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Vitamin C is an ingredient that is super effective when used topically. Dermatologists say that it brightens skin and reduces discoloration. As an antioxidant, it's able to neutralize highly reactive molecules called free radicals, preventing and reducing damage to our skin's DNA and slowing down the aging process. Vitamin C also helps protect skin from precancerous changes caused by UV exposure.

By limiting the transfer of melanin to the top layers of the skin, Vitamin C minimizes redness, blotchiness, dark spots, and other hyperpigmentation. It can fade scars and reduce lines and wrinkles. Given that Vitamin C serums are acidic, they speed up the skin’s natural regeneration process, allowing your body to repair damaged skin cells. Vitamin C also promotes healthy collagen and elastin production (naturally occurring protein fibers that help keep skin plump and firm).

Here’s our selection of Vitamin C products to incorporate into your skincare routine. Remember: Vitamin C breaks down when it's exposed to light or air, so it’s best to store it in airtight dark glass bottles.

Scroll on for the best Vitamin C skincare products around right now.

Dermalogica

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BioLumin-C Vitamin C Serum

$89

Dermalogica

Buy at SEPHORA

Adding a Vitamin C serum to your morning routine is one of the best investments you can make in your skincare regimen, because you're not only correcting dull, uneven skin, but you're protecting it from aging. This one by Dermalogica combines Vitamin C with lactic acid (for hydrating and exfoliating) and a Vitamin C complex (for brightening). Apply after cleansing and before applying an SPF.

Dr. Dennis Gross

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C + Collagen Deep Cream

from $72

Dr. Dennis Gross

(Available at 10 Merchants)
(Available at 10 Merchants)

Though Vitamin C products are generally recommended for morning use, this cream by Dr. Dennis Gross, a revered New York City-based dermatologist, can be used at night, too. The cream uses a proprietary Vitamin C complex that's highly effective at penetrating the skin to tackle dark spots and the signs of aging. Apply as you would a moisturizer.

111Skin

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Vitamin C Brightening Booster

from $108

111SKIN

(Available at 6 Merchants)
(Available at 6 Merchants)

This serum uses a high potency of Vitamin C as well as liquorice root, which fights against discolorations on the skin. Apply directly onto the skin before your facial sunscreen, or mix into your moisturizer.

Clinique

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Fresh Pressed Vitamin C Renewing Powder Cleanser

from $26

Clinique

(Available at 4 Merchants)
(Available at 4 Merchants)

If you're serious about incorporating Vitamin C into your skincare routine, try a cleanser. This one by Clinique starts off in powder form and then transforms into a lather with the addition of water. The thinking behind this is that Vitamin C degrades when it's exposed to oxygen. The powder form allows the Vitamin C to fully activate when turned into a lather. For less than the price of takeout, it's worth the try.

Kiehl's

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Powerful-Strength Dark Circle Reducing Vitamin C Eye Serum

from $50

Kiehl's

(Available at 5 Merchants)
(Available at 5 Merchants)

Dark circles are difficult to get rid of because they're not created equal. Some are hereditary, some are the result of sun exposure, others are related to sleep, and the list goes on. If you're looking to completely rid them, a concealer will do the heavy lifting, but don't underestimate an eye cream. This one by Kiehl's uses Vitamin C to gently brighten the skin, while other ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, deeply hydrate.

Marie Veronique

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Vitamins C, E + Ferulic Serum

$90

Marie Veronique

Buy at credo

This serum is an antioxidant-rich formula that includes Vitamins C and E, and can be used morning and night. During the day, the Vitamin C helps to protect skin from free radical damage; at night, it helps repair.

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