The Top 6 Best Antioxidants to Add to Your Skin Care Routine
“Antioxidant” is a buzzword in the world of wellness. Antioxidants are not only promoted as a must-have dietary supplement, but many dermatologists recommend them as a key component of a healthy skin care routine, too!
Antioxidants help to regulate free radicals, unstable molecules with highly reactive properties that can trigger a DNA-damaging chain reaction if left unchecked. Antioxidants’ inhibition of free radicals benefits the skin in a few different ways: preventing sun damage, brightening the skin, visibly smoothing out wrinkles and fine lines, and soothing inflammation.
Rather than one specific substance, “antioxidant” refers to a category of ingredients - some of which you may already know and love! In no particular order, here’s the rundown on our top six favorites:
1. Vitamin A
Vitamin A, also known as retinol, retinoid, and/or tretinoin, is one of the most thoroughly studied ingredients of its kind. It has been used by top dermatologists for decades to effectively fight visible signs of aging. Retinol increases cellular turnover and skin thickness, and stimulates the production of new collagen, keeping the skin looking healthy, glowing, and youthful.
Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) is an antioxidant favorite for all skin types due to its compatibility with sensitive and/or acne-prone skin. B3 works to regulate oil production, preventing greasy-looking skin and combating acne, while simultaneously improving the skin’s overall tone and texture. This antioxidant targets acne, fine lines and wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, and inflammation, and is safe to combine with other active ingredients like AHA/BHAs and retinol!
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3. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a must-use ingredient for anyone who spends time in the sun. Not only is Vitamin C famous for its ability to give skin a bright and dewy glow, but it also increases sun protection! This ingredient is great for daytime use under sunscreen to double-down on damage prevention. Additionally, Vitamin C is a gentle, natural treatment for dark patches of pigment!
4. Vitamin E
Vitamin E is one of the more commonly used antioxidants in personal care products thanks to its ability to improve skin barrier function. Vitamin E absorbs UV light (especially when combined with Vitamin C), which helps reduce sun damage and lower the risk of skin cancer. Beyond providing protection from the sun, it also helps expedite the skin’s healing process - and boasts soothing, anti-inflammatory, and emollient properties to boot!
5. CoEnzyme Q10 (Ubiquinone)
Also known as ubiquinone, CoEnzyme Q10 increases skin resilience against fine lines, wrinkles, and sun damage. On top of that, CoQ10 helps stimulate collagen production, keeping the skin youthful and bouncy.
Squalane is a lightweight, non-pore clogging oil derived from olives. It boasts powerful anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties, soothing the skin and reducing redness while softening skin texture. Similar to niacinamide, it can also help with oiliness!