Natural Beauty

What Are Beauty Serums? 6 Healing Face Serums

These potent formulas can work wonders on your skin.

How are beauty serums different from moisturizers?

Take the time to add a serum to your skincare routine, and you will see results. Concentrated serums target your main skin concerns, delivering potent ingredients that penetrate deeper than moisturizers. Unlike moisturizers that sit on the surface, serums are formulated with smaller molecules, so they are easily absorbed. In fact, a few drops of serum applied 3–5 minutes before a moisturizer can actually improve the absorption of your moisturizer.

Did You Know?

A few drops of serum applied 3–5 minutes before a moisturizer can improve the absorption of your moisturizer.

Formulas vary, but most serums are designed to smooth, soften, and hydrate skin, which diminishes wrinkles and fine lines. They may also brighten your skin tone and fade discoloration. Or they may firm skin, boost collagen, soothe irritation, or stimulate circulation for a natural glow.

What ingredients do beauty serums have?

Depending on their specific purpose, serums may include:

  • vitamin C
  • plant stem cells
  • peptides to help stimulate collagen
  • alpha hydroxy acids
  • vitamin A (retinols) to help increase cell turnover
  • hyaluronic acid to hydrate and smooth skin
  • bearberry and licorice extracts to brighten skin and fade brown spots
  • sea buckthorn to reduce inflammation and repair skin damage.

“The best antiaging serums are packed with plant stem cells and vitamin C,” says Nancy Neet, esthetician at The Allison Inn & Spa in Newberg, Ore. “They help stimulate collagen and elastin—the strands of tissue that give the skin its strength and flexibility.”

The Allison’s Herbal Infusion Facial relies heavily on a plant stem-cell booster serum to help rejuvenate skin and smooth fine lines and wrinkles. Echinacea stem cells stimulate new collagen, plump and firm skin, and improve elasticity. Stem cells from the butterfly bush (a plant native to Eastern Asia that is traditionally used for wound healing) help protect the skin against sun and environmental damage and increase lipid barrier protection. Vitamin C and other antioxidant vitamins reduce inflammation, boost collagen production, and also protect skin.

“Plant stem cells in this facial work so well because they come from plants that are intentionally stressed,” says Neet. “When the plant defends itself, the cells that are extracted are stronger and more effective. Use a serum every morning and night and you really can improve the health of your skin.”

6 Face Serums to Heal Your Skin

1. Blitz your skin with antioxidant and antipollution protection with MyChelle Derma-ceuticals Perfect C PRO Serum. This professional-level formula boasts 25 percent L-ascorbic acid, the highest and most active form of vitamin C in skincare products. Concentrated vitamin C brightens and renews skin, while plant stem cells and CoQ10 protect mature or damaged skin. 

MyChelle Derma-ceuticals Perfect C PRO Serum

Try it!

MyChelle is giving away 25 bottles of Perfect C PRO Serum to Better Nutrition readers! To enter, email your name and address to Please put “BN PRO C” in the subject line.

2. Recharge your skin with Reviva Labs Swiss Apple Stem Cell Serum. Mature skin will be energized with these resilient stem cells, which help revive the skin and decrease lines and wrinkles. Apply to clean skin or under your favorite day or night moisturizers to boost the effects.

Reviva Labs Swiss Apple Stem Cell Serum

3. Solve a variety of skin problems while you sleep with Nourish Organic Overnight Recovery Serum. Argan and evening primrose oils hydrate, soften, increase elasticity, and reduce signs of stress and fatigue. Go to bed with dry and damaged skin, and wake looking more refreshed.

Nourish Organic Overnight Recovery Serum

4. Rejuvenate and repair dehydrated skin with John Masters Organics Green Tea & Rose Hydrating Face Serum. Green tea helps cellular turnover, rose oil nourishes, sea algae soothes, rice extract softens and heals while helping to prevent wrinkles, and sunflower oil hydrates and forms a protective barrier against environmental pollutants.

John Masters Organics Green Tea & Rose Hydrating Face Serum

5. Annemarie Borlind Orange Blossom Energizer is a 2-phase skincare composition with first- pressing botanical oils and blossom extracts, including carrot (rich in vitamin A) and orange fruit extract (high in vitamin C). It helps firm and revitalize skin. Apply to cleansed skin in the morning and evening. Then use a day or night cream to suit your skin type.

Annemarie Borlind Orange Blossom Energizer

6. Care for your skin the way nature intended with Hyalogic Stem Cell Face Serum with Hyaluronic Acid. Restorative orange stem cells and hyaluronic acid support cell longevity, maintain skin vitality, and combat the visible signs of aging.

Hyalogic Stem Cell Face Serum with Hyaluronic Acid