give it a try you won’t be disappointed.

  5. I love that L’Oreal Paris Sublime Sun Face Lotion SPF 50+ is good SPF, doesn’t leave any white cast and it is not sticky.
    But it contains high percentage of alcohol which stings like hell on my sensitive skin probably because of topical retinoic acid night cream.

  6. hi all, new to this site. but just wondering would the vitamins be just as good consumed? I am a vegetarian and i am pretty sure i have enough fresh fruits and veggies but my skin isn’t what i expect it to be. should i be opting for some topical aid instead? anyone with any advice?

  7. I have light colored combination skin with huge pores, and on top of that dark acne scars with mild discoloration from previous acne. After using Dr. Brandt Glow for a week I noticed that the size of my pores shrank dramatically. My scars were slightly fading, and my skin tone was evening out. Now, first application was a bit awkward for me because it felt dewy and sticky. The smell didn’t bother me. I was a bit skeptical, until I woke up and washed my face to a better me. This really does help me prevent breakouts, and it mildly helps with existing ones for me.

  8. I’m 21 so I don’t know how NeoStrata Bionic Eye Cream affects wrinkles but i can assure you that it brightens dark circles. It also leaves the skin under the eyes really soft. I buy different creams all the time and I think this one has been the best so far!

  9. Clinique After-Sun Rescue Balm with Aloe is a Fantastic product. Feels great on skin and it very soothing, but not greasy for my oily skin type. Goes on smooth and silky, and feels great. Really helps to eliminate redness and peeling from sunburn. WILL buy again.

  10. My dermatologist had me try NeoStrata Bionic Eye Cream product and it works great for crows feet and puffy eyes. I only use it in the morning and I am often asked by other women what product I use because they don’t see any of my fine lines. I am so happy it works.:D

  11. I use Sloane Inc Vitamin A eye renewal cream. It glides on like a dream, very light and doesn’t clog the skin, erasing fine lines and improving the skin texture and discoloration too!

  12. I got this for my mom. She has black marks around the eyes, and a doctor in Sinagpore recommended her this product. She used for a few days and we could already see the difference. Her skin looks younger, brighter, without the marks. Fantastic!

  13. SkinMedica Vitamin C+E Complex product doubles as a Vitamin C serum and as a primer. When I run out of primer, I use this as my back up. I love how it is packaged- it prevents oxidation. I also love the texture of the serum on my skin. I use this in the AM after my Essential Serum and then the Retinol Complex in the PM. I’m in my mid 20’s but I have dry skin so I am using these products for preventative care. I used to have severely dry skin and I’ve noticed a significant improvement.

  14. I’ve been using the NeoStrata Bionic Eye Cream for years. It gives you the hydration and exfoliation that you need without spending a fortune. Highly recommend!

  15. I love SkinMedica Vitamin C+E Complex product! It goes on like silk and makes the skin feel great. I noticed a difference in my skin in less than a week of starting this product. Great for any skin type, no fragrance, and great packaging. Love it!

  16. Excellent SkinMedica vitamin C product. Goes on smooth due to the silicone content, but unlike other silicone products this does not break me out. It’s really helped my skin tone, improving evenness, clarity, and even gives a bit of a glow. Perfect for my dry skin, because it is a little moisturizing. I use this instead of a moisturizer under my sunscreen. I do need to wait about 5 minutes before applying sunscreen, to let it sink in. Really like this one as it is very easy to use.

  17. I have tried every product on the market, as well as every concealer, and the Power K is the only product that has worked! Now that my genetic dark circles under my eyes are gone, I just use it a couple days a week to maintain my new, refreshed look 🙂 Oh, be sure to break the small capsules in the product as that contains Co Q10- which is anti-aging.

  18. I have very dark under eye circles. When I used Power K for a couple of weeks I didn’t think I saw a big difference and decided I would use the product up and not buy it again. I didn’t use it for a couple of days and I really did see a difference! I was surprised by the difference in just a couple of days.

    The beads don’t break right away which can’t be good for my skin and it’s expensive. Guess you get what you pay for but if I find something that works just at good and is less expensive I would change.

  19. Peter Thomas Power K is a small amount of smooth gel with little ‘beads’ inside. For my dark circles, mostly due to chronically rubbing my eyes due to allergies and genetics, this product made a difference in a short time (about two weeks, applying twice a day with a cleansing and moisturizing routine). We all have dark circles for different reasons and this was the first product to make such an impressive impact for my case. My eye area feels soft and smooth after application, but I did notice a bit of tingling when I put it on.

    For people that rub their eyes due to allergies I can recommend this product. It is really worth the cost.

  20. I just bought my 2nd jar of Peter Thomas Power K. I have found it to be the more effective at combating dark circles than any other product I’ve tried. I’m 40 and my face is so pale (genetically) that its skin is fairly translucent. Needless to say, I don’t even have to be tired or sick to have significant dark circles under my eyes. In recent years I have used alot of beauty which is recommended and even sold by many SG physicians. Most of the products were somewhat effective, but Peter Thomas Roth’s Power K Rescue outperformed them all for me.

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