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With the multitude of supplements available now, it's difficult to know which vitamins are truly essential to maintain healthy skin and body.  While I change the multivitamins and moisturizers that I use every now and again, there are four, both topical and oral, that I count on:

Vitamin A:  Retinoids, derivatives of vitamin A, are amongst the most effective anti-aging ingredients available.  Backed by decades of research, retinoids (as prescription retinoic acid or over the counter retinol and retinaldehyde) deliver results and are a must if you want to keep your skin looking youthful. Not only do retinoids boost collagen production and promote skin elasticity, they have also been shown to effectively reduce pigmentation, even out skin tone, increase cell turnover and manage acne.  It's no coincidence that we've named "Apothekari's retinaldehyde serum [Link Removed]  .  And with all the things going for retinoids, my skin feels neglected when I skip this nightly step.

Vitamin B:  For some of us of a certain age, the word "perimenopause" has become more and more common in our everyday conversations with friends.  Hormonal changes associated with perimenopause can often bring on mood swings, trouble sleeping and depression or the blues.  This is where complex B vitamins come in.  Although perimenopausal symptoms are a result of hormonal changes and not a deficiency in vitamins, symptoms of low vitamin B include depression, mood swings, and an inability to concentrate.  Sound familiar?

Vitamin C:  To be more specific, [Link Removed] to feed the skin.  Vitamin C has a long history as the beauty industry workhorse, delivering antioxidant protection, preventing the formation of free radicals, fading age spots and increasing collagen production.  Topical vitamin C also protects against UVA/UVB rays and boosts the power of your daily sunscreen.  Super C serum and sunscreen form my daily arsenal against the assault of sun, pollution and environmental hazards.

Vitamin D:  It has become widely recognized that many of us are vitamin D deficient. A deficiency is linked to health problems such as hypertension, osteoporosis, depression, along with the cold and flu.  Although the ideal way to top up vitamin D levels is through sun exposure on the skin, factors such as seasonal variations, lifestyle and even uncertainty about what constitutes safe exposure can all contribute to low vitamin D levels.  D Drops makes it simple to safely get a little bit of sunshine every day.  Formulated with D3, the natural form of the vitamin that the body produces in response to sun light, D Drops are tasteless, odorless and easy to take.

A, B, C, D – the four essential vitamins that form the backbone of my daily self-care plan.  Everything else is just icing on the cake.

Sharmani Pillay is a Registered Pharmacist who specializes in anti aging skin care and women's wellness. She owns and operates an online skin care store at [Link Removed] 

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Pharmagirl, Your links have been removed, please consider upgrading to premium membership.

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