Vitamin C is a popular skincare ingredient due to its wide range of benefits, from antioxidant protection to brightening and wrinkle-smoothing properties.
If you want to give vitamin C a try, you might be considering one from The Ordinary. The Ordinary offers several affordable vitamin C products in both pure and derivative forms.
Today, I’d like to discuss my experience with The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F – a long name for this The Ordinary vitamin C derivative serum.
Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F combines a vitamin C derivative and fatty acids, creating a powerful antioxidant blend for your skin.
I’ll share my thoughts on my experience with the serum in this The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F review.
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Excellent for dry skin types, this vitamin C serum contains tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate. This oil-soluble vitamin C derivative is more stable than pure vitamin C yet penetrates your skin where it converts into pure vitamin C (ascorbic acid).
While not as potent as pure vitamin C, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate provides antioxidant protection from UVA and UVB rays, boosts collagen production for firmer, smoother skin, and brightens dull skin.
The serum is ideal for dry skin and targets the following skin concerns:
- Dark spots
- Uneven Skin Tone
- Wrinkles and fine lines
It’s an anhydrous serum, meaning it doesn’t contain any water and creates a lightweight barrier on the skin to lock in moisture.
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F doesn’t contain any added fragrance and is also suitable for sensitive skin types.
You can read more about The Ordinary vitamin C products in my The Ordinary Vitamin C Guide.
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F Ingredients
- Coconut Alkanes: Derived from coconut fatty acids, this active ingredient is a volatile, which means it evaporates on your skin. Its lightweight and oily texture moisturizes and leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth.
- Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate: The star ingredient in the serum, this stable, oil-soluble derivative of vitamin C penetrates your skin and provides antioxidant protection, boosts collagen, and has brightening benefits.
- Ethyl Linoleate: An oil-soluble vitamin F compound that helps moisturize and protect your skin.
- Coco-Caprylate/Caprate: A lightweight emollient that moisturizes and leaves your skin soft and silky.
- Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil: A wax ester similar to the natural sebum in your skin. It helps keep moisture locked in and is non-comedogenic (does not clog pores).
- Solanum Lycopersicum (Tomato) Fruit Extract: Rich in antioxidants, this plant extract helps protect your skin from environmental damage.
- Squalane: A plant-derived oil that helps to hydrate your skin and prevent moisture loss.
The serum comes in a 30ml dropper brown bottle to protect its contents from light and degradation.
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F Review
The first thing I noticed about The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F is its texture. It has a silky, oily feel that becomes less noticeable after it absorbs into my skin.
After it absorbs, my skin feels soft and smooth, and moisturized, so I can see how this would appeal to those with dry skin.
The serum feels exceptionally lightweight. Even lighter than a water-based serum.
I’ve been testing it on my slightly oily skin in hot weather and was worried it would be too oily. But since it’s so thin, it layers really well with my moisturizer and makeup without any greasiness.
After a few weeks of use, I can’t say that I see brighter or smoother skin, but no vitamin C product has provided quick results. I use vitamin C more for its antioxidant and skin protective benefits.
The main drawback for me is that it is a vitamin C derivative, so it won’t be as potent as pure vitamin C. But with pure vitamin C, there are drawbacks that this serum doesn’t have, like potential irritation and instability.
Another drawback is the price. It is definitely one of the pricier The Ordinary serums.
Is it worth it? I think so. When I compare it to other vitamin C derivative serums, I like this lightweight texture and how it wears with makeup during the day.
If you have dehydrated or normal to dry skin, I think The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F is a great affordable choice for a stable, lightweight, and non-greasy vitamin C derivative serum with antioxidant benefits.
For oily skin types, it will depend. If you like the feel of squalane on your skin, this serum may work for you. Otherwise, you may prefer a water-based vitamin C serum.
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F Conflicts
The Ordinary notes that the only ingredient that Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F conflicts with is niacinamide, so if you are pairing this vitamin C + vitamin F serum with other The Ordinary products, avoid using it with:
- The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
- The Ordinary 100% Niacinamide Powder
How To Use The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F can be used in both your morning and evening skincare routines.
Apply a few drops to your face and neck after cleansing and water-based serums, but before oils, suspensions, or creams.
