Last modified on June 24th, 2023
Vitamin C powder is having its moment in the sun right now, and it can be used orally and also as part of your skincare routine. This water-soluble vitamin is a powerful antioxidant that protects your immune system and your cells, and it can also create more beautiful healthy skin.
We explore everything you need to know about the powder form and how to choose a product, whether you want to take it as a supplement or you’re going to use it cosmetically.
Vitamin C Powder for Skin
One of the big reasons there’s so much interest in powder right now is because of its possible skin benefits. Vitamin C, in general, is one of the most popular skincare products that can brighten your skin, even out skin tone, get rid of brown spots, and increase collagen production. Skincare products can also protect from environmental damage.
While it’s somewhat of a miracle ingredient for skin, when you buy vitamin serums and creams, there’s a problem. They aren’t biologically stable. As soon as you expose that product to heat, light, or air, it starts to oxidize. When C oxidizes, it loses its skin benefits.
That’s why powder for face use and skin use is a growing concept.
When you use powder, you add it to whatever other ingredient you’re using, like your moisturizer or favorite serum. Then, the powder retains its power.
Benefits for Skin
Before delving into more details about powder, we’re going to look specifically at some of the top benefits of C for your skin in general.
- It’s good for all ages and skin types. Products are very versatile in terms of skincare.
- The vitamin is also called ascorbic acid and you can only get it through the food you eat or supplements because your body doesn’t make it.
- C plays a role in tissue repair.
- When you apply it topically, it’s around 20 times stronger than oral intake for your skin’s health and appearance.
- The vitamin can promote collagen production.
- It’s an antioxidant that protects the cells of your skin from free radicals.
- Blocks melanin production in the skin, which can get rid of hyperpigmentation and brown spots, and it evens out your skin tone.
- You can repair sun damage its use and it encourages cell turnover and regeneration.
- It can help wounds heal more quickly.
- If you have scars, there’s some evidence that applying it to the skin can make them less noticeable.
General Health Benefits
This natural vitamin is something we can’t make on our own, so we either have to get it from food like citrus fruit or supplements. The method of intracellular delivery plays a big role in how much of the actual vitamin C we take can enter into our blood circulation.
The vitamin can help heart health and reduce inflammation. This essential nutrient has powerful antioxidant properties, especially at high doses. It can reduce oxidative damage. The consumption may have benefits for cancer, and autoimmune disorders as well as overall immune health.
What to Know About Choosing a Vitamin C Powder for Skincare
If you’re going to use powder for your skin specifically, there are a few things to know.
First, most of the powders that are available are 100% pure L-ascorbic acid.
This means they’re a pure form of water-soluble vitamin C. This is going to be a lot more concentrated than what you’ll typically find with a serum. Those usually only have a concentration of anywhere from 10% to 20%.
With that in mind, you only need around 1/3 of a teaspoon of powder added to your products for it to be effective since it is so much concentrated.
When you are mixing powder with your own products, be careful about the other ingredients that are in those products. You don’t want your vitamin C to become ineffective because of the products you’re mixing it with. Vitamin E is a good option to mix with vitamin C because it increases its effectiveness. Generally, mixing the powder with simpler products is better.
You do have to prepare for the gritty feeling that’s going to come with powder. It can help with exfoliation, but it might feel unusual to you at first.
Don’t mix big batches of anything containing powder. Instead, you just want to mix it as you use it because otherwise, you’re going to run into the big problem with vitamin C skincare products, which is the fact that they lose their effectiveness when they’re exposed to air and light.
What’s great about using a powder rather than buying a serum or lotion that already has it mixed in, along with the effectiveness, is that you can customize and tailor the mix to your skin needs.
Choosing Vitamin C Powder for Skin
If you can, try to find a powder that is particularly formulated for the skin. We’re going to highlight a few below. If you choose a form that’s meant to be taken orally it might not absorb into your skin as well. There are products available that work for both, however. You can use them cosmetically or orally.
It’s best to add powder to water-based products because it’s water-soluble, so you’ll get a better texture.
You might also notice stinging or tingling, and if so, you should reduce how much of the powder you’re using each time until your skin gets used to it.
Don’t choose a powder that’s made with sodium ascorbate or ascorbyl palmitate for skincare. These are synthetic versions and they aren’t as potent.
How to Use Powder On Your Skin
We’ve touched on this briefly, but when you get powder for your skin, there’s versatility in how you can use it. You can scoop out just a bit and put it in the palm of your hand. Then, just pump your favorite lotion or serum.
The vitamin C should blend fairly well after you mix it with your finger, and then you can apply the combination directly to your skin.
The Best Vitamin C Skincare
Below we rank some of our favorite powders for skincare, and then we’ll also go into powders that you can use as a supplement.
It’s Just! Vitamin C Powder
- Only has one ingredient
- Fine crystal texture
- Resealable zipper pouch for shelf life
- Can be used for skincare, or you can consume it orally
- Packaged in the U.S.
- Each batch is 3rd party tested
This powder comes from the brand It’s Just! We like it because it’s affordable and can serve multiple purposes, plus it just contains one ingredient, which is ascorbic acid. There are no fillers or anything extra included in this product, and according to reviews, it works really well in skin care products like serums.
Users say it’s easy to mix in anything, and it dissolves easily. It’s just a simple, straightforward product that can give you a lot of health benefits without the frills, and we like that.
