If you’re just getting into skincare, the sheer variety of products can be a bit intimidating. Moisturisers are a classic, and cleansers just make sense. But there are others that can seem a little mysterious, like serums. Though they’ve been around a while, they popped into mainstream beauty a few years ago, leaving many questioning what exactly they were, and whether they should invest in one. In case that isn’t confusing enough, there are now so many types of serum that it can be difficult to know which one to pick - so we’ve come up with a few guidelines!
First up: what exactly is a serum?
Often boasting moisturising properties, it’s easy to assume that you can skip it, and just use a moisturiser instead. However, while moisturisers tend to contain thick, nourishing ingredients, their viscosity means they often end up sitting on the top layers of the skin. This isn’t bad - our skin absolutely needs caring ingredients there. However, it does mean that ingredients that could be of use deeper down in the skin don’t reach their target. Enter serums: usually water-based, and with a thinner, gel-like consistency, serums contain a potent blend of ingredients designed to sink deep into skin, nourishing from the inside. Because they’re so packed with active ingredients, you only need a tiny amount to see benefits. They can be used instead of a moisturiser, but we recommend using them in conjunction with one that suits your skin type - moisturisers still play an essential part in reinforcing the skin barrier, as well as all the other benefits they confer.
The easiest way to start choosing a serum is to think about the type of skin you have, and what you want that serum to do. If your skin is ultra dry, and you need a boost of moisture, look for a serum containing a humectant.
Hyaluronic acid has been all the rage recently, and it’s easy to see why: granting skin long-lasting moisture without greasiness means that it’s great for all skin types. Our Organic Hyaluronic Acid Serum makes it the star ingredient, and is especially formulated for dry, damaged skin. It utilises lower molecular weight hyaluronic acid, which penetrates deep into the skin for sustained hydration. It can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water, and it draws moisture deep into the lower levels of the skin, giving you a plumped, hydrated glow. It also boosts collagen production, so skin is repaired and its elasticity is boosted. Meanwhile, this serum also contains pomegranate extract, which regulates cell turnover, strengthening the skin’s barrier which reduces water loss. We recommend topping this serum with our Multi Peptide 360 Moisture Cream if your skin is really dehydrated, or our Daily Renew Facial Cream if you were just hoping the serum would add a boost of moisture to your routine.
For those with oily and combination skin, it can be daunting adding a new product to your routine. Serums can be a great benefit to these skin types, though: their deep penetration means that ingredients don’t sit on the surface of the skin, and they often leave skin matte after application. This can be enhanced with clever ingredient choices: our Blemish Rescue Blemish Serum contains a blend of acai and copaiba, which reduces sebum production. Skin becomes less oily over time, and any current blemishes are calmed. Meanwhile, willow bark gently exfoliates skin as a natural source of salicylic acid, leaving skin rejuvenated, clear, and smooth. If you’re concerned about oil, this is a great one to combine with our newest launch, True Balance Lotion, which uses avocado extract amongst a variety of other ingredients to keep skin looking matte but feeling quenched.
So, what about those who are not sure about their skin type, have normal skin, or suffer from either oily or dry skin, but feel their current moisturisers have it under control? Yes, they too can benefit from using a serum: something multitasking, that targets everyday stresses our skin faces, is a great preventative measure against future damage. Our Superfood 360 Natural Face Serum is based on our Age Smarter 360 concept: actively looking after the skin at every life stage. This serum makes use of cacay oil, which is packed with bio retinol and linoleic acid, which support the epidermis, trapping moisture in the skin. Meanwhile, maca and Sacha Inchi peptides reduce the appearance of wrinkles, smoothing the skin and leaving your face radiant and glowing. Team with your favourite moisturiser for an all-round skin boost!
Because they typically sink in to skin so quickly, serums are fantastic to use at any time of day. They won’t leave your face slick, so can be absorbed and layered with your favourite night- or daytime moisturiser, adding just seconds to your skincare routine. It may be speedy, but we promise you’ll notice the difference!