Cream or serum? If possible, both!

The serum is an intensive treatment that can improve the condition of your skin, lighter than a cream, but more active and concentrated than the latter.

The serum is considered as a specific treatment with a targeted action, aimed at addressing different aspects of the skin, and its usefulness depends exclusively on the formulation of the individual product.

The serum is basically attributed a greater functionality than the other products, the water-soluble molecules of which a serum is made are smaller than the fat-soluble ones and have a greater affinity with the skin: they are therefore able to be absorbed faster and deeper into the epidermis, carrying out their action even in the deeper layers of the skin.

Benefits of face serums

The face serum is a product completely made of an aqueous base and water-soluble active ingredients, therefore devoid of the fat component that creams contain. It is not always used in daily skincare, probably because in the past it has not been advertised enough, but in recent years instead it has had a boom and products of this type have increased in sales.

Formulated in an ultra-concentrated way and with active ingredients that can have different actions: stimulating, revitalizing, stain-resistant, moisturizing, brightening or anti-aging. The best face serum therefore meets your personal needs and must be used in combination with the moisturizer, to complete the routine and enhance its effectiveness. In fact, the serum is conceived as a concentrate of active ingredients that manages to go where it must act.

Already from the texture, you can see the difference compared to other products: the face serum has a light formula that is quickly absorbed and can be applied once to twice a day, depending on the needs. It is important, however, to always end the routine by applying a specific moisturizer that acts with the serum, while nourishing the skin of the face.

Serums can be of any type of liquid and aqueous consistency, gels, oils, or even fluid creams and are of different types:

  • Effective anti-aging or anti-wrinkle for mature skin that has wrinkles and signs of age, some also with a tensor effect that create a smooth film on the skin destined to last a few hours or with a plumping effect that temporarily fill the tiny wrinkles with hyaluronic acid microspheres. They contain active ingredients that have a firming and plumping effect, helping to keep the skin elastic and toned. An example is hyaluronic acid, collagen, antioxidant substances such as vitamin C.
  • Purifying recommended for oily and combination skin, with acne tendency, with sebum-rebalancing and exfoliating effect that helps to smooth the skin and counteract the appearance of imperfections such as blackheads and pimples
  • Moisturizing and nourishing, ideal for young skin and dry skin
  • Stain-resistant or brightening ideal for sensitive skin or those that have spots on the face, in fact thanks to the soothing active ingredients they contain they help to counteract redness giving a uniform complexion and glow effect that give shine to the skin.

Which serum to choose?

As always, let's go back to the importance of the INCI analysis in order to understand which product we are really in front of and the right question to always ask is: what does my skin need? But above all: what goals do I want to achieve?

To choose the best face serum, you must therefore know your skin type and the problems you intend to solve. It will be necessary first to identify which are the most suitable active ingredients to combat hyperpigmentation rather than to moisturize the skin.

For mature skin or with first wrinkles, the choice must therefore fall on an anti-wrinkle serum, able to limit the marks on the face and plump up the areas that require it, thanks to a lifting action. You can pick a face serum with hyaluronic acid ideal to counteract skin aging or with Omega-3, which nourishes the epidermis and improves the surface layer of the skin.

Younger skin, on the other hand, will require the action of a moisturizing or purifying serum, often in gel, with a lighter texture and rapid absorption, capable of eliminating all impurities, such as blackheads and small pimples.

For example, if there are skin problems such as oily skin or acne, it is necessary to apply vitamin C face serums, with sebum-regulators, zinc and salicidic acid.

It is also necessary to always be careful not to buy a serum containing substances that can trigger allergies, and it is useful that the routine also includes active ingredients that can calm the skin if there is a need to deal with skin inflammation.

Take a look at our selection of serums:

What is the serum for? What is its function?

In practice, the serum is used to complete the cosmetic routine by adding one or more active ingredients that the cream does not contain but that the skin needs, because it is not guaranteed that all the active ingredients that the skin needs can be included in a single product and in sufficient quantities, we could therefore consider the face serum as a “support” of the cream.

Each formula has specific features and in a cosmetic market that counts thousands of products, there is undoubtedly a serum suitable for every need, with which you can complete any skincare routine.

If the birth of the serum is closer to the present day, the same cannot be said for the face cream, in fact the oldest face cream dates back to about 2000 years ago and was composed mainly of starch and animal fats.

The creams are born to maintain a good level of skin hydration, it is in fact the only way to make the skin elastic, flexible and prevent the appearance of expression wrinkles.

Face creams have 3 basic ingredients:

  • Humectants: able to bring water into the deep layers of the epidermis, such as hyaluronic acid and glycerin.
  • Emollients: that is all those active ingredients that make the skin softer and smoother to the touch including silicones, linoleic acid and ceramides.
  • Film-forming agents: able to form a protective film on the skin, which is why they can promote the onset of blackheads in combination / oily skin.

A serum and a cream can contain the same active ingredients, in the same quantities, but it can happen that a serum contains higher percentages of active than a cream, but the opposite can also happen.

You can therefore also use a face cream without using the serum, although this solution, in cases of mature skin does not bring enough hydration to the skin, especially with skin aging loses the ability to retain hydration independently.


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