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Are serums really the most effective step in a skincare routine? The truth about serums revealed!

Published 4 months ago

I’m sure that most people would think that serums are one of the most important steps in a skincare routine as it is formulated to have a high percentage of skincare actives or it contains better ingredients that targets a skin concern. However, that is actually not the case every time. Are you shook to the core? Well, it’s time to tell you the TRUTH about serums!

The Truth

Normally, we would assume toners or essences would have a watery texture/consistency while serums would have a thicker gel consistency. The truth is that it might be true for most cases but it’s not absolute because there’s no actual definition or cosmetic law that regulates what “toners” or “serums” should be like. So, “toners” and “serums” are honestly just labels. Not to mention, there are more toners that have thicker consistency these days compared to the past.


Another thing we would assume is that “the thicker the consistency of the product is, the better”. GURL, so sorry to break it to you but this is false. The main active ingredients in a skincare product have little to no contribution in making the texture thicker and what ACTUALLY thickens the products are thickening agents which is also listed in the ingredient list. An example of a commonly used thickener for skin care is “Xantham Gum”. 


If you really think about it, why are The Ordinary and The Inkey List’s 10% Niacinamide so different when it comes to the texture and consistency, even though both of them contain 10% of Niacinamide? The Inkey List’s is thinner like a smooth gel while The Ordinary’s is much thicker. It’s because of the formulation with the thickening agents! THAT’s the TRUTH!


The Takeaway

So, what should we do? Honestly, what’s most important before buying skincare products is to do your research on the ingredient list and look for some reviews or videos of the product you’re interested in. Checking out reviewers' experiences and the texture of the product can help you solidify on your decision! 

Here are some “toners” that are extremely qualified to be part of the “serums” category:

Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence

Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence 100ml - Buy Now


Benton Aloe BHA Skin Toner

Benton Aloe BHA Skin Toner - Buy Now


Some by Mi Galactomyces Pure Vitamin C Glow Toner

Some by Mi Galactomyces Pure Vitamin C Glow Toner 200ml - Buy Now


Iunik Vitamin Hyaluronic Acid Vitalizing Toner

Iunik Vitamin Hyaluronic Acid Vitalizing Toner - Buy Now


Purito Centella Unscented Toner

Purito Centella Unscented Toner - Buy Now