19 Best Hydrating Serums In 2024 For Lasting Moisture

“Hyaluronic acid is a potent humectant, capable of holding water molecules and providing intense hydration. Glycerin is also a humectant that attracts and retains moisture, helping to keep the skin hydrated,” said Dr Mahsa.

And if your skin calls for a more intense hydrating serum, make sure to consider formulas containing beta glucan. “Beta glucan is  20% more hydrating than hyaluronic acid. Beta glucans are derived from bacteria, fungi, seaweed, and grains – like oats.  It is a humectant that also has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, meaning that it will help to restore and repair skin barrier,” shared Dr Christine Hall

Dr Christine also recommends opting for a serum that’s formulated with ceramides: “Produced by our sebaceous glands, ceramides are lipids, molecules or fats that ensure that our skin barrier remains strong and prevents transepidermal water loss; simply put water loss through the skin barrier.”

Dr Yulia also shared that “aloe vera is great for soothing and hydrating, niacinamide improves the skin’s barrier function, and panthenol attracts and holds moisture.”

How to choose the right hydrating serum for your exact skin type

“It’s crucial to consider individual skin concerns and preferences when selecting a hydrating serum. Hyaluronic acid serums are generally suitable for all skin types as they provide hydration without being heavy,” shared Dr Mahsa.

Niacinamide serums are beneficial for oily or acne-prone skin, as they can help regulate sebum production. Dry or sensitive skin may benefit from serums containing ceramides, glycerin which offer deep moisturising and soothing properties,” she added.

Dr Yulia also pointed out that sensitive skin types can also benefit from ingredients like aloe vera and chamomile to calm irritated skin. “When selecting a hydrating serum, individuals should avoid products with potentially irritating ingredients, such as artificial fragrances, alcohol, or high concentrations of certain acids,” Dr Mahsa commented.

According to Dr Mahsa, it’s important to keep in mind that such ingredients may “exacerbate sensitivity and counteract the hydrating effects”. Plus, it’s also essential to check for comedogenic ingredients, especially if you happen to have oily or acne-prone skin, in order to prevent pore clogging.

How to apply a hydrating serum for best results

When it comes to application, the good news is that it’s far less complicated than you’d think. Dr Mahsa advises the following: “After cleansing and toning, apply the hydrating serum before heavier products like moisturisers or creams. This allows the serum’s active ingredients to be absorbed into the skin more effectively.”

“The recommended order is cleanser, toner (if used), hydrating serum, treatment serums (if used), moisturiser and sunscreen during the day,” shared Dr Yulia.

That said, if you’re planning on using more than one serum, Dr Mahsa recommends applying them in order of consistency, so from thinnest to thickest. “The frequency of application depends on the product and individual skin needs; however, using a hydrating serum once or twice daily is common for optimal results. Adjust the frequency based on how your skin responds.”

Looking to take your skincare routine to the next level? Be sure to check out our guides for the best retinol serums, best hyaluronic acid serums, best vitamin C serums, best face cleansers and the best sunscreens for face.

For more beauty content from Glamour UK Commerce Writer Denise Primbet, follow her on Twitter @deniseprimbet and Instagram @deniseprimbet.

Enter: all the best hydrating serums to soothe, brighten and repair your skin barrier…


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