If there’s one step in our daily skin-care regimens that we dare not skip, it’s applying serum. Serums are the best way to deliver a highly concentrated, potent dose of active ingredients to the skin. Whether it’s antioxidants, hyaluronic acid, peptides, botanical agents, or any number of other ingredients, serums are able to carry smaller molecules deep into the skin, where they exert the most benefit.
“The main reason serums are able to do this is because of what they do not contain,” says Kenneth Howe, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. “In contrast to moisturizers, serums don’t contain air-tight, occlusive ingredients, which allow them to penetrate more deeply into the epidermis, carrying their active ingredients with them.”
Another reason why serums are a mainstay for skin-care novices and lovers alike? The good ‘ol feel factor. “Serums are the new moisturizers,” New York City-based board-certified dermatologist Ellen Marmur tells Allure. “They are perfect for layering — like a primer on clean skin before makeup or sunscreen.”
Luckily, there’s a world of serum options out there, including vitamin C-based varieties and thirst-quenching formulas infused with hyaluronic acid, to suit whatever your skin type and concerns may be. In fact, we’ve got 34 of them below, so keep scrolling to find your new favorite.
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