Do your clients often ask….”What is a Serum and do we really need it?”
But what is a serum? Do we need it? Or is it just another layer in your skin care routine? What’s the difference between a serum and a moisturizer? And do we layer them? If so, which one goes on first? Here’s some information to help answer their questions.
So what exactly is a serum? Serums act as specialists. The structure of the molecules in a serum is generally smaller than that of a moisturizer, which allows the serum to penetrate deeper into the layers on skin than a regular moisturizer. Serums are high in concentrated ingredients to treat particular skin problems. They are formulated to address specific skin care concerns which include redness, wrinkles, discoloration, dehydration, sagging skin and blemish skin.
Serums can address needs that aren’t covered by a moisturizer. Moisturizer are meant to protect your epidermis, or your outer layer of skin, while serums address the dermis, the internal potion of your skin responsible for your skin’s support and elasticity. Since serums have a smaller molecular size and higher active ingredient content, it enables them to penetrate deeper, providing nourishment to the underlying structure of the skin. The larger molecular size of moisturizers allows them to seal water into the layers of the skin, keeping it supple, and hydrated. Because active ingredients in serums are more expensive than thickeners in moisturizers, serums are also the costliest product in many skin care lines. But when applied properly, a 1-ounce container of serum should last months.
As for whether a serum should be used along with a moisturizer, experts agree that serums and moisturizers can be used together. Encourage your clients to boost their moisture level and target specific skin conditions by layering a serum under their moisturizer. Moisturizers give the additional emollients that extra dry skin may need.
Jessica Wu, MD, a Santa Monica, Calif., dermatologist, and author of Feed Your Face recommends serums to many of her patients. “They’re great for people with oily skin,” she says, “or those who prefer a weightless feel to their skin care products. Serums have a non-greasy finish and they don’t leave behind a sticky residue.”
Still, serums aren’t for everyone. Wu says the liquid or gel-like texture of a serum can be a poor match for people with chronic skin conditions like eczema, which weaken the skin barrier. For these people, serums may penetrate too quickly, causing irritation.
Some of our favorite serums include:
- Doctor D. Schwab Ginkgosome – An advanced patent-pending micronized liposome technology, enriched with active ingredients including Ginkgo Biloba extract. Dramatically enhances the moisture retaining capacity of the skin. Just a few drops applied daily, in the morning, provide immediate, visible improvements in skin tone, texture, firmness and vitality.
- Skin Script Ageless Hydrating Serum – This serum can be used to firm and plump fine lines. Hyaluronic re-hydrates and assists in boosting hydration levels and balances surface lipids.
- Enspri Sheer Ceramide – Sheer Ceramide optimizes and protects this natural barrier. Moisture stays in while harmful elements are kept out. Formulated in a silky smooth, easily absorbed serum that also primes the surface for more effective moisturizing, and blended with naturally hydrating squalene, grape seed and jojoba oils.