Skin Care

Fast Facts about Your Favourite Skincare Ingredients

What’s in your skincare? You’ve likely noticed that there are certain ingredients that are praised for their brightening, anti-ageing or hydrating benefits. But do you know what they actually do for your skin?

April 19, 2024


Let’s take a look at the big hitters of skincare:

Vitamin C & Vitamin E
Hyaluronic Acid

Vitamin C

Vitamin C has a wide range of benefits for your skin - brightening, evens skin tone, boosting collagen production, and protecting against environmental stressors (like pollution or sun damage). It’s also hydrating and texture-improving, diminishing fine lines and wrinkles. 

While Vitamin C may be the key to glowy skin, a word of caution: it can be irritating when mixed with other acids.

Top tips: Avoid if you have sensitive or oily skin. Keep in an air-tight bottle to avoid oxidisation. 

Find it in: serums, or in moisturisers at lower concentrations.
Eg. TruSkin Naturals Vitamin C Serum

Vitamin E

Elle calls Vitamin E “the unsung hero of skincare”. It provides two main benefits for topical applications. As an antioxidant, combating free-radical damage and providing hydration because it works as an humectant and emollient by absorbing and trapping water into the skin.

Top tips: Use on scars, stretch marks and dehydrated skin. 

Find it in: serums, moisturisers & body creams
Eg. Fenty Beauty Butta Drop Whipped Oil Body Cream

Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid has a whole range of skincare benefits, thanks to its plumping and hydrating qualities. It’s used predominantly in serums, moisturiser and body creams. Hydration is hyaluronic’s big gun - it binds to water, allowing the skin to remain moist and plump where it may otherwise become dull and flakey. 

Harvard Health reports hyaluronic acid “is capable of binding over 1000 times its weight in water”, which is what makes it such a wiz at the hydration game. 

Top tips: Excellent for hydration, and suitable for sensitive skin.

Find it in: serums, moisturisers & body creams
Eg. Alpha-H Hyaluronic 8 Serum


Niacinamide is one of the gentle giants of skincare. It’s suitable for all skin types - including sensitives - and has a range of benefits. Minimises the appearance of enlarged pores and visibly evens out skin tone, it’s a favourite included in many serums. 

Top tips: Great for all skin types. Use to reduce redness, irritation or acne.

Find it in: toners, serums and creams.


Ahh, retinol. This Vitamin-A derivative is well-known for its anti-ageing benefits! It reduces fine lines and wrinkles for younger-looking skin. Marie Claire raves about retinol’s “smoothing, brightening, firming, and zit-killing benefits”, and these are the result of its cell-regenerative nature. Retinol speeds up cell turnover, reduces inflammation and exfoliates to even skin tone.

Top tips: Best for mature skin. Consult a dermatologist before starting a retinol treatment. Can take up to 12 weeks for results.

Find it in: night creams and serums.
Eg. Paula's Choice Intensive Wrinkle-Repair Retinol Serum

So there you have it! You’re now well-versed in some of the top ingredients of today’s skincare. You can find the best fit for your skin by establishing your skin concerns and treating them accordingly.