May. 02, 2020

The role of vitamin C in skincare

Vitamin C is one of the most traditional ingredients in skin care products. This blog describes the most important effects and applications of vitamin C.

What is Vitamin C?

Vitamin C, also known as L-ascorbic acid (L-AA) , is a water-soluble, highly unstable vitamin naturally present in some foods, such as bell peppers, oranges, spinach, parsley, and kiwis. This vitamin is necessary for healthy growth and development. Naturally, vitamin C is equally common in the form of L- ascorbic acid and D- ascorbic acid. However, only L-ascorbic acid is biologically active and therefore useful in medical practice.


Most animals and plants are able to produce vitamin C themselves with glucose as the starting molecule. Humans cannot produce vitamin C themselves due to the lack of a certain enzyme. Therefore, it is an essential nutritional component . The recommended daily amount of vitamin C is set at 75 mg for an adult. Certain 'at-risk individuals' are more susceptible to the harmful effects of free radicals and they should therefore take more vitamin C.

Consumption of vitamin C

Vitamin C can be taken orally , for example by eating fruit and vegetables , but there are also dietary supplements containing vitamin C. Vitamin C is absorbed through the intestine and thus enters the bloodstream. The blood flows to the skin and vitamin C can be left here. The deposition in the skin then occurs via sodium-dependent vitamin C transporters (SVCTs). The amount of vitamin C that is effectively absorbed depends on how much is in your plasma (blood) through the diet. The higher this concentration, the more can be left in the skin.


In addition, you can also apply vitamin C locally . Because you may not reach saturation in the skin through the blood, you can increase this concentration through skin care products - on the outside. Applying vitamin C to the skin in high concentrations (and in the right form!) ensures that these nutrients are absorbed through the outer layers of the skin.

Effects of vitamin C on the skin

A vitamin C deficiency in the body can lead to serious conditions such as scurvy, impaired wound healing and bleeding gums. Vitamin C also plays an important role for healthy skin:

Collagen production

Vitamin C has two functions in the formation of collagen , on the one hand it helps to stabilize the collagen molecule. On the other hand, it promotes collagen gene expression. Collagen is responsible for the firmness and elasticity of the skin, so it ensures that the skin remains young, firm and supple.

Vitamin C as an antioxidant

Antioxidants can be divided into two groups: the enzymatic antioxidants and the non-enzymatic antioxidants . The human body produces its own enzymatic antioxidants, while non-enzymatic antioxidants can be found in certain foods. Vitamin C is an example of a non-enzymatic antioxidant and helps protect your skin against the damaging effects of free radicals. Free radicals lead to premature signs of aging, but vitamin C neutralizes them and helps protect your skin, keeping your complexion looking healthy and radiant. Nomige's day serum and day cream provide daily protection against harmful stress factors. Discover Nomige's morning routine here.

Keratinocyte differentiation

Vitamin C is not only efficient against free radicals but also stimulates keratinocyte differentiation or cell renewal process . This is a natural process in which new skin cells (keratinocytes) are created, migrate to the surface of the skin and are eventually transformed into dead skin cells (corneocytes) of the outer horny layer. This dead skin cells or horny layer forms an intact and compact skin barrier, which protects us against microbes, viruses, pollution from the outside. Vitamin C therefore also contributes to the construction of an intact and well-constructed skin barrier.

Vitamin C in skin care

Vitamin C is steadily climbing the beauty trend ladder and gaining popularity in skin care, but why? Vitamin C has been proven to be very useful as an ingredient in skin care products. For example, it counteracts skin aging and pigment spots , has a calming effect, works as an antioxidant and improves the effect of sunscreen .


There are different types of vitamin C; the 'pure' form and its derivatives (eg the 'esters'). They differ in stability, permeability and effectiveness. The instability and low permeability in the skin make 'pure' vitamin C a very difficult molecule to process . Therefore, various derivatives and variants of vitamin C are made to improve stability and permeability. But the problem is that every change has new disadvantages.

Screening of vitamin C products

Would you like to try a cosmetic product with vitamin C after reading this blog? Then use the following tips to find a good product.



Vitamin C is unstable and prone to oxidation. If the cream is exposed to air or light, vitamin C will oxidize and become ineffective. That is why airless packaging is necessary! Airless packaging ensures that the product is not exposed to light and air, making it more stable. Nomige therefore opts for airless packaging.



Ascorbic Acid (L-AA) is the most efficient and purest form of Vitamin C. Look for low pH , high concentration (>10%) L-AA formulas . If you have sensitive skin, an oil-based (not water) formula may be better as it is less irritating. Ester derivatives (so the derivatives) are not as efficient as the pure form.



INCI names are systematic names that are internationally recognized to identify cosmetic ingredients. You can find them on the packaging of every cosmetic product. Depending on the position of vitamin C in that list, it is possible to find out what function vitamin C performs in this product. If it is in the top 3, it may work against skin aging or against pigmentation . If an ingredient is at the bottom of the list, it only works as a pH regulator or preservative .

DNA Skin Analysis

Finally, it should be mentioned that the most powerful antioxidants are those produced by your own body (= enzymatic antioxidants). The GPX-1 gene and the SOD2 gene belong to the group of strong enzymatic antioxidants found in the human body. DNA variations can positively or negatively influence the production process of these powerful natural antioxidants. If this is negative, you are more sensitive to external stressors. Through a DNA test, we can find out at Nomige whether you carry a genetically higher risk of damage from free radicals because your natural antioxidants function less well.

If it turns out that you carry a higher risk, we can act on your risk by adding specific, active ingredients. You can choose to start with a DNA analysis and then possibly purchase the products or you can immediately order the Nomige package that contains the DNA test and personalized products. View our offer below.

DNA Skin Analysis

  • dna kit
  • Skin analysis
  • 15 pages skin report

Test package

2-week starter package
  • dna kit
  • Skin analysis
  • 15 pages skin report
  • Day cream & serum
  • Night cream & serum

Nome Package

4 months of treatment
  • dna kit
  • Skin analysis
  • 15 pages skin report
  • Day cream & serum
  • Night cream & serum
  • Exclusive packaging
  • Marble foot
  • personal advice

Do you want to learn more about vitamins?

Vitamins are important for the human body and especially for the skin. That is why they are often used as an ingredient in cosmetics.

Follow our story

Connect with us and follow the hashtag #MyNomige to stay up to date on the latest skin tips and news.

Follow our story

Connect with us and follow the hashtag #MyNomige to stay up to date on the latest skin tips and news.

Follow the hashtag #Nomige and stay informed about the latest skin tips and news.
Everything you need to know about your skin
Skin School
Everything you need to know about your skin