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Adding a serum to your skincare regime might seem redundant if your current regime already works fine. Aside from relying on your basic cleanse-tone-moisturise routine, using serums will help benefit your skin so much more than you think.

What are serums good for?

Serums are full of active ingredients to effectively target specific skin problems such as acne, oily and dry skin. They are also made up of fine molecules which allows them to be absorbed into the skin deeply, quickly and easily to treat it. Additionally, serums help to boost, enhance and lock in the work of moisturisers. 

Are serums necessary?

As we've mentioned before in our best skincare products article, the three most important things you must do is cleanse, tone and moisturise. But, it's highly beneficial to include the many other different kinds of beauty skincare products as they offer something that your cleansers, toners and moisturisers may not.

For example, the difference between toners and serums that is that the latter contain a richer level of ingredients to target the skin matter better.


Unsure which face serum to get? Here are some recommendations!

Top 14 Serum Recommendations in Malaysia

  • PIXI Overnight Glow Serum
  • Melano CC Vitamin C Brightening Essence
  • Sothys Wrinkle-Specific Youth Serum
  • THE FACE SHOP Yehwadam Revitalizing Serum
  • GARDEN OF EDEN Rosa E Pigmentation Serum
  • CAUDALIE Vinosource SOS Thirst-quenching Serum
  • Swissvita Micrite 3D All Use Anti-Wrinkle Serum
  • Garnier Light Complete Anti Spot White Serum
  • Clematis - Collagen Resilience Serum
  • Melvita Argan Serum-Lotion 
  • Mario Badescu Anti Acne Serum
  • Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum
  • ESTÉE LAUDER Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II 
  • SHISEIDO Vital-perfection White Circulator Serum
Best night serum for glowing skin
PIXI
1. PIXI Overnight Glow Serum
Best night serum - for glowing skin
Buy Now RM39.00
add_circle A little goes a long way
add_circle Effects show with just one night of use
remove_circle Sticky after-application

The skin repairs itself every night while we go to sleep. With the aid of PIXI Overnight Glow Serum, the skin is exfoliated overnight which results in fresh, glowing skin when you wake in the morning. Not to mention, it contains several vitamins and nutrients such as cucumber and aloe vera extract to nourish your skin.

Promising review: "After using this every night before bed, I wake up (to) radiant and bright skin (that) feels much more moisturized. When I apply my makeup, my skin feels hydrated and the powder doesn't dry out my skin as much anymore." - Kalai Vani

More: 15 Korean Face Serums That Will Leave You With Glowing Skin

Melano CC
2. Melano CC Vitamin C Brightening Essence
Best brightening face serum - with vitamin C
Buy Now RM44.25
add_circle Effective against acne scars
add_circle Smells good
add_circle Portable
remove_circle Results show commonly after 2 weeks of use

Vitamin C increases the level of collagen in your skin; hence it’s an essential vitamin needed for your skin. Melanie CC’s Pure Vitamin C Essence has a high concentration of Vitamin C which helps to build more collagen for younger looking skin, and brightens the skin complexion.

Promising review: “This is a product that I cannot recommend enough, if you’re looking for a product that can help you fade those annoying dark spots, it is definitely worth trying and it won’t break your bank.” – Vic V

7.0
Our Review

The Melano CC Brightening Essence is a stable form of vitamin C that has been popularly claimed to even out skin tone, lighten dark spots and reduce acne scars. The packaging keeps it from oxidising easily - ensuring its effectiveness!

Read Full Review

More: 7 Vitamin C Serums To Boost Radiance To Your Complexion

3. Sothys Wrinkle-Specific Youth Serum
Best serum for fine lines
Buy Now RM502.00
add_circle Good packaging

Fine lines occur not only for mature skin but also for skin types that are less firm. Visibly fill wrinkles and smoothen your skin with Sothys' Wrinkle-Specific Youth Serum. This serum promises a 40% increase in the smoothness of your skin, helping you to look more youthful with regular application. Apply on your face and neck twice a day for best results. 

Promising review: "My inseparable new friend! Can't live without it. After using (the) morning cleanser, toner and serum respectively, my wrinkles and freckles (have) obviously improved." - Wei21

More: 9 Korean Skin Care Products Essential for Everlasting Youthful Skin

The Face Shop
4. The Face Shop Yehwadam Revitalizing Serum
Best Korean face serum - suitable for dull skin
Buy Now RM129.99
add_circle Firms face without feeling too tight
add_circle Moisturising
add_circle Doesn't leave face feeling oily
remove_circle Smell may be unpleasant for some

Dull looking skin can cancel out all the makeup products on your face since your skin won't glow. Yehwadam Revitalizing Serum from The Face Shop comes with an extract of ginseng that helps to make skin look younger. It also includes goji berry that's believed to give the skin a glowing effect after several uses.

