Skinstitut Vitamin C 100% - review


As you may know, I've spent a good deal of time this year testing and reviewing products from Skinstitut. Reason being, it's a well-loved brand that uses active ingredients in its skincare and the products don't cost too much - so it's been a range that I've wanted to explore for a while.

Although I have liked some of the things I've tried from Skinstitut, this particular product does nothing for me and it's not one I would personally recommend. More on that below.

Skinstitut claims/product details:
  • Enjoy the full effects of vitamin c with our pure powder of 100% L-ascorbic acid concentration
  • Vitamin c is an incredibly beneficial skincare ingredient: it can help protect against free radical damage with its antioxidant properties, assist with collagen production and elastin for a more youthful complexion, and can also improve skin colour, radiance and tone for brighter-looking skin
  • Many vitamin c serums are either unstable due to the presence of water, or don’t contain the pure L-ascorbic acid form of vitamin c; Skinstitut’s powder formulation delivers a fresh and pure dose of vitamin c to the skin, every application
  • Should be mixed into other Skinstitut products (eg Retinol, Laser Aid, Even Blend Serum and Enzymatic Micro Peel) to enhance their results
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • To use: can be used up to twice daily; avoid overusing because it can cause redness and peeling; avoid the eye area; mix a small amount (a grain of rice) with your chosen serum between your fingertips, then massage into skin
  • RRP $45 AUD for 10g, but do shop around (I paid around $25 AUD for mine)

The product comes in a little sifter tub and the purple sticker (pictured above) notes that you're meant to keep the top sealed to avoid exposure to air.

It also says that if the product forms lumps, you should remove the plastic insert and crush them up with a fork before sealing it again. My product has formed lumps and I've had to crush them a couple of times now. Let's assume that's expected.


Let me kick-off this review by saying that I've come to believe I have a mild intolerance to vitamin c. I've used vitamin c products before and they tend to sting more than they should, so I can't use them for long periods of time or in high concentrations. While I have been able to use this one (so perhaps it would work for others who are sensitive to vitamin c), it hasn't done anything for me so it's not one I would recommend.

It's a white powder that's designed to be mixed in with other products. As suggested by Skinstitut, I was first mixing this with its Retinol Serum (reviewed here; it did nothing for me) and I'm now mixing it with the Even Blend Serum.

When I was mixing it with the Retinol Serum, I was using it at night - but I later discovered that it's best to use vitamin c during the day, so ever since then I've been adding it to the Even Blend Serum each morning.

Overall I've been using this powder for something like four or five months, and given my intolerance to vitamin c, for the first couple of weeks I used it every second day and then built up to daily applications. On reflection I probably didn't need to do that because the powder hasn't done much for me, but it's usually a good idea to bring in products like this slowly so that's worth keeping in mind.

Sometimes when I apply this, my skin stings a little. It's not awful but I'm aware of it and the stinging goes to the upper level of (and sometimes over) the discomfort line. While stinging/tingling normally indicates that a product is working, I honestly haven't noticed any benefits from using this powder. Indeed, all it seems to do is dry out my skin and make it feel more papery and sensitive, so while it's a good thing that I've been able to tolerate it better than I have other vitamin c products (some of which I haven't been able to use at all), it also hasn't done anything useful for me.

Also worth noting is that, over the last month, I've developed some white patches on my face. As in, hypo-pigmentation (which is the opposite of hyper-pigmentation). I have two potential culprits for this, and at first I thought it was definitely The Ordinary's Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2%, but after removing that from circulation and noticing no change in my skin (if anything, I may have an extra white patch or two), I'm starting to wonder if this product is responsible. 

While at first I didn't think it was the culprit because I've been using it for longer and hadn't noticed any issue until after introducing the lactic acid, now I'm not so sure. I've almost finished this Skinstitut product so I'll probably throw the last few applications into my body cream, just to be on the safe side - but I wanted to mention the issue anyway in case others have had a similar experience.

On the claims: no I don't think this has helped protect my skin (if anything, it's made it less tolerant overall); no I don't feel that the product has given me a more youthful complexion; no it hasn't improved skin colour, radiance or tone; and no my skin doesn't look brighter after using this. If anything, it looks a little more dull, worn and ashy.

Overall I don't like this product and I can't recommend it. Mind you, it's had a lot of positive reviews and I know that vitamin c works wonders for many, so perhaps we can just say that vitamin c doesn't agree with me and it's an ingredient that I should avoid from now on.

Do let me know in the comments if you've tried this and what you think of it if so. Also let me know if you've heard of vitamin c being potentially responsible for causing hypo-pigmentation (ie, white patches) on the skin. Now that I've removed both this product and the lactic acid from circulation, I'll certainly be heading to the dermatologist if the issue doesn't sort itself out.

Not for me.

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