For many women, skincare is a treasured part of their daily routine. From soothing facial oils to luxurious face moisturizers, there are many products you can use to help put your best face forward. There’s one in particular that every woman should have in her beauty arsenal, however: a vitamin C serum. Read on to find out why it’s crucial to have one of the best vitamin C serums on hand at all times and which one is right for your skin.
Vitamin C Serum Benefits
As one of the most powerful antioxidants around, vitamin C is every bit as important for our skin as it is for our bodies. Best known for its brightening abilities, this powerful ingredient has also been shown to hydrate, reduce redness, even skin tone, fade hyperpigmentation, reduce the look of dark circles, and boost collagen. It’s also particularly adept at shielding skin from harmful environmental aggressors, like pollution, UV rays, and free radicals.
Face serums, meanwhile, are concentrated treatments used to deliver key ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, retinol, and, of course, vitamin C, directly to the skin. Unlike a facial oil or face moisturizer, serums are more potent and can travel deeper into the layers of the epidermis, fighting specific skin issues, such as wrinkles, redness, and dark spots, right at the source.
For maximum benefits, it’s best to apply vitamin C serums in the morning in order to defend your complexion against the elements all day long. Simply place a couple of drops directly onto your face, massage it in, and let it dry completely for proper absorption before moving on to the next step of your skincare regimen.
Best Vitamin C Serum
Ready to find your perfect vitamin C serum? Whether you’re looking for an affordable option, an Amazon favorite, or a top-of-the line skin booster, we’ve got something for everyone on this list. Keep scrolling for Woman’s World’s picks for the best vitamin C serums that will transform your skin today.
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Best Anti Aging Vitamin C Serum
Skinceuticals CE Ferulic
Where to buy: $166, Dermstore
Doctors and consumers alike have gone gaga for Skinceuticals' CE ferulic serum. Ironically, the star of the show in this serum isn't vitamin C, but ferulic acid. A great companion for vitamins C and E, ferulic acid has been shown to improve their chemical stability. That means that all those brightening, hydrating benefits will be even prominent. While it's on the pricier side, it's high potency means it will take less product to get the results you're after — this little bottle will last you a good, long while.
Best Amazon Vitamin C Serum
Where to buy: $17.96, Amazon
For many, Amazon has become a one-stop beauty shop for the hottest products around. One of customers' most popular picks? Clean-beauty powerhouse InstaNatural's vitamin C serum. With an almost five-star rating and more than 5,000 reviews, this vitamin C serum is beloved for its powerful blend of hyaluronic acid, ferulic acid, sea buckthorn oil, and plant stem cells. This formulation fights blemishes, hydrates parched skin, and banishes signs of aging. Yes, please!
Best Vitamin C Serum for Dry Skin
Kiehl's Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate
Where to buy: $65, Kiehl's
If you're looking for a vitamin C serum with a healthy dose of hydration, pick up Kiehl's Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate. Made with a staggering 12.5 percent of vitamin C and fragmented hyaluronic acid, this serum not only provides all the brightening and anti-aging benefits you'd expect from a vitamin C serum, its moisturizing properties penetrate deep into the skin, leaving it hydrated, plump, and smooth.
Best Vitamin C Serum for Acne Scars
Sunday Riley C.E.O. 15 Percent Vitamin C Brightening Serum
Where to buy: $85, Sephora
One skin condition vitamin C has long been known to help with is acne. Whether you're dealing with active blemishes or acne scarring, incorporating a serum that's packed with this essential nutrient, like Sunday Riley's C.E.O. 15 percent vitamin C brightening serum, into your skincare routine is a must. Made with the créme de la créme of vitamin C (THD, or tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate) and glycolic acid for exfoliation, this rich solvent helps to fade spots while also preventing any future pimples, making it a very worthwhile addition to your medicine cabinet.
Best Korean Vitamin C Serum
COSRX Triple C Lightning Liquid
Where to buy: $27, Soko Glam
There are a ton of great beauty products to come out of the K-beauty skincare trend, but one of the most popular is COSRX's Triple C Lightning Liquid. Made in collaboration with Charlottle Cho, founder of the well-loved K-Beauty site Soko Glam, this serum was an instant cult-favorite, selling out just four hours after it launched. Made with 20.5 percent pure vitamin C and black chokeberry —a stabilizer that helps vitamin C stay effective — this serum ensures that brighter, more even skin is just a couple of drops away.
Vitamin C Serum for Rosacea
Klaris Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop
Where to buy: $23, Ulta
Characterized by redness, inflammation, and red bumps on the skin, the skin condition that is rosacea isn't exactly a walk in the park. If you're looking for some sweet relief for your sensitive complexion, try Klaris' Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop Serum. Featuring a blend of healing lavender oil, redness-reducing centella asiatica extract, and the anti-inflammatory powers of pure vitamin C, it's gentle enough for rosacea sufferers, but powerful enough to make a marked difference.
