I’m not a morning person, so my morning skincare is as short as possible. Wipe dirt/oil off with wet/damp towel, apply moisturizer with SPF then out the door. However, I need a little more in the winter and a good hydrating serum under my moisturizer is essential. I’ve been squirreling away hydrating serum since last fall in preparation for winter and now it’s finally time to take them out and use them.
Most serum focuses on brightening, anti-aging or antioxidants with hydration being a side benefit, but I’m looking for serum that focuses on hydration and these three looks the most promising. Shall we?
Skin Inc Hyaluronic acid serum
The serum is a clear liquidy gel with tiny blue beads suspended in it. The blue beads are made of seaweed and the active ingredients (hyaluronic acid I assume) are encapsulated within. The clear liquid feels like water/glycerin. I only need 3 drops to cover the face, if you apply more or didn’t wait until it absorbs it might feel a tad sticky. Because it is so liquidy, it absorbs and hydrates deep within the skin. It contains no paraben, alcohol, fragrance or other potential irritants and I love hyaluronic acid. The blue bottle reminds me of DDG Hydration Booster and Boscia Blue Calm Essence but this feels nicer.
I enjoy using it, but my half-size sample (.17oz) only give me 6-8 applications. Full size is .34oz and paying $45 for a serum that won’t even last a month…. I would recommend Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Liquid instead. Image below shows the size of the half size Skin Inc serum, barely the height of a perfume sample!
Murad Hydro-Dynamic Quenching Essence
First of all, it is not essence in that it does not make the skincare you apply afterward absorbs better and has a serum consistency instead of liquid. The Sephora list of ingredients is wrong and neglected to mention the generous amount of silicone in the product (2nd, 3rd, 6th and 8th ingredient). It have a barely noticeable fresh clean scent and does make your skin feel silky smooth, calm and hydrated. I prefer skincare with as little silicone as possible at night and wasn’t a fan of it at first. However, the more I use it the more I like it for morning, where it provides extra hydration under my moisturizer with SPF and the silicone helps to protect against the environment. I have even applied it on eyelid and would recommend it for all skin types.
FAB Ultra Repair Hydrating Serum
It have a mild plastic scent and is a thick gel, a tad sticky (probably due to glycerin) but not stuffy. It takes awhile to absorb but you can’t really apply sparingly since it’s a thick gel texture rather than liquidy serum. The ingredients are great, but due to consistency/texture it doesn’t really play well with moisturizer then makeup on top. It does hydrate and feels nice even on irritated skin, so I’ve been using it at night and it’s fine. Oily skin can probably use it as moisturizer, and it is gentle enough for all skin types.
Final Verdict: I like Skin Inc but it is definitely overpriced. Fist Aid Beauty…*sigh*…I feel like often times I like their ingredients more than what the product does on my skin. It’s not bad, just not my type. As for Murad, the more I use it the more I like it. It hydrates, calms, can be used on eyelid and makes the skin feel super smooth(play well with makeup). So if you like the sound of that, give Murad Hydro-Dynamic Quenching Essence a try! The Hydro-Dynamic moisturizer is also great for dry skin, so if you are buying now, get this set instead for same price but with a mini Hydro-dynamic moisturizer included!