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Physician's Formula Skin Booster Vitamin Shot Brightening Ingredients Explained

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Published on December 19, 2021 Submitted by keelieskye

Overview

What it is

Serum with 35 ingredients that contains hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, PHA, Vitamin C and Vitamin E

Cool Features

It is cruelty-free, fungal acne (malassezia) safe, and reef safe

Suited For

It has ingredients that are good for fighting acne, anti aging, dry skin, brightening skin, sensitive skin, oily skin, reducing pores, scar healing, dark spots and better texture

Free From

It doesn't contain any harsh alcohols, common allergens, fragrances, oils, parabens, silicones or sulfates

Fun facts

Physician's Formula is from United States. This product is used in 17 routines created by our community.

We independently verify ingredients and our claims are backed by peer-reviewed research. Does this product need an update? Let us know.

You should know

Here's our breakdown of the notable ingredients, benefits, and concerns we determined from the ingredients in this product. Click any item to learn more.

Notable Ingredients

PHA
Vitamin C
Vitamin E
Niacinamide
Hyaluronic Acid

Benefits

Hydrating (2)
Good For Oily Skin
Redness Reducing (3)
Reduces Irritation
Skin Texture (2)
Reduces Large Pores
Anti-Aging (3)
Dark Spots (3)
Scar Healing
Acne Fighting
Brightening (3)

Ingredient Info

Click any item below to learn more and view relevant ingredients.
alcohol-free
silicon-free
fragrance-free
sulfate-free
paraben-free
oil-free
fungal-acne safe
reef-safe
eu-allergen-free
vegan
cruelty-free

Ingredients Overview

Here's our quick-to-read summary of the ingredients in this product. Keep scrolling if you'd like to learn more about what each ingredient does!
Ingredient
Features
1
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
2
Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
1 / 0
3
Smoothing
Niacinamide IconGood for Oily Skin IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Dark Spots IconHelps fight Acne IconHelps brighten skin Icon
4
Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
0 / 0
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps brighten skin Icon
5
Skin Conditioning
6
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
7
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
8
Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
9
Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming
1 / 0
10
11
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Helps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation IconGood for Dark Spots Icon
12
Antioxidant
Antioxidant Icon
13
Skin Protecting
14
Buffering
15
Skin Conditioning
Helps hydrate Dry Skin Icon
16
UV Absorber
17
Skin Conditioning
Vitamin C IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconGood for Skin Texture IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing Icon
18
Cosmetic Colorant
19
Antioxidant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Vitamin E IconAntioxidant IconHelps brighten skin Icon
20
Preservative
Preservative Icon
21
Moisturising, Skin Conditioning
Helps with Anti-Aging Icon
22
Masking
23
Masking
24
Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming, Skin Conditioning
25
Skin Conditioning
26
Antioxidant
Antioxidant Icon
27
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
28
Antimicrobial
29
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Hyaluronic Acid Icon
30
Skin Conditioning
31
Skin Conditioning
PHA IconGood for Skin Texture IconHelps with Anti-Aging Icon
32
Bleaching, Emollient, Skin Conditioning, Smoothing, Soothing
Good for Dark Spots Icon
33
Skin Conditioning
34
Cosmetic Colorant
3 / 0
35
Masking, Preservative
Preservative Icon

Ingredients Explained

This product contains 35 ingredients. Click on any ingredient to learn more about it
1
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Loved

Water. It's the most common cosmetic ingredient of all. You'll usually see it at the top of ingredient lists, meaning that it makes up the largest part of the product.

So why is it so popular? Water most often acts as a solvent - this means that it helps dissolve other ingredients into the formulation.

You'll also recognize water as that liquid we all need to stay alive. Talk about multi-purpose! If you see this, drink a glass of water. Stay hydrated!

Learn more about Water
2
What it does: Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

Butylene Glycol (or BG) is used within cosmetic products for a few different reasons:

  • It is a solvent, meaning that it helps to dissolve other ingredients. This also enhances the absorption of the product into one's skin.
  • It is a humectant, which means that it helps attract moisture into the skin.
  • It helps improve product application.

Overall, Butylene Glycol is a safe and well-rounded ingredient. It is unlikely to irritate skin, and works well with pretty much all other ingredients.

3
What it does: Smoothing
Community Rating: Loved

Niacinamide has emerged as an all-star ingredient due to its many benefits.

It is known to treat acne by reducing inflammation. It also helps fade dark-spots and strengthen the skin by promoting the growth of the ceramide barrier.

Other benefits include smoothing wrinkles and minimizing redness.

The cherry on top? Niacinamide can also help build keratin, a protein that keeps skin firm.

When incorporating niacinamide into your routine, look out for concentration amounts. Typically, 5% niacinamide provides benefits such as fading dark spots. However, if you have sensitive skin, it is better to begin with a smaller concentration.

