Niacinamide is Skincare's Unsung Hero! (Updated 10/2/2022)

Benefits of Niacinamide Niacinamide Vitamin B3

Niacinamide is Beginning to Receive its Overdue Recognition!

Some skincare ingredients just get all the credit, accolades, praises, and media attention!  Most of you are familiar with Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin C, Retinol, Ceramides, Glycolic Acid, etc....but, when we say "Niacinamide" we get quizzical stares as people repeat back "Ni-a-what?"  Let's delve into why Niacinamide is becoming the new (deserved) darling in skincare. It may no longer remain the Unsung Hero of the skincare world and is finally receiving recognition.

Niacinamide is actually Vitamin B3!  It's the lesser-known vitamin when we say the "A, B, C's" of skincare.  Most of you know of Vitamin A (Retinol and its variants), other Vitamin B's (Panthenol, Biotin) and of course, Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid and its variants). But, Niacinamide-- Vitamin B3?  It's not sexy.  It's a relatively inexpensive ingredient.  It's actually been around for years.  It's a quiet powerhouse and workhorse in skin care.  But, it's well deserving of loud accolades!  The body of research on Niacinamide is vast, deep, and much of it is conclusive.  And scientists keep finding even more reasons we should incorporate it into skin care preparations.

The Science and Studies are Extensive 

So what does Niacinamide do for the skin?  A better question is what DOESN'T Niacinamide do?  And the breadth of skin types it's good for are--from troubled acne and breakout-prone skin to aging, fragile, mature skin, and everything in between.  Sensitive skin not only tolerates Niacinamide very well but also reaps its many benefits.  There isn't any 'downtime' or period of acclimating to Niacinamide.  Gentle and effective! 

So, back to the original question.  What does Niacinamide DO? It's definitely a long list of benefits:

  • Improves the skin's barrier against oxidative stress caused by environmental factors and pollution.
  • Pores!  Unclogs and visibly improves the appearance of large pores
  • Helps repair past damage caused by sun exposure
  • Improves Hydration
  • Helps regulate the sebaceous glands from overproducing oil
  • Helps other ingredients work better
  • Improves skin tone, uneven skin, and hyperpigmentation
  • Improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Multiple studies are showing that it helps protect against current and past sun damage caused by UV rays
  • Brightens dulled skin
  • Fights against moisture loss and encourages the natural production of ceramides
  • It's gentle and easily tolerated by almost all skin types
  • Helps reduce sensitive skin irritation.  Reduces blotchiness, and redness. Calms the skin.
  • It's compatible with most other ingredients (except it doesn't play well with low pH ingredients such as Glycolic Acid and Vitamin C within the same product).  Let your acidic products "dry down" before applying products containing Niacinamide.  
The Only Caveat to Using Niacinamide is with Low pH Products

    Because the only group of ingredients Niacinamide doesn't play well with are those with a low pH such as Vitamin C or Glycolic Acid (AHA's and BHA's) we encourage you to use products containing these as 'good neighbors". 

    • For instance: Use a Vitamin C Serum before using a product with a high percentage of Niacinamide (5% or more). Allow the first serum to "dry down" before applying the high percentage Niacinamide serum.
    •  Or, alternate the use of these products --such as using Vitamin C serums in the morning and a high percentage Niacinamide product in the evening. Or apply Glycolic products in the evening and the high percentage Niacinamide product in the morning.

    It's a Serious Ingredient for Effective Skin Care

    Contrary to many new "it" ingredients--Niacinamide is not a fad.  Our admiration of Niacinamide is not a fling. It's a long-term love affair that we see no scientific reason for ever ending. 

    At Char's Effectives we use Niacinamide in percentages of between 2% to 4% in many of our products.  It has an important role in our Calm, Relief for Sensitive SkinDrench & Quench Serum, the Creamy Bakuchiol Serum, the Youth Anti-Aging Serum with Matrixyl 3000Bakuchiol Cream Moisturizer,  Age-Defying Night Cream, and the Age Defying "AHHH" Day Cream.

    And, we think so highly of Niacinamide, we created its own serum--the 10% Niacinamide Serum!  Receive all of the wonderful benefits of Niacinamide in a supercharged serum!

    Now that we know the myriad attributes, let's sing the praises of Niacinamide and give it well-deserved accolades. And, more importantly, let's enjoy its lovely and effective benefits in quality skincare!

     

    References 

    Bissett DL, Oblong JE, Berge CA. Niacinamide: A B vitamin that improves aging facial skin appearance. Dermatol Surg. 2005 Jul;31(7 Pt 2):860-5; discussion 865. doi: 10.1111/j.1524-4725.2005.31732. PMID: 16029679.

    Bissett DL, Miyamoto K, Sun P, Li J, Berge CA. Topical niacinamide reduces yellowing, wrinkling, red blotchiness, and hyperpigmented spots in aging facial skin. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2004 Oct;26(5):231-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-2494.2004.00228.x. PMID: 18492135.

    Levin J, Momin SB. How much do we really know about our favorite cosmeceutical ingredients? J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2010 Feb;3(2):22-41. PMID: 20725560; PMCID: PMC2921764.