You are here

The Best Vitamin C Skin-Care Products for Brighter, Younger-Looking Skin

The Skin Benefits of Vitamin C

1 of 12

All photos

It may not be the newest skin-care ingredient on the block, but vitamin C remains a mainstay in the beauty world, thanks to its tried-and-true anti-aging benefits. First and foremost, it acts as an antioxidant, combating skin-damaging reactive oxygen species (ROS) that form after exposure to sun and/or pollution (which happens to *everyone*, no matter how good you are about applying sunscreen). Next, it brightens the skin by gently exfoliating dead, discolored cells while simultaneously inhibiting tyrosinase, an enzyme essential for the production of new pigment. In other words, it both fades existing spots and keeps new ones from cropping up. And finally, it helps keep collagen—the protein essential for firm, youthful skin—from breaking down, and some studies have shown that the vitamin stimulates collagen production, too. (The full scoop on the benefits: Everything You Need to Know About Vitamin C Skin Care

Sold on the science? Start working the triple-threat vitamin into your skin-care routine with any of these vitamin C products.

Photo: Carlo Prearo / EyeEm / Getty Images

Dermalogica BioLumin-C

2 of 12

All photos

The new Dermalogica BioLumin-C packs not one, but two, stable forms of vitamin C for a hefty dose of antioxidant protection. It also contains lactic acid to boost cell turnover for added brightening benefits. ($87;

buy it, $87

Photo: Dermalogica

Clinique Fresh Pressed 7-Day System with Pure Vitamin C

3 of 12

All photos

Reach for this two-step, seven-day protocol whenever your skin needs a little extra TLC. The 7-day system comes with a powder vitamin C cleanser; add water to work it into a lather, then leave it on your skin for a minute to reap the full benefits. There's also a vitamin C–rich booster that contains a powder and emulsion you combine in the tube, then add to your daily moisturizer. 

buy it, $27

Photo: Clinique

First Aid Beauty Hello FAB Ginger & Turmeric Vitamin C Jelly Mask

4 of 12

All photos

Ginger and turmeric aren't just good to incorporate into your diet; in this cooling jelly mask, the superfoods work to calm and soothe your skin while the vitamin C delivers brightening benefits. And while it's usually best to look for vitamin C–based products housed in opaque containers—since the sun can deactivate the ingredient—the packaging on this jar has a special UV coating to keep the ingredient stable.

buy it, $32

Skinceuticals C E Ferulic

5 of 12

All photos

We have yet to find a vitamin C serum that dermatologists love and recommend more than the cult classic Skinceuticals C E Ferulic. Why? It might have something to do with the impressive 15 percent concentration of pure vitamin C or the fact that it's coupled with ferulic acid, another potent antioxidant, that also improves the stability and efficacy of vitamin C. A pricey product for sure, but well worth the splurge. 

Related: The 11 Best Anti-Aging Serums, According to Dermatologists

buy it, $166

Photo: Skinceuticals

Peter Thomas Roth Potent-C Targeted Spot Brightener

6 of 12

All photos

See spots run. This targeted brightener uses THD Ascorbate, which is 50 times more powerful than traditional vitamin C, to fade even the stubbornest dark marks. But, as with any skin brightening treatment, make sure you're extra diligent about daily sunscreen application so that those spots don't come back. 

buy it, $58

Photo: Peter Thomas Roth

M-61 Vitablast C Serum Pad

7 of 12

All photos

Mark your calendars: The M-61 Vitablast C Serum Pads won't be available until October, but they're already generating beauty buzz. Infused with 15 percent vitamin C, vitamin E, and antioxidant-rich gallic acid, all you have to do is swipe one of these pads across your skin every night to reap the benefits. Could it get any easier?

Related: Genius Single-Use Beauty Products for Your Gym Bag

buy it, $38 for 10

Photo: Blue Mercury

Vitabrid C12 Face Brightening Powder

8 of 12

All photos

Here's a fun fact: One Vitabrid C12 Face Brightening Powder is sold every 27 seconds in Japan. Mix the powder with water or a skin-care product of your choosing; it releases active and stable vitamin C into your skin for the next 12 hours. FYI, powder versions of the vitamin are on the rise, thanks to their increased potency and stability.

buy it, $60

Photo: Vitabrid

Avalon Organics Intense Defense with Vitamin C Eye Cream

9 of 12

All photos

The thin and delicate skin around your eyes requires extra protection, which is why this vitamin C eye cream is a smart option to work into your routine. The 70 percent organic formula packs a hefty antioxidant punch, thanks to not only vitamin C, but also lemon bioflavonoids and white tea.

buy it, $12

Photo: Avalon Organics

The Body Shop Mandarin Energizing Face Mist

10 of 12

All photos

The vitamin C in this face mist is sourced from mandarins, camu camu—an Amazonian fruit extremely rich in the nutrient—and maca root extract. Whether used as post-workout or as a pick-me-up throughout the day, the spritz instantly refreshes and revives your skin. 

Related: Refreshing Spritzes That Solve All Your Summer Beauty Issues 

buy it, $10

Photo: The Body Shop

Mary Kay Timewise Vitamin C Activating Squares

11 of 12

All photos

Each of the tiny, dissolvable squares packs a dose of the vitamin that can be mixed with any skin-care product (except sunscreen or acne treatments). The first-of-its-kind technology keeps the ingredient stable and effective and is an easy way to work vitamin C into any existing skin-care routine.

buy it, $24 for 12

Photo: Mary Kay

Laneige Vitamin Brightening Cleansing Water

12 of 12

All photos

What you won't find in this cleansing water: mineral oil, synthetic colorants, parabens, or phthalates. What you will find: an antioxidant combo of vitamins B and C, plus a superberry extract. Right away, the gentle micellar formula dissolves dirt and makeup; over time, those vitamins work to brighten and protect your complexion.

Related: No-Rinse Cleansers That Make Washing Your Face Infinitely Easier

buy it, $24


Add a comment