The Skin-Care Savior That Cuts Through the Hype


Photo: Levin Brown/Trunk Archive

The skin resolution: Feed your skin with active ingredients that work.

Why you’re tempted to quit: Option fatigue has you baffled as to how to which actives to pick.

Why keep going: A streamlined solution can help fight free radicals and brighten complexion.

Fermented white ginseng! Snow lotus! Marula oil! With an ever-widening array of active ingredients touted in skin care, it’s easy to jump from product to product, in hot pursuit of the most exotic or newest active ingredient that promises the elusive glowing complexion.

Related: How to winterproof common skin conditions

It’s no wonder that something as basic and familiar as vitamin C can get lost in the shuffle—or seem old-fashioned at best. But according to the experts, that’s exactly what makes this active ingredient such a skin-care powerhouse. Consider the staggering number of active ingredients in skin care that are not backed by research, and that the FDA doesn’t regulate cosmetic companies, their products or claims. Suddenly, something as simple as vitamin C becomes paramount, or what Dr. Melanie Palm, a Solana Beach-based dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon, and Assistant Clinical Professor at University of California San Diego calls “a gold-standard antioxidant in published literature.” It’s a great place to focus when thinking about daily skin care because it serves more than one role.

After decades of research, we know that vitamin C can help fight against free radical production (like other antioxidants) while also working to increase collagen production, reduce hyper pigmentation and decrease inflammation. Palm says it serves as a great go-to because it’s typically well tolerated by all skin types. So while researchers are discovering the next great antioxidant, treat your face with a dose of what’s tried and true—a vitamin C-packed serum applied in the AM to help fight pollution and save face.

Try: iS Clinical C-15 Serum Advance+