I’ve been on a real rollercoaster of emotions when it comes to the pairing of vitamin C and niacinamide in skincare. When I wrote about niacinamide a year ago, general advice seemed to be that using vitamin C and niacinamide products together was potentially dangerous for your skin: the L-ascorbic acid could convert niacinamide to nicotinic acid, which can cause redness.
Then I was told about this niacinamide-containing mask by Klairs, which they were marketing as a mask to boost the efficacy of their vitamin C-containing serum. I figured no cosmetic company would promote the combination of products that would make your skin worse (surely) so I did a bit more research—and decided it was time to get my shit together and finally write my ‘What the hell is vitamin C?‘ post.
In this case, the explanation from Paula’s Choice lays it out clearly and simply: only pure vitamin C could convert niacinamide to nicotinic acid, and even then it needs high heat to complete the conversion, much higher than you’d find on your face or in the lifetime of your cosmetic products.
So let’s talk about the Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin E mask (with niacinamide), shall we?
Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin E Mask*, $18.90 USD
Hello affordable! This mask is usually $27 USD but it’s 30% off at the moment; either way that’s like, what you’d spend on a mask from the supermarket. Plus you can buy the C21.5 Vitamin C serum from Wishtrend while you’re there.
Can we talk for a second about how this isn’t really a mask, though? It’s not designed to be washed off, and it absorbs into the skin quickly and comfortably. So it’s a moisturiser for all intents and purposes.
The first few ingredients tell you all you need to know about how good this product is: Water, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Niacinamide, Sodium Hyaluronate.
Water and glycerin and butylene glycol are there for hydration purposes, and for product texture in the case of butylene glycol. You’ll see there are no silicones, which is handy if you like to avoid them, but also means you don’t get the pseudo-hydrated sensation that silicone-heavy moisturisers can give.
This combination of ingredients is designed to increase vitamin C’s ability to boost collagen production, break down existing pigmentation and prevent the formation of new blemishes.
On top of the excellent ingredients, the Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin E mask has the most fun texture. These jelly/pudding products are common in Korean skincare lines and have grown in popularity in the West, I assume because they’re so fun to play with.
You get a wee spatula in the box, so you don’t need to stick your fingers into the jar.
The spatula also makes for fun jelly-smushing. You only need a small-ish scoop of the mask per application, and the product settles itself back into a smooth-surfaced jelly between applications (I haven’t monitored it to see how long this takes because I have some semblance of a life to do other things in).
Once rubbed between your hands or applied to the face, the product converts to a normal moisturiser-y texture. I briefly wondered if it would try to re-form into a jelly on my skin, but I think it absorbs too fast for that.
The more I write about this mask/moisturiser/jelly goodness, the more excited I am about using it regularly on my skin. It feels comfortable and offers enough hydration to last on my skin overnight. I’ve also tried it under makeup and it feels great, with no interruption to how the makeup goes on.
As with many products, I’m a bit lazy at using them consistently enough to see results, but I’m confident that this will be a product that’s staying in my routine.
Have you tried any jelly products before? Do you combine different serums and masks for extra powerful results?