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Skin&Lab Vitamin C Brightening Serum Ingredients Explained

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Published on April 07, 2021 Submitted by lauradh

Overview

What it is

Serum with 55 ingredients that contains hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, peptides, retinoid, Vitamin C and Vitamin E

Cool Features

It is cruelty-free 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, oils, parabens, silicones or sulfates

Fun facts

Skin&Lab is from South Korea. This product is used in 76 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

Retinoid
Vitamin C (2)
Vitamin E (2)
Niacinamide
Hyaluronic Acid (4)
Peptides (2)

Benefits

Hydrating (3)
Good For Oily Skin
Redness Reducing (4)
Reduces Irritation (2)
Skin Texture (3)
Reduces Large Pores
Anti-Aging (5)
Dark Spots (3)
Scar Healing (4)
Acne Fighting (2)
Brightening (7)

Concerns

Irritating
Eczema

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
Solvent
3
Solvent
4
Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
0 / 0
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps brighten skin Icon
5
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
6
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
7
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation Icon
8
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
9
Antioxidant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Vitamin E IconAntioxidant IconHelps brighten skin Icon
10
Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Helps reduce irritation Icon
11
Skin Conditioning
Helps hydrate Dry Skin Icon
12
Skin Conditioning
13
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0
Hyaluronic Acid Icon
14
Skin Conditioning
15
Skin Conditioning
16
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Hyaluronic Acid Icon
17
Masking, Perfuming
Fragrance Icon
18
Skin Conditioning
19
Skin Conditioning
20
Humectant, Moisturising, Skin Conditioning
Hyaluronic Acid IconMay cause irritation IconGood for Skin Texture IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin Icon
21
Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Helps with Anti-Aging Icon
22
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Hyaluronic Acid Icon
23
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
24
Humectant
25
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
26
Humectant, Moisturising
27
Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
1 / 0
28
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
29
Humectant
30
Buffering, Masking
31
Solvent
32
Skin Conditioning
Helps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Scar Healing Icon
33
Buffering, Masking
34
35
Buffering, Masking
AHA IconMay cause irritation IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconMay worsen Rosacea IconHelps brighten skin Icon
36
Skin Conditioning
37
Emulsifying
0 / 0
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
38
Skin Conditioning
Peptide IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
39
Skin Conditioning
Peptide IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
40
Antioxidant, Buffering, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Vitamin C IconAntioxidant IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconGood for Skin Texture IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin Icon
41
Antiseborrhoeic, Skin Conditioning
42
Skin Conditioning
43
Skin Conditioning
44
45
Skin Conditioning
46
Cosmetic Colorant, Skin Conditioning
47
Masking, Skin Conditioning
48
Skin Conditioning, Soothing
49
50
Cleansing, Emollient, Skin Conditioning
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconMay worsen Oily Skin IconBad for Acne Prone Skin IconNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon
51
Masking
52
Skin Conditioning
Retinoid IconCan worsen Dry Skin IconGood for Oily Skin IconMay cause irritation IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps fight Acne IconMay worsen Eczema IconHelps brighten skin Icon
53
Antioxidant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
0-3 / 0-3
Vitamin E IconAntioxidant IconHelps hydrate Dry Skin IconMay cause irritation IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin Icon
54
Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming
1 / 0
55
Emulsifying, Emulsion Stabilising, Gel Forming, Skin Conditioning

Ingredients Explained

This product contains 55 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: Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

Methylpropanediol is a synthetic solvent and humectant.

As a solvent, it helps dissolve other ingredients, helping to evenly distribute ingredients throughout the product. This ingredient has also been shown to have antimicrobial properties which makes it a preservative booster.

Methylpropanediol is able to add a bit of moisture to the skin. It also helps other ingredients be better absorbed into the skin, such as salicylic acid.

Learn more about Methylpropanediol
3
What it does: Solvent
Community Rating: Liked

Propanediol helps absorb ingredients into your skin, boosting their benefits. It can act as an emollient, making your skin softer. Propanediol can help products last longer by boosting the properties of preservatives within the formulation.

Propanediol is not likely to cause sensitivity and considered safe to use.

It is derived from corn or petroleum with a clear color and no scent.

Learn more about Propanediol
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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, 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.

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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
7
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Betaine is a common humectant (a substance that promotes retention of moisture). It's known to be gentle on the skin and can help balance hydration.

Betaine is best for improving hydration and soothing irritated skin. Studies show betaine may help with uneven skin tones.

