Hundreds of products come across our desks every month, but not all of them deliver on their claims or live up to the hype. (Not everything that goes viral on TikTok is a miracle worker.) This is our exclusive curation of the best-in-class skin-care products receiving rave reviews from our team and hitting shelves right now.
Whether your concern is red, raised pimples, whiteheads and blackheads, clogged pores, post-acne marks or a combination of them all, this new acne serum can help banish them for good while also preventing new breakouts. The texture is lightweight but packs a ton of blemish-fighting power thanks to the brand’s Triple Acid Complex, a mix of 1.5-percent salicylic acid, glycolic acid and lipohydroxy acid. It’s also dermatologist-tested to suit all skin types, and the addition of niacinamide and the La Roche-Posay’s signature Thermal Water give it soothing properties and cut down on possible irritation.
In a clinical study over the course of four weeks, results showed a 45-percent reduction of pimples, a 21-percent reduction of whiteheads and blackheads, and a 49-percent improvement in post-acne marks. In just two weeks, 77 percent of participants agreed their pores appeared less visible.
“Many of the patients I see with adult acne struggle to find a product to not only help with breakouts but also other concerns as well, including skin texture, post-acne marks and enlarged pores,” says Birmingham, AL dermatologist Julie Harper, MD. “The Effaclar Acne Serum not only treats acne, but also signs of aging, working to visibly reduce pores, fine lines and post-acne marks.”
One of the questions we get asked often at NewBeauty is, “What’s the difference between dry and dehydrated skin?” To put it simply: dry skin is lacking oil and dehydrated skin is lacking water. Inspired by the micro-channeling treatment Somerville performs at her LA Clinic, this new serum uses peptides, Nobel Prize–inspired AquaPort technology and hyaluronic acid to provide long-lasting hydration, and over time, an increase in radiance and reduced fine lines and dark spots.
And if you’re wondering what AquaPort technology is, Somerville describes it as a way of stimulating aquaporin channels in the skin and optimizing hydration transportation and retention to deliver instant and long-lasting results.
“This serum is great for combating dehydrated skin that’s often mistaken for visible signs of premature aging,” says Somerville, who recommends that you use it both morning and night. In an independent clinical study, the serum increased skin hydration by 81 percent in just 20 minutes.
If you have pigment or skin-texture concerns, this is the moisturizer for you. The star of the formula is 1-percent vegan epidermal growth factor (EGF)—it’s never animal-derived—which signals the skin cells to boost collagen and elastin production for an uptick in elasticity and luminosity.
“We were putting Bio-Renew EGF Drops on patients post-procedure and seeing it was helping to turbo-boost whatever treatment we were doing in-office, and this cream is the next generation,” says New York dermatologist Dendy Engelman, MD, who helped formulate the new cream. “It increases dermal thickness by 66 percent and builds collagen and elastin. And, in a clinical study on 29 patients with the average age of 47 and a variety of concerns from pore size to hyperpigmentation, We saw brighter, firmer, smoother skin in 30 days or less, and it made a big difference in people’s skin without irritation.”
You can use it after retinol, and you can use it twice a day too, Dr. Engelman adds. “Additionally, though they weren’t studied together, if you already use the EGF Drops, you can give your skin an extra boost if you pair the two, and maybe use a little less cream too.”
Dull skin no more! Patented, medical-grade MicroSilverBG—an antimicrobial, antiviral ingredient that helps protect the skin’s microbiome—is the hero in this weekly mask that feels like a spa treatment. Formulated by brand founder, cosmetic chemist Ron Robinson, the mask gets its color and pore-purging power from a proprietary mix of natural clays and charcoal powder, and its soothing power from a mix of rare Hawaiian white honey, polyglutamic acid (PGA) and vegan ceramides.
It also pairs really well with Robinson’s other microbiome-friendly creation, the Universal Microbiome Barrier Balancing Cleanser, which we’re big fans of as well.
It’s almost officially fall, and all that summertime fun in the sun has left a constellation of dark spots behind (but not in a cute freckle way). This new jelly-like serum (no oily residue!) features five forms of vitamin C, including guava seed oil and an innovative dual-encapsulated form, as well as supercharged brightening ingredient tranexamic acid. Did you know guava is four times more potent in vitamin C than oranges?
It’s vegan, recommended for all skin types and free of synthetic fragrance (there is a lightly fruity scent from the natural extracts though). I like to use two pumps in the morning, but you can also use it twice a day if you prefer. If you have sensitive skin, start with once every other day at first and see how your skin reacts. This one promises no harsh irritation, but vitamin C and sensitive skin don’t always get along, even in well-balanced formulations.
