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Background. In multiple chronic clinical studies, topical niacinamide (vitamin B3) has been observed to be well tolerated by skin and to provide a broad array of improvements in the appearance of aging facial skin (eg, reduction in the appearance of hyperpigmentated spots and red blotchiness).

Objective. To clinically determine the effect of topical niacinamide on additional skin appearance and property end points (wrinkles, yellowing, and elasticity).

Methods. Female white subjects (N = 50) with clinical signs of facial photoaging (fine lines and wrinkles, poor texture, and hyperpigmented spots) applied 5% niacinamide to half of the face and its vehicle control to the other half twice daily for 12 weeks (double blind, left-right randomized). Facial images and instrumental measures were obtained at baseline and at 4-week intervals.

Results. Analyses of the data revealed a variety of significant skin appearance improvement effects for topical niacinamide: reductions in fine lines and wrinkles, hyperpigmented spots, red blotchiness, and skin sallowness (yellowing). In addition, elasticity (as measured via cutometry) was improved. Corresponding mechanistic information is presented.

Conclusion. In addition to previously observed benefits for topical niacinamide, additional effects were identified (improved appearance of skin wrinkles and yellowing and improved elasticity).

ALL OF THE AUTHORS ARE EMPLOYED BY THE PROCTER & GAMBLE COMPANY, WHICH FUNDED THIS STUDY.