With so many dangerous ingredients out there and companies trying to sell them as healthy or natural, it’s always safe to do a little research before applying whatever you find in the market. Many brands keep moving forward on only using safe and healthy ingredients but that doesn’t mean they all do or that everything they use is safe and why not check? Today, our topic is about what is an ascorbic acid and why is it in a lot of skin care products?

Skin care products are very beneficial for all of us. They help us get rid of unwanted acne, blackheads, wrinkles and much more. I will never say that using skin care products are bad but I agree that we must be cautious with what we put in our skin. Sometimes it’s just as simple as finding the correct products and not over using them but other times, it may be that the product is not the correct one. All we have to do is educate ourselves about the ingredients, the benefits and what works best with our skin. Remember, products don’t work the same for everyone. Not even those that are meant for all types of skin!

What is an ascorbic acid? – Definition

Have you heard about Vitamin C? Probably! All of us have heard about it at some point in our lives. Well, vitamin C can also be known as ascorbic acid or L-ascorbic acid. Ascorbic acid sounds scarier that vitamin C but it’s about the same thing. In this case, why is it used in skin care?

To define it properly, ascorbic acid is the purest, most beneficial form of vitamin c. It is a potent antioxidant and has many benefits for the skin. It was originally used to treat and prevent a disease called scurvy.

The benefits of ascorbic acid

Ascorbic acid has a few great benefits for the skin. Specially, for those who lack plenty of Vitamin C.

Some benefits include:

  • It’s an antioxidant
    • This means that ascorbic acid can be used to protect your skin from damage and help the skin repair itself.
  • Has Anti-aging properties
    • It can get skin cells to boost collagen and elastin. This helps provide firm skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. Additionally, it improves the skin texture and helps improve its quality.
  • It can be used as a depigmenting agent
    • It interacts with copper ions and it inhibits the action of the enzyme tyrosinase, therefore, it decreases the melanin formation. For better results, it is used with other depigmenting agents to help with hyperpigmentation.
  • Photoprotection
    • It helps reduce the damage cause by free radicals in UV lights. This does not mean that it can replace sunscreen. Please continue your use of sunscreen to protect your skin.
  • Improves hydration, brightens skin and evens your skin tone.

Side effects of ascorbic acid

Usually, many ingredients or products may have a negative effect for some people. This is specially true when the product is used incorrectly, overused, mixed inappropriately, expired or in some cases, plain back luck or allergies. It all depends on the person or the way that they are using the ingredient or product.

Some side effects of ascorbic acid (Vitamin C):

  • Allergic reactions may occur
    • It’s best not to forget to do the skin patch test for every new product you try.
  • It may cause headaches when used in high doses.
  • Overuse can cause damage instead of helping your skin.

Other forms of Vitamin C

Vitamin C can come in other forms or derivatives like the ascorbic acid. Here are a few of them and what they’re used for:

  • Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate
    • It’s a derivative of vitamin c that it less potent than L- ascorbic acid but more stable in water. It has many of the same benefits but it’s better to for those with sensitive or dry skin since it causes less irritation.
  • Ascorbyl Palmitate
    • This form of vitamin c is most commonly used in skin care products form oily skin. It’s not as potent as other forms but it’s effective at reducing environmental damage.
  • Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate
    • This one is best used for general skin treatment because of its ability to increase collagen production. Additionally, it’s fatty acid components helps aid penetration and it pairs well with retinol to enhance its effectiveness.
  • Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate
    • This form of vitamin c is water-soluble and function as an antioxidant and it’s best for brightening skin. It’s also gentle on skin and helps fight free radical damage.

The correct way to store products with vitamin C

Learn how to take care of your products so they can give you their best and know when the products should no longer be used.

The L-ascorbic acid is vulnerable to oxidation when it’s exposed to light. This is why they typically come in a dark bottle. Do not order products with clear bottles as they may oxidize without light protection. It should be placed somewhere dark and avoid placing it in direct light.

Oxygen can also ruin the product. Be sure to never leave it out opened.

What not to do with your vitamin C (ascorbic acids)

  • If you have sensitive skin, do not look for products with low Ph since this may cause irritation.
  • Do not use if the product has a bad smell. They are typically odorless and bad smells could mean the product is no longer safe to use.
  • Do not use if it’s dark. This may mean that its oxidized and it should be discarded.
  • Again, do not use if sold in clear bottles.
  • Do not use in any other matter other than directed.

Recommended products – Almost five stars!

This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. 

Product: Vitamin C Serum

Brand: Petunia Skincare

Rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars

Reviews: 900+


This product has vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and anti-aging collagen booster. It helps with wrinkles, dark spots, age spots and sun damage. It’s cruelty-free and natural ingredients. Additionally, it’s highly rated and affordable.

Product: Skin Clearing Serum with Vitamin C

Brand: Eva Naturals

Rating: 4.3 out of 5 stars

Reviews: 2,500+


This serum has vitamin c, hyaluronic acid, niacidamide and other ingredients that help improve the overall look and feel of your skin. Additionally, it has anti-aging properties to help rid of fine lines and wrinkles.

Other great products that are worth taking a look at:

One Love Organics Vitamin C Body Oil – 5 stars!

Indie Lee Daily Vitamin Fusion – 5 Stars!

Let us know what products you have tried and how they worked for you in the comments. Have you tried any of the recommended products?


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  1. Kat

    It’s a good reminder that we do need to be vigilant in our selection of skin care products, as just because they’re on the shelves, it doesn’t mean the ingredients are actually beneficial for our skin. When I came across your post on using ascorbic acid in skincare products, I was wondering if it was safe too. I’m glad you’ve been able to look into this, as I hadn’t even thought of it as being in skincare and then if it is safe. I especially like that it’s an anti-aging product for those of us who are getting older and need a little extra help in reducing the signs of again. Thanks for a helpful informative post.

  2. Oh, I come to know from this article that Ascorbic Acid is basically another name for vitamin-c. You learn something everyday!

    Indeed, skin care products are extremely beneficial to our body maintenance and even more so to know the appropriateness when it comes to incorrect use or expiry use and so on.

    You have done good research and readers will ultimately get many benefits from your useful tips.

    I look forward to reading more of your updates.
    Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thank you so much for an awesome article. I have to be careful about what I use on my skin. I have sent back products that made me itch so bad!

    I have used great products and no so great products. It is very important to research what works for you and what doesn’t!

    Fabulous article!

    All my best,
    Donna Rayne

    1. Hi, Sorry to hear that. It sucks when that happens. And I agree, it’s always important to do your research. I learned the hard way after I bought something as simple as lotion and ended with a horrible allergic reaction. Learned my lesson! Thank you!

  4. Donna

    Very informative. I didn’t know it was actually vitamin c. There was a lot I didn’t know that you covered in this article. Thank you so much. Have to watch what I put on my skin.,

  5. I had no idea Vitamin C was useful for skin!! Maybe that’s why I’m so wrinkly?!

    Thanks for sharing this awesome info I will certainly get some of the Serum as I think it’s much needed!


  6. Great research carried out here. It is always important to check the components of products we feed our skin with, can never be overemphasized. It never occurred to me that ascorbic acid could be used as a skincare product. My son and I have dry skin, perhaps the Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate would better suit us. Thank you for the recommendations.

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