How Niacinamide Helps Skin

Niacinamide is a skincare ingredient worthy of your attention and time, your skin will love you for using niacinamide. Niacinamide stand out from the rest of the ingredients such as the retinol, vitamin C, it provides versatility for almost all kinds of skincare solutions.

Our conclusions of ingredients are based on many published researches that have shown it to be true. Many researches about niacinamide are demonstrated and produced to show how special it is. Many researches keep showing that it is one of the most exciting skincare ingredients to have come out to date.

What is Niacinamide?

Also known as vitamin B3 and nicotinamide, niacinamide is a water-soluble vitamin that works with the natural substances in your skin to help visibly minimize enlarged pores, tighten lax pores, improve uneven skin tone, soften fine lines and wrinkles, diminish dullness, and strengthen a weakened surface.

Niacinamide also reduces the impact of environmental damage because of its ability to improve skin’s barrier (its first line of defense), plus it also plays a role in helping skin to repair signs of past damage.

Left unchecked, this type of daily assault makes skin appear older, dull, and less radiant.

Why You Should Use Niacinamide

As you might have gathered, we’re very impressed with all that niacinamide can do for the skin when applied via skincare products like toners, serums, and highly concentrated leave-on treatments.

Niacinamide is uniquely compatible with any of the products in your skincare routine, including those that contain retinol, peptides, hyaluronic acid, AHAs, BHA, vitamin C, and all types of antioxidants.

You can use multiple niacinamide-containing products in your routine, and it will still be non-sensitizing as this ingenious B vitamin is well tolerated by all skin types. It’s even suitable for use by those with sensitive or rosacea-prone skin.

Other helpful benefits of niacinamide are that it helps renew and restore the surface of skin against moisture loss and dehydration by helping skin improve its natural production of skin-strengthening ceramides.

When ceramides become depleted over time, skin is left vulnerable to all sorts of problems, from persistent patches of dry, flaky skin to increasingly becoming extra-sensitive.

If you struggle with dry skin, topical application of niacinamide has been shown to boost the hydrating ability of moisturizers so skin’s surface can better resist the moisture loss that leads to recurrent dry, tight, flaky skin.

Niacinamide works brilliantly with common moisturizer ingredients like glycerin, non-fragrant plant oils, cholesterol, sodium PCA, and sodium hyaluronate.

How does niacinamide help pores? Great question, although the answer here isn’t certain. Simply put, research hasn’t come to a full understanding of how this B vitamin works its pore-reducing magic, but it does!

It seems that niacinamide has a normalizing ability on the pore lining, and that this influence plays a role in keeping debris from getting backed up, which leads to clogs and rough, bumpy skin.

As the clog forms and worsens, the pores stretch to compensate, and what you’ll see is enlarged pores.

By helping things get back to normal, niacinamide use helps pores return to their normal size.

Sun damage can cause pores to become stretched, too, leading to what some describe as “orange peel skin”. Higher concentrations of niacinamide can help visibly tighten pores by shoring up the skin’s supportive elements.

How to Use Niacinamide

Using niacinamide is as easy as finding great skincare products that contain it along with other beneficial ingredients like antioxidants, skin-restoring agents, and other skin-replenishing ingredients.

This multi-ingredient approach to skincare is important because as great as niacinamide is for skin, it’s not the only ingredient skin needs to look and feel its best.

Think of it like your diet—as healthy as kale is, if kale was all you ate, you’d soon become malnourished because your body needs more than one healthy food to maintain itself. The same is true for skin, the body’s largest (and most exposed) organ!

For best results, use leave-on niacinamide products and apply them to cleansed skin twice daily. That might mean you apply a toner with niacinamide immediately after cleansing to rehydrate and replenish the skin.

10% Niacinamide Booster can be used on its own (much like a serum) or mixed into your favorite moisturizer, based on personal preference.

Those with stubborn concerns around advanced signs of sun damage, orange peel texture, lax pores, and oil-related bumps should consider trying an advanced strength 20% niacinamide serum for use once or twice daily. Experiment to see what works best for your skin!

You can use niacinamide-containing products around your eyes, too. Some might find applying a moisturizer or eye cream with niacinamide helps improve the look of under-eye circles, helps soften the appearance of crow’s feet, not to mention enables this delicate area to retain skin-smoothing moisture and resist loss of firmness.

There’s no reason to wait to add niacinamide to your skincare routine. This wonderfully versatile B vitamin brings many topical benefits to improve skin’s appearance, so it appears more even, brighter, and younger.

Like every other skin ingredients, it is good to have your skin protected with a broad-spectrum sunscreen that is rated SPF 30 and above. This sunscreen will allow you to enjoy the full benefits of using niacinamide and save your skin.

Niacinamide: Benefits, Uses, and Side Effects

Niacinamide is one of the two forms of vitamin B3 — the other being nicotinic acid. Vitamin B3 is also known as niacin.

