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TeriAnn Trevenen: Yeah, so making sure you get enough vitamin C every day is essential, not just internally, but externally as well if you want that beautiful skin and if you want a healthy body. This is because vitamin C is the catalyst for dozens of vital cellular mechanisms in your body. It does a lot for us. This includes functions that promote healthy skin.
Voiceover: Empowering You Organically, delivering content you trust with results you love.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Welcome, everyone, to another episode of Empowering You Organically. I’m your host, Jonathan Hunsaker, joined by my cohost, TeriAnn Trevenen.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Hey, everyone.
Jonathan Hunsaker: So, we’ve gotten a lot of questions since we released our vitamin C serum, and we figured, “Hey, let’s do a podcast.” And we’re not going to talk about our serum specifically, we’re just going to talk about vitamin C, the benefits for your skin, and why we feel everybody should be using some sort of vitamin C skincare treatment.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Although I do love our vitamin C serum, I must say.
Jonathan Hunsaker: I agree 100 percent.
TeriAnn Trevenen: So, let’s get started with this today.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Absolutely. So, let’s talk about what does vitamin C do for your skin?
TeriAnn Trevenen: Yeah, so making sure you get enough vitamin C every day is essential, not just internally, but externally as well if you want that beautiful skin and if you want a healthy body. This is because vitamin C is the catalyst for dozens of vital cellular mechanisms in your body. It does a lot for us.
This includes functions that promote healthy skin. As we age, we’re all looking for that beautiful, healthy skin and glow that we once had, and we can take that with us through our life if we take care of our body and our skin.
Besides acting as a powerful antioxidant, one of the biggest roles vitamin C plays is in the production and synthesis of collagen, which is super important for our skin. There are internal functions of our body that need collages for us to be healthy, but also, our skin and collagen production are so important. Collagen is the basic building block of healthy tissue. It is formed through the binding together of key amino acids, mainly glycine, arginine, and proline. Vitamin C is vital for the creation of many types of collagen, especially type 1 and 3.
Jonathan Hunsaker: See? And we’ve talked about this before when we’ve done podcasts around collagen, and even looking for collagen supplements. What’s really interesting, right, is that collagen supplement, you need to have enough vitamin C in order for your body to create collagen, or even to absorb collagen.
So, and skin is one of the quickest places you’re going to see the difference of using a collagen supplement or using a vitamin C on your skin, because then, your body creates more collagen and you’re going to instantly see that firmness, so on.
So, what I found was really interesting as we were doing a lot of research and just being in this space for the last few years is your body actually can’t make vitamin C.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely.
Jonathan Hunsaker: So, can you talk more on that?
TeriAnn Trevenen: Sure. So, yeah, it is interesting, because most of the vitamin C that we ingest gets used right away or is flushed out through our urine. Vitamin C is a water-soluble nutrient. That means that it dissolves in water. So, we have to get it through external sources to make sure that we have enough since our body can’t make it and a lot of it goes through our body so quickly.
However, research indicates the body can and does store some amount of vitamin C, which is why it’s important to be supplementing with it, why it’s important to make sure we’re getting it internally, and then for our skin, to be getting it externally, right?
Also, something interesting to note about vitamin C, vitamin C complements the absorption and the result of so many other things that go on in our body, so many other nutrients and supplements that we take. And so, it’s really critical that the amount that our body can store up of vitamin C, we’re getting enough of that in our diet, in our nutrition, and then also, putting it on our skin topically so we can have that healthy glow.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Well, and that’s the interesting thing, right, is I mean our skin is an organ, and it’s the biggest organ, and it absorbs nutrients just as much as taking something orally.
TeriAnn Trevenen: It’s one of the places that we store vitamin C the most is in our skin, and it’s so—and people ask, “Do I really need to use vitamin C topically, or can I just take a supplement?” No, like putting it on topically is super important as well.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Well, it’s a no-brainer, right? I mean absolutely, you can ingest it, and you can hope that that vitamin C goes to all the right places that it needs to go. But one way to really pinpoint is to actually put it topically on your skin. Let’s talk more about vitamin C, because I think that everybody hears about vitamin C when you get sick, “Take some vitamin C and you’ll get better.” But let’s really talk about the importance of vitamin C, how it’s needed for collagen production, and everything else, and why it just plays such a major role in your health.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Sure. So, one of vitamin C’s main jobs is to add oxygen and hydrogen to the amino acids proline and lysine in order to turn them into their collagen forms. Without a lot of vitamin C in the skin, collagen production slows down. We’ve talked about this on the podcast before.
