I began with a 12% formulation, before moving up to a potent 21.5% L-Ascorbic Acid from Korea. My hyperpigmentation began to withdraw - I've mentioned the product several times in my empties' posts, and used up more than four bottles.
The unstable L-AA not only turned deep orange within three weeks of opening - despite 24x7 refrigeration - but it also ruined my fingernails, turning them orange and brittle, and making my nail beds turn black. This was more than I could take, so I began looking for an alternative Vitamin C serum.
I tried more than a dozen - stay tuned for a comparison post - and wasn't too delighted with anything, until I was browsing around during a haul on LookFantastic, to avail of free shipping. That is when I spotted The Hero Project Vit C 30 Ultra Brightening Serum. Yes, that IS 30%. "Ultra Brightening" being the operative phrase here.
Scroll down for the review of The Hero Project Vit C 30 Ultra Brightening Serum.
I bought this . affiliate
Who are The Hero Project?A cruelty-free British label, manufactured by London-based Pangaea Laboratories, that believes in listening to the end users and what they want. THP delivers formulations based on user-feedback and reviews. That's nice! I wish more brands would do this instead of adding ingredients that we do not want to see.
Packaging of The Hero Project Vit C 30The Hero Project Vit C 30 comes in the most gorgeous looking orange glass bottle with a dropper. Very luxurious. The bottle is dimpled at the base so you don't end up with a few drops of the precious serum being wasted at the end. The external box matches the colour scheme.
Advantages of The Hero Project Vit C 30The product itself is not orange, but clear. It is a stable form of Ethylated L-Ascorbic Acid, at 30% strength - the maximum! THIRTY per cent! Swatisaid.
This does not need refrigeration. It is stable and does not change colour even after two months.
Ergo, it does not stain my fingers. Or skin.
And, it does exactly the same magic as OST.
There is some orange on the cap - see the edges there? But the product itself does not turn orange or oxidise.
The actives are:
Ethylated L-Ascorbic Acid, Hydrocurcumin, Grapefruit Oil, Lemon Oil, Egyptian Geranium Oil
Take a look at the label:
And, it does not contain these:
How I use The Hero Project Vit C 30As with L-AA, I use THP's Vit C after cleansing and acid toning at night - after giving my glycolic pad about 20 minutes to do its work and lower my skin's pH so the Vit-C can act. Upon application, there is some heat from the Vit C. Nothing intolerable - just a warm tingling.
[Disclaimer: I am used to strong formulations.]
I then leave the Vit C for half an hour or so, before continuing with my night-time skincare routine (in case you can't be arsed to read, an essence is the next step in my routine, followed by a serum, an ampoule, and a couple of layers of hydration and oil).
It is not sticky at all, as OST used to be. This is a very runny serum and is ideal for layering.
I use Vitamin C specifically for hyperpigmentation, so I cannot comment on fine lines and so on. Apart from brightening, this serum also provides antioxidant protection, restores clarity, and helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Results on me:
This Vitamin C has caused the quickest rate of fading of hyperpigmentation for me. I have been using this since late January on an everyday basis, save for 48 hours after subcision (two sessions so far) and dermarolling (also two sessions). Now, unless you're very lucky, even these procedures can give you some hyperpigmentation, especially where the needle enters the skin (don't ask, and don't google subcision videos unless you're not squeamish). This strong serum has been protecting me from that phenomenon as well.
My derm sees me every month, and he has told me two times so far: "Your hyperpigmentation fades really fast, for Indian skin!" Thanks to this one.
Verdict, and where to buy The Hero Project Vit C 30 Ultra Brightening Serum worldwide:This is my HG Vitamin C. The one I'll repurchase over and over. It fades any hyperpigmentation sooner than other Vit Cs I've tried (and I've tried quite a few of them). Well done to The Hero Project on formulating a non-staining, stable, yet potent product that actually works. I would love to see this in "pad" form for travel. I also hope they do a retinol next, and exfoliating AHA/BHA/retinol pads. Or maybe, a lovely cleanser with Vitamin C?
The Hero Project Vit C 30 Ultra Brightening Serum is available worldwide from here. It costs £39 for 30ml, which is more than OST, yes. But if you think about 1. OST oxidising halfway through the bottle, whereas you get 100% use out of this one; 2. OST ruining my nails so badly, I actually used press-ons, the price point is definitely worth it! Plus, this one is 30%!
Also, code LF15 on LookFantastic could get you a discount of 15%, so that's an even brighter deal!
Watch out for The Hero Project. I have a feeling we'll be hearing a lot more of this brand!