Niacinamide is a versatile ingredient that works well on any skin type and helps with a lot of skin concerns. This water-soluble vitamin, also known as nicotinamide, is the active form of niacin (vitamin B3 or nicotinic acid). Niacinamide is well-tolerated even by sensitive and rosacea-prone skin types and is compatible with any other skincare ingredients. In skincare formulations, it is known to be one of the most stable and non-irritating active ingredients.
You can practically find niacinamide in every Asian skincare product and there is a reason for that.
Nicotinamide is a vitamin that is not synthesised in the human body, so it needs to be provided by food, supplements, or applied topically on the skin. In skincare products, niacinamide can be used both, morning and evening and has a lot of skin health benefits.
The concentration of niacinamide in skincare starts from 2% to 5% and can go as high as
10%. Here are some of the most important properties of this powerful antioxidant in skincare formulations:
- Reduces redness – studies have shown that 5% niacinamide can significantly improve blotchy, red skin and is beneficial for people with eczema, rosacea, and other inflammatory conditions.
- Fades hyperpigmentation – with regular use, niacinamide can be helpful in brightening dark spots and even melasma.
- Fights environmental damage – niacinamide protects from free radicals and prevents oxidative stress, caused by environmental aggressors.
- Visibly minimises enlarged pores – prevents pores from getting clogged which can result in bumpy skin and stretched pores, while helping pores return to their usual size.
- Softens fines lines and wrinkles and improves skin texture – niacinamide increasescollagen production in the dermis and leaves the skin looking more plump and supple.
- Aids skin’s natural barrier function and boosts hydration – trying many different products at once can compromise your skin barrier and lead to irritation.
- Niacinamide reduces transepidermal water loss and increases the moisture content in the outermost layer of the skin. The result is a restored barrier function. Regulates oil production – decreases sebum production without being drying like other actives.
- Treats acne – it helps even in cases with severe types of acne and especially inflammatory forms like papules and pustules, as it improves skin texture over time and reduces lesions.
The success niacinamide shows in treating acne conditions is comparable to that of topical antibiotics but without carrying the risk of bacterial resistance. It is gentle, effective, and safe at the same time.
Types of Products with Niacinamide
Usually, niacinamide comes in the form of lightweight serums suitable for every skin type and concern but especially for oily and blemish-prone skin. Dry skin types can benefit from using an emollient cream with niacinamide.
Pairing Niacinamide With Other Skincare Ingredients
Niacinamide is compatible with any other skincare ingredients and pairing them together
provides even better results. It works well with hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, AHAs (alphahydroxy acids), BHAs (beta-hydroxy acids), peptides, and vitamin A (retinol).
Are There Potential Side Effects?
Niacinamide is one of the safest active skincare ingredients. It is safe to use even during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, it might cause redness or irritation if used in very high concentrations. In this case, you should probably try a lower percentage.
From its soothing and healing properties to reducing the signs of ageing and protecting the skin from environmental damage, niacinamide is truly one of the most exciting skincare ingredients. It is a real multi-tasking skin booster, backed by science and you can easily incorporate it into your daily routine without being afraid of adverse reactions