Betaine is naturally created in the skin and body. The form found within cosmetic products can be either plant-dervied or synthetic.

Learn more about Betaine
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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
9
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
10
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Panthenol (also referred to as pro-vitamin B5) is a common ingredient that helps hydrate and soothe the skin.

lt is a humectant, meaning that it helps the skin attract and retain moisture.

Another benefit is the anti-inflammatory abilities. This means that it's great for sensitive, irritation-prone skin.

Once oxidized, panthenol converts to pantothenic acid. Panthothenic acid is found in all living cells.

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

Bifida Ferment Lysate is derived from the fermentation of Bifida bacteria (often with dairy). It is a probiotic and helps to strengthen our skin's microbiome.

Having a healthy microbiome helps protect our skin against infection. It also helps our skin stay hydrated and healthy.

Studies also show this ingredient to be a promising soothing ingredient for sensitive skin.

Learn more about Bifida Ferment Lysate
12
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Chlorella Vulgaris Extract comes from the microalga, Chlorella vulgaris. It is hydrating and contains antioxidants. Studies also show Chlorella Vulgaris may help in rebuilding collagen and elastin.

Antioxidants help with the signs of aging by neutralizing free-radical molecules. Free-radical molecules, if left unchecked, may damage skin cells and DNA. On top of that, Chlorella Vulgaris helps condition and hydrate the skin.

Chlorella Vulgaris is made up of lipids, carbohydrates, and chlorophyll.

This ingredient is commonly used as food additive in Japan.

Learn more about Chlorella Vulgaris Extract
13
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
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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Melia Azadirachta Flower Extract is from the Neem tree. Neem trees originate from India.

Melia Azadirachta Flower Extract contains antioxidants. Antioxidants help fight free-radicals. Free-radicals are molecules that may damage your skin cells, such as pollution.

The flowers of this tree are lilac colored.

Learn more about Melia Azadirachta Flower Extract
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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Melia Azadirachta Leaf Extract is extract from the neem plant.

Melia Azadirachta Leaf Extract is an antioxidant. Antioxidants help fight free-radicals. Free-radicals are molecules that may damage your skin cells, such as pollution.

The leaves of this tree contain flavonoids and polyphenols. These two compounds are antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial. Further research is needed as to their effects when applied on skin.

Learn more about Melia Azadirachta Leaf Extract
16
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid is a form of hyaluronic acid. It is created by the hydrolysis of hyaluronic acid with a high molecular weight. Once created, Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid has a low molecular weight.

Low molecular weight HA has been shown to hydrate and increase elasticity of the skin. Increasing elasticity is also associated with reduction of wrinkle depth.

One study found topical low molecular weight hyaluronic acid may be considered for the treatment of rosacea in the adult population. However, we always recommend speaking with a professional about your skin concerns.

Hyaluronic acids are a humectant. This means they draw moisture from the air. Hyaluronic acids help moisturize, soothe, and protect the skin.

Read more about other common forms of hyaluronic acid:

Learn more about Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid
17
What it does: Masking, Perfuming
Community Rating: Liked

Curcuma Longa Root Extract is from the spice, turmeric. Besides being a healthy and delicious spice, turmeric also has plenty of skincare benefits. It has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-microbial properties.

Turmeric contains curcumin, an antioxidant. Antioxidants help neutralize unstable free-radical molecules. Free-radical molecules may damage your skin's cells and DNA. Curcumin may help with anti-aging.

Curcumin also has anti-inflammatory properties. It can help soothe skin and reduce irritation. On top of that, curcumin has been shown to help prevent hyperpigmentation from sun damage.

The anti-microbial property of turmeric can make it effective in treating acne. It has also been shown to help regulate the production of sebum.

Learn more about Curcuma Longa Root Extract
18
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Ocimum Sanctum Leaf Extract comes from the Holy Basil plant. Holy Basil is native to India.

Holy Basil is rich in antioxidants due to its high romarinic acid, ferulic acid, and rutin content. The ferulic acid may help with skin brightening and help soothe the skin.

Antioxidants may help with anti-aging due to its ability to neutralize free-radical molecules. These molecules may damage skin cells and DNA.

While Holy Basil has many claims to help fight acne, more research is needed.

One thing to note is the presence of tannins. Tannins are naturally found in nature. This compound may be skin-sensitizing.

