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Everything You Need to Know About Niacinamide

April 17, 2023

Picture this: you're scrolling through skincare products on your phone, getting more overwhelmed by the minute. You take a screenshot of one with niacinamide, THE hot ingredient, and send it to your beauty BFF (the one who somehow knows all the skincare lingo before anyone else does):

WTF is niacinamide?

Is it good? Do I need it? Will it solve my pore problems?


We’ll step in as your beauty BFF. And don’t worry—we won’t leave you on read.

Let’s get into everything you need to know about niacinamide, from what it is to its amazing skin-smoothing benefits.

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Niacinamide: The Quick Q & A

Whether you’re pore-obsessed or have a skincare vocabulary that consists of “soap” and “water,” you’ve come to the right place to learn all about the benefits of niacinamide for skin.

First, let’s save you some scrolling with at-a-glance answers to your questions. Then, we’ll dive into the more detailed ins and outs of niacinamide.

  • What is niacinamide? Niacinamide is a form of Vitamin B3.
  • What does it do for skin? Niacinamide is a popular ingredient for pores. It can help visibly smooth skin and minimize the look of pores.
  • How do I get the most out of niacinamide? To get the most out of niacinamide for your skin, use a moisturizer that contains niacinamide, apply your niacinamide consistently, and choose products that contain niacinamide PLUS other pore-loving ingredients.

Keep reading for the in-depth scoop on niacinamide.

What is Niacinamide?

It's a vitamin! Niacinamide is a type of vitamin B3. There are 8 B vitamins that support various aspects of your overall health, from your nervous system to digestive functions. But we know what you’re here for—Vitamin B3 has benefits for skin (don’t worry, we’ll get into that next).

Fun Fact:

Your body’s no stranger to this vitamin—in fact, our bodies can generate their own niacinamide!

3 Benefits of Niacinamide for Skin

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So, what does niacinamide do for your skin? A lot!

#1 Minimizes the Appearance of Pores

Let’s talk about PORES.

You got ‘em. We got ‘em...but what are they, really? They’re tiny openings all over your skin that allow your whole dermal system to function healthily. When pores are visible to the naked eye, they can look like tiny little black dots all over your skin. Which, we know, isn’t exactly ideal.

Here’s the thing: You can’t change the actual size of your pores. Pore size is determined by various factors that are kinda out of our control, like genetics. But you can make them look smaller, especially with products that help minimize oil production.

Enter: niacinamide for pores. Niacinamide can help reduce oil on the surface of your skin. Less oil means pores look smaller (which is one reason we LOVE this ingredient).

Our skin produces sebum, a natural oil that keeps our skin healthy. But when your skin produces too much oil, that oil can get caught in your pores, trapping dirt and impurities in there with it. When that oil, gunk, and grime build up it can make the pore look bigger by “stretching out” its appearance.

Metaphor time: Think about your favorite cloth tote bag—when it’s empty, it looks trim, tight, and tidy. But when you load it up with stuff, the bag looks a lot bigger and more stretched out. That cute lil tote is still the same size as it was before; it just looks bigger because you’ve filled it up. This same rule goes for your pores!

When your skin has less oil, your pores can look smaller. Using niacinamide can reduce the oil on your skin, which then can help visibly reduce the look of pores.

#2 Helps Retain Moisture

Niacinamide can also help reduce water loss in the skin, which is a HUGE win, (especially if you’re wondering about niacinamide for dry skin). When our skin can more easily retain water, it feels healthy and moisturized. So, the more water our skin can retain, the better!

Skin scientists believe that niacinamide may help the skin’s natural water and oil barrier work more efficiently, locking in moisture for skin that looks and feels hydrated.

#3 Helps Skin Look Smoother

The mighty niacinamide combines its powers of oil reduction and moisturization to do even more for your skin. Specifically, niacinamide can help skin feel and look smoother.

Here’s how this smooth operator, well, operates:

  • Less oil means more smoothness: Pores clogged by oil can create bumps. Recap—skin naturally creates its own oil, called sebum. That oil can fall into pores, trapping grime and gunk along the way. A build-up of oil and impurities can create clogs, resulting in uneven texture, bigger-looking pores, and roughness. So, when your skin produces less oil, skin can end up looking and feeling smoother. Because niacinamide can help reduce surface oil on your skin, this can also help reduce the lumps and bumps of clogs.
  • Moisturized skin means smoother skin: Dry skin can also make our pores look uneven and our skin feel rough. Niacinamide can help our skin retain moisture and give our pores an oh-so-smooth look and feel.

How To Get the Most Out of Niacinamide

"Wow, I’m sold on niacinamide. What next?”

We’re so glad you asked.

Here are our best niacinamide tips to help you maximize the effects of this super-powered ingredient:

  • Use a face moisturizer with niacinamide: Having niacinamide in your moisturizer is a major boost (kinda like getting an extra shot of espresso in your latte). Because of its moisture retention superpowers, niacinamide helps your moisturizer do what it’s supposed to do, (but even better in our opinion!). That’s why we love love looooove our hydrating moisturizer, The POREfessional Smooth Sip lightweight smoothing moisturizer for pores (which contains our star ingredient, niacinamide!)
  • Keep it consistent: Your skin loves consistency. When you stick with a pore routine that includes niacinamide, you’ll see the benefits over time.

Smooth Sip Moisturizer

Pore Pro Tip: Try The POREfessional Smooth Sip Moisturizer

Okay, we’re not not going to brag about our superstar smoothing moisturizer.

The POREfessional Smooth Sip is a beautifully bouncy, lightweight gel-cream moisturizer that gives you 12 hours* of hydration and helps improve skin texture. It’s packed with pore-loving ingredients, including:

  • Niacinamide (you know, the thing you’re an expert on now!), which helps smooth the look of pores
  • Celery & flax seed extracts, which help visibly improve skin texture & refine the look of pores
  • Squalane & aloe leaf juice, which contribute to maintaining hydration

And these ingredients go to WORK (we checked).

After one use of The POREfessional Smooth Sip...

  • 99% of study participants said skin is soft **
  • 99% of study participants said skin is smooth**
  • 99% of study participants said skin feels nourished**

After 1 month of use...

  • 99% said skin is smooth***
  • 85% said it visibly smooths pores***
  • 96% said skin texture looks more even***

Just apply to a clean face and neck in the morning and in the evening after you cleanse and tone.

*instrumental test on 30 participants

**self-evaluation by 115 participants after 1 use

***self-evaluation by 115 participants after 1 month

We’re Benefit. Of Course We Have Pore Care Solutions.

With award-winning Pore Care products and 5,000+ trained and trusted Pore Experts globally, Benefit’s got your back (and your pores, of course). Because when you do more for your pores, you’ll see more from your skin.

Check out our pore resources to learn more!


Cleveland Clinic. (2023, November 27). Top 6 Benefits of Niacinamide.

Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2023, August 10). 6 Benefits of Niacinamide. Mayo Clinic.

Shaw, S. (2022, October 19). What is niacinamide? experts explain the benefits of the anti-aging skin care ingredient. CNN.