Why You Should Consider Using a Serum


In This Article:

Why You Should Consider Using a Serum

Although it’s true that every product in your routine should contain a skin-loving array of antioxidants and skin-restoring ingredients, the best serums should be more advanced, concentrated formulations designed to address specific needs in a more focused manner.

Depending on your specific skincare concerns, you may need higher amounts of these valuable skincare ingredients with anti-aging benefits. We wish these could all fit in your nighttime moisturizer or daytime moisturizer with SPF but there simply isn’t room to fit the extra amounts of these strategic skincare ingredients.

Serums shouldn’t contain sunscreen actives like a daytime moisturizer would or the emollients or light, texture-enhancing ingredients your nighttime moisturizer should have. Instead, serums use that extra space to pack in other beneficial ingredients such as more antioxidants or skin restoring ingredients—and these complement the other products in your routine.

A serum won’t replace your daytime moisturizer with SPF or your nighttime moisturizer, but they will boost your overall anti-aging results and overall healthy appearance when used morning and evening.

Exception: If you have oily skin (and thus don’t need extra moisture), a well-formulated serum may work well as a double-duty product that replaces your nighttime moisturizer!

Age Doesn’t Matter so Start Using a Serum Now

It’s common knowledge that doing things like eating a balanced diet, exercising, and not abusing your body with smoking and excessive alcohol, keeps your body healthier and younger, longer. Actually it’s the only overarching lifetime strategy everyone interested in maintaining healthy vitality should follow.

With that in mind, it doesn’t make sense to wait until you are unfit, not well, or in your 40s, 50s, or 60s to start a healthier diet or lifestyle. Just the opposite is true: The sooner you start, the more likely your physical well-being will be with you for the long haul. The same is true when it comes to skincare!

Using serums loaded with these impressive ingredients before you start seeing signs of aging means you'll be on track for getting (and keeping) the beautiful skin you want now.

Keep in mind that just like your body never "gets used" to you eating healthy foods, nor does your skin get used to great ingredients. Your skin craves and needs generous amounts of the beneficial ingredients we talk about all the time, antioxidants, skin-replenishing ingredients, and skin-restoring ingredients to help it be healthy. Using them now does not mean they won’t work "when you really need them"!

Of course, these ingredients do work even after signs of aging appear, but without question, sooner is better than later!

The Best Way to Use Your Serum

Now that you know why serums are so beneficial (no matter your skincare concern), we’ll share the best ways to use one in your routine!

Use your serum each morning before you apply your daytime moisturizer with SPF and at night before your nighttime moisturizer.

There is no single "best" serum or best ingredient to find in a serum, so choose based upon your skin type and concerns. No matter how well formulated a serum, it isn’t right for you if it isn’t a match for your skin type. So if you have oily or combination skin, look for a water-light serum that feels weightless on skin but still has a potent formulation. If you have dry skin, you’ll likely love a serum packed with antioxidant rich plant oils!

We still want you to use an exfoliant. The benefit a gentle, completely non-abrasive leave on exfoliant provides for skin does not change because you’ve added a serum to your skincare routine. A well-formulated AHA or BHA exfoliant naturally and imperceptibly sheds the buildup of the dead surface layer of skin. This is a primary way to have the smoothest skin imaginable.

As a general guideline, after applying your AHA or BHA exfoliant, you would then apply your serum followed by your daytime SPF moisturizer or nighttime moisturizer.

For more information about our Paula’s Choice exfoliants check out this article so you can find the best one for your skin type and learn how often to apply it.

The Best Skin of Your Life Starts Here: The same type of in-depth scientific research used to create this article is also used to formulate Paula’s Choice Skincare products. You’ll find products for all skin types and a range of concerns, from acne and sensitive skin to wrinkles, pores, and sun damage. With Paula’s Choice Skincare, you can get (and keep) the best skin of your life! See Paula's Choice Serums.

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to busting beauty myths and helping you solve your skincare frustrations with research-supported expert advice—so you'll have the facts you need to take the best possible care of your skin.

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