Are you totally overwhelmed by the number of serums on the market these days? I am, and I’m a green beauty expert! I can only imagine how confusing it would be to sort through it all as a consumer, even an educated one. So, let’s simplify things. First, I’ll explain some basics about serums. Then, I’ll break down our three serums by function and skin type. And at the very end, I hope to make you smile by telling you that all our serums will now be offered at the same price.
1) WHAT ARE SERUMS?
The actual definition of serum is this: “the watery part of blood that contains antibodies and fights disease”. A secondary definition is “any watery animal or plant fluid”. Are you grossed out yet? Sorry! But, I want you to understand the real definition so we can see how it segues into the world of skincare.
There is no set of rules by which skin care companies define their serums: you’ll find water-based, gel-based, and oil-based serums, making it hard to know exactly how to incorporate a serum into your routine. A water or gel-based serum will bring added hydration and water-soluble vitamins to the skin, while an oil-based serum might bring antioxidants or anti-inflammatory nutrients, deliver oil-soluble vitamins, and help the skin retain water.
(Note: did you know that oils are NOT hydrating? Any word with “hydra” needs to be about water. Oils have no water. They’re basically the opposite of water. They soften. They deliver nutrients. They help skin retain water. But they do not HYDRATE. Only water does that. That’s why you must use oils on wet or damp skin. Okay, I’m done now.)
The best way to think about a beauty serum is to consider the medical definition: it’s a liquid, either oil or water, with concentrated ingredients designed to target specific conditions, just like antibodies in our serum target certain disease processes.
Regarding how to use a serum, I usually recommend water-based products before oil-based products, but your skin will let you know if you’re doing it right. If a serum sits on top of your skin and does not absorb, or feels tight or flaky after applying, you may need to change the order of things. Our three facial serums are oil-based, so I recommend cleansing the skin and applying the serum to the skin while it’s still damp from washing or from your toner.
By Sarah Villafranco, M.D, Founder Osmia Organics