I personally use this form of powder to make my own skincare products. I also use it to make liposomal vitamin C.
Cosmedix Pure C
- Made from ascorbic acid
- Top-rated powder for cosmetic use
- Helps reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines
- May improve skin texture
- Helps with dark spots and hyper-pigmentation
- Clean, safe ingredients
This product is more expensive than some of the other types of vitamin C powder we feature in this review, but it’s incredibly high quality and is often recommended by dermatologists. Since it is for cosmetic use, it blends well.
Many users do say that they’ve noticed benefits in the appearance of their skin using this product, but the downside is that there are more affordable products available.
Bestvite Vitamin C Powder
- Affordable 1.1 pound bag
- Antioxidants fight free radicals that damage cells
- Protect skin against pollution and environmental harm
- Pure vitamin C powder with no fillers or added ingredients
- Well-rated by users
The Bestvite powder gives you a good, effective product that’s simple with no fillers or added ingredients. It’s just powder to protect your skin and help it glow. It’s affordable, and one bag has more than a pound of vitamin C, so it’ll last you for quite some time.
The Ordinary 100% L-Ascorbic Acid Powder
- The Ordinary is one of the best affordable skincare brands
- Has hundreds of reviews that are mostly positive
- Very fine mesh powder that’s easy to mix
Users of The Ordinary’s Vitamin C powders say it’s the best they’ve tried in many cases. They mix it with their products and notice improvements in spots and discoloring, sometimes within just a few days. Users also say just a little goes a long way with this product.
What About Vitamin C Powder to Take Orally?
If you’re looking for powder to use as a supplement, that’s also an option. It’s often referred to as buffered vitamin C.
Buffered C is easier on your stomach, and digestive system and you can take a higher amount of vitamin C. Buffered C also includes calcium, potassium and magnesium.
The addition of calcium, magnesium, and potassium can reduce acidity and help alkalize the body. Adding minerals also increases the speed at which vitamin C travels through the GI system, so it can be more fully absorbed.
When you take powder, more of it may be absorbed by your body than if you take it in capsule or tablet form.
Vitamin C is important for your immune system, to help wound healing, to reduce inflammation, and for general health and wellness.
Our picks for the best oral buffered powders include the following:
Horbaach Sodium Ascorbate Vitamin C Powder
- Each serving has more than 1600 mg of vitamin C
- Non-acidic powder with neutralizing sodium that’s gentle on the stomach
- Highly absorbable
This is a highly rated oral powder. You can take a higher dose and get more benefits without worrying about side effects or kidney stones, but you do have to make sure you take enough water with it. Users say they feel it supercharges their immune system and helps them get through illnesses faster.
Users also say it doesn’t irritate their stomach and doesn’t have a strong sour taste.
Pure Encapsulations Buffered Ascorbic Acid Powder
- Pure Encapsulations is one of the best supplement companies
- Neutral pH vitamin C because of the addition of calcium, magnesium, and potassium
- Reduces the risk of gastric irritation in sensitive people
- Sourced only from premium ingredients
- Tested for potency and purity
- Free of any additives or preservatives
We always tend to like the Pure Encapsulation brand when it comes to supplements, and their buffered powder is no exception. It’s specifically formulated to reduce GI upset and allow you to get more absorbable vitamins for maximum health benefits and high blood levels of the vitamin.
Their products are hypoallergenic and made with only pure ingredients. Users say it dissolves well and they don’t notice the taste.
Designs for Health Buffered Vitamin C Powder
- 2000 mg of vitamin C per scoop
- Each canister has 80 servings
- Alkalizing form of vitamin C
- Added minerals including potassium, magnesium, and calcium
- Buffered to minimize or eliminate upset stomach
The Designs for Health Vitamin C is another excellent buffered C backed by research, and the company has a long reputation. The vitamin has added calcium, magnesium, and potassium so that it’s better tolerated. Users say they feel they absorb this product well and it’s easy to digest.
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some of the most common questions you might have about powder, which is different from taking it in traditional vitamin form.
What is Vitamin C Powder?
There are two general types of powder.
There is a powder that is for cosmetic use, so you would use it with your serums or lotions. Then, there is buffered vitamin powder which is a supplement to support overall health with a high absorption rate.
Powder for the skin is beneficial over products that contain vitamin C because it’s more stable, and more of it can be absorbed and used by your skin. With products like serums that already contain vitamin C, it tends to lose its effectiveness very quickly.
As far as powder that you take orally, it’s just another way to get the nutrient and to do so more effectively with greater absorption and reduced GI symptoms.
How to Use Powder?
If you’re using powder for skincare, you simply take a small amount and put it in your palm. Then add your serum or lotion and mix the two together. You can use it as a spot treatment or all over your face.
If you’re taking it orally, follow dosage instructions and mix it with a glass of water. Some buffered products also come in capsule form.
What Is Buffered Powder?
The buffered powder is a version that often has added minerals like potassium and magnesium. The absorption is better in a buffered form, and it reduces the risk of GI upset that can come with taking high doses of other forms.
Whether you want it for your skin or your health, or maybe both, vitamin C powder is a great product with a lot of benefits. As far as skin, it can help with discoloration, dark spots, sun damage, and fine lines and wrinkles. If you take it as an oral supplement it can help strengthen your immune system, reduce inflammation and oxidative stress and boost your energy levels.