How do I know if my vitamin c serum has oxidized?

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oxidized form of vitamin c serum

However, vitamin c serum becomes oxidized when the original color starts changing, and then it eventually becomes less effective.   

The easiest way to know if your vitamin C serum has become oxidized is by taking note of the color. Most 

Serum containing vitamin C serum is clear yellow which begins to change to a brown or dark orange color after 3months of opening the bottle. Then it’s high time you stop applying that particular vitamin c serum.

Can I still use oxidized vitamin C serum?

Though it is possible, you can still apply it if you choose to.

There is over 10% of active vitamin C serum that is still potent. But it would be less effective on the skin treatment.

Once it is oxidized, it becomes dark yellow or brown, and very rarely, oxidized vitamin C products can even cause staining and yellow discoloration on the skin surface. However, there is no benefit in applying an oxidized vitamin c serum.

 How to keep vitamin c serum from oxidizing

Therefore, we must keep our vitamin c serum bottle tightly locked; we must store our vitamin C serums and other forms of it, like creams and oils, in a dry, cool place or inside the refrigerator.


 The best way to prevent vitamin C serum from becoming oxidized is to protect it from sun exposure and warm temperature.

Sometimes, our rooms may feel like an oven, especially during the summer season, which can render our skincare products powerless. 

If it is oxidized, it becomes dark yellow or brown and will likely stain the skin and less effective.

How does vitamin C get oxidized?

The oxidation of vitamin C serum (ascorbic acid) results from the loss of two hydrogen atoms as the vitamin is converted to dehydroascorbic acid (DHA).  

If you examine an oxidized vitamin c serum liquid properly, you will notice a bad smell and dark yellow color.

What should vitamin C serum look like before oxidizing?

What should vitamin C serum look like before oxidizing?

The actual color of vitamin c serum is a clear yellow. It is always advisable to look out for a vitamin C serum that comes in clear-yellow in appearance, as previously mentioned, which shows how high the PH levels of vitamin C is in the formulation and allows you to see if it has become oxidized. 

As hard as it may be to reconsider your initial thoughts of the vitamin C serum having an orange color, some brands have been known to add coloring to its formula to replicate the original color. 

However, it is best to search for products with the original yellow color to avoid the risk of purchasing fake products or oxidized ones.

The bottles should be properly closed to ensure that vitamin C serum stays as fresh as possible and not have it combating too much UV and oxygen exposure that can cause it to break down quickly.

When should you throw out a vitamin C serum?

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Once you notice the changes in actual color or bad smell from your vitamin C serum, begin to discard them, there is a clear sign that it has been exposed to air or sunlight then becomes less potent. 

Once the formula becomes discolored in any way, it is best to throw out the product completely. Vitamin C serum is an essential skincare ingredient with an unstable form in water solutions, making it harder to toy with. 

We need to be cautious when using to avoid adverse reactions to the skin and ensure its benefit to the skin. 

To ensure it will treat the skin the best way possible, it is a good idea to note the L-ascorbic acid’s validation date before purchasing carefully. 

How is vitamin C converted to dehydroascorbic acid?

Dehydroascorbic acid can be simply defined as an oxidized form of vitamin c serum. 

It is actively imported into the endoplasmic reticulum of cells via glucose transporters. It is trapped therein by reduction back to ascorbate by glutathione.

The depreciation of two hydrogen atoms brings about the oxidation of vitamin C serum (ascorbic acid) as the vitamin c serum is converted to dehydroascorbic acid. Where the changes occur is referred to as organic dye.

In conclusion

Finally am glad to have shared with you the importance of observing and keeping your vitamin c serum carefully to avoid the danger of using an oxidized vitamin serum.

As explained above, vitamin C serum can be prevented from oxidizing by locking the container properly and storing it in the refrigerators.

One should ensure to consider necessary precautions to avert further skin irritation.

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