The story goes that in the 18th century British Naval Surgeon James Lind stumbled upon quite a discovery: a cure for the scurvy-inflicted sailors on his fleet. What he noticed was that those who chewed on or ingested any kind of citrus fruit were soon rapidly cured and restored back to their previous ship-shape condition.
From there to here, we see Vitamin C on the shelves in every market. It will cure the common cold. Heal your wounds. Keep your heart pumping. Prolong the season of youth in your skin, your body, your mind.
Promoter of collagen. Free radical fighter. Like an Hindu God (or Goddess), Vitamin C appears on the anti-aging skin care scene like a multi-faceted, diaphanous deity: I am all things to all people. But, like those other Gods, who reside on Olympus, we see its true personification in reality as something else: Temperamental. Moody. Misunderstood -- Yet still managing to hold our attention through flashes of genius, strokes of good luck.
We, the consumers, hear this siren song and go forth, lapping up this Vitamin C product and slapping on that one. Yet, when it comes to skin care, many of us find our hopes (and dollars) dashed. We find our Vitamin C products inefficient at best and irritating at worst. This, while we see others gladly galloping around showing off the results of their split-face experiment with a twinkle in their eye: this is what vitamin c can do for you, they smile confidently, knowing that they are doing no further damage to their once dwindling collagen reserves no matter how high the corners of their mouth rise.
The truth is this. Vitamin C -- as the body's major natural aqueous antioxidant, present, too, within the extracellular matrix of the face -- is important for anti-aging skin care. And, as long as the stars are aligned, Vitamin C products do work. The trick is knowing how and why and when and who, etc… to manage the numerous rotating variables that must be taken into account when selecting Vitamin C skin care products.
For Example, did you know that... (From: Topical Vitamin C in Aging)
-- Human beings cannot synthesize Vitamin C; they must ingest it, and body control mechanisms limit absorption and subsequent delivery to the tissues?
-- And that skin, which comprises about 8% of body tissues, gets approximately that same amount from oral Vitamin C?
-- And that there’s an inverse correlation between concentrations of ascorbic acid (vitamin c) in the skin and increasing age?
-- But that once it reaches skin cells (as is with the case when it was added to fibroblast cultures), elderly donor cells, previously on a plateau of growth, are stimulated to proliferate?
So, as you can see, if you can manage to get Vitamin C delivered to your skin the results are indeed worth it.
That's why you'll notice a series of posts on Vitamin C throughout the month of February -- from pinning down the exact definition and nature of Vitamin C to investigating its numerous derivatives, from its proven effects on the skin to tips and tricks for application, plus reviews and DIY Vit C skin care serums -- that we hope will help you on your quest for smooth, glowing, youthful skin.
But we'd like you to get into the discussion. Do you have a particular question about Vitamin C that you would like TIA to address? Have a favorite product to recommend? A DIY serum to share?
Part 1: What is it? Vitamin C: An Investigation & Discussion
Part 2: What is it? Vitamin C: What it does for your skin
Part 3: What is it? Vitamin C as L-ascorbic acid
Part 4: What is it? Vitamin C derivatives