There’s been a lot of buzz around niacinamide lately—and we can see why. This must-have skincare ingredient is popping up in everything from serums to moisturizers, eye creams, toners, and more. We could rattle on for hours about the wonders of niacinamide, but for now, we’re keeping things simple.
If “radiant” and “dewy-looking” are two words that describe your skin goals, this one’s for you! Today, we’re deep-diving into this skin-loving ingredient—the benefits of niacinamide, how it works, what to expect, and why it deserves a top spot in your routine.
What is Niacinamide?
Most of us are traveling on two skincare journeys: finding products that really work and discovering multifunctional ingredients to make your life as simple as possible. Fortunately, you really can have your cake (and eat it, too!) with niacinamide. So, what does niacinamide do and what is niacinamide good for?
It’s actually pretty simple. Niacinamide is a form of vitamin B3, an essential water-soluble vitamin that promotes healthy skin. And since your body can’t produce it on its own, it has to come from your diet or your skincare regimen. Until recently, this superstar ingredient was considered somewhat of a background player in skincare—but it’s now taking center stage—thanks to products like our game-changing Bye Bye Dark Spots Niacinamide Serum.
Before we go any further, let’s talk science. Although the names may sound similar, there are actually three different types of vitamin B3: niacinamide (nicotinamide), niacin (nicotinic acid), and nicotinamide riboside. Frankly, you don’t have to worry too much about the other two—niacinamide is the one you want to look for in your skincare products: It’s created by your body when you ingest large quantities of niacin, a naturally-occurring substance that can be found in foods like fish, vegetables, and various grains.
The amount of niacin your body needs will depend largely on your age, gender, and other lifestyle factors. Just remember this: There are three varieties of the same vitamin, and niacinamide is the must-have skincare ingredient to incorporate for brightening and evening out your skin tone.
The Benefits of Niacinamide for Your Skin
When it comes to getting that lit-from-within glow, it’s all about niacinamide. Vitamin B3 (niacinamide) is extremely restorative for your skin, and it’s most known for its hydrating and skin-brightening properties (hello, luminous skin!). Worried about your fussy and unpredictable skin? You can exhale! This powerhouse ingredient stands out for its unique ability to gently support all skin types across a wide range of skin concerns.
If you ask us, it’s always the perfect time to add a niacinamide serum to your routine! Here are just some of our favorite skin-boosting niacinamide benefits.
1. Promotes Brighter-Looking Skin
Niacinamide is an absolute essential for achieving that coveted radiant glow. This ingredient’s brightening benefits are largely a result of all the many complexion-enhancing properties combined, like its ability to preserve skin hydration, reduce redness, fade dark spots, and protect skin from environmental stressors.
2. Great For All Skin Types
Oily? Combination? Mature skin? It doesn’t matter! This soothing ingredient is considered to be an excellent choice for all skin types—even sensitive skin. It’s typically very well tolerated and often recommended as a smart option for those with sensitive skin or for anyone looking for a gentle but effective skin-nourishing formula.
3. Keeps Skin Looking Firm and Healthy
Keratin (the main structural protein in your skin) is crucial for keeping your skin looking firm, flawless, and healthy. Niacinamide has been shown to support the production of keratin in your skin, resulting in a tighter, more youthful-looking complexion. Need we say more?
4. Supports Clearer Skin
Adding niacinamide to your daily regimen may also assist with enhancing clarity, making it a must-have for anyone with oily or blemish-prone skin types. By balancing your skin’s oil production and inflammatory responses, niacinamide can help keep your complexion looking clearer, smoother, and more even-toned. One medical article reporting on past trials with niacinamide found that topical application was effective in significantly reducing blemishes.
5. Minimizes the Look of Wrinkles and Fine Lines
Niacinamide's multifunctional benefits make it essential to any anti-aging skincare routine. This ingredient promotes more youthful-looking skin and may also minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles with its powerful hydrating and skin-plumping abilities.
6. Reduces the Appearance of Large Pores
As if we didn’t already have enough reasons to love niacinamide, we can add another to the list. Niacinamide-based formulas have a normalizing effect that can help smooth your complexion and reduce the appearance of large pores by keeping your skin properly moisturized, healthy, and balanced. Discover more tips on how to make large pores appear smaller here.
7. Helps Reduce Dark Spots
Niacinamide in skincare has the ability to help keep your skin visibly glowing, even, and smooth, and may even reduce the appearance of visible dark spots. Especially when paired with other glow-boosting ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, niacinamide may help prevent age-related pigmentation and other signs of skin aging.
8. Supports a Healthy Natural Skin Barrier
Your skin’s natural lipid barrier (or moisture barrier) can become weakened with age. Luckily, one amazing niacinamide skin benefit is that it can assist your skin with retaining moisture and promoting a strengthened lipid barrier, which is essential for protecting your skin from external stressors.
9. Boasts Skin Protecting Properties
Your skin battles environmental pollutants and toxins every day that can lead to fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots, and other signs of aging over time. Niacinamide acts as a powerful antioxidant for your skin, delivering protective properties that can help shield against the skin-damaging effects of oxidative stress.
10. Helps Regulate Oil Production
Hydration isn’t just for dry skin, after all! Yet another niacinamide benefit is that it may aid in boosting overall moisture and preventing oily skin from overcompensating by producing too much oil. Even blemish-prone and oily skin needs plenty of hydration, and niacinamide is the perfect choice for any skin type.
How to Include Niacinamide in Your Skincare Routine
Now that you know all about the complexion-enhancing wonders of this superstar ingredient, we’re sure you’re feeling like the ultimate skincare guru. But, let’s talk about how you can get the best results from your niacinamide skincare routine. It’s important to know how and when to apply niacinamide, as well as how to choose the best products for your skin.
Apply a Niacinamide Moisturizer at the End of Your Routine
Once you’ve reached the end of your skincare steps, it’s time to apply a niacinamide-infused moisturizer, like your Secret Sauce moisturizer. This luxurious moisturizer immediately hydrates and plumps your skin and is your secret to a youthful-looking glow. Simply apply this hydrating moisturizer to clean skin in the morning and evening, and bask in all that niacinamide goodness!
Apply Niacinamide Day or Night
Niacinamide is that wonder ingredient that’s perfect for both your AM and PM skincare routines—it really all depends on what works best for you. We recommend using a leave-on serum or moisturizer formulated with niacinamide both in the morning and at night for long-lasting “I woke up like this” skin status.
For even better results and a radiant daytime to nighttime look, don’t forget your Bye Bye Under Eye Anti-Aging Concealer. This revolutionary waterproof formula featuring niacinamide improves the appearance of wrinkles and effectively conceals the look of skin imperfections.
Does Niacinamide Work Well With Other Ingredients?
When choosing your niacinamide-infused solution, try to choose complementary ingredients that offer similar multifunctional benefits like hyaluronic acid, peptides, or hydrolyzed collagen. And don’t forget, you can also enjoy it in our best-selling Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream with SPF 50+ or our Bye Bye Under Eye Anti-Aging Concealer!
Whether you have dry, oily, sensitive, or mature skin, niacinamide can be a game-changing addition to your skincare routine. It all comes down to selecting the right product for you.
Ready to find our best hydrating products with niacinamide for your skin type? Check out our lineup here.
I. Niren NM. Pharmacologic doses of nicotinamide in the treatment of inflammatory skin conditions: a review. Cutis. 2006 Jan;77(1 Suppl):11-6. PMID: 16871774.