Learn more about Ocimum Sanctum Leaf Extract
19
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Corallina Officinalis Extract is from the red seaweed, Corallina Officinalis. This seaweed is found all over the world but is most common in the rocky shores of Great Britain and Ireland.

Corallina Officinalis Extract contains antioxidant and emollient properties.

Extracted polysaccharides, galactose and xylose, in red algae showed antioxidant activity. Antioxidants help with anti-aging by neutralizing free-radical molecules. Free-radical molecules may damage your skin cells and DNA. Galactose is also a PHA.

Corallina Officinalis is structurally similar to coral due to its high calcium content.

Learn more about Corallina Officinalis Extract
20
What it does: Humectant, Moisturising, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Hyaluronic acid is naturally found in healthy skin. It is a humectant, meaning it draws moisture to your skin.

Hyaluronic Acid has the capacity to bind to large amounts of water. This ingredient helps hydrate, soothe, and protect the skin.

Fun fact: It is already naturally found in our bodies, such as the fluids of our eyes and our joints.

Studies find this ingredient to have anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties. This can help speed up wound-healing,

These are some other common types of Hyaluronic Acid:

Learn more about Hyaluronic Acid
21
What it does: Emollient, Humectant, 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.

Hydrolyzed Collagen means it has been broken down into smaller particles. This helps the body process hydrolyzed collagen better.

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 Hydrolyzed Collagen
22
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer is a type of hyaluronic acid. In fact, it is modified version of hyaluronic acid.

The structure of Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer allows it to stay in the skin's top layer for a longer period of time. This allows for even more hydration and humectant action than hyaluronic acid.

These are some other common types of Hyaluronic Acid:

Learn more about Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer
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What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

We don't have a description for Hydroxyethyl Urea.

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What it does: Humectant
Community Rating: Loved

Glucose is a simple sugar and is the most important source of energy in all organisms. In skincare, glucose is used to hydrate the skin. It also acts as a prebiotic for our natural biome.

As a humectant, glucose draws moisture from the air and from deeper levels in the skin. This helps hydrate skin.

Our skin's natural microbiome contains many saccharides that act as prebiotics. These prebiotics help strengthen our skin's microbiome. Having a healthy microbiome helps protect our skin from harmful bacteria and other contaminants.

Studies show glucose may help with fading discoloration and pigmentation. This is because our skin metabolizes glucose into lactic acid. Lactic acid is an AHA that helps exfoliate the top layer of skin.

Plants and algae make glucose during the process of photosynthesis. It is then used to make cellulose, the building blocks of cell walls.

Learn more about Glucose
25
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

We don't have a description for Hydrolyzed Glycosaminoglycans.

26
What it does: Humectant, Moisturising
Community Rating: Loved

Trehalose is a disaccharide made of two glucose molecules (glucose is sugar!). Trehalose is used to help moisturize skin. It also has antioxidant properties.

As a humectant, trehalose helps draw moisture from the air to your skin. This helps keep your skin hydrated.

Due to its antioxidant properties, trehalose may help with signs of aging. Antioxidants help fight free-radical molecules, unstable molecules that may damage your skin.

In medicine, trehalose and hyaluronic acid are used to help treat dry eyes.

Some animals, plants, and bacteria create trehalose as a source of energy to survive freeze or lack of water.

Learn more about Trehalose
27
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.

28
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Fructooligosaccharides is an alternative sweetener. It is often derived from the blue agave plant.

Fructooligosaccharides is a prebiotic and helps to hydrate the skin. Emerging studies are also showing fructooligosaccharides to have antioxidant properties.

As a humectant, Fructooligosaccharides helps draw moisture to the skin, helping to hydrate the skin.

Bananas, onions, garlic, asparagus, jรญcama, and leeks also contain fructooligosaccharides.

Learn more about Fructooligosaccharides
29
What it does: Humectant
Community Rating: Liked

Fructose is fruit/plant sugar. It can be found in apples, figs, and honey.

This ingredient is a humectant. Humectants help draw moisture from the air to your skin, keeping your skin hydrated.

30
What it does: Buffering, Masking
Community Rating: Liked

Tromethamine is an aliphatic compound. An aliphatic compound is an organic compound with open-chained carbon atoms. It is synthetically created. Tromethamine is used to balance pH and improve texture.

As an emulsifier, Tromethamine prevents oil and water ingredients from separating. This helps stabilize the product and elongate a product's shelf life. Tromethamine also makes a product thicker.