[0:05:03] As we age, that collagen production slows down and we just don’t produce as much as we once did. This causes our skin to sag and may even raise your risk of skin-related conditions and things like melanoma. So, collagens is really important to the health of our skin. Vitamin C plays a huge part in production of the collagens in our skin.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Absolutely. So, let’s talk about topical vitamin C a little bit more then.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Yeah, absolutely. So, when it comes to topical application of vitamin C, so absorbency and stability are huge challenges. Well, scientists have found that ascorbic acid is the most effective type of vitamin C to use topically. It is often problematic since it’s also very unstable. So, when you talk to people who formulate vitamin C products who are using ascorbic acid, which is the topical form of vitamin C, it’s really hard, right, because it would be like taking one ingredient in a supplement and just hoping that it lasts wherever you can take it. It doesn’t have a good stable shelf life.
This is why it’s really important, in skincare and in supplements, A, to make sure they’re using really high-quality ingredients, but B, how are they preserving your supplements and making sure that you can use them? But also, they shouldn’t be something that stores for a long period of time, because if your products last too long, what’s in them?
Jonathan Hunsaker: Yeah, there’s preservatives, other “poisons,” things that are just making it last longer.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. So, when it comes to the stability of vitamin C, it breaks down and it becomes ineffective when it’s exposed to heat, light, or air. And so, when it comes to manufacturing and producing products that come with vitamin C, you have to be really careful on how they’re doing that.
Also, when it comes to vitamin C absorption into the skin, it’s poor when it’s just mixed with something simple like water. So, if you’re like “Oh, I’m just going to get ascorbic acid and I’m going to make my own concoction,” like no. It’s very dangerous to do it in that way. When it comes to topical vitamin C, you want to make sure that it’s being manufactured and produced in a way that’s stable, but also clean.
Jonathan Hunsaker: And I mean I think you touched on so many things here, and that’s what kind of brings us to talking about like just a vitamin C serum, right? Something that’s specifically been formulated for you to use on your skin to get the vitamin C that you need to produce the collagens and all the other benefits of having vitamin C.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. One other thing that I want to mention here is, because of how hard it is to get that vitamin C, that ascorbic acid, stable, if you read the labels, even if you’re getting a clean organic product, you’re going after the vitamin C portion of that product, and that’s what you’re really after is the benefits of the vitamin C. And not only that, but if the company said, “Oh, well, this is a vitamin C product,” it’s interesting to note that, if you read the label, labels, in almost every situation – food, supplements, skincare – are supposed to have the ingredient that has—that the product holds the most of at the top of the label, and then going down, it decreases in percentage by how much of the ingredient is in there.
If you look at a vitamin C product, many vitamin C products will have vitamin C second or third from the last ingredient on the list instead of up there at the top. And if you’re going after the vitamin C, that means there’s very little vitamin C in that product. So, be really careful when it comes to that because there are ways to create vitamin C products that are stable, and they’ll give your product a 6-month to a yearlong shelf life.
You don’t really want much more than that, because that means there’s preservatives in there. But there are natural preservatives where you can get a vitamin C product that has a lot of vitamin C in it, but it’s also stable with natural preservatives – things like witch hazel, which can extend the shelf life of ingredients, but it’s a natural ingredient, and still have that really powerful amount of vitamin C in there. So, just some things to look at when it comes to vitamin C for your skin and putting it on topically.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Well, and what I think is interesting is when you talk about how things are listed on the ingredients, on the label, right? And whatever it has the most of should be listed first, and all the way down the line. We’ve gotten emails and questions and people asking, they say, “Well, how does this vitamin C, your vitamin C, compare to this other vitamin C?”
And you start looking, and you realize, it’s not an apples to apples comparison, right? Because there’s vitamin C serums out there that are only 5 percent vitamin C, some that are 10 percent, some that are 13 percent, where ours is 26 percent vitamin C, because I mean that is really what we’re trying to give you is the vitamin C, not just advertise that it’s vitamin C and then put a bunch of filler in there with vitamin C listed second to last, but actually making it the number one thing.
