ALL about Vitamin C: One of the Best active skincare ingredients you need to use!

By: Amir Karam MD

Because I specialize in skin rejuvenation, I’m here to help you look as young as you feel. Preventing damage and restoring your skin comes down to one simple principle: what makes skin look better over time is an awareness of what active ingredients you use and consistent sun protection. 

In this journal entry, we’ll look at how the skin ages, and I’ll tell you all about Vitamin C, one of the best active skincare ingredients you need to use. Watch this video to learn more about this powerhouse anti-aging ingredient and why I recommend it to everyone.

How the skin ages

With age, you’ll notice:

Pigmentation as sun damage rises to the surface
Loss of collagen, which causes frailty, fine lines, and wrinkles
Dehydration, which causes dryness and dullness
Textural changes from environmental exposure to airborne pollutants
Textural changes from exposure to food or lifestyle-based toxins

    All of these effects compound and cause the skin to age. As somebody who creates skincare products that do something meaningful and real to the skin, I consider how to address these things simultaneously. My answer: Vitamin C, which hits nearly all of these skin-aging instigators.

    Vitamin C: the secret weapon for aging skin

    Vitamin C is clinically proven imperative as a multi-faceted part of treating the different components of skin aging. To be deliberate and serious about managing aging skin, we need to be incorporating this ingredient into a consistent regimen.

    First, Vitamin C is vital for fighting free radicals. Free radicals are unstable atoms that damage cells and accelerate aging; the sun is a significant generator of these atoms. As an active molecule, Vitamin C is an antioxidant that absorbs existing free radicals while protecting against them.

    Second, you’ll notice the following improvements when using Vitamin C consistently over time:

    Reduced pigmentation
    Fewer fine lines and wrinkles
    Increased brightness and hydration
    Reduced redness and acne

      At the cellular level, Vitamin C assists fibroblasts (the primary skin cells) in producing collagen. Stimulating collagen production is the foundation of youthful-looking skin; it’s essential for restoring plump skin with a lit-from-within glow. It also limits melanin production long-term for a more even skin tone and reduced blotchiness.

      Building a good skincare lifestyle around Vitamin C

      The two fundamental cellular changes caused by Vitamin C-melanin suppression and collagen stimulation are anti-aging 101. My goal is to keep your skin looking better day after day going forward, which is what this is all about.

      Vitamin C works best when paired with retinol to stimulate collagen production while decreasing pigmentation. I specifically developed Illuminate to pair the two without producing the harshness and sensitivity of combining Vitamin C and retinol. Similarly, you’ll notice improved tone and texture when you add a skin lightener, such as hydroquinone or herbal-based products.

      Countless other active ingredients work well with Vitamin C. Some improve hydration, while others brighten and enhance cell turnover. If I were to narrow it down to the three most vital ingredients to pair with Vitamin C for improving skin long-term, they would be:


      And, of course, you must maintain good skincare habits to make the most of your efforts. This includes:

      Regular use of a mineral-based sunscreen
      Avoid smoking
      Limit exposure to toxins
      Maintain a balanced, protein-rich diet
      Stay hydrated
      Get enough sleep
      Taking an oral Vitamin C supplement, which is crucial in collagen production

      How often to use Vitamin C

      This depends on your chosen brands; generally, Vitamin C is used topically once or twice daily. Bottling and packaging also matter, as Vitamin C can lose efficacy with sun exposure; some are more air-sensitive. Make sure your topical is in dark, air-tight packaging to get the most out of your efforts.


      The TRIFECTA is a simple, three-step skincare line that includes a range of vital ingredients necessary for achieving beautiful skin, including Vitamin C. Used together with the exfoliator POLISH, the TRIFECTA provides everything your skin needs to be as beautiful, supple, healthy, and youthful as you want it to be. 

      I created the TRIFECTA and POLISH to give my patients a way to achieve radiant, fresh skin without a complicated skincare routine. I looked for the right products for years and discovered that not only was the selection of products overwhelming, but many didn’t have what was needed for beautiful skin. And worse, the required steps and complexity of many of the great skincare products out there made it almost impossible to follow the skincare routine consistently every day, which you must do to get results.

      My products are safe for all skin types, work for patients at any stage of the aging process, and can be consistently applied with an easy, short morning and night routine. You should use the TRIFECTA twice every day. Apply 1-2 pumps of each product to the skin of your face, neck, and around your eyes in the morning and night.


      RINSE is a refreshing cleanser that hydrates and softens the skin while removing toxins and makeup residue. RINSE also triggers cell regeneration and helps to prevent UVA damage. This product prepares your skin for deep absorption of the active ingredients of the other KaramMD skincare products.


      This brightening Vitamin C serum helps renew and rejuvenate the skin, preventing collagen breakdown and reducing hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and other signs of age. 


      ILLUMINATE is an anti-aging cream that includes retinol and a range of many other vital ingredients for beautiful, ageless skin. The elements of ILLUMINATE stimulate skin elasticity, boost collagen production and cell turnover, hydrate and freshen the skin, and achieves radiant, luminous effects. ILLUMINATE works together with RINSE and QUENCH to achieve beautiful, youthful skin. 


      This gentle but highly effective exfoliator removes dead skin cells and toxins, and other buildups to improve skin hydration, smooth skin texture, regulate natural oil production, and plump the skin for a clear, radiant, vibrant appearance.

      Your skincare expert, Dr. Amir Karam


      Dr. Karam is a double board-certified facial plastic surgeon who has spent more than two decades achieving beautiful, youthful-looking results for patients. He has helped hundreds and hundreds of patients to combat the effects of the aging process. With his range of innovative surgical and non-surgical treatments, Dr. Karam’s many satisfied patients consider him the “go-to” for turning back time and achieving a youthful, beautiful appearance.

      Aside from surgical and non-surgical procedures and treatments he provides, Dr. Karam realized patients needed a home skincare routine to truly achieve the radiant, healthy, and vibrant skin that signals youth.


      • KaramMD Customer Support Team

        Hi Leslie,
        We are so happy you’re loving the Trifecta! We don’t have a specific all over Vitamin C lotion we recommend but we will keep your suggestion in mind for the future.

      • KaramMD Customer Support Team

        Hi Aoife,
        Thank you for your question! If you are using another brand of Vitamin C, it’s best to follow their recommendations for usage. If you are interested in using our Quench Vitamin C serum, we cannot give you a standard concentration comparison that you are used to seeing because this particular compound out performs the typical Ascorbic acid that is used in many Vitamin C serums. Dr. Karam believes that microdosing Vitamin C twice daily in comparison to using a 10-12% Vitamin C serum once daily is much more effective and also avoids reactions like breakouts and irritation.

      • KaramMD Customer Support Team

        Hi Lucia,
        We recommend you try our Quench serum. This is a powerhouse antioxidant serum delivering the perfect dose of three types of Vitamin C helps to boost natural collagen and illuminate, a cocktail of skin brighteners, and plumping Sodium Hyaluronate.

      • Jeanne Parker

        Stunning results.

      • Aoife nicholas

        How much topical vit c do you recommend to take daily? Thank yoi

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