Niacinamide can be mixed with other ingredients to boost benefits. For instance, it has shown to be effective when used with copper, folic acid, and zinc to treat acne.

Learn more about Niacinamide
4
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
Community Rating: Loved

Glycerin is already naturally found in your skin. It helps moisturize and protect your skin.

A study from 2016 found glycerin to be more effective as a humectant than AHAs and hyaluronic acid.

As a humectant, it helps the skin stay hydrated by pulling moisture to your skin. The low molecular weight of glycerin allows it to pull moisture into the deeper layers of your skin.

Hydrated skin improves your skin barrier; Your skin barrier helps protect against irritants and bacteria.

Glycerin has also been found to have antimicrobial and antiviral properties. Due to these properties, glycerin is often used in wound and burn treatments.

In cosmetics, glycerin is usually derived from plants such as soybean or palm. However, it can also be sourced from animals, such as tallow or animal fat.

This ingredient is organic, colorless, odorless, and non-toxic.

Glycerin is the name for this ingredient in American English. British English uses Glycerol/Glycerine.

Learn more about Glycerin
5
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Acetyl Glucosamine is an antioxidant and humectant. It is a form of Vitamin C.

Acetyl Glucosamine helps the skin produce hyaluronic acid and boost hydration.

Antioxidants help fight off free-radicals, molecules that may damage skin cells.

When paired with niacinamide, Acetyl Glucosamine has been shown to be effective at reducing discoloration.

Read more about other types of Vitamin C:

Learn more about Acetyl Glucosamine
6
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

Pentylene glycol is typically used within a product to thicken it. It also adds a smooth, soft, and moisturizing feel to the product. It is naturally found in plants such as sugar beets.

The hydrophilic trait of Pentylene Glycol makes it a humectant. As a humectant, Pentylene Glycol helps draw moisture from the air to your skin. This can help keep your skin hydrated.

This property also makes Pentylene Glycol a great texture enhancer. It can help thicken or emulsify a product. Emulsifiers help stabilize a product. It does this by preventing certain ingredients from separating.

Pentylene Glycol also acts as a mild preservative and helps to keep a product microbe-free.

Some people may experience mild eye and skin irritation from Pentylene Glycol. We always recommend speaking with a professional about using this ingredient in your routine.

Pentylene Glycol has a low molecular weight and is part of the 1,2-glycol family.

Learn more about Pentylene Glycol
7
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

1,2-Hexanediol is a multi-tasker ingredient. It acts as a preservative to increase shelf-life and can aid other preservatives in preventing microbe growth. 1,2-Hexanediol also helps the skin retain moisture as a humectant.

In products that are water-based, this ingredient can help stabilize perfumes and fragrances. It can also help make the texture of products softer and more smooth.

8
What it does: Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Caprylyl Glycol is a humectant and emollient, meaning it attracts and preserves moisture.

It is a common ingredient in many products, especially those designed to hydrate skin. The primary benefits are retaining moisture, skin softening, and promoting a healthy skin barrier.

Though Caprylyl Glycol is an alcohol derived from fatty acids, it is not the kind that can dry out skin.

This ingredient is also used as a preservative to extend the life of products. It has slight antimicrobial properties.

Learn more about Caprylyl Glycol
9
What it does: Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming
Community Rating: Disliked

Carbomer is a polymer of acrylic acid. Its main role is to create gel consistency within products.

Carbomer is commonly found in many types of cosmetics products. It is found to be safe in concentrations up to 15%. However, a high amount of carbomer can cause pilling or balling up of products. Most products contain 1% of less of carbomer.

10
What it does:
Community Rating: Disliked

Disodium EDTA plays a role in making products more stable by aiding other preservatives.

It is a chelating agent, meaning it neutralizes metal ions that may be found in a product.

Disodium EDTA is a salt of edetic acid and is found to be safe in cosmetic ingredients.

Learn more about Disodium EDTA
11
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate comes from licorice root.

Extracts of licorice have demonstrated to have antibacterial, antiโ€inflammatory, antiviral, antioxidant properties.

One component, glabridin, has extra potent antioxidant and soothing properties. It has also been found to block pigmentation from UVB rays in guinea pigs.

Licorice Root also contains a flavonoid. Flavonoids are a natural substance from in plants. Flavonoids also have antioxidant properties.

Another component, glycyrrhizin, has been found to have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial benefits. This may make licorice root extract effective at treating acne. However, more research is needed to support this.

Liquiritin is one of the flavone compounds found in licorice. It has been found to help lighten skin by preventing tyrosinase from reacting with tyrosine. When the two react, protein is converted to melanin. Melanin is the substance in your body that gives your features pigmentation.