And so, when you’re looking at your different products and you’re trying to decide what skincare or what vitamin C serum to use, really look at the ingredients. [0:10:02] And I’ve said this on many podcasts. Investigate the company that’s making them. Make sure that they have a good history and what they stand for.
What are their core values? To make sure you’re not just getting a bunch of junk in there with some “vitamin C.” Because the reality is, having all these other preservatives, having these other “dirty” ingredients is causing damage to your skin. So, you’re trying to put this on here to look, to heal your skin, to look younger, to tighten up your skin, and yet, you’re putting poisons on it at the same time, which is just the opposite effect.
So, a little bit of a tangent there, but I just really—I want people to understand when you go shopping, that it’s so important to look at the label, understanding what you’re reading. Make sure you’re comparing apples to apples when you’re looking at two vitamin C serums next to each other. It’s very important to have the no preservatives.
It’s very important, like you said, to have the witch hazel. That makes it more stable and to last longer. And there’s other things. Clearly, we put in our serum what we think is superior, but just when you’re out there shopping, really look at what you’re buying and making sure that you’re getting what you’re paying for.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely.
Jonathan Hunsaker: So, I mean we’re talking about how important vitamin C is, and clearly, we think that it’s very important, but let’s really hammer down all the big reasons why we feel everybody should be using some sort of vitamin C serum, man or woman.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. So, the first thing I want to talk about is keeping your skin looking young, which we are all after as we age. While vitamin C serum can’t get rid of every wrinkle that comes with age and too much sun exposure, it can help to reduce them. And sometimes, quite significantly.
Vitamin C is a powerful, powerful antioxidant that has the ability to protect sensitive skin from the aging effects of the sun. Just as important as that, vitamin C also plays a role in the production of collagen. So, we talked about how collagen is so important in keeping our skin from sagging, giving it elasticity, making it look plump and full.
So, if you want your skin to look young, vitamin C is absolutely a must topically for your skin.
Jonathan Hunsaker: So, you talked about, for a second, about how vitamin C can help protect from the sun. Can you talk a little bit more about that?
TeriAnn Trevenen: Yeah. So, I just want to touch on this very briefly, but as a powerful antioxidant, vitamin C protects the skin by warding off free radical damage caused by UV radiation that can lead to DNA mutation, which is really, really, really bad when it comes to our health, when it comes to our skin, overall health.
It’s important to still use good judgement when it comes to sun exposure and protection. That being said, upping your vitamin C levels by applying a vitamin C serum to areas of your body that get the most exposure is a sound strategy for really protecting your skin.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Well, and I mean the place that clearly gets the most exposure is our face, right? And I think that most of us would prefer not to use some sort of toxic sunscreen or something like that. And so, just increasing the amount of vitamin C that’s in your system helps protect from the sun, allows you to be out in the sun more, which allows you to absorb some more vitamin D and be happier, and all the other benefits that you get from being outside in the sun.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. Well, and just something to know, and I think you have to be really careful about the time of day that you’re in the sun. So, I have some very fair skin. Babies at home who get sunburned very easy, I also get sunburned quite easily, and if I can help it, if we’re not on some big vacation where we want to go out and be on the beach in the middle of the day, because that’s why we’re there, most of the time, I try to take my kids out in the summer from like 10-12 or after like 3:30 to 4, because the exposure from the sun is so much more minimal at that time, and you have less chance of getting burned, and it’s just really critical to make some decisions like that when it comes to your skin.
So, while vitamin C can help, you also have to be careful about when you’re in the sun, protecting your skin. It’s good to have sun and you want some of that exposure for your overall health, but also, being careful when it comes to protecting.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Yeah, and it’s everything in moderation, right? I mean we go out there, springtime turns to summer, and we go outside for 3 hours, all of a sudden, we all look like lobsters, right? You can build up to it, too, right, to help. Just a little bit of exposure and a little bit more, little bit more, so…
TeriAnn Trevenen: Yes, you never want to look like a lobster.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Exactly.
