What is Niacinamide
Niacinamide can be considered as a one-stop solution for every skin-care need. It functions as an anti-inflammatory agent on conditions like acne and rosacea, increases the protein synthesis of skin, improves the surface structure of mature skin and increases the ability of the epidermis to retain moisture. Using it topically on the scalp could increase the blood circulation and assist protein synthesis helping with hair growth, feel and quality. Taken internally, it has shown benefits for conditions like osteoarthritis, Alzheimer’s and depression along with promoting sleep.
What are the benefits of Niacinamide:
GOOD FOR ACNE
Inflammation is a major cause behind acne and redness of the skin. Several pieces of research have shown niacinamide to be substantially anti-inflammatory which helps in calming acne-prone skin. Moreover, with oily skin prone to acne, presence of optimum hydration is tricky; something that niacinamide is shown to help with by strengthening the top layer of skin and locking the moisture. Niacinamide might be the best skin active to be used for active acne and blemishes.
BOON FOR ACNE SPOTS & REDUCTION OF REDNESS
Reduction of acne will result in lessening of acne-spots. Increased hydration and stimulated protein synthesis with encouraging the scars to heal resulting in clearer skin. It is the active to turn to if you have active acne and blemishes.
BALANCES OILY SKIN
Niacinamide regulates sebum production helping with its management moreover; being an amazing humectant it can also provide the much needed hydration to the skin.
AMAZING FOR MATURE SKIN & ANTI AGING PROPERTIES
With time, skin starts to lose its ability to retain hydration, fight radical damage and produce sufficient lipids, proteins and ceramide resulting in weakened integrity. Niacinamide stimulates ceramide and protein production by the skin and prevents trans-epidermal water loss helping it retain its integrity. It also acts as an antioxidant combating radical damage and reduces age spots.
HAS SKIN LIGHTENING, SKIN WHITENING PROPERTIES & GOOD FOR DARK SPOTS
Several pieces of research have shown up to 30% reduction in pigmentation and also benefits on sun-damaged skin. Stimulated collagen production acts to increase skin health resulting in brighter skin tone.
How to use Niacinamide serum / powder
Niacinamide is water-soluble and can be incorporated in the skincare regime as an ingredient of serum, toner, moisturizer, face-pack or sheet masks. According to some sources, there must be a gap of half an hour between the use of any product containing Vitamin C and Niacinamide.
You can add a pinch of powder to your usual moisturiser, any hydrating face-pack or toner you are using or whip up something of your own.
Below are some basic recipes and some additives that can help you. If you are into DIY I would strongly suggest getting a tiny scale and some Ph Strips.
USING WITH YOUR USUAL MOISTURISER/TONER
Add about ¼ tsp of niacinamide powder to 100gm of your hydrating moisturizer/toner/face pack, mix well and leave for about 24 hours. This gives you approximately 2% concentration which is good enough for daily use you can increase or decrease it as per your requirement. I wouldn't suggest going beyond 5%. Always do a patch test before trying any new ingredient on high concentrations. You can also try to add a tiny amount in one portion of moisturiser and mix. Use common sense here.
Be careful while handling your cosmetics. Use sterile instruments and don't disturb the packaging too much. The products are delicately preserved, changing their packaging or exposing products to the open environment might not turn out well.
HOW TO MAKE A NIACINAMIDE SERUM (TO ADD TO PREMADE COSMETICS)
- 1.5 tbsp Niacinamide powder (approx 30 g)
- 65 ml distilled water (65 gm)
- 1tsp Glycerine
- ¼ tsp Preservative*
Heat water and dissolve sodium benzoate (if using) & wait till it cools.
Add the niacinamide to the distilled water leave for about 24 hours or until niacinamide is dissolved. Mix the Niacinamide with sodium benzoate.
Add other ingredients (Not compulsory)
This gives you approximately 30% niacinamide solution which would be easier to use with your cosmetics. Simply add a few drops to your moisturiser or toner while using it. Don't use this directly on the skin.
*It should stay good in the fridge for a week without the preservative. I strongly suggest using a preservative, otherwise, make a very small batch at a time.
- Niacinamide 1.5 tsp (10 gm)
- Distilled water 85 ml (85 gm)
- 1 tsp glycerine
- ¼ tsp Preservative
- Other extracts, if available
- 0.5 gm Xanthan gum or another thickener, if desired.
You can also replace Distilled water with part rose water or other hydrosols. Part of glycerine can be replaced with Sodium lactate.
As before heat water and dissolve thickener (if using). If your preservative can tolerate heat, add it here otherwise add it with everything else. Let it cool. Add everything else and leave for about 24 hours or until niacinamide is dissolved.
Use it with a cotton pad or as a spray, after washing your face but before moisturizer. If you have used a thickener, you can also just take a few drops and massage it on your skin.
It should stay good in the fridge for a week without the preservative. With sodium Benzoate, it should be well for up to a month. I strongly suggest using a preservative; otherwise, make a very small batch at a time.
Always do a patch test before using.
Do not use more than the recommended amount.
Do not use topically at the same time with Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C).
FREQUNTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ON NIACINAMIDE SERUM (FAQs)
What does Niacinamide do to your skin?
Niacinamide increases hydration, strengthen the skin barrier, stimulates collagen, lipids and protein synthesis and calm the skin.
Does Niacinamide lighten skin?
Yes, it helps with pigmentation and tanning. It would also help achieve a lighter skin tone.
What are the side effects of Niacinamide?
Niacinamide might cause mild burning, itching, or redness, though the chances are very less. It might also worsen allergy.
How long does Niacinamide take to work?
Every skin is unique and its relationship to skincare is one of a kind. Generally some effects would be seen immediately and most of the studies showed results in 8 to 12 weeks.
Does Niacinamide fade dark spots?
Yes, it does.
Should you use Niacinamide in the morning or at night?
It is not affected by the sunlight, therefore can be used in the morning or night.
Is Niacinamide good for acne and acne scars?
Yes, it reduces inflammation and calms acne. It increases protein synthesis to make scars heal faster.
Can you use Niacinamide with vitamin C?
You should not layer niacinamide topically with ascorbic acid; It might result in redness and irritation. However it can be layered with complex Vitamin C. If you want to include both in your regime, use one in the morning and one at night. You can also use them at alternate days.
Can Niacinamide be used with salicylic acid?
Topically, salicylic acid should not be used together with niacinamide. However including both in your regime would work like magic especially for acneic and oily skin. You can skip niacinamide on nights you use salicylic acid and continue as usual.
Is Niacinamide good with zinc?
Yes, niacinamide and zinc are a match made in heaven, especially for oily acne prone skin.
Can I use Niacinamide with aloe vera gel?
Yes, you can.