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Sun’s out, buns out. Time to wax those legs, scrub those backs, and get your skin glowing for summer (oy) but also time to start thinking about lighter products and lots of sunscreen, too.  If your face has been on furlough, now’s the perfect time to get a facial to get rid of all that dull, flaky winter skin and start your summer skincare regimen anew.

One thing that’s a vital for your at-home arsenal is S E R U M.  There are a gazillion different ones that treat a gazillion different conditions, but what you need to know it that serums are not moisturizers, and moisturizers are not serums.  Serums are concentrated treatments that penetrate below the skin level, helping to boost your moisturizer and making you look fabulous.  Think of it as a pay raise for your face.

The first step to choosing the right one for you is knowing what your skin type is.  Ask a skincare professional.  Once you establish that, then you can choose a serum accordingly:

  1. Best for oily/acne-prone skin: Murad Exfoliating Acne Treatment Gel ($54) Balancing oily skin is tough and this one keeps your skin clean, clear and happy, and all without parabens, fragrances or dyes that can irritate problematic skin.
  2. Best for aging oily skin: SkinCeuticals Blemish and Age Defense ($80) is light as water in consistency and keeps excess oil in check while preventing fine lines and little brown spots.
  3. Best for dry or mature skin: GM Collin Daily Ceramide Comfort ($89) Appropriate for all skin types, yet this richer serum is really ideal for fine, dry skin and for nighttime use.
  4. Best for Severely Parched Skin: Skin Chanel Hydra Beauty Serum This lightweight serum is a splurge ($135) but it goes on like a dream and hydrates the thirstiest of skins with the magic of hyaluronic acid.
  5. Best for dehydrated, sensitive skin: Eminence Cornflower Serum ($58) is medium-weight, easily absorbed and yet protective enough to soothe the most sensitive and sensitized skins, with 95% organic ingredients including calming chamomile and cornflower.

Ultimately, choose one that absorbs well, smells great and makes you feel good about using it.

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