Dr. Brandt Skincare Microdermabrasion Face ($79, launching September 12)
This cult-classic creamy face scrub (it’s also a NewBeauty Award winner) has long been a fan-favorite, and now it’s relaunching with a new formulation and new packaging, but the same powerful skin benefits.
Inspired by in-office microdermabrasion (a procedure that gently removes the top layer of skin to reduce signs of aging), the new formula features clean, biodegradable ingredients like biocellulose crystals derived from renewable wood pulp instead of aluminum oxide crystals, which were used in the original product. The well-balanced blend of chemical exfoliation and (lactic acid) and physical exfoliation (biocellulose and sugar crystals) makes for baby-soft skin, and the addition of acacia gum soothes to keep irritation at bay.
BeautyBio GLOfacial ($199)
If you love the hydrating, pore-tightening benefits of your salon facial (I’m a big fan of both HydraFacial and DiamondGlow), but wish you could replicate them at home whenever you want, this new professional-grade tool is the answer.
As it extracts all the trapped gunk from pores that makes them look stretched, it also infuses skin with a proprietary blend of hyaluronic acid, botanical extracts, niacinamide and blemish-fighting salicylic acid. To use the device, attach the small or large Treatment Tip and pour the accompanying serum into the Treatment Chamber. Then turn it on and select one of three modes: 1 for low suction; 2 for medium suction and 3 for high suction. Hold your skin taut (like you would if you were dermaplaning) and then glide it over each area until the liquid in the chamber is gone.
It takes around five minutes to do my whole face (I aim for twice a week), and my skin feels amazing afterward. It also really glows! And as a added bonus, there’s also a blue light mode that you can use to spot-treat pimples after a treatment, though you don’t want to use the suction on open or active breakouts.
More than 10 years ago, L’Occitane discovered the anti-aging power of the Corsican immortelle flower—it’s known as the everlasting flower with a bright yellow color that never fades, even after it’s been picked— from the beautiful French island of Corsica. According to the brand, it is “the only variety that contains an incredibly high concentration of active ingredients,” and since this discover, L’Occitane patented the ingredient for use in its skin-care products.
Infused with the brand’s newest ingredient discovery, Immortelle Antioxidant Superbomb, “a powerful blend of natural origin antioxidants that targets early signs of aging,” this milky emulsion sinks into skin almost instantly, delivering line-smoothing and pore-minimizing benefits.
In a consumer study on 60 participants, 93 percent of people said their fine lines appeared less visible after just two weeks, and 95 percent of people found their pores to be less visible in that same time frame. After two months of use, 97 percent of people said their skin felt smooth, poreless and plumped all day long.
For thirsty skin in need of a hefty dose of hydration (though all skin types can use it), this lightweight serum contains three key humectant ingredients for the ultimate quench: hyaluronic acid (HA), polyglutamic acid (it’s a peptide that’s four times more hydrating than HA) and plumping, antioxidant-rich snow mushroom extract.
Apply two drops to slightly damp skin for maximum benefits, and let it sink in for a couple minutes before layering another product on top. And don’t forget to bring it down to your neck and chest, too! You can use it morning and night, and it’s silicone-free, nonsticky, safe for sensitive skin, and made from 50-percent recycled materials. What’s not to love?
For those who got a little too much sun this summer and some hyperpigmentation is settling in, this rich, silky cream utilizes stabilized vitamin C to brighten dark spots and even out a blotchy complexion. The benefits are further boosted thanks to niacinamide and vitamin E, and white lupine lipopeptides help strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier. It’s also vegan and gluten-free.
Another thing I really appreciate is that because Arbonne is a certified B Corp, it considers the impact of its packaging on the planet when developing new products. For this product, the jar is made of recyclable glass (make sure you rinse any product residue out before tossing it in the bin) and the cap contains 30-percent post-consumer recycled material.
Valmont V-FIRM Serum ($340)
Dermatologists often categorize their patients as being one of three types, depending on their signs of aging: “wrinkler,” “sagger” or “sinker,” which describes a bony face with visible volume loss. This luxurious, Swiss-made serum benefits both saggers and sinkers by helping to restore skin’s youthful bounce, density and firmness.
In addition to the brand’s signature, cell-revitalizing Triple DNA ingredient, another standout in the formula are matrikines, which are messenger peptides that have the ability to regulate cellular activities, including collagen synthesis and cell proliferation, by interacting with their specific receivers. “V-FIRM achieves the challenge of technicality in voluptuousness, combining visible efficiency and prolonged pleasure,” says Sophie Vann Guillon, CEO of Valmont. The creamy, velvety texture is also a real treat, especially for those with dry skin.
In a clinical study using ultrasound to measure changes in skin thickness on 20 women using the serum twice a day for 84 days, results showed an increase of 15.1 percent in skin plumpness.
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