Of course, with any new skincare product, it’s a good idea to patch test it first to avoid an adverse initial reaction.
The shelf life of the serum is 6 months after opening.
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F Alternatives
If this serum doesn’t work for your skin type, The Ordinary has several vitamin C serums, both pure and derivative formulas, that offer similar benefits as Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F.
Let’s take a look at the derivatives first:
It brightens, balances uneven skin tone, improves collagen synthesis, and offers antioxidant protection with its comfortable non-sticky formula.
It’s also gentle on the skin, so it’s better suited to sensitive skin than pure vitamin C serums.
It provides the three main benefits of vitamin C: brightening, collagen-boosting, and antioxidant protection.
Ethylation supports stability while providing a smaller molecule size, allowing quicker results and less irritation.
It has a somewhat oily feel on the skin that dissipates after absorption.
Now onto the pure vitamin C products from The Ordinary:
The Ordinary Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%
The Ordinary Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2% is a potent pure vitamin C product that contains 23% ascorbic acid plus 2% hyaluronic acid for hydration.
It’s water-free, which allows it to stay stable and provides the excellent anti-aging benefits of pure vitamin C.
The texture is a little tricky to work with. The suspension has a somewhat grainy, cream-like texture that can feel a little gritty on your skin.
It’s suspended in an oil-like base, so it may take a little longer to absorb.
Also, since it’s so potent, it may irritate sensitive skin. The Ordinary notes that it can be mixed with a cream to dilute its potency until your skin builds a tolerance.
The silicone base blocks some absorption, so when all is said and done, it has about the same strength as the 23% suspension previously discussed.
The water-free formula has a silkier, smoother texture than the 23% suspension but is also very potent. You may dilute it with a cream base before application until your skin acclimates.
Alpha arbutin is a skin-lightening ingredient that helps to lighten dark spots and discoloration. It pairs well with ascorbic acid, which has antioxidant benefits, promotes collagen production, and can also help lighten dark spots.
The water-free serum targets excess pigmentation and uneven skin tone for a brighter, more even complexion.
This lower concentration of vitamin C makes it less likely to cause irritation than The Ordinary’s other pure vitamin C products.
This serum is ideal for those looking to brighten their complexion without the potential irritation of high concentrations of vitamin C.
The Ordinary 100% L-Ascorbic Acid Powder
For a more customized approach to vitamin C skincare, The Ordinary 100% L-Ascorbic Acid Powder targets the signs of aging with a pure vitamin C powder designed to be mixed with other serums, creams, or moisturizers.
With a little added effort, you can create your own custom vitamin C product that can be more gentle with a lower concentration or more potent with a higher concentration.
Just be sure to follow The Ordinary’s usage directions since there are some products that this powder should not be mixed with.
Paula’s Choice Super Antioxidant Serum
If you are willing to spend a little more for a vitamin C derivative serum, Paula’s Choice Super Antioxidant Serum is a good one. It’s one of my favorite antioxidant serums.
The serum hydrates and brightens dull, dry skin while protecting against environmental damage with a blend of vitamin C derivatives, peptides, and antioxidants.
The serum contains the same vitamin C derivative, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, found in The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F.
But it doesn’t stop there. This anti-aging antioxidant serum contains a blend of several other antioxidant ingredients.
These antioxidants include ferulic acid, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (another vitamin C derivative), epigallocatechin gallate, ergothioneine, xanthophyll, thioctic acid, ubiquinone, and superoxide dismutase.
The serum helps improve the look of wrinkles, uneven skin tone, and dryness.
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F: The Bottom Line
There is no shortage of vitamin C serums on the market. So what makes this The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F stand out from the rest? There are a few things.
First of all, it’s a gentle formula, which can’t be said for many pure vitamin C serums. A pure vitamin C serum needs to be formulated at a low pH to be effective. This low pH can lead to stinging and irritation, especially for sensitive skin.
Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F is formulated at a higher pH, drastically reducing the risk of irritation.
The addition of vitamin F (omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids) makes this serum hydrating, so it’s an excellent choice for dry skin.
And the lightweight texture makes it easy to incorporate into your skincare routine and layer with other products.
If you have sensitive or dry skin type or are looking for a gentle and hydrating vitamin C serum, I think The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F is worth considering.
Thanks for reading!