Our Top 5 Favorite Skincare Active Ingredients – Activist Collective

Our Top 5 Favorite Skincare Active Ingredients

Our Top 5 Favorite Skincare Active Ingredients

It’s no secret that we pride ourselves on using only the highest quality ingredients for our skincare products. We’re passionate about getting right to the cause of the most common skin issues, and we have something for every skin type and combination of complexion concerns in our library of almost 20 actives. Some are suited only for specific uses, while others do almost any skin type some good. Let us introduce you to our top 5 favorite active ingredients that can benefit almost everyone.

Vitamin C

Simply stated, vitamin C is an anti-aging superpower. It provides many anti-aging benefits including antioxidant protection, calming and soothing properties, and improving the look of uneven skintone.

Vitamin C comes in many forms, and we are very proud to use two forms of vitamin C whose effectiveness and safety is backed up by the latest research: magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (MAP) and sodium ascorbyl phosphate (SAP). MAP and SAP are well suited for those with sensitive skin because their effective concentration is lower than the most commonly used form of vitamin C, ascorbic acid.

Ascorbic acid has been proven to be unstable and potentially dangerous. When exposed to air, heat, and light, ascorbic acid oxidizes, eliminating its effectiveness on the skin and increasing the formation of free radicals. That’s why we choose to use MAP and SAP. Your skin automatically converts MAP and SAP to ascorbic acid, so you still get all the benefits, but with much less risk.

Niacinamide (Vitamin B3)

This “jack of all trades” ingredient is a very effective skin-restoring agent that offers multiple benefits for aging skin, including improving the appearance of enlarged pores, uneven skin tone, fine lines, dullness, and a weakened skin surface. Even more amazing? Niacinamide is highly stable around heat and light. This allows it to be included in our products without the use of stabilizing additives.

We love niacinamide because it is truly wonderful for all skin types, including sensitive skin. We use it for clients dealing with everything from acne to inflammation to advanced aging. No matter what your specific skin type is, niacinamide is often one of our best tools in combating your symptoms and concerns.

Licorice Root Extract

Licorice root is one of the oldest and most widely used medicinal herbs. Its use dates back to ancient times, and large quantities were found in King Tut’s tomb. Today, it is the most widely used herb in Chinese traditional medicine. So, how can it benefit your skin?

In skincare, it is mainly used due to one of its main components, glabridin. Glabridin is a potent antioxidant and skin-soothing ingredient, proven to be effective in treating damaged skin. We often use it for skin types characterized by redness and inflammation, including acne prone skin. Clients who have dark spots brought on by breakouts or sun exposure are also good candidates for licorice root extract.

Check out our previous blog post specifically detailing the benefits of licorice root extract here!


CoQ10 is found in all plants and animals, and is an essential component of skin cells. Cells use CoQ10 within the mitochondria, the energy center responsible for the cell’s metabolism, effective processing of nutrients, and expulsion of toxins.

Older skin and skin that has had a lot of UV exposure often lacks sufficient CoQ10 to provide skin with enough energy to effectively renew itself and expel toxins. That’s why we use this ingredient for many of our clients concerned with mature/aging skin, inflamed/irritated skin, or skin exposed to UV radiation and/or environmental toxins. Topical application of CoQ10 reduces, and even reverses, damage caused to the skin by the sun. Wrinkles subside, and skin cells and fibers are protected from further damage.

We use a botanical form of CoQ10, while other skincare companies may use synthetic CoQ10 that can cause an allergic reaction. No thank you!

Antioxidant Cocktail

Get ready...this is our favorite cocktail yet!

Our antioxidant cocktail is a custom blend of synergistic antioxidants that provide protection from UV rays and environmental toxins

Pomegranate Seed Oil is rich in antioxidants and fatty acids, including ellagic acid, punicic acid, palmitic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid, and linoleic acid.

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that can even absorb UV rays. It is also soothing and calming for inflamed and irritated skin.

Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) is a substance naturally found in our skin, but its concentration tends to decrease over time. Thus, older skin becomes lacking in this very important antioxidant. ALA is known as the “universal antioxidant” because it is so powerful that it makes other antioxidants more effective.

Lastly, we include four botanical extracts that are found in many common fruits and vegetables. Astaxanthin is a dark red antioxidant that is incredibly effective against free radicals — up to 1,000 times more effective than vitamin C! Lycopene, Lutein, and Beta Carotene provide antioxidant and UV-blocking capabilities and fight free radicals.

These botanical extracts are are highly pigmented, so they add color to the Antioxidant Cocktail. The presence of these compounds in healthy fruits and vegetables is one of the reasons for the advice "eat your colors."

Find the right ingredients for you

This is not to say that these 5 ingredients are better than the rest of the actives that we use. Depending on your unique skin type, one ingredient may work better for you than it does for someone else. That is why we encourage you to take our Free Skin Type Assessment and find out your personal results.

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