Can Medik8’s New Vitamin C Serum Convert Non-Believers?

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For so long, vitamin C has been the most commonly used antioxidant for brightening, evening skin tone, and improving skin texture. As the celebrity of the skin care alphabet—vitamin A, otherwise known as retinol, is another—vitamin C serums show up in just about every skin care brand’s lineup, its letters typically plastered all over bright orange packaging to indicate its morning-only use. However, if you pay close attention to the top vitamin C serums, their reign is more of a group project than a sole effort, thanks to another equally effective skin care letter employed to boost C’s performance: F for ferulic acid. As the Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen antioxidant duo, vitamin C and ferulic work harmoniously to proffer results you wouldn’t likely get using either alone. New (skin care) celebs pop up daily, and Medik8’s newest vitamin C serum has all spotlights on it.

As someone with an intense aversion to vitamin C, I’m not easily impressed by most formulas. I’ve spent years idly applying vitamin C serums to my face to correct my dark marks (recovering picker here!) and boost my skin’s radiance (soon-to-be recovering insomniac!). After cleaning out three different serums from three separate brands, my discoveries were as disappointing as the faux-citrus smell emanating from most of the bottles. Dark spots? Still visible, still dark. Radiance? Subtle, but nothing quite extraordinary. Was it me? Was I not consistent enough? Was the potency strong enough to deliver the results I yearned for? Truthfully, finding a suitable vitamin C serum for your skin is as tedious a process as finding a Hinge date worth your time. Like the dating app, I gave up on my search for vitamin C and moved on to focus solely on using retinol at night. Then, Medik8’s Super C Ferulic landed on my radar, and my intrigue soared—I’m not ready to give up the search yet.

But what is vitamin C, anyway? “Vitamin C benefits all skin types and tones. It should be a core ingredient in anyone’s morning skincare routine as it boasts many benefits. First and foremost, it is a powerful antioxidant – one of the very best in skincare. It can help neutralize damaging free radicals derived from the sun and the environment, stopping them from attacking skin cells and causing premature aging. Vitamin C can also help inhibit the melanin production pathway, ideal for targeting hyperpigmentation and dark spots,” says cosmetic chemist, chief product officer, and Medik8 founding partner, Daniel Isaacs.

Super C Ferulic, which retails for $74.00 pares down the gimmicks—no bright orange packaging or sunny fonts—and arrives in a dark brown bottle with clean copy that makes it easy for your eyes to fixate on one word: potent. In skin care, the word is a marker of how effective a formula can be; for the uninitiated, it evokes images of irritation or damage. For me, it’s an invitation to a challenge: how well can one serum correct the parts of my skin I’m most insecure about? According to Isaacs, Super C Ferulic’s potency derives from the 30 percent ethylated L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) but uses ferulic and vitamin E nourishment to add balance.

Medik8 Super C Ferulic Serum 30% Ethylated L-Ascorbic Acid

Super C Ferulic Serum 30% Ethylated L-Ascorbic Acid

Medik8 Super C Ferulic Serum 30% Ethylated L-Ascorbic Acid

“Super C Ferulic is our most powerful, clinically tested vitamin C solution yet. It contains 30 percent ethylated L-ascorbic acid—a super potent dose of a highly stable form of vitamin C. This means that, unlike many vitamin C serums, Super C Ferulic remains powerful and effective without compromise right until the very last drop. This formula is clinically proven to visibly improve the four main signs of advanced sun aging: evenness of skin tone, firmness and elasticity, fine lines and wrinkles, and age spots. Plus, it’s supercharged with a triple antioxidant formula for more even-toned, smoother skin in just seven days,” he explains.

Given the serum’s high potency, I kept my morning routine simple by using the Sulwhasoo Gentle Cleansing Foam. I followed the instructions on the Super C Ferulic bottle and used four droplets to cover my entire face. Week one was a doozy; I had a cluster of breakouts forming during that time of the month and was growing impatient that nothing was working, not even my brand-spanking new serum. Then, by the start of week two, I was delighted to feel how flat and smooth my face was, with barely any breakouts in sight. Super C Ferulic didn’t drastically fade my dark marks, but areas of concern were seemingly (and gradually) losing pigment. The evidence of sleepless nights that had my skin looking lifeless and dull last week faded, and what stood before me was a face that appeared brighter and more youthful. Issacs says that’s the synergy of vitamin C, vitamin E, and ferulic acid—and the addition of turmeric root extract. “We also added turmeric root extract, which has been proven to target the underlying cause of age spots, for boosted luminosity and more even-toned skin,” he adds. Even with all that goodness packed into the compact bottle, my skin never felt uncomfortable or irritated with daily use, and the formula absorbed so quickly that it didn’t pill or interfere with any subsequent products in my routine.

I’ve learned that the race to maintain even, youthful skin is merely a marathon, not a sprint; the baton passed at every stage is the Medik8 Super C Ferulic serum, a potent cocktail of antioxidants that excel at prevention—from encouraging collagen production to reducing fine line and wrinkles, and building a defense against sun damage. I’m ready to lay all my skin care burdens down at the feet of Super C Ferulic.

Headshot of Nerisha Penrose

Nerisha is the beauty commerce editor at ELLE.com, covering all things beauty (and fashion and music). She has a penchant for sneakers and nude lip glosses, and spends way too much time re-watching 90s sitcoms.

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