Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid in a scientific chemical name. Vitamin C and its derivatives are used as a powerful antioxidant. The vitamin C is one of the agent commonly used for the skin lightening or whitening.
The Clinic Laser & Cosmetic Surgery Ling has been using this ingredient safely for skin whitening treatment over the past 20 years, together with the PRP, filler (such as Vampire lift), Botox and thread lift.
Many skin whiteners can be used together as a part of the formula for skin care products. The formula component ingredients are listed here includes:
Mechanism of action
The possible mechanism of action of vitamin C can be described as follows:
The vitamin C also has some potential side effects as stated below:
It can induce a large increase of free radicals with some traces of metal ions. Free radical are electrons or negatively charged molecules, radicals, or ions that are unstable and it readily give away this electron, causing an oxidation reaction of itself. The original high energy and active free radical becomes stable and lost its activeness. Any donation of electron brings about oxidation. Oxidation is not a good news for the cell. The free electron can get stick to genetic material causing damage, and if prolonged and frequent, may cause mutation.
Vitamin C is an extremely unstable compound. To increase its absorption and hence its skin whitening effect, some ascorbate esters, such as the magnesium ascorbyl-2-phosphate and its various forms, has been synthesised.
Vitamin C cream of 10% concentration or its derivative has a significant whitening effect on the skin. This is particularly observed in patients or client with melasma pigmentation disorder.
Vitamin C has been shown as a very effective agent in bring about skin whitening in a randomised, double blinded, placebo controlled trail (Solana et al., 2006).
One study found it raises glutathione level in the body and the cells. While another study found that the experimental brownish colour guinea pig, which was given the vitamin C together with vitamin E and L-cysteine, at the same time brought about whitening effect of the guinea pig skin.
Vitamin C can be given in different format or routes:
Asian in particular, because of their skin type 3 or 4, are always on the look out to lighten their skin to skin type 2 or 3. This is the dream complexion they are dying to achieve. It is not impossible if after given the various skin lightening therapy, as shown in the melanin synthesis pathway, the melanin production can be decreased or curtailed significantly.
In order to achieve this result, a program of injection has to be given before the previous injection effect wears off. Furthermore, the effect can only be seen after a minimum period of 2 weeks, when all the melanocytes has responded to and the entire pathway of melanin production is suppressed.
In between, the client must stays away from the stimulating effect of the sunlight on the melanin synthesis. Any slack of guarding this suppressed melanin synthesis can trigger the melanocyte to ram up pigment production. This is the innate ability of skin to response to UV rays damaging effect by producing pigment to shield it. Therefore, it is highly essential that the client understand the principle behind the skin lightening. Failure to perform their duty will brings about failure of lightening effect, which cannot be blamed on the therapist.