Skin Brightening Serum: How Does It Work?

Looking for a way to brighten up your complexion? Serums can help!

When you want to get and maintain that oh-so-desirable youthful glow, serums are your best friends. Including high-quality serums in your skincare regimen is one of the best ways to supply your skin with the nutrients it needs. Serums can help to keep your skin looking bright, dewy, and fresh, providing your skin with beneficial acids, antioxidants, and oils in high amounts.

If you are dealing with a dull, uneven complexion, we’re here to help. This post is all about skin brightening serums, how they work, and how to use them as part of your daily beauty routine.

Why Your Skin Gets “Dull”

If you aren’t satisfied with your complexion, there’s no need to panic. We’re about to get in-depth about the root causes of dull-looking skin and how to deal with them. By the time you are finished reading this post, you will be ready to take your skincare to the next level.

There are a few factors that together are often responsible for preventing your skin from looking bright and youthful. One of the most common causes of complexion issues is a buildup of dead skin cells. This excess dead skin can build up on your face, clogging your pores and taking a toll on the look and feel of your skin.

When dead skin builds up on your face, it can quickly lead to breakouts since dead skin cells clog your pores. In addition, the buildup of dead skin cells can worsen the appearance of wrinkles and lines, making them more visible than they would otherwise be. 

Cellular Turnover: What It Is, and Why It Matters

Dead skin cells often build up and negatively affect your appearance when your skin’s rate of cellular turnover is too low, or when your skincare routine does not include exfoliation. Your skin naturally sheds dead skin cells and generates new ones over time. However, this natural cycle of cellular turnover can be slowed down when your skin is not supplied with enough of the nutrients that it needs to stay healthy. 

While exfoliation can help to improve your skin’s appearance when you are dealing with a buildup of dead skin cells, you will also need to support your skin’s cellular turnover rate to deal with the issue at the core. Exfoliation can make a big difference in the way your skin looks and feels, but to keep your skin healthy inside and out, it needs to be supplied with nutrients that keep its natural processes running normally. That’s where serums come in!

Brightening Your Skin With Antioxidants

When your skin’s rate of cellular turnover is too low, it is often a sign that free radicals in your body are damaging your skin cells. Free radicals are molecules in your body and from the environment that can weaken and damage your skin cells by stealing their electrons. As you get older, your body often becomes more vulnerable to this damage, called oxidative stress. When your cells experience oxidative stress, the impact of free radicals on your skin can be much more severe, causing signs of aging to show up more quickly and appear more pronounced.

When your body experiences oxidative stress, your skin cells’ production of the proteins that keep your skin healthy and strong can slow down. These proteins also help your skin to maintain a healthy rate of cellular turnover, and without enough of these proteins, dead skin can start building up and affecting your complexion. 

So, how do you deal with oxidative stress? The answer: antioxidants. 

Common antioxidants include vitamins A, E, and C, all of which can counteract free radical activity in your body. When your antioxidant levels are high enough, your body can maintain its necessary functions normally. Antioxidants help to support your immune system, the functioning of your organs, and the production of the proteins that give structure to your cells, including your skin cells. 

You can supply your body with antioxidants in the form of supplements or by eating antioxidant-rich foods, but you can also apply them topically to your skin. When you want to supply your skin with a high amount of beauty-boosting antioxidants, a serum is one of the best ways to do so.

Hyaluronic Acid to Boost Your Skin’s Water Retention 

In addition to antioxidants, your skin also thrives thanks to acids. Your skin naturally produces certain acids to keep it healthy, nourished, and hydrated. However, you can also supply these acids to your skin by using a serum that includes them as main ingredients.

One specific acid that can help to brighten your complexion is hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is naturally produced by your skin. This acid serves the purpose of boosting your skin’s ability to retain water. When your skin retains enough water, it can stay looking brighter, fuller and more youthful. 

Hyaluronic acid can also help to support your skin’s firmness and suppleness, similar to antioxidants. With the support of this acid you are much less likely to start seeing wrinkles, lines, sagging and other signs that your skin is weakening and aging prematurely.

Exfoliation to Get Rid of Dead Skin

To keep your complexion bright and even, it needs more than just hydration and nutrition. Since a buildup of dead skin cells can quickly dull your complexion, one of the most important components in a skin-brightening routine is a form of exfoliation. 

Exfoliating your skin scrubs away dead skin cells, making way for a softer, fresher look and feel. However, not all exfoliating agents are equally effective. Some exfoliators can leave your skin irritated, red, and rough. These exfoliating products are made with harsh chemicals or rough particles that are designed to get rid of dead skin either by dissolving it or scrubbing it off. 

Although the idea of chemically peeling or physically scrubbing dead skin off your face with a powerful exfoliator might sound like the most effective route, it’s not the best way to care for your skin. Instead of using a harsh exfoliating agent, you can refresh your skin using a glycolic acid enzyme masque.

Glycolic acid is a natural exfoliator. This acid gently dissolves dead skin cells without irritating your face or requiring rough scrubbing. Glycolic acid is an ideal ingredient to include in your skincare routine in the form of a serum, as well. Without gentle exfoliation, your skin may not end up looking as bright, even, and refreshed as you want it to, and overly harsh exfoliation can leave your skin worse off than where you started. To add exfoliation to your skincare routine without making your skin vulnerable to irritation and damage, glycolic acid is an excellent ingredient to make your go-to.

How to Apply a Brightening Serum

Most serums can be applied twice daily – once in the morning and once at night. To get the most out of a brightening serum, use it and your other skin treatments in a specific, strategic order. Your skincare routine should begin with any products that will be used for cleansing and rinsed off. This includes products like cleanser and face wash.

After cleanser and other rinse-off products, it’s time to apply serums. Serums are some of the most lightweight products that you put on your skin. That means heavier products like gels, moisturizers, and sunscreen need to be applied after serums – otherwise, these heavier products might interfere with your skin’s ability to absorb the ingredients in your serums.

Because a serum contains such a high concentration of its main ingredients, you only need a few drops for your skin to reap the benefits. You can apply a serum with your fingers, gently spreading the liquid evenly to cover your entire face. 

The final stage in your skincare routine, after serums have been applied, includes the heaviest products – moisturizer, creams, gels and sunscreen. Wrapping up your beauty regimen with heavier products allows your skin’s absorption of lighter products like serums to remain unhindered. 

The Bottom Line: Serums Can Be Powerful Skin-Brightening Tools

Serums can make major improvements to your skin’s appearance and overall health, helping to even your complexion and give your face that youthful glow that can be so difficult to achieve. They supply your skin with high amounts of vitamins, antioxidants, acids, and other ingredients that keep it healthy and nourished 

When brightening your complexion is one of the primary goals of your beauty regimen, some of the most important ingredients to include in your daily skincare routine are hyaluronic acid, glycolic acid, and vitamin C. 

Hyaluronic acid gives your skin much-needed hydration and boosts its water retention. Glycolic acid gently removes dead skin cells, refreshing and brightening your appearance. Vitamin C supports firmness and suppleness, strengthening it from the inside out. 

With these ingredients in your skincare arsenal in the form of serums, you’re well on your way to achieving that bright glow!

Sources:

https://journals.lww.com/plasreconsurg/Fulltext/2010/01000/Antioxidants_and_Skin_Care__The_Essentials.45.aspx

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1046/j.1524-4725.2001.00234.x

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.4161/derm.21923