Tromethamine helps balance the pH level of a product. Normal pH level of skin is slightly acidic (~4.75-5.5). The acidity of our skin is maintained by our glands and skin biome. Being slightly acidic allows our skin to create an "acid mantle". This acid mantle is a thin barrier that protects our skin from bacteria and contaminants.

Oral Tromethanmine is an anti-inflammatory drug but plays the role of masking, adding fragrance, and/or balancing pH in skincare.

1,3-Propanediol, 2-amino-2-(hydroxymethyl)-

Learn more about Tromethamine
31
What it does: Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

We don't have a description for Benzyl Glycol.

32
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Adenosine is in every living organism. It is one of four components in nucleic acids that helps store our DNA.

Adenosine has many benefits when used. These benefits include hydrating the skin, smoothing skin, and reducing wrinkles. Once applied, adenosine increases collagen production. It also helps with improving firmness and tissue repair.

Studies have found adenosine may also help with wound healing.

In skincare products, Adenosine is usually derived from yeast.

Learn more about Adenosine
33
What it does: Buffering, Masking
Community Rating: Mixed

Sodium Citrate is the sodium salts of citric acid. In skincare, it is used to alter pH levels and acts as a preservative.

Sodium Citrate helps maintain the pH of a product. Normal pH level of skin is slightly acidic (~4.75-5.5). The acidity of our skin is maintained by our glands and skin biome. Being slightly acidic allows our skin to create an "acid mantle". This acid mantle is a thin barrier that protects our skin from bacteria and contaminants.

Sodium Citrate is a chelating agent. It neutralizes metal ions from water and prevents them from binding to other ingredients. This ensures the other ingredients will not be altered.

Learn more about Sodium Citrate
34
What it does:
Community Rating: Liked

Sodium Phytate is the synthetic salt form of phytic acid. Phytic acid is an antioxidant and can be found in plant seeds.

Sodium Phytate is a chelating agent. Chelating agents help prevent metals from binding to water. This helps stabilize the ingredients and the product.

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

Citric Acid is an AHA derived from citrus fruits (think oranges, lemons, and limes!).

If you spot Citric Acid near the end of an ingredient list, it's likely there as a pH adjuster rather than an active ingredient.

As an AHA, Citric Acid removes the top layer of skin cells from the newer layer of skin underneath. This helps skin to remove dark spots and look more even.

Read more about some other popular AHA's here:

Learn more about Citric Acid
36
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

Ethylhexylglycerin (we can't pronounce this either) is commonly used as a preservative and skin softener. It is derived from glyceryl.

You might see Ethylhexylglycerin often paired with other preservatives such as phenoxyethanol. Ethylhexylglycerin has been found to increase the effectiveness of these other preservatives.

37
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Polysorbate 20 is made by combining ethoxylation of sorbitan, ethylene oxide, and lauric acid. It is a mild cleansing agent, surfactant, and emulsifier.

As a surfactant, it helps collect dirt and oils for washing. Emulsifiers prevent oils and water from separating.

Polysorbate 20 also adds scent to a product. Since it is made using sorbitol, it has a sweet scent. Sorbitol can also be found in fruits such as apples and peaches.

The lauric acid used to create Polysorbate 20 is often derived from coconuts.

Polysorbate 20 may not be fungal acne safe.

Learn more about Polysorbate 20
38
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1 is a 3-amino acid peptide. Peptides are building blocks for protein.

Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1 is a signal peptide. This means it tells our skin to create collagen. Collagen is a protein that makes connective tissue. Boosting collagen production leads to a healthier skin barrier. Having a healthy skin barrier means having firm and hydrated skin.

Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1 can help reduce wrinkles and make the skin look more youthful.

Read more about other common types of peptides here:

Learn more about Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1
39
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 is a peptide. Peptides are building blocks for protein.

This ingredient consists of four amino acids and palmitic acid. These amino acids are arginine, proline, glutamine, and glycine.

This ingredient has many benefits. These benefits include boosting collagen production, fighting inflammation, and reversing UV damage.

By preventing our bodies from producing interleukins, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 helps fight inflammation. An interleukin is a chemical that signals to the body to produce an inflammatory response. Interleukin production is accelerated by UV radiation.

Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7 tells our body to create more collagen. Collagen is a protein that makes connective tissue. Boosting collagen production leads to a healthier skin barrier. Having a healthy skin barrier means having firm and hydrated skin.

