One of the most studied skincare ingredients for treating pigmentation, niacinamide is a popular antioxidant, especially within the Asian beauty industry.
Niacinamide also known as vitamin B3 and nicotinic acid. Vitamin B3 is a potent cell-communicating ingredient that offers multiple benefits for aging skin. Niacinamide is a very effective skin-restoring ingredient. Among these benefits is the ability to visibly improve the appearance of enlarged pores, uneven skin tone, fine lines, dullness, texture, help erase discolorations (dark pigmentation), can improve skin’s elasticity to a weakened skin surface, dramatically enhance its barrier function, and has been shown to reduce acne. Your digestive system, nervous system, and brain function are all dependent on Niacin (Vitamin B3). Topical niacinamide is also being used to treat skin conditions such as rosacea and psoriasis.
Let’s break it down a bit more.
Improves performance of epidermal barrier
Niacinamide increases the production of ceramides (an essential component of your lipid barrier), keeping the skin strong and preventing Trans Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL). Your lipid barrier helps retain moisture, keeps it hydrated for longer and will protect your skin from the harshness of the environment.
Lipids are essential components of skin and play a crucial role in the skin’s barrier function. Niacinamide boosts the skin’s lipid barrier by encouraging ceramide and collagen production.
Regulate oil flow on skin
If your lip barrier is functioning correctly it can retain its natural moisture, the natural oil flow of the skin becomes controlled. Niacinamide as an essential factor necessary for lipid barrier to function properly to control excessive oil flow.
Boost Skin immunity
There are cells in your skin known as Langerhans cells. Niacinamide works by interrupting Langerhans cell production. They are responsible for the protection and repair mechanisms of your skin. When you expose your skin to the sun and get a sunburn, they temporarily retreat leaving the skin without its natural immunity against invading microbes or the safeguards against the activity of precancerous lesions.
Protects skin from infrared light
Along with the damaging effects of UV exposure, Niacinamide protects the skin from the infrared heat of the sun. Infrared activates free radicals and stimulates an overproduction of pigmented cells. If your pigmentation is caused by hormones, heat exposure to skin can become a big problem. Niacinamide protects the skin from heat.
The transfer of pigment (melanosomes) from your melanocytes to the surrounding skin of your epidermis is known as a tan. Over time and with too much-unprotected instances in the sun, this activity becomes dysfunctional, and the skin ends up with uneven, blotchy pigmentation rather than a golden tan.
Niacinamide will assist in the reduction of uneven pigmentation by slowing down the transfer of melanin to your skin’s epidermis. A must-have ingredient to anyone who is exposed to the sun on a daily basis and for those who enjoy sunbathing or getting tanned.
Dull and sallow skin
While many antioxidants prevent damage caused by oxidative stress and Advanced Glycation End-Products (AGE’s). Niacinamide helps to reverse the visible signs brought about by the onslaught.
Advanced Glycation End-Products (AGE’s) is a process that happens when the glucose in your blood sticks to the skin protein. This is a normal function, however, your body can get overloaded if the proteins in your body have become sugar-coated. This process begins to break down collagen.
Your body needs sugar (glucose) to function and so do every cell. It needs the energy to burn and sugar is what it uses. However, when the body has ample supply and doesn’t require any extra sugar, everything you eat eventually metabolisis into sugar, which in turn becomes fat. In the case of skin and skin cells, AGE’s can develop and cause premature aging. A healthy diet that contains natural sugar can help prevent excessive glucose.
The constant exposure to free radicals and glycation can start to make the skin appear dull and sallow. Niacinamide as an antioxidant reduces the negative impact of oxidative stress and improves the skin’s ability to fight back.
Minimize wrinkles and lines
Niacinamide boosts collagen production and improves the skin’s lipid barrier comes an increase in cell differentiation which contributes to better synthesis and formation of collagen and elastin. Cell differentiation is the process by which cells become specialized in order to perform different functions. This occurs through a process called gene expression. Gene expression is the specific combination of genes that are turned on or off (expressed or repressed), and this is what dictates how a cell functions. Niacinamide plays an important role in DNA replication and repair, as well as cell differentiation.
For healthy glowing skin, Niacinamide is an ingredient that is important in skincare. Niacinamide is contained in the following Acti-Labs products:
35+ Radiance Cream
Face Food Moisturizer
The effect of 2% niacinamide on facial sebum production.
Reduction in the appearance of facial hyperpigmentation by topical N-undecyl-10-enoyl-L-phenylalanine and its combination with niacinamide.
The effect of niacinamide on reducing cutaneous pigmentation and suppression of melanosome transfer.
Topical Nicotinamide Improves Tissue Regeneration in Excisional Full-Thickness Skin Wounds: A Stereological and Pathological Study.
How Much Do We Really Know About Our Favorite Cosmeceutical Ingredients?
Niacinamide: A B vitamin that improves aging facial skin appearance.
Skin anti-aging strategies