What Is A Serum And Why Do You Need It?
Let’s get serious about serums! Serums are catching up with moisturisers and cleansers as the new skin care must-haves. Surely you’ve seen them around, but perhaps the question remains: what is serum exactly and why do I need one? Between oils, essences, serums, moisturisers, and every other step in your skincare routine it’s hard to keep straight what’s essential from what’s trending. Ultra-lightweight and typically water-based liquids, serums deliver a concentrated dose of active ingredients that target specific skin care concerns. They are the cocktails of the beauty world crafted to suit your skin needs and the metaphorical supplemental booster to your skincare routine smoothie that you never knew you were missing until you tried it.
What Are Serums?
Unlike your facial oil or day and night moisturizers, the best serums are usually formulated without emollients, which means they’re able to absorb more deeply and easily into your skin instead of sitting on the surface. This doesn’t mean your oils and lotions aren’t doing their job—you still need them to form a protective barrier of hydration and seal in the nutritional benefits of your beauty regimen. Like a shot of concentrated nutrients, actives in serums contain molecules small enough to penetrate the outer layer of the skin and deliver intensive doses of collagen builders, antioxidants, and anti-aging ingredients deeper into the epidermis.
Once you’ve found your skin-boosting serum soul mate, working it into your existing skincare routine correctly is key to reaping the full benefits of its active-charged powers. Working through products from the lightest to the heaviest consistency is a good rule of thumb. This means serums fall after cleansing, exfoliating, and toning but before oils and moisturisers. Make sure you give them enough time to really soak in before locking in with a moisturiser. Remember, serums are highly concentrated and a little goes a very long way.
How To Choose The Perfect Serum?
What makes them such a brilliant addition to your skincare routine is that you can tailor your serum to your skin concerns. How do you know which one is the best face serum for you? If acne is your main concern, be on the lookout for ingredients like salicylic acid and willow bark extract. Things like peptides, glycolic acid, and hyaluronic acid are key ingredients in anti-aging serums. Hyaluronic acid should also be on your radar if you’re skin is constantly dehydrated because it’s a naturally occurring moisture magnet that helps strengthen your skin’s moisture barrier. For those concerned with hyperpigmentation or dull skin tones, try a serum high in vitamin C, an effective skin brightener that can help reduce the appearance of discolouration.
1) To Moisturise Dry Skin
Dry skin? Not only can it make you feel self-conscious, it can be itchy and uncomfortable. You might also find that regular skin care products don’t provide you with as much hydration as you require. Luckily, there are plenty of ‘dry skin’ serums specifically designed to impart long-lasting moisture. The texture of serum is thinner than regular moisturisers which enables it to permeate the skin’s surface and reach layers that thicker liquids can’t. For this reason, a little serum can have a powerful impact when soothing and softening your skin from the inside out.
2) To Brighten Dull Skin
Dull, lacklustre skin can bring down the best of moods. Innovative brightening serums are becoming increasingly popular and affordable. Just a dash of product across the cheekbones and T-Zone can give you the boost you’ve been searching for. Many brightening serums use miracle ingredient, retinol, in a bid to accelerate cell renewal and reveal fresh, brightened skin. When applied correctly, you’ll look as if you’ve had 12 hours of beauty sleep even if in reality you’ve only had five!
3) To Battle Troubled Skin
Acne, eczema, dermatitis are all classed as ‘troubled skin’. These conditions can damage your confidence and lead to skin scarring if not correctly treated. The skin-loving benefits of glycerin, Vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and panthenol are activated in the formulas of many serums for blemished skin. As well as treating troubled skin and reducing the appearance of imperfections, these serums strengthen the skin barrier to make it more resilient in future. The beauty of serum for troubled skin is that it’s non-sticky and won’t clog your pores or further irritate the skin’s surface. Blemished skin, be gone! Did you know that there are specific serums for acne-prone skin? Despite what you might think, adding a liquid to the skin doesn’t necessarily make it greasy. Serums by nature are concentrated products and, in the case of serums for acne-prone skin, they’re packed with spot-fighting ingredients. Keep an eye out for products including glycolic acid. While it’s used in many skin care creams, it’s better equipped to reach the cells thanks to the lightweight texture of serum.
4) To Turn Back Time
To tackle fine lines and wrinkles, look no further than anti-ageing serum. Achieving that ‘lit-from-within’ glow, these products have been taking the market by storm. Many beauty experts are even calling serum the highest concentration of ingredients available without a prescription. They work by boosting collagen production with highly-concentrated active ingredients like Vitamin C and antioxidants. Increased collagen production can plump fine lines to reduce their appearance while giving ageing skin an overall refresh. Look out for anti-ageing serums that include hyaluronic acid as this has been tipped the youthful elixir of the moment.
Face serums are having a serious moment, and we really hope they stick because these potent potions get serious results. Whatever your skin craves the most—moisture, blemish-fighters, youth-renewers—there’s a serum (even eye serum!) for it at Sephora. Shop online today to find yours!