A flawless complexion may be impossible to achieve, but that typically doesn’t stop us from wanting to even out our skin tone to the best of our capabilities. The most common obstacle to our success: Skin discoloration. Medically referred to as hyperpigmentation, uneven skin tone occurs when there’s an excess production of melanin or pigment in the skin. This overproduction can be due to many factors like hormones, acne, pollution, and UV exposure.
Unfortunately, completely avoiding these external stressors is easier said than done in a humid and densely populated country like the Philippines. But the good news is there are plenty of illuminating products to help you get that highly coveted balanced and radiant look. To start you off on the right foot, we've compiled a list of the 10 best brightening serums you can try for an even and glowing complexion.
Best Brightening Serums for Dark Spots and Uneven Skin Tone
1. Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Vitamin C Serum
This serum contains 15% vitamin C, a cult-favorite ingredient that can lighten dark spots, reduce the appearance of pores, and provide protection against various environmental aggressors. Plus, this powerful yet lightweight formulation uses 5% polyhydroxy acid (PHA) to mildly exfoliate your skin and hasten skin cell turnover. The serum also color corrects hyperpigmentation with banana powder-inspired pigments and naturally plumps up your skin with hyaluronic acid.
Banana Bright Vitamin C Serum, P3850, OLE HENRIKSEN, Sephora.ph
2. The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
Niacinamide or vitamin B3 is arguably the most popular active ingredient out there because it can do a bit of everything from balancing out uneven skin tone to strengthening your moisture barrier. This multi-tasking serum from The Ordinary is formulated with over 10% of it, providing your skin with those much-needed brightening and hydrating benefits. Working in tandem with niacinamide, the product's zinc PCA also helps regulate your skin's sebum production throughout the day.
Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, P622, THE ORDINARY, Lazada
3. Aesop Lucent Facial Concentrate
Everyone knows that vitamin C, though a well-loved antioxidant by many, is tricky to formulate properly due to its sensitivity. That's why this innovative serum evens out your skin tone with 15% ascorbyl glucoside, a stabilized and water-soluble derivative of vitamin C. Great for all skin types, this serum also contains niacinamide and rose petals to further boost the brightening and balancing properties of the star ingredient.
Lucent Facial Concentrate, P5300, AESOP, aesopskincare.ph
4. The Inkey List 15% Vitamin C and EGF Serum
This vegan and cruelty-free serum works to improve your skin health through a potent blend of 15% vitamin C and 1% epidermal growth factor. While the vitamin C acts as an antioxidant and lightening agent, the plant-based EGF boosts your skin’s natural collagen and elastin levels.
15% Vitamin C and EGF Serum, P1075, THE INKEY LIST, Lazada
5. It's Skin Power 10 Formula LI Effector with Licorice
This serum pampers and rejuvenates tired skin with PGA, a lightening agent extracted from fermented soybeans. It can also ease irritation and soothe redness using licorice root extract, making it great for combination and acne-prone skin types.
Power 10 Formula LI Effector with Licorice, P620, IT'S SKIN, Lazada
6. The Body Shop Drops of Light Brightening Serum
Help your skin maintain its youth and radiance with this nourishing yet featherlight serum from The Body Shop. Thanks to its vitamin C derivatives and red algae extracts, this product can reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation and leave your skin looking smooth and moisturized.
Drops of Light Brightening Serum, P1995, THE BODY SHOP, Lazada
7. Guerlain Abeille Royale Double R Renew & Repair Serum
Searching for your next big skincare splurge? This rejuvenating and anti-aging serum from Guerlain might just be the perfect addition to your shopping list. Formulated with Guerlain's exclusive royal jelly and Ouessant Island's black bee honey, this product can promote skin elasticity and luminosity. As for improving skin cell turnover and minimizing the appearance of pores, the serum is jam packed with a trio of powerful AHAs to gently exfoliate your skin’s surface.
Abeille Royale Double R Renew & Repair Serum, P12,700, GUERLAIN, Rustan's
8. Isntree C-Niacin Toning Ampoule
Hyperpigmentation is stubborn to treat, but this ampoule contains a strong blend of sea buckthorn, niacinamide, and vitamin C to address dullness and dark spots. Although powerful, this product is still perfect for sensitive skin since it's free of any silicones, essential oils, drying alcohols, and synthetic fragrances and dyes.
C-Niacin Toning Ampoule, P1040, ISNTREE, Lazada
9. Good Molecules Daily Brightening Serum
If you're on the lookout for budget-friendly skincare, this affordable yet effective Good Molecules serum is absolutely perfect for you! With a balanced pH level of 5.32, this cruelty-free product contains beta arbutin to control excessive melanin production and illuminate lackluster complexions. There's also hyaluronic acid in this non-greasy formula to deeply nourish your dehydrated skin!
Daily Brightening Serum, P500, GOOD MOLECULES, BeautyMnl
10. Estee Lauder Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment
Say goodbye to uneven and dull skin tone with this youth-boosting product. Infused with hyaluronic acid to moisturize and vitamin C to protect, this lightweight formulation will definitely leave your skin with a plumper, smoother, and clearer appearance overall. This serum also offers long-term anti-aging benefits through its highly concentrated duo of naturally derived ferments: yeast ferment and molasses ferment.
Perfectionist Pro Rapid Brightening Treatment, P4500, ESTEE LAUDER, Lazada