Beauty

5 Super-Charged Serums Your Skin Will Love

The skincare essentials to keep your skin clear, smooth and glowing.

By ELLE + Olay
When it comes to discovering our skincare staples for clear and smooth skin, the process can at first seem overwhelming.
From toners to moisturisers, to cleansers and exfoliants, the amount of choice on offer can leave our heads in a spin (and our beauty shelves overflowing).
But there's one product that should always be a skincare essential: a serum.
More lightweight than their moisturising mates, serums are specifically formulated to address a variety of skin concerns (think fighting acne marks or sunspots, providing extra hydration or boosting brightness for glowing skin) thanks to their combination of powerful and potent active ingredients.
The first step in our skincare routine (after cleansing, of course), serums are now more supercharged than ever, with many containing more than one active ingredient to fight multiple skin concerns at once.
Thanks to the magic of science, some serums even combine active ingredients (think Alpha-hydroxy acid, aka AHA, and niacinamide) that were previously labelled as no-no's when it came to using them together.
Here, we've rounded up our favourite "super-charged" serums guaranteed to keep your skin clear, smooth and glowing.

The Perfect Serum For...Acne Marks, Sunspots And Even Skin Tone

Consider this the "A-HA" moment your skin has been waiting for—a serum targeted at reducing stubborn spots (like acne marks, freckles and sunspots) for clearer, smoother, glowing skin.
Niacinamide, known for brightening and clearing, and Alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA), used to nurture skin cell renewal and hydrate the skin, typically cancel each other out when used together. But, after ten years of formula development and clinical trials, Olay have developed a Niacinamide and AHA formulation that works synergistically.
In fact, the type of AHA used—L-Lactic Acid—has low levels of irritation and is milder compared to other AHA products, enhancing the efficacy of the 99 per cent Pure Niacinamide when compared to using Niacinamide alone.
The combined formula penetrates 10 layers deep* into the skin's surface, providing a reduction in marks or discolouration after 8 weeks†.
Best for use on normal, dry, combination and oily skin, it's suitable for all skin tones and anyone looking for spot reduction, and also comes in a moisturiser formula.

The Perfect Serum For...Giving Your Skin A Boost Of Hydration

Think of this serum as the big drink of hydration your skin is desperate for. Supercharged with not one, but four types of hyaluronic acid, the formula quenches and plumps even the most dehydrated or dry face for glowing skin.
The serum also contains peptides to promote skin's firmness and elasticity, and soothing aloe vera juice and provitamin B5 to calm the skin. Lightweight and fragrance-free, this supercharged hydrating serum leaves the skin noticeably soft and smooth.

The Perfect Serum For...Brightening And Tightening

Designed to be mixed by you before the first use to ensure maximum potency of the powerful ingredients, Drunk Elephant's C-Firma Fresh Day Serum is packed with 15 per cent l-ascorbic acid, 0.5 per cent ferulic acid and 1 per cent Vitamin E.
Together, the ingredients deliver brighter, firmer skin, and help to even skin tone. Other ingredients (like pumpkin ferment extract and sodium hyaluronate cross polymer) work to dissolve dead skin cells from the skin's surface, for clearer and smoother skin and a reduction in the visible signs of ageing (think freckles, sunspots, fine lines and wrinkles).

The Perfect Serum For... Rejuvenating Tired Skin

Supercharged with both niacinamide and hyaluronic acid, this cult favourite serum is like a wake-up call for tired or lacklustre skin.
Niacinamide works to brighten to skin, by reducing the transfer of pigment to the surface skin cells (that means spot reduction, so say goodbye to freckles and sunspots), while hyaluronic acid works to deeply moisturise for long-lasting hydration. Think of this serum as your face's radiance reset.

The Perfect Serum For... Calming And Hydrating

Suitable for all skin types, this ultra-hydrating and calming serum works to deliver a daily dose of moisture for clear, smooth and glowing skin.
While hyaluronic acid works to hydrate and nourish the skin, anti-ageing peptides minimise the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, with collagen helping to plump and replenish skin for a more even skin tone.
The best part? The serum is formulated with Colloidal Oatmeal and Aloe Leaf Juice, which work together to calm and soothe irritated skin, leaving it looking (and feeling) healthy and glowing.
Brought to you by Olay.
* Epidermis layer
†Clinical visual assessment by Dermatologists in Beijing, China, Clinical Study after 8 weeks of usage (from 19/10/2020 to 16/01/2022). Discolouration refers to freckles, sun spots, and melasma.