Although vitamin C deserves all the praise for its smoothing, brightening, plumping, healing, and dark spot- and scar-reducing powers, we must admit it’s extremely finicky. When exposed to air and sunlight, it basically self-destructs like the Wicked Witch of the West in rain. Vitamin C quickly oxidizes, becomes ineffective, and turns a rusty brown hue with a nasty ham scent. (Gross.) With the Supergoop Daily Dose, aka the brand’s first-ever serum launch, founder and CEO Holly Thaggard came up with an innovative solution to make vitamin C as low maintenance as possible.
“When we started this conversation in the lab with my chemist about it, I had a laundry list of things I don’t like about the vitamin Cs that are out there,” Thaggard tells Allure. Fixing all of those items on her list turned into a particularly challenging three years complete with about 15 formulas until Daily Dose finally came to be. Launching on December 28, the serum — which is the first of its kind — combines the benefits of vitamin C and SPF 40 in a milky, lightweight texture housed in an adorable airless pump. The bottle, which reminds me of a little cartoon version of a propane tank, is opaque to keep the ingredients from being exposed to sunlight.
Of course, Supergoop is known for its incredible, Best of Beauty Award-winning sunscreens and SPF products, like the Unseen Sunscreen and Superscreen Daily Moisturizer. It turns out its specialty can be a means to an end for vitamin C. Through her research, Thaggard found out vitamin C helps SPF survive on our skin and effectively do what we know and love it for. “When they are applied together, vitamin C is not exposed to the sun immediately,” says New York City-based board-certified dermatologist David Kim. “Therefore, SPF may have some protective effects on keeping the vitamin C more stable.”
Eighteen months of formulation went into finding the right percentage and forms of vitamin C that effectively pair with SPF, Thaggard says. Daily Dose now packs a whopping 14 percent concentration of vitamin C: 10 percent of a pure, oil- and water-soluble form called ethyl ascorbic acid and four percent Kakadu plum, which is one of the richest, all-natural sources of the popular antioxidant. (For context, the beloved SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic has 15 percent.)