Promising review: "(This serum) contains lotus flower that soothes and honeysuckle flower that helps to remove puffy and red areas. My skin feels so supple, moist and pampered because I am feeding it with lots of nutrients." - SunshineKelly

More: Top 11 Skincare Products to Reinvigorate Your Dull Skin

Best affordable oil serum with vitamin E
Garden of Eden
5. Garden of Eden Rosa E Pigmentation Serum
Best affordable oil serum - with vitamin E
Buy Now RM28.80
add_circle Absorbs easily
add_circle Little goes a long way
remove_circle May smell unpleasant

If you think including face serum in your daily facial routine might end up burning a hole in your pocket, fret not! We’ve found you the best affordable face serum by Garden of Eden. This serum is infused with Vitamin E to ease the wrinkles on your face, and essential oils such as rosehip seed oil and grape seed oil, known for its ability to repair skin from sun damage.

Promising review: "I have been trying multiple products to lighten my pigments but so far this product seems to be the one that works best for me. Can see noticeable difference after 3 weeks." - Teng Teng

More: 9 Face Serums to Get Rid of Dry, Parched Skin

Best face serum for sensitive skin
Caudalie
6. Caudalie Vinosource SOS Thirst-quenching Serum
Best for sensitive skin
Buy Now RM61.00
add_circle Generous amount in a bottle
add_circle Refreshing and hydrating
remove_circle Bottle is not travel-friendly

Using the wrong products on your skin is dangerous especially when you have sensitive skin. This face serum from Caudalie is water-based, which means it’s oil-free serum but still helps to retain skin’s moisture. Due to its fine texture, it helps to penetrate the skin even better.

Promising review: "This serves my skin well in both my morning/night routine. Though the glass bottle is not very travel-friendly, I insist (on) bringing it with me to combat different climates/jetlag and to calm and hydrate my skin whenever I travel." - A.W

More: Nourish Your Sensitive Skin with these 14 Skincare Products

Anti-wrinkle and firming face serum
7. Swissvita Micrite 3D All Use Anti-Wrinkle Serum
Best anti-wrinkle and firming face serum
Buy Now RM128.00
add_circle Not sticky after use
remove_circle Consistent usage is needed to see results

One of the most important thing about reducing wrinkles on your face is by ensuring your skin is firm. Firm skin increases elasticity, which prevents loose skin – this is when wrinkles happen. With this serum, it helps to firm up your skin from deep inside and helps to reduce wrinkles on your face.

Promising review: "Not oily nor dry to skin. Absorbs well into (my) skin. My acne marks (have) faded with consistent use of this serum. Recommended." - Eugene23

More: Be Forever Young with These 11 Anti-Aging Skin Care Products

Best drugstore serum for oily skin
8. Garnier Light Complete Anti Spot White Serum
Best drugstore serum - suitable for oily skin
Buy Now RM27.11
add_circle Lightweight
add_circle Affordable
remove_circle Bets to avoid for sensitive skin suers

Drugstore products are easily accessible to consumers and very convenient. This face serum by Garnier is best suited for those with oily skin as it has an ultra-light formula which is quickly absorbed by the skin. Thus, it gives a 12 hours shine-free look and a long-lasting oil-control effect.

Promising review: "I really love the texture of this essence. Less concentrated than serum which means it's more fluid. It's really easy to use and is also well-absorbed into your (skin)." - Nurul Aida

More: 10 Best Korean Skincare Products for People with Oily Skin

Best face serum with collagen for smooth skin
Clematis
9. Clematis Collagen Resilience Serum
Best serum with collagen - for smooth skin
Buy Now RM68.00
add_circle Fast results
add_circle Lightweight and gentle
add_circle Moisturising
remove_circle Pricey

Collagen helps to increase the elasticity of the skin by replacing dead skin. Hence, a rich amount of collagen will result in a smooth and elastic skin condition. Skin Inc's Collagen Serum offers a high amount of collagen and elastin that are rich in amino acids, giving your skin structural support and plumping it to give you a youthful appearance.