TeriAnn Trevenen: That’s going to age your skin faster. Don’t do that if you have a choice.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Let’s talk about vitamin C and how it hydrates the skin.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. So, using a high-quality vitamin C serum can hydrate your skin by decreasing water loss at the trans-epidermal level. How does it do this? Retained water molecules are a happy byproduct of increased collagen production as well as the production of hydroperoxyline through vitamin C-assisted collagen synthesis. A derivative of vitamin C known as magnesium, ascorbyl, phosphate, also contributes to the hydrating effect of vitamin C. So, vitamin C, when it comes to the different layers of your skin, at the trans-epidermal level is where you’re going to get that absorption of vitamin C and really keep your skin hydrated. [0:15:04]
Jonathan Hunsaker: Well, and it actually allows you to use less product, right? You’re not having to use as many lotions, you’re not having to use as many other things, because you’re not feeling all dried out all the time, that you’re actually staying hydrated, your skin’s staying hydrated.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely.
Jonathan Hunsaker: So, we’ve talked a lot about vitamin C. We’ve talked about the benefits of it. We even touched a little bit about kind of taking a vitamin C orally versus topically. Let’s touch on that a little bit more, because I don’t want people to walk away thinking, “Okay, I’ll just pop some vitamin C pills, and all of a sudden, my skin’s going to heal.”
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. So, it makes a lot of sense to say, like just take a vitamin C supplement and that will be enough, but according to research that was done in 2017 in New Zealand, this is not true. It took a look at the benefits of both dietary and topical vitamin C on skin health. According to the study report published in the Journal of Nutrients, vitamin C consumed internally can only help skin in a person who is deficient to begin with. On the other hand, the multitude of studies conducted on vitamin C serum have proven that topical vitamin C application appears to have beneficial effects no matter what a person’s status.
Jonathan Hunsaker: So, I think that’s a really good distinction, is if your body is low on it, if you’re out of balance, then yes, orally can help get you back to a balanced state. But what we’ve been talking about is, I mean all the benefits if you have additional vitamin C, right, if you’re putting a serum on, how much more it can do for your skin, how much more it can hydrate, how much more it’s going to help create collagen.
Again, we’ve talked about this in other podcasts. At around age 25, your collagen production decreases by about 1 percent per year. So, I’m 41 years old. That means I’m only making 84 percent of what I used to make, and in another 10 years, it will be that much less. And so, it’s important to understand how all of these things work together.
Putting that vitamin C on, having additional vitamin C, can help me create more collagen, which clearly, it’s going to have me look younger. The other thing to understand is vitamin C isn’t all anti-aging, right? There’s things out there that can really help with wrinkles and help with anti-aging, but vitamin C serums really help heal your skin as well. They really help from skin damage in the past, from other things. It’s providing the nutrients, the hydration, and all this stuff to help heal your skin, which naturally has you look younger.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. I mean that’s one of the biggest things when it comes to, and I’m just going to say it, the vitamin C serum that we currently sell. It’s a restorative product. It not only gives you all of these benefits that we’ve talked about today, but it also restores, and it helps with discoloration, and it helps with rashes or scarring, and things that have maybe impacted your skin in a negative way as you’ve aged.
And so, vitamin C, and in particular, our product and the ingredients that are in it, is really restorative for your skin, and especially when you look at the cell structure of your skin, there’s a lot of benefits there with vitamin C with really helping in the cell turnover, in regenerating and improving the cell structure of your skin. So, there’s some really important restoration aspects and benefits there when it comes to vitamin C.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Absolutely. And I think that a lot of things get lost in the hype of anti-aging and everything’s anti-aging. And let’s really understand, right, I mean what that is. What—we’re healing the skin. We’re healing the body. We’re giving it what it’s lacking so that it can heal itself. Naturally doing that will have you look younger, it will have you feel younger, if we’re talking about actually taking collagen supplements and things like that. So, I think it’s a no-brainer to use some sort of vitamin C serum.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely.
Jonathan Hunsaker: We highly recommend that you use a clean vitamin C serum. Buy it from a company that really focuses on organic, understands the benefits of not having preservatives and using clean products – clean not just for the environment, but clean for ourselves and our bodies, and not adding more toxins to our regimen every day.
Is there anything else that you want to say on vitamin C serum that we may have not covered?
