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Does Vitamin C Serum Get Rid Of Dark Spots? We Break Down The Benefits

Pesky dark spots (also known as hyperpigmentation) can affect just about anyone at any age. They come in the form of age spots (also known as sun spots), melasma, and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, the latter of which is caused by acne. While these are caused by different triggers, they all form when a certain area of the skin overproduces melanin – AKA your skin’s natural pigment.  

As common of a concern as dark spots are, not everyone knows the best course of action for fading these spots for a more even skin tone. We’re going to talk about the role a well-formulated vitamin C serum can play in targeting hyperpigmentation, as well as what you can expect after adding this ingredient to your skincare routine. 

What are Dark Spots?

The term dark spots is used to describe a range of conditions where certain areas of the skin appear darker than the rest. With dark spots, the color can range from light to dark brown, and the texture of the skin will remain the same. 

The root cause can vary depending on the condition, but any type of hyperpigmentation forms when the skin responds to a trigger by producing an excess of melanin. There are three primary types of dark spots:

  • Sun Spots: As the name implies, sun spots are caused by chronic exposure to UV rays. They typically form on areas of the skin that tend to get the most sun exposure, including the face and hands. You may also see them referred to as age spots, solar lentigines, or liver spots. 

  • Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation: With this type of hyperpigmentation, the skin produces melanin in response to being injured in a specific area. It’s often connected to acne, but can also be caused by eczema, psoriasis, infections, allergic reactions, or other similar conditions. 

  • Melasma: Melasma can be triggered by hormonal fluctuations, and is most common in women – especially during pregnancy. It often appears on the forehead, cheeks, and chin, and may also form on the neck and arms. 
  • Dark spots are not harmful, and do not require treatment. However, many people seek out topical products and other treatments to help reduce their appearance for a more even skin tone.

    ​​How Does Vitamin C Serum Brighten Your Skin?

    One of the most talked about benefits of topical vitamin C is its ability to brighten the skin for a more radiant complexion. These brightening effects are what help fade the appearance of hyperpigmentation to promote evenness in the skin.

    So how exactly does it work? Vitamin C inhibits the activity of tyrosinase, an enzyme responsible for the production of melanin. By impacting the creation of this skin pigment, vitamin C is able to both fade and prevent various forms of hyperpigmentation. 

    For the best results, you’ll want to use a vitamin C serum at least once daily. It’s also equally necessary to wear sunscreen during the day. Damaging UV rays can not only trigger additional age spots, but they may even darken existing hyperpigmentation. Protect your skin so that your vitamin C serum can deliver the best possible results!

    How to Use Vitamin C for Dark Spots

    If you want to add a vitamin C serum to your routine to fade dark spots and achieve a more even skin tone, you’ll want to use it properly to see the best and fastest results. As mentioned above, at minimum, you should apply a vitamin C serum once daily to clean, dry skin. Wait 5 to 10 minutes for the serum to fully absorb into the skin. Once that time is up, you can follow up with other serums you may be using, and then top those off with a moisturizer, as well as sunscreen during the day. 

    If you’re just using the serum once a day, we recommend applying it in the morning to get antioxidant protection against environmental aggressors to prevent further damage – we’ll talk more about this below. However, for even faster results, you can consider using your vitamin C serum both in the morning and in the evening. 

    How long it takes vitamin C to start fading dark spots will depend on the severity of the discoloration, as well as the quality of the serum you are using. In general, many people start to see improvements in their skin after four weeks of consistently using a vitamin C serum. Even once you have achieved a more even skin tone, you’ll want to continue using your serum to protect the skin, minimize the risk of further damage, and experience the other benefits of vitamin C. 

    Of course, choosing a well-formulated product is key for seeing the biggest changes in your complexion. We’ll talk about what to look for (and what to avoid) when picking out a vitamin C serum.


    Vitamin C Serum

    Top Benefits of Vitamin C in Your Skincare Routine

    Vitamin C is a powerful brightener and dark spot fader, but there’s so much more to know about this potent, science-backed ingredient. In addition to promoting a more even skin tone, there are some key benefits of adding vitamin C to your daily skincare routine:

  • Provides Antioxidant Protection: Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that can defend the skin against damaging free radicals from pollutants and other environmental aggressors, which can cause premature signs of aging.  
  • Supports Collagen: Collagen plays a key role in maintaining a youthful complexion, but the natural production of this protein slows down as we age, leading to a loss of firmness and elasticity. Vitamin C not only protects existing collagen, but also enhances the body’s natural production of collagen. 
  • Targets Fine Lines and Wrinkles: By protecting and stimulating collagen, vitamin C helps to soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 
  • Protects Against Sun Damage: When used alongside a sunscreen, vitamin C is able to provide additional protection against oxidative stress caused by UV rays, which can contribute to pigmentation, fine lines, and wrinkles. 
  • Not All Vitamin C Serums are Created Equal

    Practically every skincare company has their own version of a vitamin C serum, but the formula quality can vary greatly depending on the ingredients and the packaging. You’ll want to know how to sort through the endless options to find your perfect, most effective match. 

    First, you have to consider the actual form of vitamin C used in the formula. Ascorbic acid (also known as L-ascorbic acid) is one of the most well-researched. This pure form of vitamin C is a high-performance ingredient that delivers maximum results when it comes to anti-aging, fading dark spots, and protecting the skin. 

    Another ingredient to look out for is 3-0-ethyl ascorbic acid, a derivative of pure vitamin C that is both super stable and highly effective. Additionally, some other particularly great vitamin C ingredients include ascorbyl palmitate, sodium ascorbyl phosphate, and magnesium ascorbyl phosphate.  

    Next, look at the supporting ingredients. Pure vitamin C and some of its derivatives are delicate, and can deteriorate when not combined with the right ingredients. However, research has shown that other antioxidants – particularly ferulic acid and vitamin E – can both help keep vitamin C stableandboost its effects. Soothing and hydrating ingredients are also always welcome additions, as they can help counteract irritation and dryness. 

    Finally, you need to consider the packaging. Many forms of vitamin C can oxidize when exposed to air. If you want the last pump of your vitamin C serum to be just as potent as the first, it’s crucial that you pick out a serum packaged with an airless pump. This protects the solution from oxygen exposure, ensuring maximum longevity. 

    Keeping all of this in mind, we created ourVitamin C Boost Serum to provide the best possible results. This clean, clinical formula combines high-performance forms of vitamin C (ascorbic acid, 3-0-ethyl ascorbic acid, and ascorbyl palmitate) with ferulic acid, vitamin E, and calming and hydrating ingredients to promote a radiant, youthful, and even-toned complexion. Just like all of our other serums, it’s also cruelty-free, made without fragrances, and crafted in small batches that are constantly lab tested for guaranteed safety and efficacy.