Promising review: "This collagen serum feels very comfortable and light on the skin, absorbs very fast, and has really improved my condition. My skin is becoming tighter." - Joseph Lim

More: Wake Up Looking Flawless with These 9 Face Oils for Everyone

Best organic face serum – suitable for normal and dehydrated skin
10. Melvita Argan Serum-Lotion 
Best organic face serum - suitable for normal and dehydrated skin
Buy Now RM118.00
add_circle Hydrating and soothing
add_circle Lightweight
add_circle Fast absorbing

Some people are very particular about the products they use; not only for the body but for the face as well. This face serum from Melvita is safe and the ingredients are all organic such as organ leaf extract and a combination of 2 hyaluronic acids. All of these ingredients help to moisturize in order to gain a better skin condition especially for those suffering from dehydrated skin. Besides, it is also safe for normal skin type.

Promising review: "Superb toner! My skin feels much more supple now. It sinks instantly into my dehydrated skin and plumps it up instantly." - Li Ching

More: Hydrate Your Skin with these Top 14 Face Moisturisers for Every Skin Type

Best serum for cystic acne
Buy Now RM42.00
add_circle Soothing
add_circle Scent-free
remove_circle Doesn't absorb easily into the skin

Formulated with Salicylic Acid, this serum is effective to prevent and inhibit bacteria-causing acne. It also calms inflammation and dries up existing breakouts. People with oily skin types will find their skin's sebum production being controlled better with use of this product. However, this also means that those with dry and combination skin types will have to pack on the moisturiser. Despite this, it does not reduce the serum's efficiency in any way!

Promising review: "Cleared my acne within 4 days of application without drying my skin too much. I can usually see a difference within 1 application. This is the serum I will always reach out for when I'm breaking out." - Natasha Sazali

More: Get Spot-Free Skin with these Best 11 Serums for Acne

Best face serum for normal skin
Innisfree
12. Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum
Best serum for combination skin
Buy Now RM78.90
add_circle Absorbs well
add_circle Light yet moisturising
add_circle Suits all skin

Having combination skin is a real challenge because different parts of the skin need different skincare routines –you might have an oily T-zone but very dry skin around the cheek area. Green Tea Seed Serum by Innisfree is suitable for combination skin types. It moisturises and hydrates without being too heavy for those with combination skin. 

Promising review: "I've been using this product for years. It's light yet gives much moisture to skin." - Joy R.

More: 9 Perfect Face Moisturizer Picks For Your Combination Skin

Estée Lauder
13. Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II 
Best anti-aging and hydrating face serum - suitable for mature skin
Buy Now RM175.00
add_circle Absorbs quickly into the skin
add_circle Does not leave a sticky residue
add_circle Soothing even for irritated skin
remove_circle Some may not like its "grass" small

Why look your age if you can look much younger? This face serum is tested and proven to help reduce the ageing process of the skin. With the exclusive ChronoluxCB™ Technology by Estee Lauder, this serum locks the skin’s moisture with the aid of Hyaluronic Acid, one of the main ingredients of the product.

Promising review: "This serum keeps my skin moist and prevents breakouts. (It) also helped (to) even out my skin tone. Possibly the only 'miracle' product I've ever purchased that ACTUALLY works!" - Mia

More: 10 Korean Skincare Products to Hydrate Dry and Sensitive Skin

More: Top 8 Korean Skincare Products to Make You the Fairest One of All


How do I choose a face serum?

If it’s your first time trying out a face serum, you can opt for one with hydrating properties. However, if you are looking to target specific concerns, look for serums with ingredients that work specifically to treat your problem. For instance, if you require more moisture, look for serums with hyaluronic acid. Serums with vitamin C properties are helpful to brighten your complexion, and those with peptides are effective to treat wrinkles.


Purchasing serums

Ideally, you would want to find a serum that has a powerful list of ingredients. However, it is common that the more potent they are, the higher the price might be. Nonetheless, bear in mind to always look for serums with lighter colours first. The clearer they are, the more likely that they are made up of smaller molecules. This ensures that they penetrate easily through the skin’s outer layer.

It is also important to know what your skin type is. Water-based serums are better for those with oily skin while those that are oil-based or have a richer texture will be more effective for those with drier skin. 


Key things to remember

Face serums are a great way to really customise your skincare regime to work to your benefit depending on what you want to achieve. However, remember that not all serums are created in the same way. It is important to be mindful of the ingredients listed.

At the end of the day, skincare is definitely not a one size fits all. Therefore, find out what works for your skin and what does not, and build from there. 

Disclaimer: The pricing shown is just a good indication of how much these products are worth. The prices could change based on the e-commerce promotions that are going on. If some of the products are not available, do email us at [email protected] Thank you!

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