TeriAnn Trevenen: You know? I just can’t say enough that one of the things you should be looking at is testing. So, we’ve talked about this on the podcast before, but not every ingredient out there can be USDA-certified organic, but that doesn’t mean that it is not a naturally-occurring ingredient, just that Mother Nature produces and that we can obtain.
So, when it comes to things that can’t be certified organic, where the testing and the cleanliness and the quality has already been proven for you, make sure that you’re looking at a company that gets their products tested.
Our products are tested for GMOs. So, we have them tested to make sure that we have no GMOs in there, there’s no GMO markers, that they’re really clean, there’s no herbicides or pesticides in them. And people should be getting these tests done on their products, especially where you can’t have a product that’s USDA-certified organic because of the nature of how that product comes to be and is manufactured and created.
[0:20:10] You can get testing done to make sure that something like collagens, which can’t be USDA-certified organic, the topical version of vitamin C can’t be USDA-certified organic, and if you have a high amount of it in your product, you certainly can’t be USDA-certified organic, but that does not mean that the product is not clean and it’s not good for you.
So, make sure that your company’s doing testing, that they’re providing results. If they’re not willing to provide results to you, you have to ask yourself, “What are you hiding?”
Also, the last thing I’ll say on it is we’ve done other podcasts in the past talking about ingredients in your products. Especially in the skincare industry, there is hardly any regulation in the United States. There are only 12 banned ingredients in the United States for cosmetic and skincare products. Outside of the United States, there are thousands that are banned.
And so, when it comes to your products, just like food, be able to read your label and understand what the ingredients are. One of the biggest things as I’ve been educated and started looking at products more and more, is perfumes. And there’s a lot of things in your products, a lot, but perfumes.
And they actually will put really scientific names on your labels, where you’re like “Oh, this is a clean, organic ingredient.” Then, you’ll go Google search it, and it is not a natural version of a perfume, it is actually a perfume that is toxic for you, but they put it under this is an oil, or this is a natural ingredient, and it’s actually not.
So, I would just say being able to obtain certification for your products, that they’re testing them and they’re clean, and also, really understanding what’s on your label and how each ingredient impacts you.
Jonathan Hunsaker: And I know you’ve talked about this before. You can go to EWG website and you can actually plug in the different ingredients and you can see that they rated a 1, which is extremely clean, to 3, all the way up to how toxic it can be. And so, that’s another resource that you can use.
I love that you talked about getting things tested, because the supplement space, and the skincare space, people can say whatever they want, and they can say “Oh, but I’ve got this,” from whatever supplier. But prove it, right? Prove that it’s as clean as you say. It’s one thing that we do that—because I want to instill confidence in people, right?
Like hey, I don’t want you—don’t just believe me. Here’s 3rd-party tested. It has no glyphosate, right? It has no genetically-modified organisms. The heavy metals are as low as they could possibly be, right? They’re lower than the heavy metals in the air that you would breathe in any city, right? Like they’re—it’s as clean as it can be, and I’ll prove it, I won’t just say it.
So, again, I don’t want this to make—to be a big plug about us. I just want to educate people on understanding how to shop for good, clean products, because I don’t want to be the only supplier of a great vitamin C serum. I want there to be 50 others. Because if there are, that means that organic matters and that means that it matters more to the people, and competition is great. It’ll drive costs down for all of you, right? We’ll have a lot more farmers and other people creating organic products.
So, this isn’t a plug just to buy our stuff, which I don’t mind if you do, but it’s really my plug to buy clean products, because that’s what’s really going to change the industry and that’s what’s really going to change everybody’s health as a whole.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Absolutely. 100 percent.
Jonathan Hunsaker: Cool. Thank you, everybody, for tuning in. Listen, if you liked this podcast, please go to iTunes and subscribe. We do not send emails out about our podcasts every single week, although we do broadcast every single week, and if you don’t want to miss a single episode, go to iTunes, subscribe. You won’t miss a single episode. They’re all 100 percent free.
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What else? Anything that we’ve talked about, that we referenced here, you can go to EmpoweringYouOrganically.com to listen to this as many times as you want. You can watch us on video if you like. The transcripts, the show notes, anything else that we’ve talked about will be at Empowering You Organically.
Thank you, everyone, for tuning in. TeriAnn, thank you for all of your wisdom. And we will see you guys on the next episode.
TeriAnn Trevenen: Thanks, everyone.
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