I've started to explore more in skincare the past couple of years. Through my 20's I had pretty good skin that didn't need much treatment other than a basic cleanser or moisturizer. As I transition into my early 30's I've found my skin in need of more. So many have told me about the benefits of using a serum under moisturizer, but I have sensitive skin. Several serums I've tried at the counter or at make over events have ended up being too rich and heavy-feeling so I avoided them for a long time. In the past I've tested mini samples of several serums, I've found many feel nice but didn't didn't really seem to make a difference in my overall skin appearance.
Three serums have changed my outlook on serums in general. Ole Henriksen Truth Serum is amazing in terms of maintaining a good glow for the skin. I find it's good if you have minor imperfections and need an extra boost of moisture (more details in my review here). Two other serums I have in rotation that I wanted to share with you are Chanel Le Jour de Chanel and Tatcha Luminous Deep Hydration Firming Serum.
Both serums come in a convenient pump dispenser bottle. The serum textures are on the thin side with a slight gel-like finish but blend easily onto clean skin. Chanel Le Jour de Chanel is clear while Tatcha Luminous Deep Hydration Firming Serum has a subtle pearly finish that contains 24k gold.
First up is the Chanel Le Jour de Chanel ($85 for 50 ml/1.7 fl oz). I've been using this for a year since it was first released as a Nordstrom exclusive. This one has Salicylic Acid which helps exfoliate the skin gently and clears up any clogged pores and small blemishes over time (but doesn't make the skin peel). It claims to tighten pores and reduce the size. I have small pores but I found it does improve the look of the skin and make pores smaller. It layers well under moisturizer to make the skin feel hydrated, smooth and slightly more radiant. I wouldn't recommend using this if your skin is irritated or has any open or healing blemishes. This one is best for unbroken skin and if you're not extremely sensitive.
I made the mistake of using this alone as a moisturizer when I first received a mini sample in the mail. The artists at the Chanel counter explained to me that I was using it incorrectly and it was not sufficient to be used alone. Adding this under your moisturizer helps improve the T-zone area and extends the wear of your foundation throughout the day as it helps to draw in your moisturizer to the skin.
A quick tip on application - if you feel that it stings the skin, make sure your skin is completely dry after you cleanse and tone before you apply this. I've found that applying items to a wet face can sometimes make moisturizers or serums sting. I've used this in conjunction with a number of moisturizers, my current favorites to use this with are the Chanel Le Blanc Moisturizing Cream, Chanel Sublimage La Creme Texture Fine and Fresh Lotus Youth Preserve Cream.
Chanel Le Jour de Chanel ingredient list here
If you've shopped online with Tatcha you know that their orders come with generous samples and often have good promotion codes to try new items. My first order with them came with their Deep Hydration Firming Mask which is amazing. They've recently expanded their Water Collection with the Luminous Deep Hydration Firming Serum ($95 for 30 ml/1.0 fl oz). They kindly sent me a sample to try and I've been thrilled with it. Several readers have already raved to me about this one before I had the chance to try it. Many have said it's worked wonders on their dry skin so I was worried this might be too strong for my skin but I found the Deep Hydration Firming Mask to be amazing on my skin so I had high hopes. I am really happy to find that even though it's super hydrating that it isn't too strong.
This serum has a hydrating blend of Okinawa red algae and hyaluronic acid to soothe and firm skin - and the it does just that. The 24k gold shimmer isn't overpowering but gives that glow from within kind of luminosity. I've been using this for a week and already have noticed a difference in the overall look of the skin. It appears more radiant and it has soothed my skin which has been acting up for the past month. I've been using this during the day under regular moisturizers but I've read many like to also use this at night (which I haven't tried yet).
If you're unsure about purchasing the full size, Tatcha now has a selection of mini travel sized skin care items. The Deep Hydration Firming Serum comes in a $33 mini travel size option nicely priced proportionally to the full size.
Full ingredient list here
I like to alternate serums weekly depending on what my skin feels like. On normal skin days I find the Ole Henriksen Truth Serum to be a good everyday kind of serum suitable for all skin types (even sensitive ones). When my skin is in need of some texture improvement the Chanel Le Jour de Chanel works wonders to clear up the skin. I wouldn't recommend this for super sensitive skin but it is gentle enough for me. For extra hydration and soothing of irritated skin I like to use Tatcha Deep Hydration Firming Serum.
What do you currently use for a serum? Or do you skip it entirely? I'd love to hear what you've tried, what you loved or what didn't work for you.
This post contains a press sample sent by Tatcha for review consideration. For more information refer to my disclosures.