Niacinamide and nicotinic acid both provide vitamin B3 activity, but they differ in chemical structure and how they affect your health.

This article explains what niacinamide is, its benefits, uses and potential side effects.


What Is Niacinamide?

B vitamins appear so often in so many products that we sometimes forget what they actually do, they are used to convert food into energy to fuel vital processes. They are responsible for healthy hair, skin, and nails.

B vitamins are present in skincare products to help to heal, regenerate damaged cells, moisturize skin, decrease inflammation, and more.

Niacinamide is extremely useful for anti-aging skincare products.

Niacinamide repairs and prevents sun damage by keeping the melanin from reaching the surface of the skin. Niacinamide is a powerful multipurpose workhorse – it works great as a brightener, moisturizer and pigment corrector.

The anti-inflammatory benefits of niacinamide work well for people with acne, rosacea, melasma, and hyperpigmentation.

Vitamin B5 commonly called panthenol is also a humectant that helps to moisturize scaly or rough skin. In a 2002 study, it is shown that B5 decreases the inflammation and helps to repair the skin’s barrier.

Vitamin B7 is another essential vitamin in the B vitamins family with studies showing that the lack of it can cause detrimental symptoms such as hair loss, dry and scaly skin.

Niacinamide is a form of vitamin B3 (niacin) — one of the eight B vitamins your body needs for good health.

Vitamin B3 plays a vital role in converting the food you eat into usable energy and helps your body’s cells carry out important chemical reactions.

Since it’s water-soluble, your body doesn’t store this vitamin, which is why you need to eat nicotinic acid or niacinamide daily.

Vitamin B3 is generally found as niacinamide in animal-based products, such as meat and poultry, and as nicotinic acid in plant-based foods like nuts, seeds, and green vegetables.

Many refined grain products, including cereals, are also fortified with niacinamide.

Your body can also make vitamin B3 from tryptophan, an amino acid present in most protein foods.

However, the conversion of tryptophan to vitamin B3 is inefficient, as it takes 60 mg of tryptophan to make just 1 mg of vitamin B3.

Historically, vitamin B3 was called vitamin PP, an acronym for pellagra-preventive.

That’s because a deficiency of vitamin B3 or tryptophan leads to a disease called pellagra, which is characterized by the four D’s — diarrhea, dermatitis, dementia and, if left untreated, death.

Pellagra is rare in developed countries like North America and Europe, but the disease is still frequent in some developing countries.

Nicotinic acid and niacinamide can both treat pellagra, but niacinamide is preferred since it’s associated with fewer side effects, such as flushing of the skin.


Niacinamide is a form of vitamin B3, an essential nutrient that supports many cellular processes. Niacinamide is found primarily in animal-based products and is the preferred form of vitamin B3 for treating pellagra.

Benefits and Uses

Aside from being the preferred form of niacin for treating pellagra, niacinamide has several other health benefits and uses.

Helpful for Certain Skin Conditions

Niacinamide plays an important role in keeping your skin healthy.

For this reason, it’s a popular additive in the cosmetic and skincare industry.

When applied topically or taken orally as a supplement, niacinamide has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects on the skin.

It has been used to treat skin conditions like acne and rosacea, a facial skin disorder characterized by redness.

This makes niacinamide a popular alternative to oral or topical antibiotics for treating acne or rosacea.

May Help Prevent Melanoma

Melanoma is a serious type of skin cancer that develops in the cells that produce melanin, the pigment that gives your skin its color.

Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, either from the sun or tanning beds, damages the DNA of your cells over time and is strongly correlated with melanoma.

Owing to its role in keeping your cells healthy, oral supplements of niacinamide have been shown to enhance DNA repair in UV damaged skin in humans.

As such, niacinamide is a promising supplement that may protect against melanoma, especially in high-risk populations, such as those who have had previous nonmelanoma skin cancers.

Useful for Chronic Kidney Disease

Chronic kidney disease is the progressive loss of kidney function that affects your body’s ability to clean and filter blood and control blood pressure.

This can cause a harmful buildup of chemicals, such as phosphate, in your blood.

Research suggests that niacinamide may help decrease phosphate levels in people with kidney dysfunction by blocking its absorption.

Phosphate levels are otherwise typically managed through diet, medications or dialysis, depending on the severity of the buildup.

May Slow the Progression of Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is a condition in which your body attacks and destroys the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas.

It’s been suggested that niacinamide protects and preserves the beta cells, thereby preventing or delaying the onset of type 1 diabetes in at-risk individuals.

However, research doesn’t support the notion that niacinamide can prevent the onset of type 1 diabetes, although it may help delay its progression by preserving beta cell function.

While promising, more research is needed before niacinamide supplements can be recommended as an intervention for type 1 diabetes.

