If your skincare routine only consists of cleansing, moisturizing and putting on sunscreen—you may be missing out.
Adding a serum or an elixir to your daily skincare regimen not only gives your skin an extra shot of hydration but can also help address specific skincare concerns such as blemishes, redness, wrinkles and fine lines.
Unlike a regular moisturizer, serums feature a lipid-soluble base which allows the concentrated concoction of active ingredients to penetrate deeper into the skin barrier, making them more potent and effective. Similarly, a beauty elixir, which is typically thinner than a serum but heavier than a toner, is also a great hydrator that helps heal and nourish the skin. In addition, the multitasking product can also be used as a substitute for primer and foundation.
If you’re looking to buy one, here are some of the best serums and elixirs that will help you achieve the skin of dreams in no time:
Whal Myung Skin Elixir ($58)
This multitasking K-beauty star combines the goodness of toner, serum and face oil to simultaneously simplify your skincare regimen while nourishing and healing dull, dehydrated skin. Infused with hydration-boosting ingredients like argan oil, shea butter and squalane, this three-in-one elixir creates a finely structured moisture barrier, leaving your skin buttery soft, supple and glowing, all day long. Meanwhile, antioxidant-rich ingredients like ginger root extract help fight inflammation and counteract common signs of aging such as wrinkles and fine lines.
Ole Henriksen’s Truth Serum ($50)
Enriched with orange and green tea extracts, this cult-favorite Vitamin C serum stimulates collagen production, fights free radical damage, boosts youthful glow and improves the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. Its silky, oil-free formula quickly sinks deep into the skin while the sweet, citrusy aroma instantly energizes the senses.
Drunk Elephant’s T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum ($90)
Featuring a powerful blend of AHAs, virgin marula oil, salicylic acid and yeast extract, this fast-absorbing serum gently exfoliates and refines skin texture to reveal a more even, smoother and brighter complexion. While horse chestnut and white tea leaf extract help calm redness and inflammation. In addition, its formula is free from potential irritants such as fragrance, phthalates, sulfates, mineral oil, parabens and essential oils.
U.SK’s Precious Pearl & Caviar Elixir ($149)
This luxurious elixir by U.SK is infused with hydrolyzed pearl and caviar extract that help lighten blemishes and dark spots, slow the breakdown of elastin and collagen and repair the skin damage caused by sun exposure. Its lightweight, non-sticky formula absorbs quickly into the skin, imparting a dewy sheen. Plus, it has a delightfully decadent scent that lingers. The Precious Pearl & Caviar Elixir is one of the four gemstone-infused elixirs recently launched by the brand.
La Prairie’s Anti-Aging Rapid Response Booster ($272.90)
This splurge-worthy serum claims to improve skin texture and reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines in as little as two weeks and it actually delivers on that promise. The ultra-luxe serum boasts of a technologically advanced system that delivers the active ingredients where they are needed the most, making the anti-aging product more effective and fast-acting.
Eminence Organics’ Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Serum ($110)
Loaded with skin-nourishing superfoods like avocado, hyaluronic acid, botanical ferulic acid and citrus oils, this Vitamin-C rich serum offers both intense hydration and antioxidant protection to plump up the skin, soothe inflammation, repair free radical damage and boost radiance, among other things. Its non-irritating formula makes it safe for those with sensitive skin types as well.
Farsáli’s Rose Gold Elixir ($54)
There’s a reason why Farsali’s bestselling Rose Gold Elixir became such a huge hit on Instagram. This lightweight, non-greasy beauty oil features a potent concoction of 24K gold, rosehip seed oil, citrus oils and lush botanicals that provides intense hydration, firms up the skin and improves skin tone while the tiny gold flakes give the skin a natural, lit-from-within glow.
No. 7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum ($29.99)
Powered by Matrixyl 3000 Plus—a combination of the most potent form of Matrixyl Plus which is a next-generation peptide that works together to help restore more youthful skin—No.7’s clinically proven serum visibly softens the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and firms up the skin in just four weeks, keeping it looking younger for longer.
Monat’s C.Radiance Illuminating Serum ($95)
Monat’s glow-boosting daytime serum is infused with 15% vitamin C sourced from Kakadu plum, ferulic acid, niacinamide and hyaluronic acid to help strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier, evens out skin tone and shield it from environmental stressors. It also has licorice root extract which helps brighten the complexion and fade away blemishes, acne scars and dark spots.
Shani Darden’s Texture Reform ($95)
Formulated with a mild retinoid, lactic acid and niacinamide, Shani Darden’s Texture Reform serum helps promote cellular turnover for smoother skin, minimizes the appearance of fine lines and helps brighten and even skin tone. It also contains aloe and coffee extract to soothe and revitalize tired skin.