Whether you’re someone with a 10 step skincare routine or like to keep it simple, face serums are one product you shouldn’t overlook. If I’m being honest, I myself didn’t realize the importance of serums until a few years ago. I always just thought my cleansers, moisturizers and occasional face masks were enough. Clearly I couldn’t be further from the truth. Once I hit my mid-20s I started noticing changes in my skin that my current routine just wasn’t solving. That’s when I started getting more into skin care and discovered the magical powers of face serums.
Fast forward to today and I can’t see my skincare routine existing without serums. It’s a crucial step that can target specific concerns to enhance your skincare. But with so many face serums out on the market it’s not always easy to find the right one for your skin needs. Anti-aging, hydrating, firming… where do you even start?
What To Look For In Face Serums
The first thing to consider when looking for face serums is what skin concerns you’re looking to treat. There are all types of serums that work to improve a variety of issues. Some serums are single ingredient formulas like a hyaluronic acid while others combine multiple key ingredients. You also might want one serum for the morning and another for night, which isn’t uncommon. Whatever formulas you’re looking for it’s important when it comes to skincare that you look for products with clean ingredients. There are a lot of products (both luxury and drugstore) out there that use filler ingredients or other things that aren’t great for your skin. So always keep that in mind when purchasing any skincare product.
Another thing to keep in mind when looking for face serums is finding products within your budget. I for one am someone who believes in investing in your skin. So I often times opt for higher end skincare products. But a high price tag doesn’t necessarily equate to good quality. There are so many high end skincare brands out there (I won’t name names) that have low amounts of key ingredients paired with petroleum jelly. In contrast, I’ve found extremely affordable skincare products that work better then the “best names” in cosmetics.
Finding the right face serums for you might require a bit of research. If that’s not your thing you can easily book a consultation with a dermatologist or esthetician to get recommendations.
How Do You Apply Face Serums?
As a rule of thumb, you should always apply your skincare products in order of consistency from thin to thick. Face serums generally go on post-cleansing before your moisturizers. If you’re someone who’s into a multi-step routine, your serum will go on after you’ve cleansed, toned and applied an essence, before your eye creams and moisturizers. In the case you’re like me and layer your serums, apply them from clearest to opaque waiting for each serum to be fully absorbed before going to the next. When applying a serum never rub them in, instead pat it onto the skin gently to help with absorption.
How Often Should You Use Face Serums?
If you’re really looking to build the best skincare routine you should be using serums daily, as often as you do your skincare. Which is hopefully at least twice a day. You can also rotate your serums based on your skins needs and the time of day you’re applying them.
Face Serums That Really Work
As a self-proclaimed skincare enthusiast I’ve tried a lot of products, and serums are no exception. I’ve taken all the serums I’ve tried in the past and come up with a list of ones that I not only still use but find they really work.
1. Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum
Not only is this serum one of my all time favourites, it’s also a Caudalie cult favourite. The Vinoperfect Radiance Serum is a milky formula that brightens your complexion and evens skin-tone. Brightening serums usually include Vitamin C, a holy grail for skin care. But just as wonderful as it is, some have sensitivities to this powerhouse ingredient. So for those looking for an alternative Caudalie’s Vinoperfect Radiance Serum uses their patented Viniferine, which is more effective than Vitamin C at evening out complexions and boosting radiance.
Shop: Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Serum, $89
2. Neostrata Tri-Therapy Lifting Serum
At my age, it’s all about preventative skincare to hold onto every bit of my youth that I can. I’ve recently begun to include firming products into my routine like Neostrata’s Tri-Therapy Lifting Serum. Within the first use I immediately noticed my skin looked plump, hydrated and firm thanks to hyaluronic acid and AMINOFIL™ which works to volumizes the look of skin.
Shop: Neostrata Tri-Therapy Lifting Serum, $130 available at Shopper’s Drug Mart
3. AmorePacific Dual Nourishing Lip Serum
Lip serums aren’t as popular but just as effective and recommended as their facial counterparts. I’m guilty of not using them until AmorePacific sent me their Dual Nourishing Lip Serum a while ago. It’s since been a staple within my routine. It’s infused with green tea essence and green tea seed oil that instantly moisturizes and nourishes lips.
Shop: AmorePacific Dual Nourishing Lip Serum, $54 available at Nordstrom
4. The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
The Ordinary is that skincare brand that proves quality products don’t need to cost an arm and a leg. So when I was looking for a serum to help with breakouts and skin congestion I immediately turned to the highly recommended Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% serum. I stumbled upon this serum after reading reviews of people who said this helped them with their maskne, breakouts caused by wearing masks. After just a week of use I noticed a huge difference when it came to breakouts. Disclaimer: when applying tit don’t rub it excessively, because of the Zinc it can turn a bit chalky leaving a white residue.
Shop: The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, $10.60
5. Omorovicza Oxygen Booster
Another one of my favourite names in skincare is Hungarian brand Omorovicza (pronounced o-mor-o-veet-sa). Their Oxygen Booster is probably one of my many favourites from them. When you need to revive dull, tired looking skin it’s a great serum to turn too. I buy this to add to my serums as an enhancer on mornings when I need the boost, but you can also use this serum on it’s own.
Shop: Omorovicza Oxygen Booster, $86.50
6. Tan-Luxe Super Glow Hyaluronic Self-Tan Serum
I’m a big lover of self-tanning products, specifically anything from Tan-Luxe. So when they launched a self tanner with skincare ingredients in it back in 2019, I knew I had to try it. Tan-Luxe’s Super Glow Hyaluronic Self-Tan Serum is a hyaluronic acid based serum that not only tans your skin but nourishes it for a healthy glow inside and out. You can use it to gradually build a tan or a full self-tan session depending on how much you apply at a time.
Shop: Tan-Luxe Super Glow Hyaluronic Self-Tan Serum, $64 available at Sephora
7. Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Serum Concentrate
Shiseido is a powerhouse in the skincare world and their Ultimune Power Infusing Serum Concentrate demonstrates that. It’s one of the serums that provides a wide range of benefits within one product, great for those looking for a simple skincare routine. Reishi mushroom and iris root extracts work to firm, hydrate and strengthen skin while protecting it from daily damage.
Shop: Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Serum Concentrate, $130 available at Hudson’s Bay
* This post was put together using inspiration from items that were gifted to me by brands, however is not directly sponsored. My recommendation and feedback on these products and my overall experience is 100% honest and authentic as always. To learn more about my sponsored content, please visit my about me page.