Can You Use Niacinamide With Vitamin C?

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Two of the most widely studied and effective ingredients in skincare are niacinamide and vitamin C. These ingredients provide several benefits for the skin, such as reducing hyperpigmentation and anti-aging.

Can you use vitamin C with niacinamide? Yes, you can use them together, assuming you don’t have sensitive skin. Most of the reported concerns are probably myths.

Skincare enthusiasts often fear the combined use of niacinamide and vitamin C. Some people believe they are ineffective if used simultaneously as their chemical interactions cancel each other out.

This belief may be a result of vitamin C’s instability and tendency to oxidize easily when exposed to oxygen, light, and heat. 

We’ll discuss the interaction between Niacinamide and Vitamin C below.


Vitamin C in Skincare

With its ability to brighten skin and erase sun spots, vitamin C is one of the best ingredients for skin care, particularly for aging skin. In addition to being an antioxidant, vitamin C boosts collagen production.

Antioxidants neutralize free radicals and protect the skin from the damaging effects of UV rays.

It blocks abnormal pigment production to fade your dark spots and even out the skin tones. In addition to brightening, it helps firm the skin.

Vitamin C works well with Ferulic acid, vitamin E, Hyaluronic acid, and Vitamin B. It can also work well with retinol, but again, you should know what you’re doing

Delivering a high level of active ingredients, vitamin C boosters are popular among skincare products. Mixing one’s serum with moisturizer is recommended for sensitive skin types, or choosing a moisturizer with vitamin C is a gentler option.

Make sure to incorporate vitamin C into your skincare regimen gradually. If you mix new ingredients into your routine, you should start slowly.

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The Benefits of Vitamin C for the Skin

First, let’s review what vitamin C has to offer.

Dark Spot Reducer

Dark spots are reduced, and the skin is evened out: Probably the most prominent benefit. Applied topically, vitamin C has improved skin’s overall quality and tone. It brightens the skin tone and decreases hyperpigmentation. 

Collagen Creator

Collagen formation is facilitated by Vitamin C: Vitamin C not only promotes collagen synthesis. It also stabilizes your existing collagen, diminishing wrinkles.  In addition, vitamin C prevents collagen from cross-linking to tighten and lift your skin.

Free-Radical Fighter

Oxidative stress is minimized: Vitamin C has antioxidant properties that fight free radicals and promote a healthy inflammatory response. It has even been shown to counteract UV damage. 

What Is Niacinamide?

Niacinamide, also known as nicotinic amide, is a water-soluble vitamin. This compound is derived from Vitamin B3. Foods like meat, nuts, and mushrooms contain natural forms of this compound. 

The skin-restorative properties of niacinamide have made it a popular ingredient in skin care due to its minimal side effects associated with treating a variety of skin problems.

Many products use Niacinamide in their solution, including several The Ordinary and The INKEY List products.

Having anti-inflammatory properties, it can be especially beneficial to acne and hyperpigmentation. In addition, it can help repair skin that has been damaged by external factors.

Acne can also be treated with oral supplements containing niacinamide, which helps to reduce inflammation associated with existing breakouts and reduce the risk of future breakouts.

As a cellular communicator, it improves blood circulation in the skin, leading to a smoother, more elastic complexion. In addition to its anti-aging properties, this ingredient increases the skin’s fatty acid levels.

Pros of Niacinamide

Hyperpigmentation treatment

When applied topically, niacinamide helps reduce brown spots, imperfections, and redness. Your skin will appear brighter. 

Treatment of acne

Niacinamide topical cream 4% treated moderate acne similarly to clindamycin 1% cream. 

Softens wrinkles

It prevents and treats wrinkles caused by reactive oxygen species. However, it can break down collagen and elastin and make skin look saggy.

The application of vitamin B topically can also increase skin elasticity and stimulate the regeneration of skin cells. 

Can You Use Vitamin C With Niacinamide?

Combining Niacinamide and Vitamin C was once thought to create Niacin. This yellowish liquid causes temporary tingling and flushing that causes the skin to turn yellow, so neither ingredient has any effect.

Although combining Niacinamide with Ascorbic Acid can form Niacin in certain circumstances, this requires a very high temperature and a long time.

Nonetheless, only a small portion of the product will be altered. 

You can end skin problems with Niacinamide and Vitamin C!

These ingredients rejuvenate your skin and reduce pore size, improving collagen production and rejuvenating your skin. The problems caused by mixing these two are nothing to worry bout and, in most cases, are deemed just a myth. 

