Woman applying face serum to her cheek

(© Drobot Dean - stock.adobe.com)

The best face serums are carefully formulated to address specific skincare concerns, such as fine lines, uneven tone, and hydration. They typically contain potent active ingredients like hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, and retinol to promote a healthier complexion. Finding the right serum for your skin type and concerns can lead to significant improvements in overall skin texture and appearance. Investing in the best face serum and adding a little extra care to your routine can protect your skin from damage and stave off the effects of aging.

Serum is typically applied after cleansing and before moisturizer. A serum is meant to target your skin’s individual needs and lock in whatever products you place over it. You should choose a serum according to your desired goals. Need more moisture? Try a serum with hyaluronic acid. Looking to improve pigmentation or ward off aging? A vitamin C serum might work for you. Actives such as lactic acid or glycolic acid are great for improving texture.

As a consumer, you have no shortage of products to choose from, all promising you better skin. This can be a blessing or a curse. You might be overwhelmed trying to decide what to try. When it comes to skincare, it’s important to pay attention to the active ingredients in each product. Besides reading reviews, research each ingredient and learn what impact each has on skin.

To give you a starting point, StudyFinds has put together a list of the best face serums. Our list is comprised of the most commonly recommended products across 10 expert websites. Already have a go-to? Let us know what face serum you use in the comments below!

Someone holding a bottle of serum
Someone holding a bottle of serum (Photo by Mathilde Langevin on Unsplash)

The List: Best Face Serum, According to Skin Experts


1. SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic Serum

This serum was the top recommended across more than 50 percent of our found sources. With vitamin C, ferulic acid, and vitamin E, it has been clinically proven to reduce oxidative skin damage and contains powerhouse ingredients. “There’s a reason why SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic tends to land at the top of most lists (including our very own Best Beauty Buys list) — it works,” writes InStyle. “Albeit pricey, beauty editors, dermatologists, and skincare enthusiasts alike have deemed it worthy of investment.” 

Skinceuticals C E Ferulic Serum
Skinceuticals C E Ferulic Serum (skinceuticals.com)

Vitamin C is an essential in skincare known to help reduce signs of aging, while vitamin E and ferulic acid brighten skin, in a formula effective for up to 72 hours. “As its name suggests, this Allure Readers’ Choice Award-winning elixir is formulated with a potent trifecta of antioxidants including vitamins C, E, and ferulic acid to brighten your complexion, reduce discoloration and the appearance of fine lines, and improve firmness all at once,” adds Allure.

2. SkinMedica TNS Advanced+ Serum

Targeting mature skin, this serum is known to reduce the appearance of texture and wrinkles, while promoting elasticity to prevent further fine lines. “The formula packs science-backed ingredients that work to soften fine lines and wrinkles, smooth your skin’s texture, and treat skin laxity. Clinical studies support the product’s efficacy, so you know it’s worth the investment,” says Women’s Wear Daily.

SkinMedica TNS Advanced+ Serum
SkinMedica TNS Advanced+ Serum

The serum provides visible results in as little as 2 weeks, and can be incorporated into any skincare routine, not just for mature skin. “This dermatologist favorite is formulated with a potent blend of growth factors to help smooth and reduce appearance of fine lines and wrinkles,” notes Marie Claire. “While it is ideal for more mature skin types, we’re a firm believer that it’s a worthwhile addition for anyone’s skincare routine.”

3. L’Oreal Paris RevitaLift Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum

Hyaluronic acid is the unsung hero of moisturizing serums. Layer this serum under your moisturizer on damp skin and get extra hydration. “You’ve got a potent hyaluronic acid formula here—there’s 1.5% pure HA to be exact. It works to deeply hydrate the face and lock moisture in, leading to plumper and firmer skin,” writes Who What Wear.

L’Oreal Paris RevitaLift Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum
L’Oreal Paris RevitaLift Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum

This ingredient works by attracting and bonding to water molecules, increasing water content in the skin. “Not only does this hyaluronic acid serum rehydrate thirsty skin to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, but it also helps boost radiance with vitamin C,” says Elle. “Your skin should feel tighter with a nice youthful glow.”

4. Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum

Sleep is for rest and recovery, and this applies to your skin too! Give your skin the nutrients it needs to repair any damage overnight. “Advanced Night Repair is a face serum developed by Estée Lauder over thirty years ago. This product is credited with being the industry’s first serum,” writes The Derm Review. “The concept behind Night Repair is that the best time to repair and heal the skin is while you sleep.”

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum
Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum

The key ingredients in this serum include peptides, bifida ferment lysate, and sodium hyaluronate, which help to moisturize, repair, and restore the skin’s natural microbiome. “Infused with hyaluronic acid, this anti-aging treatment takes advantage of your skin’s natural nighttime renewal process using the brand’s trademarked Chronolux Power Signal Technology that helps increase skin’s natural ability for visible self-repair,” mentions Derm Store.

5. La Roche-Posay Retinol Face Serum

Retinol is a key-anti-aging ingredient that increases cell production and unclogs pores, resulting in better skin texture. “As the name suggests, it contains retinol, which is the undisputed champion of leveling out skin texture and tone and bringing back lost bounce,” explains Stylist

La Roche-Posay Retinol Face Serum
La Roche-Posay Retinol Face Serum

The key thing to remember is that retinol can often be very drying, so make sure to add extra moisture to your skincare routine when using retinol. “This anti-aging serum is oil-free, non-comedogenic and paraben-free, and is ideal for anyone who wants to treat the visible signs of aging like lines, wrinkles and sun damage,” says Today.

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This post may contain affiliate links. 

About Elsa Lee

Elsa is a freelance journalist, copywriter, and marketer based out of the Los Angeles area. She has been writing for 7 years.

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StudyFinds publishes digestible, agenda-free, transparent research summaries that are intended to inform the reader as well as stir civil, educated debate. We do not agree nor disagree with any of the studies we post, rather, we encourage our readers to debate the veracity of the findings themselves. All articles published on StudyFinds are vetted by our editors prior to publication and include links back to the source or corresponding journal article, if possible.

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  1. Lynda says:

    Hello! I would like to know , which powerhouse facial serum is non comedogenic. I’m having troubles finding any skincare that is. Some say they are on their sites, but, intact is not always the case once you get them. My Derm says that products that truly are non comedogenic, they would advertise clearly, as it is important and widely requested. Do you agree. Also, above questions please.

  2. Christine says:

    Would like to use these products, whjch stores are they found in Kenya?