Hydrate and Reduce Redness
Boosting the immunity of your skin
Improves epidermal barrier performance
Improves redness and blotchiness in the skin
Minimises pore appearance
Regulates facial oil flow
Protects your skin from infrared light
Helps to prevent Hyper-pigmentation
Minimises fine lines and wrinkles
Protects against oxidative stress
Forms of Vitamin B in Skin Care
There are eight (8) classes in total of water soluble Vitamin B, those being; B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, and B12. These vitamins are vital for maintaining our energy levels, brain functions, and cell metabolism and are easily derived from food sources such as dairy, meat, fish, vegetables, seeds and nuts, and more. Used in skin care, Vitamin B is an antioxidant that helps to treat signs of aging and alleviate sensitive skin. The most common forms of Vitamin B found in topical skin care are Vitamin B3 (also known as Niacin, Niacinamide or Nicotinic Acid), Vitamin B5 (also known as Panthenol), and Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin).
B group vitamins are an essential nutrient, our body needs them for growth and well being. They cannot be made or stored in the body, so we need to be continuously consuming them through our diet or applying them topically. Vitamin B5 is soluble in water and is excreted in urine. Our bodies do not store it, and we need to consume it every day to replenish supplies.
Deficiencies in B vitamins are often first seen in the skin, this can be in the form of; redness, irritation, dermatitis or even pigmentation, and this has lead skin care developers to enhance the use of topical vitamin B to provide a wide range of skin benefits.
- Vitamin B3 has been shown to boost collagen production and also reduce dark spots. Niacinamide, a derivative of vitamin B3, has been shown to improve the ability of the epidermis, the upper most layer of the skin, to retain moisture. Reduces inflammation, signs of aging like fine wrinkles and blemishes, and improves the function of the skin’s barrier. Niacinamide can also serve as an effective skin-lightening agent when added to moisturisers.
- Vitamin B5 is used as a humectant and is highly popular in moisturisers, shampoos and hair conditioners, offering barrier conditioning effects on the skin.
- Vitamin B12, when applied topically, has been shown to successfully treat eczema by reducing the body’s production of nitric oxide production. It helps to increase cellular regeneration and encourage wound healing. When taken orally, it helps in red blood cell production, regulates pigmentation. It’s also an important vitamin that we get from our diets or in supplements.
Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide) Benefits
The B group most influential in skin care is B3 or niacinamide. Being water-soluble, it is easily absorbed and so it gets straight to work deep in the layers of the skin where it’s needed. Niacinamide reduces redness, yellowing or sallowness and the appearance of hyperpigmented spots (the darker spots on your skin caused by sun damage). It can improve skin texture, refines pore size by regulating sebum production, reduces fine lines and wrinkles and improve moisture by strengthening the outermost layers of the skin. It is an antioxidant also known as a hydrating or redness reducing vitamin, which improves the barrier function of the skin by boosting the amount of ceramides produced. This is essential for protecting the skin against pollutants and irritants.
For problem skins, acne patients can reach for this vitamin to improve their skin barrier function as well as increase their tolerance to topical retinoids (vitamin A). Aging skins and those with sun damage will also reap the benefits of the combination of niacinamide and vitamin A.
If you have dry or rosacea skin, you will want to make sure you get this vitamin in your skin care. Those with sensitive skin will also benefit, although you will want to build your tolerance up to it gradually. Don’t use too much, as this can make your sensitivities worse. You’ll want to add it to your skin care routine from your 30s, as this is when the barrier starts to break down naturally.
Niacinamide is an ingredient worthy of your attention and your skin will love you for using it. Among a handful of other amazing skin care ingredients such as retinol and vitamin C, vitamin B3 niacinamide is a standout because of its versatility for almost any skin care concern and skin type.
Without a good amount of ceramide, the skin will be sensitive to anything that touches it. It is also more likely to suffer from inflammation and hyperpigmentation, usually due to acne. By getting more vitamin B3, you’ll be able to get a more even skin tone.
The best formulations will contain at least 10% Niacinamide. Some brands will be forthcoming with this information while others prefer to keep it under wraps. A good indication of how much is in your serum is how far up the list of ingredients Niacinamide appears. It should be close to the top of the list.
Vitamin B5 (Panthenol) Benefits
Vitamin B5 comes from our food groups including eggs, fish, sweet potatoes, spinach, peanuts and broccoli to name but a few sources, and can help to keep the immune system strong and effective at fighting diseases and infections in the body. In skin care Vitamin B5 Panthenol is often listed as a Pro-Vitamin. A Pro-Vitamin, similar to Retinol being coverted by the body to Retinoic Acid, is another substance that must be converted within the body into a vitamin useful substance or compound. In this instance Panthenol is the stable biologically active form of Vitamin B5, which the body metabolizes into pantothenic acid in the skin. The pantothenic acid is then incorporated as an important component in the coenzyme A.
Pro-Vitamin B5 helps to keep skin soft, smooth, and healthy. It also has an anti-inflammatory effect that can help stimulate your skin’s healing processes. Deeply hydrating, it helps to keep skin quenched by absorbing moisture from the air (clever!). Also known as Pantothenic Acid, small quantities of Vitamin B5 are found in most foods – but you’d have to eat a lot to see any benefit. The shortcut? Look for Vitamin B5 in your skin care products. Vitamin B5 might also be listed in skin care ingredients as dexpanthenol, d-panthenol or dl-panthenol.
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) Benefits
Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is an important water-soluble vitamin. It plays an essential role in the production of your red blood cells and DNA, as well as the proper functioning of your nervous system. Vitamin B12 is naturally found in animal foods, including meats, fish, poultry, eggs and dairy. However, it can also be found in products fortified with B12, such as some varieties of bread and plant-based milk.
Vitamin B12 works by binding to enzymes to help with chemical reactions in the body and the skin. When B12 is absorbed into the skin, it boosts metabolism in the skin cells and this energy speeds up cell recovery and regeneration. Reduces the signs of aging skin by increasing the production of collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid, which is nature’s hydrating powerhouse. In turn, fatigued skin is improved. Applied topically for skin it reduces inflammation, dryness, and acne. It is sometimes used to treat conditions like psoriasis and eczema.
Unfortunately, B12 deficiency is common, especially in the elderly. You’re at risk of deficiency if you don’t get enough from your diet or aren’t able to absorb enough from the food you eat. Symptoms of a vitamin B12 deficiency can take years to show up, and diagnosing it can be complex. A B12 deficiency can sometimes be mistaken for a folate deficiency. Low levels of B12 cause your folate levels to drop. However, if you have a B12 deficiency, correcting low folate levels may simply mask the deficiency and fail to fix the underlying problem.
Vitamin B Folate
Folate is a water-soluble vitamin (Vitamin B9) that is important for boosting the metabolism. It’s a nutrient that helps with the synthesizing and copying of DNA, and it helps to improve the way the body uses amino acids and B12. Why is it so good for the skin? Well, it helps to boost the immune system and digestion. When the digestion plays up, the hormones become imbalanced. This leads to an increase in oil production, causing greasy skin and clogged pores. The immune system boost will help to tackle any bacteria or fungi forming on the skin.
It’s often overlooked when it comes to skin care but is very important.