The Best Serums I’ve Ever Tried
Michela Marra | Friday March 16th 2018
The market currently offers a lot of solutions to fight free radicals, preventing wrinkles and eliminating imperfections. Choosing the right one can be quite challenging, since you may not be able to test every product that is available. As I sit here writing, I have more than 12 serums lined up on my vanity table (I contacted each brand before writing this article): from hydrating serums to anti-age serums, to one you apply before your cream to give skin a matte finish (in other words, it fights shine which, anyone with combination skin like mine will confirm is a real enemy). You name it, I’ve got it. Honestly, I’ve tried everything. But the truth, Pretty Birds, is that it is impossible to use one product that is perfect all year round. Seasons change and, consequently, our skin’s needs change accordingly.
For example, now it’s March, and here in Milan it’s still cold so I’m still using rich creams and serums. But when spring arrives, I’ll switch to products that have a lighter texture, preferably in gel form. The one thing I am sure of, however, is that I won’t stop using a serum as part of my beauty routine – and not only because I like the feel of serums. “Thanks to their particular structure, serums”, says dermatologist Adele Sparavigna, “allow for the product’s active ingredients to penetrate more deeply with respect to regular treatments.” If you pair your serum with a cream, it will be eight times as effective as using only a cream would. Are you still convinced you can live without a serum?
Here are three products I love and recommend and that are suitable for all skin types, from normal to combination skin, to skin that needs a hydration boost (the secret is choosing the right cream to pair it with).
And the winner is…
La Mer The Revitalizing Hydrating Serum
You’ll find information on this serum everywhere. Ok, it is an extremely expensive product — and I was pretty skeptical at first — but then I started using it every day and it truly made a difference. Instantly my skin was smooth and moisturized, so this product did exactly what it promised to do.
Technical notes about the product: like all La Mer products, it contains Miracle Broth™, a revitalizing ingredient derived from the sea, while Lime Tea Concentrate exerts an antioxidant action. It also contains Deep Hydration Ferment, an interactive blend of green, brown and red algae which penetrates deeply to fill the skin. It does this by providing hydration from the inside, moving outwards thanks to the action of AQUAPORIN channels which balance the skin’s water. Deconstructed WatersTM lead the enzyme deep within the skin thus drawing and keeping hydration throughout the day. Meanwhile the Youth Activating Ferment — developed using a blend of active ingredients derived from the sea — recharges skin making it appear lively immediately.
The extra tip: if you are in a rush, try adding it to your foundation for results that are even more glowing.
Vichy Idéalia Serum
I adore every product produced by this brand, including its sunscreens. It is also fairs well in terms of value for money. In the past, Vichy Liftactiv Serum 10 Supreme had won me over, so I was very curious to try this new product (NB: this product existed previously but its formula has since been redeveloped) which I really appreciated because it truly improves skin’s brightness.
Technical notes about the product: it contains liquorice root, a brightening extract along with antioxidant Citrus Flavonoids, Adenosine, which is regenerating, and Vichy Thermal Mineral Water which ensures skin will be hydrated for 24 hours.
The extra tip: use it along with the cream (available in two versions: one for oily skin, one for dry skin). Another product from the same line that passed our test with flying colors is the Peel which is to be applied to skin before the night treatment.
Bakel Lactobionic Anti-Age Serum
I adore this serum because of its texture: it is a super pleasant gel that is easy to apply. It is the newest product to become a part of my skincare routine and has quickly become a must. I actually love all Bakel products for a very simple reason: they are highly effective, rich in active ingredients and don’t contain anything that could harm my skin (plus, they are vegan).
Technical notes about the product: it contains Lactobionic acid, a substance with highly effective anti ageing properties and it is also an antioxidant able to increase skin’s tightness. It contains gluconolactone, which offers valid protection against photo-ageing and is also active in preventing sun spots and helps tone skin. Finally, this product contains vegetable glicerine which nourishes.
The extra tip: if you don’t have problem skin or skin that is particularly sensitive, you can use this product on its own followed by a primer (my favorite? L’Original Skin™ Pore Perfecting Cooling Primer with Willowherb).