Best Natural Vitamin C Serum
Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum
Where to buy: $27.19, Amazon
As one of the most beloved vitamin C serums to hit the market in recent years, Mad Hippie's all-natural serum wowed customers with the potent punch it packs without any additives or preservatives. Made with a blend of stabilized vitamin C, vitamin E, ferulic acid, and hyaluronic acid, it's got has all of the ingredients you want in your skincare and none of the ones you don't: a win-win!
Best Drugstore Vitamin C Serum
Where to buy: $23.18, Amazon
For a vitamin C serum you can pick up at your local drugstore, put your trust in the skincare experts at L'Oreal and their Revitalift Pure Vitamin C Concentrate. Made with 10 percent pure vitamin C, this concentrated cream formula works hard to diminish fine lines and wrinkles, brighten skin, and even tone. It also absorbs quickly into skin, leaving behind a matte finish that makes for a great makeup base.
Best Affordable Vitamin C Serum
Derma E Vitamin C Concentrated Serum
Where to buy: $19.99, Ulta
Who said a good vitamin C serum had to be expensive? For an affordable option, we recommend Derma E's vitamin C concentrated serum. Though it rings in under $20, this serum is a best-seller not because its cheap, but because it works. Its key ingredients, including vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, green tea extract, and a host of other antioxidants, promote a brighter, more even complexion at a budget-friendly price point that won't hurt your wallet.
Best Vitamin C Serum for Sensitive Skin
Drunk Elephant C-Firma Vitamin C Day Serum
Where to buy: $80, Sephora
Drunk Elephant has reached the skincare stratosphere in the last 10 years, and with star products such as this C-Firma Vitamin C Day Serum, it's no wonder. One of the best vitamin C serums for sensitive skin, this liquid is packed with superstar ingredients, such as exfoliating pumpkin and pomegranate enzymes, ferulic acid, and of course, vitamin C. Best of all, thanks to its cooling application, this serum not only heals inflamed skin, it soothes upon application.
Best Vitamin C Serum With Collagen
Olehenriksen Truth Serum
Where to buy: $49, Sephora
A staple in the world of skincare, Olehenriksen's Truth Serum is like a shot of vitamin C to the face. This silky formula gets an added anti-aging boost thanks to a dose of collagen, antioxidant-rich green tea extract, and healing aloe. The result? An enriched serum that helps brighten, visibly firm, and deliver all-day hydration. A delicious citrus scent serves to seal the deal.
Best Vitamin C Serum for Hyperpigmentation
Mario Badescu Vitamin C Serum
Where to buy: $45, Amazon
If skin discoloration has got you feeling down, reach for one of the best vitamin C serums for hyperpigmentation — Mario Badescu's vitamin C serum. Made with a combination of 7.5 percent ascorbic acid (better known as pure vitamin C), hydrating sodium hyaluronate, firming collagen, soothing lavender oil, and refreshing cucumber extract, this potent blend offers up an affordable-yet-effective way to even out your skin tone. Apply directly to the skin or infuse it with your favorite moisturizer for glowing results you can see.
Best Vitamin C Serum for Dark Spots
Tatcha Violet-C Brightening Serum
Where to buy: $88, Sephora
The Tatcha Violet-C brightening serum may be one of the newer products on this list, but it's already gaining a cult following, and one look at its list of ingredients makes it easy to see why. Made with a unique blend of fast-acting 20 percent vitamin C, exfoliating α-Hydroxy acids (AHA)'s that are derived from seven different fruits, and Japanese angelica root extract, which is known for its ability to help fade dark spots and hyperpigmentation, it's clear the skincare experts at Tatcha knew what they were doing with this one.
"Within a week I saw that my skin tone had evened out a lot more, seemed plumper and had a healthy glow to it," one buyer raved, with another adding, "I noticed hyperpigmentation lightening within a few days and my skin felt very smooth."
Best Vitamin C Serum for Oily Skin
The Body Shop Vitamin C Skin Boost Instant Smoother
Where to buy: $20.11 (Originally $21.24), Amazon
Oily skin needs love too, so if you're looking for an option that will rejuvenate skin without adding shine, The Body Shop's vitamin C Skin Boost Instant Smoother just may become your new favorite. A best-seller, this silky-smooth serum comes infused with the power of the super-charged Amazonian Camu Camu berry, which is known to contain 30 to 60 times more vitamin C than an orange. Talk about packing a punch!
Best Vitamin C Serum for Dark Circles
Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
Where to buy: $64, Sephora
We all know how important it is to be gentle with the delicate skin around your eyes. Those seeking an eye cream that can nourish this thin skin with the potent powers of vitamin C without irritating can pick up Drunk Elephant's C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream. Rich and restorative, this cream is made with a blend of eight peptides, five forms of vitamin C, moisturizing ceramides, and cucumber extract that promise brighter, firmer, and stronger-looking skin. Use day and night to watch your dark circles fade away.