SLIDER

Another Day, Another Vitamin C: Paula's Choice C25 Super Booster Review

It's been 3 months since I started using the Paula's Choice C25 super booster, so that means it's time for a review!

If you haven't seen my other vitamin C posts from this year, I've also reviewed Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare's Collagen Brighten & Firm Vitamin C Serum as well as the Soko Glam x Cosrx Triple C Lightning Liquid.

On a slightly off-topic PSA: I'm going to work on writing more one product review blog posts. This weekend I reflected on *why* I slacked off on blogging this past year. One thing I noticed is that I focused more on lengthier posts that focused on multiple products. With the rise of social, I felt pressured to save all my long-form beauty content for my blog and all shorter form beauty content for Instagram. But many times I have to chop up my reviews to fit into Instagram's 2100 character limit-- so here we are. Shorter posts naturally take less time to write, which hopefully means I will be blogging more often! (Even if blogging is dying.)

That said, I still have lengthier blog posts planned too! Coming before the end of the year are some sunscreen posts as well as a one brand review on Drunk Elephant! I'm sure there will be more in the works, but that's all I'm promising for now 😉

And now back to the review! Disclosure: I received this serum as PR from the brand, but of course all thoughts are my own and I was under no obligation to talk about it, photograph it, blog about it, etc.


Price, Size, & Availability

$55.00 for 0.5 oz via Dermstore, Paula's Choice, Skinstore, QVC, & Amazon

Con: you only get 0.5 oz whereas most vitamin C serums come with a full 1 oz. Pro: Because it is a cream and is used as a spot treatment, it lasts longer than a 1 oz liquid vitamin C serum.

Ingredients

Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane (hydration), Ascorbic Acid (vitamin C/antioxidant), Ethylhexyl Hydroxystearate (emollient), Polysilicone-11 (texture-enhancing), Dimethicone (hydration), Polymethylsilsesquioxane (texture-enhancing), Disteardimonium Hectorite (texture-enhancing), Propylene Carbonate (preservative).

The ingredients list is pretty straightforward. There's no fragrance, alcohol, or essential oils. The star ingredient is the 25% LAA. There are a few silicones in there to make it a more pleasant texture, as well as a preservative to make sure it lasts.

Because it isn't a water-based formula, I don't have to worry about it oxidizing in 3 or 4 months months. In fact, it has a 12-month shelf life!

What does it do?

Ah, the age-old question. There are only so many (mildly) interesting ways I can sum up the benefits of vitamin C post after post after post.

You can check out my review of the Dr. Dennis Gross vitamin C serum to see my whole spiel on vitamin C, and more specifically, L-ascorbic acid. But like in that post, I'm going to quote the Beauty Brains because they do the best job of summing up its benefits:

"Vitamin C is a chemical called (L-) ascorbic acid that is naturally occurring in skin. It is known to play a role in collagen production. In addition, when topically applied it is thought to help heal acne, increase the barrier function of skin to decrease moisture loss, protect from UV radiation, and prevent age spots."

Packaging

Plastic tube with a screw on cap. It's easy to control how much product you get. I know some people hate the repackaging/ rebranding of the boosters line, but I think it's fun! Plus the new packaging matches my Instagram theme better, which as well all know, is what's truly important.

Texture

It's quite siliconey which 90% of the time, is a bad thing for me. But despite the siliconeyness, it absorbs readily. It doesn't dry me out nor does it make me excessively oily. It also doesn't pill, probably because it absorbs so well. I wouldn't say it's actively moisturizing my skin, but nor is it drying like some other vitamin C serums.

I usually allow 5-10 minutes for it to absorb before moving on with the rest of my skincare.

Scent

Nada. It smells like nothing.

How do I use it?

I started off using it 2x a week and worked my way up to 4-5x a week. It's specifically meant for spots so I dab it on any active breakouts, scars, or discolorations on my face. I've tried putting it all over my face, but I didn't find it worth it (more on that down below.)

I also tried using this in conjunction with their 15% vitamin C serum and it was a DISASTER after less than a week. I over-exfoliated my skin and it was an oversensitive mess. My skin did look hella brighter, but it wasn't worth compromising my moisture barrier.

With so many retinol and vitamin C and BHA and AHA products on the market, it's very easy to overwhelm our skin. We want to try all the things to get all the benefits and results! But often that comes at a cost. My skin isn't even particularly sensitive and it still got irritated at the combo.

My skincare philosophy is no more than one active in a routine. I'll break this rule every now and then (like with this vitamin C overload), but for the most part, I stick to it and it treats me well.

Of course, everyone's skin is different and if you find your skin can handle multiple actives at a time, all the power to you! But if you're not sure where your skin stands (is it sensitive? does it like lactic acid or does it prefer glycolic? etc) it's best to stick to one!

Results

SO my main goal when using any vitamin C serum is for it to target acne scarring. As an added bonus, I want my skin to look brighter and smoother.

Like I said above, I mostly used this as a spot treatment. After a few weeks of consistent, I started seeing results. My scars were healing more quickly than before. But I wasn't getting the other benefits I like to see from vitamin C serums-- overall brightness and smoother skin. So I decided to use it all over my skin and see what happened. After a week it did work BUT I had to use soo much more product! After about 2 weeks of doing this, I stopped because I noticed I was using the tube up so quickly.

Now the final question: would I repurchase? I'm not sure. On one hand, I like that I don't have to worry about it oxidizing and I like that it does a good job at brightening my scars. On the other hand, it's not the best all over vitamin C serum.

I think if I got to a point where my skin was relatively scar free and smooth, with only the occasional breakout, I would repurchase this to use as a spot treatment. But at the moment, my skin has plenty of acne scars and I think it would benefit more from a serum I can apply all over.



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