Niacinamide, A hidden gem?
Every so often when looking through the ingredient list of our products we spot something that piques our interest, niacinamide is one such ingredient.
One of the two variations of B-3 vitamins, alongside niacin, Niacinamide is often overlooked mainly as it's overshadowed by a lot of the other components in your day to day products even though it provides great results. This isn’t helped by how little research is actually done on it and with contenders such as Vitamin C and Hydroquinone it’s no wonder, but, despite this, Niacinamide is still something I feel should be discussed.
Usually you would find Vitamin b-3 in foods like eggs, cereal, beans and fish so it's not uncommon. But obviously it won't be as good for your skin when eaten compared to using it topically. This is why companies like AlumierMD have started using Niacinamide in their serums as they've taken notice of its effects on the skin when combined with other ingredients.
If you’re someone who took any sort of biology course in college you may have heard these names, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+/NADH) and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADP+), but for those who haven't, basically they are vital to chemical reactions that occur within cells, especially skin cells, such as propagating, repairing and functioning properly. Many of these just can’t happen at all without NAD+ so having the precursor, Nicotinamide, means you can produce more NAD+ which in turn can absorb and neutralise free radicals.
This is only one of the many skin conditions it can help with though such as how It has been shown that Niacinamide actually can create a lipid barrier on your skin which allows you to retain more moisture. It also can help build keratin which is a vitamin that assists in keeping your skin firm and healthy. Not only that but when taken orally rather than used topically, it has been shown to be effective at clearing up acne and other forms of hyperpigmentation but just not to the same degree as Vitamin C. Although that doesn't mean vitamin C is better, as Niacinamide has been shown to be much gentler on the skin making it a good alternative for those who can't tolerate the stronger variants or have sensitive skin.