If you’re anything like us — and we imagine that it’s safe to say you are — you’ve got your daily vitamin game on lock. Supplements are a major part of natural wellness and whether you’re upping your iron or taking your turmeric (or both!), you understand that fortifying your body with the nutrients it needs is so important. And of course it’s not only for your internal health but your external skincare regimen too
Vitamin C helps brighten, pomegranate oil has incredible anti-aging properties and the Vitamin E content in black raspberry seed oil makes for a killer natural sunscreen- but you already knew all that. But maybe you weren’t aware of Vitamin B3 and its incredible skincare properties?
Vitamin B3, or Niacin, as it can interchangeably be called, is a water-soluble nutrient that is part of the B vitamin family. Niacin is one of the main nutrients that helps your body metabolize cholesterol and fats, making it an integral part of your overall health in so many ways.
Lowers Cholesterol. It’s been proven that taking a regular Niacin supplement can help decrease bad cholesterol levels by as much as 25% in some people. Foods like mushrooms, fish, nuts, green veggies and beans all contain Niacin but supplementing with Vitamin B3 can definitely help flush fat out of your blood vessels.
Eases Arthritis Pain. Niacin naturally dilates blood vessels so that more oxygen and nutrients can reach further through the vessels. Those suffering from arthritis find relief in their joints as the blood vessels surrounding them expand and reduce inflammation.
Reverses Heart Disease. Very Low Density Lipoproteins are bad blood fat cells that have been linked to heart disease. Similarly, Niacin also improves blood sugar irregularities that can ultimately damage your arterial walls.
Prevents Cancer. This is a big claim and one that researchers are still trying to definitively prove, but studies have shown that having enough Niacin in your body is crucial to maintaining your DNA health. Not having enough B3 in your body can cause genetic damage which puts you at a higher risk for cancer-causing cells to form. Taking B3 supplements can ensure that your Niacin levels stay at a consistently healthy level, thus reducing the risk of cancer.
Lowers Sun Sensitivity. Niacin deficiency is a known culprit in extreme sunlight sensitivity. If you don’t have enough B3 in your body, spending any amount of time in the sun can cause blistering, sunburn and rash.
Helps Prevent Skin Cancer . Langerhans cells are immunity-boosting cells that live at the surface of the skin and help repair damaged cells. When exposed to the sun, these cells retreat, leaving your skin susceptible to precancerous cell growth. Vitamin B3 keeps these cells in check and at the surface of your skin where they belong.
Combats Acne. You can use Vitamin B3 for acne as a topical cream or serum or as a supplement. Because Niacin dilates blood vessels, B3 brings more oxygen and nutrients to the surface of your skin. This, in turn, helps flush toxins out of your system and reduces inflammation which helps keep acne-causing bacteria at bay.
Additionally, B3 helps maintain a healthy lipid barrier, which means that your skin retains its natural moisture more easily. If you’re prone to acne with overactive sebaceous glands, a topical B3 cream or serum will help control your skin’s natural oil production and help fight acne.
Gets You Glowy. Even if you don’t have acne and are just looking to get that extra glow in the skincare game, Niacin can help you look generally well-rested, healthy and hydrated.
Fights Wrinkles. B3 encourages collegen production in the surface of your skin. The result is a higher turnover of cell production which keeps skin looking younger, longer!
If you decide to take a Vitamin B3 tablet in its recommended dose, be aware that a mild — and totally harmless! — side effect of Niacin is a warmth, redness or tingling sensation under the skin. It usually subsides within one or two hours and is much less potent if you use time-release tablets.
With that said, taking too much Niacin in the form of a supplement can cause serious health problems like liver toxicity, so be sure to take only the recommended dose if you choose to take a Niacin supplement.
There is also a number of Vitamin B3 for skin topical serums, creams and masks on the market that’ll give you all those awesome Niacin benefits we just listed above. The B3 effective ingredient in most of these products is called Niacinamide and is usually present at between 5 and 10%. We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite Niacinamide products here for your convenience.
Vitamin B3 Serum Round Up
- Paula’s Choice Resist 10% Niacinamide Booster
- Skin Daily Niacinamide 5% Serum
- Insta Natural Niacinamide Serum
- Gia Naturals Niacinamide 5% Serum
- Elrique Naturals Niacinamide 5% Serum
- When Snow Magic Sheet Mask
Vitamin B3 Face Cream Round Up
- First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydra-Firm Sleeping Cream
- Elta MD AM Therapy Facial Moisturizer
- Insta Natural Night Cream
- Topix Replenix Enriched Nighttime Bio-Therapy Cream
- Peter Thomas Roth Laser-Free Regenerator Moisturizing Gel-Cream
Like we mentioned previously, if you’re a natural wellness enthusiast, you’ve probably got quite the collection of products for any number of health and beauty concern that you rotate through on a daily basis. We particularly love Vitamin B3 because it provides so many wide-ranging benefits at once.
If you’d like to really multi-task and use the same product for both your internal and external health, we suggest buying a jar of B3 pills and simply adding a crushed up pill to your favorite moisturizer for an immediate Niacinamide cream!