Licorice root is native to Southern Europe and Asia. It has been used in traditional Chinese medicine to help with respiratory issues.

Learn more about Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate
12
What it does: Antioxidant
Community Rating: Mixed

Phenylethyl Resorcinol is an antioxidant.

13
What it does: Skin Protecting

We don't have a description for Caesalpinia Spinosa Fruit Extract.

14
What it does: Buffering
Community Rating: Mixed

Sodium Hydroxide is also known as lye or caustic soda. It is used to adjust the pH of products; many ingredients require a specific pH to be effective.

In small amounts, sodium hydroxide is considered safe to use. However, large amounts may cause chemical burns due to its high alkaline.

Your skin has a natural pH and acid mantle. This acid mantle helps prevent harmful bacteria from breaking through. The acid mantle also helps keep your skin hydrated.

"Alkaline" refers to a high pH level. A low pH level would be considered acidic.

Learn more about Sodium Hydroxide
15
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Chondrus Crispus Extract comes from a red algae native to the northern Atlantic coasts of Europe and North America.

Chondrus Crispus Extract helps hydrate the skin and is rich in antioxidants.

The antioxidants in chondrus crispus help fight free-radical molecules. These molecules may damage skin cells and DNA. Antioxidants present in chondrus crispus include lutein and zeaxanthin.

Lutein has the ability to filter blue light from screens.

Other contents of chondrus crispus include polysaccharides, peptides, and amino acids. These help hydrate the skin.

Learn more about Chondrus Crispus Extract

We don't have a description for Sodium Benzotriazolyl Butylphenol Sulfonate.

17
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

You might know this ingredient as Ethyl Ascorbic Acid, a more stable version of ascorbic acid.

Like other types of vitamin C, this ingredient has many benefits including reducing wrinkles, skin soothing, dark spot fading, and fighting against free radicals.

3-O-Ethyl Ascorbic Acid interferes with the process of skin darkening, helping to reduce hyperpigmentation. It also encourages the skin to produce more collagen.

Once applied, 3-O-Ethyl Ascorbic Acid is converted to Vitamin C deeper in the skin's layers. This process is slow but makes this ingredient more tolerable for skin.

The optimum pH range for this ingredient is 4 - 5.5

Learn more about 3-O-Ethyl Ascorbic Acid
18
What it does: Cosmetic Colorant
Community Rating: Mixed

Ci 77492 is also hydrated iron III oxide. It's sole purpose is to give a yellow hue to products.

Iron III oxides are classified as inorganic chemicals for coloring.

Synthetically created Ci 77492 is considered safer than those naturally found. This is because the synthetically created version may contain less impurities. Iron oxides are generally non-toxic and non-allergenic.

Learn more about CI 77492
19
What it does: Antioxidant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Tocopheryl Acetate is AKA Vitamin E. It is an antioxidant and protects your skin from free radicals. Free radicals damage the skin by breaking down collagen.

One study found using Tocopheryl Acetate with Vitamin C decreased the number of sunburned cells.

Tocopheryl Acetate is commonly found in both skincare and dietary supplements.

Learn more about Tocopheryl Acetate
20
What it does: Preservative
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Phenoxyethanol is a preservative that has germicide, antimicrobial, and aromatic properties. Studies show that phenoxyethanol can prevent germ and microbial growth. By itself, it has a scent that is similar to that of a rose.

It's often used in formulations along with Caprylyl Glycol to preserve the shelf life of products.

21
What it does: Moisturising, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Collagen is the most abundant type of structural protein found in your body. In your skin, it is responsible for keeping it firm and youthful.

Your body uses collagen for a variety of tasks. These tasks include repairing and maintaning tissues, helping cells communicate, and helping your bodyโ€™s immune system respond to attacks.

Collagen is comprised mostly of glycine, proline, and hydroxypoline. These are amino acids.

Collagen can be used in the morning or night. It will not increase sun sensitivity, but you should always wear sunscreen during the day.

Learn more about Collagen
22
What it does: Masking
Community Rating: Mixed

Agar is the vegan substitute for animal-gelatin. It helps thicken and improve the texture of cosmetics.

Agar is an antioxidant. Antioxidants help fight free-radicals. Free-radicals are molecules that may damage your skin cells.

Agar is created from cell-walls of red algae.

Learn more about Agar
23
What it does: Masking

We don't have a description for Calcium Alginate.

24
What it does: Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Disliked

Xanthan gum is used as a stabilizer and thickener within cosmetic products. It helps give products a sticky, thick feeling - preventing them from being too runny.

On the technical side of things, xanthan gum is a polysaccharide - a combination consisting of multiple sugar molecules bonded together.

Xanthan gum is a pretty common and great ingredient. It is a natural, non-toxic, non-irritating ingredient that is also commonly used in food products.

