It lightens, it tightens, it brightens. Is there anything niacinamide can't do?
If you’ve got your finger on the pulse of skincare, you may have been hearing about an up and coming ingredient that’s poised to be the next vitamin C. We’re talking about niacinamide, a derivative of vitamin B3 that’s quickly becoming a favorite of dermatologists, estheticians and other skincare industry experts.
So what exactly is niacinamide? And why is it a must-have for your beauty routine?
Niacinamide is technically classified as a brightening ingredient but its benefits extend well beyond the scope of just cosmetic lightening. It is additionally a powerful reparative agent, acne fighter and anti-aging superhero. A derivative of Vitamin B3, niacinamide is not something our body produces naturally. The best way to benefit from using it is to apply it topically in skincare products like cleansers, toners, serums and creams. But to better understand all the magic behind niacinamide, let’s take a closer look at some of our favorite benefits:
Anti-Inflammatory - Niacinamide works to reduce inflammation which is a common factor in many skin conditions including acne, eczema, redness, rosacea and hyperpigmentation. For this reason dermatologists also like it as a gentle alternative to more aggressive active ingredients which can irritate sensitive skin.
Oil-Balancing - Acne and oily skin types can benefit greatly from niacinamide’s ability to regulate the skin’s natural sebum production. It helps rebalance and correct excess oil, minimizing breakouts over time.
Improves Barrier Function - If your skin lacks oil, niacinamide can also be helpful, as studies show it can aid in improving the skin’s natural lipid barrier. This also increases water retention in dry or aging skin, plumping out fine lines and minimizing the appearance of pores.
Promotes Overall Skin Health - A few more amazing benefits of niacinamide include protection against UV and sun damage. Niacinamide can promote better skin immunity - fighting free radical damage and oxidative stress, as well as boosting collagen synthesis.
Sound a little too good to be true?
It’s not! In fact, a recent study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science found some rather astonishing results when participants were asked to apply a niacinamide cream to one half of their face and a placebo cream to the other half. At the end of 12 weeks, results found that the skin treated by the niacinamide cream showed significant improvement in the form of reduced wrinkles and hyperpigmented spots, compared to the skin treated with the placebo cream. Although results can vary depending on your skin’s condition and product used, with so many potential benefits, niacinamide might just be the game changer your skin has been looking for.