Is Niacinamide The Only Serum You Need?

Niacinamide may not be as well-known as retinol and vitamin C, but it is a skincare powerhouse that deserves equal attention. It is the epitome of a multitasker, providing a slew of distinct benefits that make it an excellent choice for a variety of skin types and complexion issues. However, incorporating it into your current skincare routine may appear challenging. Is it safe to combine niacinamide with vitamin C and/or retinol? Is hyaluronic acid a viable option? We weigh in on everything you need to know about niacinamide usage.

What exactly is niacinamide?

Simply put, it's a B vitamin, one of two forms of vitamin B3, and it plays a role in a variety of critical cellular processes in the skin.

What are the skin benefits of it?

Buckle your seatbelts, because this will be a lengthy list. Niacinamide is an excellent acne-fighting agent. Niacinamide inhibits sebum production, which can aid in the prevention of acne and shine. The vitamin is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties, which help treat acne and other skin conditions like eczema.

Niacinamide aids in the formation of the skin barrier, which is beneficial to those with eczema or sensitive skin. It also works well as a skin lightening agent, treating hyperpigmentation by preventing pigment transfer from pigment-producing cells known as melanocytes to skin cells on the surface where discoloration is visible.

Furthermore, there is evidence that niacinamide can help to reduce wrinkling and photoaging by maintaining cell function and repairing DNA damage. To summarise, niacinamide has few drawbacks.

Is it safe to combine niacinamide and retinol?

Yes! In fact, retinol and niacinamide are often used together to achieve faster results. The soothing properties of niacinamide can also help to alleviate the unpleasant side effects and irritation that are commonly associated with retinol's wrinkle-fighting effectiveness.

Is it okay to mix it with other ingredients?

As a general rule, yes, which is why it can be found in many skincare products and is simple to incorporate into your current routine. Because of its acne-fighting properties, niacinamide is frequently combined with salicylic acid, a beta-hydroxy acid commonly found in acne products. Combining the oil-removal properties of niacinimadie with the ability of salicylic acid to break down excess oil is an effective way to keep pores clear and breakouts at bay.

Because of its anti-inflammatory and skin barrier-strengthening properties, niacinamide is an excellent choice for combining with alpha-hydroxy acids, which are chemical exfoliants that can cause skin irritation. Because the AHAs exfoliate the dead skin cells that would otherwise prevent the niacinamide from entering, combining them increases the niacinamide's efficacy. Finally, because niacinamide and hyaluronic acid both aid in the treatment of dry skin, they are frequently combined.

What is the one point on which the jury is still out? The vitamin C. Because vitamin C has the potential to inactivate niacinamide, the applications should be separated by 15 minutes. In reality, the two would have to be heated in order to interact negatively, and an increasing number of cosmetics companies are combining the two in skin-brightening formulations. The bottom line is that if you use a product that contains both vitamin C and niacinamide, it was probably designed to work together. If you use two different products that contain these chemicals, wait 15 minutes between applications or use one in the morning and one in the evening.

Is niacinamide something I should use?

In a nutshell, yes. One of the best things about niacinamide is not only the long list of benefits it provides, but also how well it is tolerated, especially by people with sensitive skin. This makes it an appealing option for those whose skin is sensitive to more commonly used acne or skin lightening agents such as benzoyl peroxide or retinoids.