The problems caused by mixing these two are nothing to worry bout and, in most cases, are deemed just a myth. 

Using Niacinamide and Vitamin C Together

Vitamin C and Niacinamide can be used together in a few ways. For starters, you can try looking for products that contain both nutrients. This will save you time in your skincare regime, and it will also ensure your ingredients will work well together in the right quantities!

For example, this BOOST by Paula's Choice  contains both Niacinamide and Vitamin C.

Paula's Choice BOOST 10% Niacinamide Booster, Vitamin B3, Vitamin C & Licorice Extract Serum, Pore Minimizer, 0.67 Ounce
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The perfect two-in-one product to start with is a serum with the two concentrates together. With just two drops twice a day, this serum can reduce the appearance of uneven skin, skin texture, brightness, and clarity, diminishing dark areas and reducing the appearance of dark spots.

Vitamin C and Niacinamide can be applied as part of the same skincare routine using different products layered over each other in the morning and evening. Niacinamide and vitamin C can be applied directly after each other, or you can use them at different times during the day.

Niacinamide and vitamin C can be applied directly after each other, or you can use them at different times during the day. 

As a standalone, niacinamide will restore the appearance of your skin, whereas vitamin C protects it from environmental damage. Adding these to your skincare routine isn’t just smart; it’ll help you achieve a younger-looking skin tone.

Having learned that mixing these two products is completely safe, now is the perfect time to begin doing so. Niacinamide serum can be applied before retinol or other powerful exfoliants so that your skin is soothed, visible redness is reduced, and they work better together. 

Are There Side Effects?

This will depend on the individual.

There is a chance that anything from foundation to moisturizer might not agree with your skin! People tend to think that given niacinamide and vitamin C are so good for the skin that they will be ok together.

This isn’t always true.

Everyone’s skin is different, and you may end up with a reaction. Different factors from genes and skin type, to skin problems can impact whether a skin product will cause irritation.

Everyone’s skin is different, and you may end up with a reaction. Different factors from genes and skin type, to skin problems can impact whether a skin product will cause irritation.

Always conduct a patch test first and apply only a small thin layer. Remember that unwanted reactions might not appear right away. For example, you may develop acne or irritation a few days or weeks after using. Symptoms like itching, burning, discoloration, and redness suggest that the product is unsuitable for your skin.

If you have sensitive skin, you may want to speak to a dermatologist who might be able to suggest another product with the same ingredients but is not as harsh or used as often.

Is It Safe for Sensitive Skin?

If you have sensitive skin, you should do a patch test for niacinamide and Vitamin C before applying them to your routine (or anything else, really!).

However, if you do not experience an adverse reaction, you may continue.

Using vitamin C and Niacinamide together should be handled carefully if you have sensitive skin. Niacinamide and Vitamin C Serum from plants are the best options for this purpose.

Natural ingredients are more nourishing and are less likely to have fragrances and additives.

If you choose synthetic products, test each ingredient separately. For example, start with a 2% concentration of niacinamide and add Vitamin C to your regimen after a few weeks.

If using two treatments simultaneously irritates your skin, try applying them both at different times of the day or apply Niacinamide one day and Vitamin C the next. You can play around with this and see what works for you.

Are Niacinamide and Vitamin C Chemically Incompatible?

When used together, vitamin C and Niacinamide are not neutralizers.  This belief stems from combining these two clear liquids to form a yellow liquid.

According to some, the color change is due to instantaneous oxidation of vitamin C. However, it’s caused by the charge transfer between the ingredients, leading to the formation of niacinamide ascorbate.

In this chemical reaction, a transfer of electrons occurs between L-ascorbic acid and niacinamide, which weakly binds them.

How Does Niacinamide Ascorbate Affect the Skin?

Niacinamide ascorbate is currently being studied for its dermatological effects. Research indicates that it has a safe and effective brightening effect. Niacinamide ascorbate can also be separated and reversed quickly.

The formation of Niacinamide Ascorbate is most accessible when the pH is sitting at 3.8. Although the pH of the skin is acidic at the surface, as you move deeper into the skin, the pH becomes less acidic – and eventually reaches a neutral level of 7. 

Upon skin penetration by Niacinamide Ascorbate, the bond that holds them together ends up breaking, leaving you with L-ascorbic acid and niacinamide again. 


For most people, you should be able to use Niacinamide and Vitamin C together, either at the same time or alternating in your morning and evening routine.

But remember, every person’s skin is different, and you could have a reaction, particularly if you have sensitive skin.

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).