Read more about other common types of peptides here:

Learn more about Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7
40
What it does: Antioxidant, Buffering, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Ascorbic Acid is is pure Vitamin C. This form makes up the largest amount of vitamin C found naturally in our skin.

Not only is vitamin C great for your overall health and immune system, it also has plenty of benefits on your skin.

Vitamin C is best used for brightening skin. It improves dark spots, acne scars, and hyperpigmentation. This is because it blocks the process of skin darkening when exposed to UV.

Remember: Vitamin C should not replace sunscreen!

Your skin uses vitamin C to build collagen. Collagen is one key component in having a strong skin barrier and plump skin. Vitamin C also plays a role in regulating collagen, thus making it effective in improving wrinkles and fine lines.

Ascorbic acid shows potent antioxidant activity. As an antioxidant, it helps fight free-radicals. Free-radicals are molecules that may damage your skin cells. These antioxidants also protect skin against UV damage.

The best formulations include Vitamin E and/or ferulic acid. These two ingredients help stabilize and provide a boost in the benefits of ascorbic acid. This is because ascorbic acid becomes unstable when exposed to UV and air. In fact, you can tell your ascorbic acid has oxidized when it turns an orange-yellow color.

Ascorbic acid is generally compatible with other ingredients. However, using ascorbic acid with other active ingredients might cause irritation. Two ingredients: copper ions and benzoyl peroxide, will inactivate ascorbic acid completely.

Read more about other types of Vitamin C:

Foods rich with vitamin C include oranges, strawberries, broccoli, bell peppers, and more. When consuming Vitamin C, your skin receives a portion of the nutrients.

Learn more about Ascorbic Acid
41
What it does: Antiseborrhoeic, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Biotin is a B vitamin that is naturally produced by our bodies. It is also called Vitamin H.

Our bodies use biotin in the metabolism process. It also helps our bodies use enzymes and move nutrients around. A biotin deficiency can lead to brittle hair and nails.

More research is needed on applying biotin topically. However, taking biotin orally has been shown to help nourish the skin, hair, and nails. They play a role in forming skin-hydrating fatty acids.

Biotin is water-soluble. It can be found in foods such as fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, and meat. Vitamin H stands for "haar" and "haut". These are the German words for hair and skin.

We recommend speaking with a professional if you have any questions or concerns about this ingredient.

Learn more about Biotin
42
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Cyanocobalamin is the manufactured version of vitamin B12. Our bodies use B12 for cell production.

There is limited research on how Cyanocobalamin affects your skin.

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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Folic acid is a form of Vitamin B9. Our bodies use folic acid for creating new cells and for DNA repair.

Folic acid is an antioxidant, making it an effective skin repair ingredient.

In vivo studies show folic acid to increase UV-C induced DNA damage on human fibroblasts. This is because folic acid is effective at rejoining breaks in the fibroblast DNA. It is believed folic acid may play a role in reducing UV-B damage as well. While the mechanisms are unknown, it is believed folic acid plays a role in disrupting the DNA damage process.

Studies show using moisturizers rich in folic acid led to increased hydration of the skin. Hydrated skin is essential for collagen and elastin, or for keeping skin plump. One study found a reduction in wrinkles from using folic acid creams.

Foods rich in folic acid include leafy vegetables, beans, peanuts, fresh fruit, and eggs.

Learn more about Folic Acid
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What it does:
Community Rating: Loved

Calcium Pantothenate is calcium salt from Vitamin B5. It can be naturally found in plants and animals.

Calcium Pantothenate is a potent antioxidant. Antioxidants help fight free-radical molecules. Free-radical molecules are capable of damaging our cells and other genetic material. Antioxidants help stabilize free-radicals by donating extra electrons. This may help reduce the signs of aging.

Our bodies use Calcium Pantothenate for various metabolic functinos. These functions include metabolizing carbohydrates, proteins, and fatty acids.

Learn more about Calcium Pantothenate
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What it does: Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Pyridoxine.

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What it does: Cosmetic Colorant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Riboflavin is Vitamin B2. Our bodies use riboflavin in the creation of skin, digestive tract lining, and blood cells.

Riboflavin is naturally found in Royal Jelly.

Foods rich in riboflavin include eggs, milk, organ meat, cheese, and yogurt.

Learn more about other types of Vitamin B:

Learn more about Riboflavin
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What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Thiamine Hcl is Vitamin B1. The HCL stands for hydrochloride. Thiamine HCL is created using thiamine chloride and hydrochloric acid.

