I really wanted to love niacinamide (AKA vitamin B3) from the start - it treats enlarged pores, fine lines, dullness, skin weakness, and it's now sitting front and centre in a lot of serums and boosters.
Aside from Good Molecules, the most recent product I dabbled in was the polarising Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% - a dropper-bottle clear serum with a slightly sticky feel.
The problem was, every time I tried it, I'd get small bumps/blemishes, I disliked the feel of it on my skin and overall where I thought I would see refined pores and texture, I felt I had just slightly irritated the area. And I'm not the only one - when I say polarising, I mean it.
If you jump onto some of the skincare threads on Reddit, The Ordinary's product is hailed as a skin saviour by some and a breakout in a bottle by others. I don't normally take anecdotal advice regarding a product - you can find just about every opinion under the sun for anything on the market - but it didn't make sense with a science-backed ingredient that has so much good to do (and from a brand that is so mindful about its formulations!)
Long story short, when I noticed the Good Molecules (an offering from Beautylish of active, skin-beneficial ingredients and reasonable prices) I was curious about this toner specifically. I actually ordered both this 120ML bottle (retailing at $14 US), along with the Niacinamide Serum, but this toner is for sure the standout of the two.
What I like about it is the fact that it's a toner - more viscous than water for sure - but the kind of product you can load up onto a cotton round and swipe over your skin without feeling any product sitting on your skin waiting to absorb.
I also like the inclusion of Vitamin C here, which is a gentle dose and great in combination with your SPF, along with other soothing ingredients - for the most part, aside from those with really sensitive or sensitised skin (just because of the vitamin C here), it's a really refreshing toner and ideal for those who cringe at the thought of a heavy serum.
I hope we can get to the bottom of why some niacinamide products cause such adverse reactions (because it's unlikely this many people have a genuine allergy to this ingredient), but if you've had a bad time with some of these types of serums, this form of B3 is in a league of its own.