Niacinamide

EWG SCORE: 1What is EWG?

Niacinamide is a particular form of Vitamin B3 that has gained significant interest in the skincare world for its skin brightening, and to a less degree, age-fighting properties.  Found in a vast array of Korean skincare products, and of course, skincare products worldwide, this particular ingredient has been proven to help improve the general appearance and condition of skin to a certain degree.

The pigmentation lightening property is primarily why Niacinamide is recognized for its Skin Brightening properties, and is a commonly found ingredient in Korean Skincare products that include this particular claim.

Ingredient Safety

Because knowing what goes into your skin is important.

As an ingredient that has received significant attention and studies in the past, the safety and degree of effectiveness of Niacinamide has been well established to be on the safe side.

EWG: 1 (Low Hazard)
As of September 16, 2019, Niacinamide has achieved the lowest risk level possible from the Environmental Working Group, at score level 1.  This ingredient has been reported in over 450 different products within the EWG database, with a number vastly larger to be more likely available in the general public.  It has been quoted as not to be persistent or bioaccumulative according to the Environment Canada Domestic Substance List.
You can view EWG’s Niacinamide entry here.

US FDA:  The US FDA has classified Niacinamide as ‘General Recognized As Safe (GRAS)’, meaning that it can be used in limited quantities and/or concentrations in nutrients and/or dietary supplements.  As a dietary supplement, however, there are no strict regulations on its inclusion in skincare products and/or other applications.  The continuing interest in Niacinamide and its effects on brightening skin has also afforded a number of studies to be conducted for efficacy and safety purposes.
Read more about the Efficacy of Niacinamide at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Website
Read more about the Safety of Niacinamide at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Website

Effect Types

Categorization of what the effects this ingredient may be when used on the skin

Brightening/Whitening: The star feature of Niacinamide, is attributed to its hydrating and anti-inflammatory properties, among others.  It is theorized that this effect is attributed to increase collagen production, helping skin become more plump and ‘restored’, thereby reducing the dullness/darkness of the affected areas.

Pore Reduction:  Though the mechanics are still being understood, Niacinamide has been shown to exhibit certain properties on pores causing it to ‘tighten’ or become smaller in visible size, reducing in their general appearance.

References and Further Reading(need to be fixed):
Nicotinic Acid/Niacinamide and the Skin, National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Final Report of the Safety Assessment of Niacinamide and Niacin, National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Niacinamide and Niacin, Cosmetics Info

NIACINAMIDE || Skin Deep Cosmetics Database | EWG

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