Our bodies use Thiamine HCL for aerobic metabolism, cell growth, and transmission of nerve impulses.

Learn more about Vitamin B in skincare:

Learn more about Thiamine Hcl
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What it does: Skin Conditioning, Soothing
Community Rating: Liked

Bioflavonoids are secondary metabolites found in plants. They contain antioxidants.

Antioxidants help fight free-radicals. Free-radicals are molecules that may damage your skin cells, such as pollution.

Foods containing high amounts of bioflavonoids include celery, peppers, berries, grapes, citrus fruits, cocoa, and more.

Learn more about Bioflavonoids
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What it does:
Community Rating: Loved

Glutathione is an antioxidant naturally found in our bodies. It is made up of three amino acids: glycine, cysteine, and glutamic acid.

As an antioxidant, it prevents oxidative damage to parts of our cell.

While glutathione is said to help with skin lightening, the results from research are inconclusive. Further studies are needed.

However, gluthatione has been shown to protect our skin from UV-B induced damage.

This ingredient is naturally occurring in plants, animals, fungi, and some bacteria.

Learn more about Glutathione
50
What it does: Cleansing, Emollient, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

Linoleic Acid is Vitamin F and a fatty acid. It is an emollient and helps thicken texture. Linoleic acid helps with hydrating skin and nourishing the skin's barrier. The top layer of skin, or epidermis, contains high amounts of linoleic acid naturally.

Your body uses linoleic acid to build ceramides and prostaglandins. Ceramides keep your skin's barrier plump and firm. Prosaglandins help control inflammation and healing.

This makes linoleic acid effectives for reducing inflammation, hydrating skin, and firming skin. A side effect may include extra protection against UV damage and free radicals. This is due to linoleic acid strengthening the skin barrier.

Low levels of linoleic acid is also associated with acne-prone skin. By keeping sebum soft, it prevents pores from clogging.

Linoleic acid can is in common foods such as nuts, sunflower oil, corn oil, and soybean oil.

This ingredient may not be Malassezia folliculitis, or fungal-acne safe.

CHEM: 9,12-Octadecadienoic acid (9Z, 12Z)-

Learn more about Linoleic Acid
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What it does: Masking

We don't have a description for Menadione.

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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Retinol is a gold-standard ingredient for anti-aging. It is a form of Vitamin A and belongs to the class of retinoids that also includes tretinoin.

Why is retinol famous?

It has the most scientific studies backing up its skin benefits out of all the non-prescription ingredients.

Retinol is proven to:

This is why retinol is effective at removing wrinkles, fading dark spots, treating acne, and reducing the appearance of pores.

Studies show retinol is less effective when exposed to UV. Be sure to look for appropriate packaging to keep your retinol potent (similar to Vitamin C).

Using retinol or any retinoids will increase sun-sensitivity in the first few months. Though studies show retinoids increase your skin's natural SPF with continuous use, it is best to always wear sunscreen and sun-protection.

We recommend speaking with a medical professional about using this ingredient during pregnancy.

Retinol may cause irritation in some people, so be sure to patch test. Experts recommend 'ramping up' retinol use: start using this ingredient once a week and work up to using it daily.

Read about Tretinoin

Learn more about Retinol
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What it does: Antioxidant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Tocopherol (also known as Vitamin E) is a common antioxidant used to help protect the skin from free-radicals and strengthen the skin barrier. It's also fat soluble - this means our skin is great at absorbing it.

Vitamin E also helps keep your natural skin lipids healthy. Your lipid skin barrier naturally consists of lipids, ceramides, and fatty acids. Vitamin E offers extra protection for your skinโ€™s lipid barrier, keeping your skin healthy and nourished.

Another benefit is a bit of UV protection. Vitamin E helps reduce the damage caused by UVB rays. (It should not replace your sunscreen). Combining it with Vitamin C can decrease sunburned cells and hyperpigmentation after UV exposure.

You might have noticed Vitamin E + C often paired together. This is because it is great at stabilizing Vitamin C. Using the two together helps increase the effectiveness of both ingredients.

There are often claims that Vitamin E can reduce/prevent scarring, but these claims haven't been confirmed by scientific research.

Learn more about Tocopherol
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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.

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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
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When to use

We've created a guide with info on when you should use Skin&Lab Vitamin C Brightening Serum. We've also included some recommended products to use it with, as well as some routine inspiration!

Read our guide on when to use Vitamin C Brightening Serum ->
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