Niacinamide helps to eliminate soreness skin conditions, reduce the risk of melanoma in high-risk individuals. It is also proven useful to people with chronic diseases, to a lesser extent even type 1 diabetes.

Supplement Types and Forms

Vitamin B3, in the form of nicotinic acid or niacinamide, is available as a supplement either by itself or alongside other vitamins and minerals in doses ranging from 14 to 1,000 mg per serving.

The vitamin is also included in B-complex supplements, which contain all eight B vitamins.

Some supplements that contain vitamin B3 only list niacin, but most supplements specify the form of niacin as either nicotinic acid or niacinamide.

Niacinamide may be included in pre-workout supplements, but nicotinic acid, the form that causes flushing of the skin, is preferred for the purpose of giving the consumer a sense that the pre-workout has kicked-in following the skin flushing.

For skincare, niacinamide is often included in facial moisturizing lotions or in products marketed for treating acne or rosacea.

Regulation of Sebaceous Lipid and Acne by Niacinamide

Topical niacinamide in the form of a commercial 4% gel (Papulex®) has been shown to provide potent anti-inflammatory activity in the treatment of acne vulgaris. Shalitaetal.

[15] found that after 8 weeks of usage, 82% of subjects with inflammatory acne showed an improvement in global evaluation, with a significant reduction in papules/pustules (–60%) and acne severity (–52%).

Indeed, many practitioners use the treatment citing a combination of efficacy and lack of bacterial-resistance. Shalita et al.[15] and others postulate that niacinamide may act via its apparent antihistaminic effect, activity as an electron scavenger, or its inhibition of 3’-5’ cyclic-AMP phosphodiesterase activity.

Recent data, however, appear to demonstrate an altogether more fundamental role for topical niacinamide in acne treatment. Biedermann et al. [16] used viable human facial biopsies (from face-lift surgery) to measure the effect of niacinamide on sebaceous lipogenesis.

Cultured biopsies were treated with niacinamide or trans-retinoic acid (tRA) for 4 days, after which they were incubated with 14C-acetate.

Lipid components were subsequently isolated, fractionated and identified using analytical TLC and radiometry.

Niacinamide produced significant dose-dependent reductions in total sebaceous lipogenesis (–42% at 25 mM [p<0.01]). Furthermore, the reduction induced by 25 niacinamide was equivalent to that produced by 1 µM tRA (–32% [p=0.01]).

When discrete lipid classes were identified and quantified, it was found that niacinamide had produced marked reductions in both triglyceride and fatty acid synthesis vs. the control (–52% and –46% respectively for 25mM niacinamide [p<0.05]).

It is now known that triglycerides represent by far the largest proportion of sebaceous gland lipid (50-60%); the observed effect of niacinamide on total lipogenesis is, therefore, probably attributable to triglyceride reduction. This has important implications for acne pathogenesis.

It is accepted that acne is a disease involving the pilosebaceous duct and Propionibacterium acnes. Despite the on-going debate as to the exact interplay of these factors, it is without doubt that a significant reduction both in total sebaceous lipid bulk and in the triglyceride fraction would be expected to impact positively acne-form skin.

Niacinamide Exerts Multiple Benefits on the Appearance of Ageing / Photodamaged Skin.

Bissett et al. [17] studied the effects of topi-cal niacinamide in aging human facial skin in two double-blinded clinical studies. In the first, 40 female subjects aged 35 – 60 applied vehicle and vehicle containing 5% niacin-amide (randomized split-face) for 12 weeks.

High-resolution digital images were taken at baseline, 4, 8 and 12 weeks and texture and hyperpigmentation were evaluated by judges (comparing blind-coded image pairs, baseline vs. another treatment time-point).

Judges were able to perceive a significant improvement in skin texture appearance at 4 weeks (p<0.1) and 12 weeks (p<0.05) and a significant improvement in hyperpigmented spot appearance by 8 weeks (p<0.05) (Fig. 3).

In a second study, female subjects aged 35-60 applied blind-coded products (vehicle control and vehicle containing 5% niacin-amide; n=88) split-face for 8 weeks. Skin texture appearance was assessed as above.

The niacinamide-containing treatment provided a significant improvement in skin texture appearance relative to the vehicle control at the 8-week time-point, confirming the results of the first study.

This effect on skin surface texture is consistent with that noted in a 10-week clinical study where Matts & Solechnick [18] used multiple-angle reflectance spectrophotometry to measure the diffuse component of skin reflection.

They noted a significant increase in the diffuse component of 5% niacinamide-treated dorsal hand skin vs. vehicle control after 10 weeks of treatment(p<0.05), consistent with significant blind self-rated preferences for texture appear-ance over vehicle control (p<0.05).

This change was consistent with a shift in texture distribution towards the finer, anisotropic features characteristic of younger skin.

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