Vitamin C derivatives: ethyl ascorbic acid.


6/10/20222 min read

Our team looks at each cosmetic ingredient as a unique substance, the stability and effect on the skin of which is worth examining using analytical knowledge. Currently, we are preparing a comprehensive review of various vitamin C derivatives, but let's talk now about the well-known ethyl ascorbic acid, which is recognized in scientific publications as one of the most stable forms.

What is ethyl ascorbic acid?

Ethyl ascorbic acid (INCI name 3-O-ethyl ascorbic acid, 3OAA) is chemically stable and easily broken down by enzymes on the skin's surface, and has the same properties as vitamin C. In addition, ethyl ascorbic acid has a lipophilic and hydrophilic amphiphilic structure, which has made it popular with cosmetic chemistry specialists because 3OAA's amphiphilicity allows it to penetrate more easily through the stratum corneum into the dermis. Ethyl ascorbic acid is recognized as the most stable form of vitamin C, stable under sunlight, heat, and not oxidizing in the air. Thus, on the skin's surface, ethyl ascorbic acid is broken down into the active form of vitamin C and has the highest amount of vitamin C (even 86%) and the lowest molecular weight compared to other vitamin C derivatives such as ascorbic acid 2-glucoside, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, and sodium ascorbyl phosphate. Another advantage of this vitamin C derivative is that ethyl ascorbic acid is stable at a pH value between 4 and 6, which is biologically compatible with human skin pH.

What are the properties of ethyl ascorbic acid?

Vitamin C, which is released by ethyl ascorbic acid, can directly reduce the amount of melanin in the skin, thereby helping to combat hyperpigmented spots. Also, due to its antioxidant activity, this vitamin C derivative inhibits the activity of the enzyme catalase (which leads to a decrease in melanin production in the skin) and can participate in tyrosine metabolism in the human body, resulting in the inhibition of tyrosine conversion to melanin. For these reasons, cosmetic manufacturers use ethyl ascorbic acid in products that are designed to beautify the skin and effectively reduce skin hyperpigmentation.

However, this is not the only product category where you can find this active ingredient. Ethyl ascorbic acid is an effective antioxidant that neutralizes the effects of free radicals and helps repair damage caused by UVA and UVB exposure. Therefore, 3OAA can prevent skin cell damage and aging, and its ability to promote collagen synthesis in the skin makes it a suitable ingredient for products designed for mature skin care. One of the lesser-known properties of ethyl ascorbic acid is its anti-inflammatory effect. 3OAA is an effective active ingredient that acts against saccharification and carbonization, making it effective in treating inflammation on the surface of the skin.

Therefore, ethyl ascorbic acid is one of the most effective and stable forms of vitamin C, which can be applied in a wide range of products: serums, creams, lotions, cleansers, etc.

-- The LAB