9 serums for your smoothest, brightest skin ever
Who ever said you needed a scrub to exfoliate?
By Carli Alman
Beauty Crew Editor / November 02 2017
When we think of exfoliating, a face scrub usually comes to mind. But thanks to the power of alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), you can now slough away those dead skin cells and reveal brighter, smoother skin without having to physically scrub them away.
Here are a few of our favourite exfoliating and clarifying serums to add to your skin care routine. Simply apply after cleansing and before moisturising, and you’ll be that much closer to smooth and glowing complexion
Rationale Catalyst Serum
Featuring a trio of AHAs (lactic, citric and malic), as well as a BHA (salicylic acid), the Rationale Catalyst Serum works to improve skin tone and texture, while unclogging pores and preventing breakouts. In a nutshell? It’s a must-have for those with acne-prone skin.
SkinCeuticals C + AHA
The combination of glycolic and lactic acids in this formula work on the surface of your skin to exfoliate away those dead skin cells that have left your complexion a little dull, while the addition of vitamin C ensures you’re left looking nothing short of bright and radiant. All while protecting your skin from the environmental elements that can age you, no less.
Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Correcting Serum
Eve Lom Time Retreat Radiance Boost Treatment
Naturally-derived AHAs work with encapsulated retinol to give a dull, tired looking complexion a one-two punch. The exfoliating ingredients in this Eve Lom Treatment will work to reveal brighter, smoother skin, while the retinol will tackle slow cell turnover, ensuring skin is left looking younger and more luminous.
Alpha-H Liquid Gold
While this cult product is technically more toner than serum, it can be included in your skin care routine at the same point, and the presence of glycolic acid is guaranteed to do all the exfoliating you could need. Simply wipe onto skin before bed and let the (good) tingling work its magic. For better results, you can skip the moisturiser after.
O Cosmedics Potent Clearing Serum
Formulated with both salicylic and lactic acids, as well as witch hazel, this clarifying serum will help tackle current and future breakouts, as well as congestion and even ingrown hairs and scarring. Just a heads up – avoid using this one with any other products that contain active ingredients. It may be a bit too much for your skin!
Sunday Riley Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Treatment
If you weren’t blessed with genetically amazing skin, then this treatment-meets-mask can certainly help you fake it. With lactic acid for exfoliation and licorice extract to increase skin plumpness and elasticity, this could very well be the secret skin weapon your routine has been missing.
The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2%
What’s that? You need a budget-friendly exfoliating solution? The Ordinary’s potent AHA formulation has both your skin and your bank balance covered. If you’re new to AHAs, then perhaps it’s best for you to start on the milder 5% version, and then work your way up to this one as your skin gets used to the exfoliation.
Elizabeth Arden PRO Perfection Facial Serum
This is the serum to invest in when you want to tackle both skin tone and texture, as well as lines and wrinkles. Formulated for mature problem-prone skin, this oil-free and lightweight serum harnesses the power of lactic and salicylic acids and an AHA retinoid conjugate to keep skin looking fresh, smooth and radiant.
Want to know more about chemical exfoliators and your skin? Find out why AHAs could be the secret to a glowing complexion
Do you have a favourite exfoliating treatment? Please share with us in the comments section below.
Image: Chris Jansen
Carli is BEAUTYcrew’s Editor and has been since the site launched in 2016. She is currently on a quest to find the perfect medium-coverage foundation for combination skin, is trying to narrow down her mascara collection to just three, and is embracing the power of AHAs. You can find her words right here on BEAUTYcrew, and previously on beautyheaven.