Learn more about Xanthan Gum
25
What it does: Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Kappaphycus Alvarezii Extract.

26
What it does: Antioxidant
Community Rating: Liked

Hydroxyacetophenone is antioxidant and helps with skin conditioning.

Antioxidants help fight off free-radical molecules. These unstable molecules may damage your skin cells. By helping stabilize free-radicals, antioxidants may help in anti-aging.

Hydroxyacetophenone boosts the efficiency of other preservatives.

Learn more about Hydroxyacetophenone
27
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Glucosyl Hesperidin.

28
What it does: Antimicrobial
Community Rating: Liked

Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate is a natural preservative. It comes from fermenting radish roots with a bacteria called leuconostoc. Leuconostoc comes from lactic acid. This bacteria is used to make the traditional Korean side-dish, kimchi. It is also used to make sourdough bread (both incredibly yummy foods).

Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate has antimicrobial properties and helps prevent the growth of bacteria in a product.

It is believed the preservation property comes from salicylic acid and ammonium salt, neither of which are involved in the fermentation process.

Learn more about Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate
29
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Sodium Hyaluronate is hyaluronic acid's salt form. It is commonly derived from the sodium salt of hyaluronic acid.

Like hyaluronic acid, it is great at holding water and acts as a humectant. This makes it a great skin hydrating ingredient.

Sodium Hyaluronate is naturally occurring in our bodies and is mostly found in eye fluid and joints.

These are some other common types of Hyaluronic Acid:

Learn more about Sodium Hyaluronate
30
What it does: Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Tropolone.

31
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Gluconolactone is a PHA. PHAs have a larger structure than AHAs and BHAs and are more gentle. It is an created by reacting gluconic acid with an alcohol.

When applied, Gluconolactone has the same affect on skin as AHAs such as lactic acid. It helps dissolve the dead skin cells in the top layer of your skin. This helps improve texture and brightens the skin.

Gluconolactone is a humectant and helps draw moisture to your skin. This helps keep your skin hydrated.

PHAs are more gentle than AHAs due to their larger structure. They do not penetrate as deeply as AHAs and take a longer time to dissolve dead cells. Studies show PHAs do not cause as much irritation.

PHAs also exhibit antioxidant activity by neutralizing free-radical molecules. This can help with anti-aging.

In a 2004 study, Gluconolactone was found to prevent UV damage in mouse skin cells. However, we still recommend wearing SPF especially after using exfoliating ingredients.

Learn more about Gluconolactone
32
What it does: Bleaching, Emollient, Skin Conditioning, Smoothing, Soothing
Community Rating: Liked

Glycyrrhiza Glabra Root Extract is an extract of the roots of Licorice. It has been found to have several benefits such as skin hydrating, conditioning, and soothing.

One component, glabridin, has extra potent antioxidant and soothing properties. It has also been found to block pigmentation from UVB rays in guinea pigs.

Licorice Root also contains a flavonoid. Flavonoids are a natural substance from in plants. Flavonoids also have antioxidant properties.

Another component, glycyrrhizin, has been found to have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial benefits. This may make licorice root extract effective at treating acne. However, more research is needed to support this.

Liquiritin is one of the flavone compounds found in licorice. It has been found to help lighten skin by preventing tyrosinase from reacting with tyrosine. When the two react, protein is converted to melanin. Melanin is the substance in your body that gives your features pigmentation.

Learn more about Glycyrrhiza Glabra Root Extract
33
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

We don't have a description for Cynara Scolymus Leaf Extract.

34
What it does: Cosmetic Colorant

Ci 73360 is a synthetic red-pink dye.

35
What it does: Masking, Preservative
Community Rating: Disliked

Sodium Benzoate is a preservative. It's used in both cosmetic and food products to inhibit the growth of mold and bacteria. It is typically produced synthetically.

Both the US FDA and EU Health Committee have approved the use of sodium benzoate. In the US, levels of 0.1% (of the total product) are allowed.

Sodium benzoate works as a preservative by inhibiting the growth of bacteria inside of cells. It prevents the cell from fermenting a type of sugar using an enzyme called phosphofructokinase.

Sodium Benzoate is the salt of benzoic acid. Foods containing sodium benzoate include soda, salad dressings, condiments, fruit juices, wines, and snack foods.

Studies for using ascorbic acid and sodium benzoate in cosmetics are lacking, especially in skincare routines with multiple steps.

We always recommend speaking with a professional, such as a dermatologist, if you have any concerns.

Learn more about Sodium Benzoate
Embed Ingredients

Here's what our community thinks of the 35 ingredients in this product โœจ

46% are loved or liked
20% have mixed ratings
14% are disliked or very disliked
20% have no rating yet

When to use

Here's some more info on how this product is used by our community.

When to use

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