This Vitamin C Oil Brightened My Sun- and Pregnancy-Induced Dark Spots

I've tried dozens of vitamin C serums over my 16-year career as a beauty editor. This is my new fave.

Bloomeffects Royal Tulip Vitamin C Facial Oil


As a veteran beauty editor, I pride myself on knowing how to take great care of my skin—but that wasn't always the case. My 16-year-old self jumped at the chance to bake in the sun (I may or may not have even sprayed on some tanning oil before doing so, ugh) during family beach vacations and lived at the tanning bed salon weeks leading up to prom in order to achieve that faux glow. Of course, I'd love to go back and slather myself in SPF and steer clear of those dang beds, but since that's not possible, I work really hard at preventing further sun damage by applying sunscreen religiously (even on cloudy days) and using products that help to repair my previous sun damage.

Over the past 16 years, I've tried at least 100 vitamin C products in the name of research. Dermatologists recommend using a vitamin C serum on clean skin in the morning to help ward off free radicals that cause premature aging and lead to brown spots and fine lines. So I've swiped on my fair share, and learned that although many brands utilize this popular antioxidant, the way it's formulated makes all the difference. Long, science-y story short, the ingredient, also known as ascorbic acid, is notoriously hard to stabilize, meaning that when it's exposed to air and light, its efficacy can be compromised. So when you're searching for a vitamin C in a sea (get it?) of vitamin Cs, opaque packaging is a good place to start. That way, you know that the formula is being protected from sunlight.

Testing the New Bloomeffects Vitamin C Oil

Recently, I was given the opportunity to test a new vitamin C facial oil from Bloomeffects, a skincare line infused with fresh, Dutch tulips, before it hit shelves. Before I even twisted the jar open, I was impressed to learn that the brand used a whopping 20 percent of the active THD ascorbate—a highly stable and effective form of vitamin C that penetrates deeper to brighten and reduce hyperpigmentation without—and this is the key—irritation. My freckles, sun spots, and brown marks that showed their stubborn little faces throughout both of my pregnancies (rude!), couldn't wait to be slathered in the stuff.

Most vitamin C products come in a serum but this one is tucked in a lightweight, 70-percent-squalane facial oil, so it's super moisturizing (a trait my 38-year-old skin appreciates). At $85, it's definitely a splurge for me, but a worth-it one because it eliminates a few steps in my skincare routine, thanks to all of its thoughtful ingredients: In addition to the THD ascorbate, it is packed with eight fruit oils high in vitamin C (strawberry, watermelon, black currant, raspberry, kiwi, pineapple, papaya, and blueberry) to brighten, bakuchiol (a retinol alternative) to smooth and firm fine lines, ceramides and niacinamide to strengthen the skin barrier, plus the brand's Dutch Tulip Complex to hydrate and plump—the whole kit and caboodle, if you will.

Beauty Director Heather Muir Maffei after testing the new Face Oil.

Heather Muir Maffei

As a busy mom, I love products that check off a lot of boxes. And because I don't get a ton of time to myself these days, my skincare regimen serves as my daily self-care sesh. The dropper applicator feels kind of fancy and helps me slow down for a few seconds. I apply a dropper full of the oil onto clean, dry skin and press it in, starting at the center of my face, and moving outward and upward, which feels like a mini massage. The oil is super lightweight, yet it gives my skin a pretty sheen (I've tried it both under and over moisturizer). Full disclosure: I have super-reactive cheeks so even when I'm makeup-free, people think I'm wearing blush. So I'm used to active products triggering a little redness or sensitivity, but I was pleasantly surprised that neither happened after using this oil.

The Verdict

Bottom line: short-term, the oil feels lovely and imparts an immediate glow; long-term, the heavy-lifter works to even skin tone. Within a few weeks, I noticed my freckles, sun spots, and even those annoying post-zit marks that linger for what feels like forever, looked noticeably lighter. That, my friends, is what you call a glow-up.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles