Beauty & the Geek

Composure Magazine Beauty & the Geek serums


In the battle of the serums — with the highest concentration of active ingredients, they’re the workhorses of any beauty regimen — packaging is either pretty, high-tech or straight out of the lab. But it doesn’t matter, because whichever you prefer, there’s some serious science behind all of them. 


Story by Anna M. Park


Dehydration: This serum — infused with real rose oil, water-magnet hyaluronic acid, and algae and plant extracts known for their water-retention properties — has been shown to hydrate deeper for 24 hours. Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Face Serum, $55,

Wrinkles: They’ve got studies (and photos) to prove that a groundbreaking octapeptide and minerals relax facial muscles, but just witness it for yourself: Dab onto crow’s feet, frown lines, nasolabials, even eye bags, and magically watch the lines flatten out. Jouvé Instant Tightening and Restoring Serum, $86,

Dull texture: A host of ingredients works with the skin’s own enzymes to increase cellular turnover, while antioxidants green tea and red ginseng fight aging free radicals. Amorepacific enzyme treatment, $250,

Sagging: Made to address “pockets” in the dermis that lead to laxity, wrinkles and sagging, this high-tech serum utilizes patent-pending ingredients to boost cell renewal, fight free radicals and more effectively hydrate. Shiseido Bio-Performance LiftDynamic Serum, $95,

Premature aging: This award-winning, multi-antioxidant serum neutralizes more free radicals, prevents UV immunosuppression and provides eight times more protection from UV-induced aging. Amazingly, once absorbed, its protection lasts 72 hours and can’t be washed off. Skinceuticals C E Ferulic, $163,

Droopy Eyelids: Light reflective pigments brighten, while a new delivery technology drives hyaluronic acid deeper into the skin to lift the eye area instantly and long-term. Ren Keep Young and Beautiful Instant Brightening Beauty Shot Eye Lift, $45,

Hyperpigmentation: Dermatologist Ronald Moy utilizes DNA repair enzymes and plant-based epidermal growth factor, which work with the skin’s natural processes to modify skin behavior, in his signature spot-fighting serum. DNA EGF Renewal DNA Regeneration Serum, $145,

Oily skin: Salicylic acid gets deep down into pores to clear out excess sebum, while hyaluronic acid and botanical extracts prevent dry-out. Skinn Matte Manager Daytime Pore Reducing Serum, $27.50,

Loss of volume: Retinol and anti-aging DMAE build up collagen with none of the inflammation, thanks to the nourishing, protective properties of eggshell membrane. Perricone MD OVM serum, $155,

Customize Your Serum: Not sure what your skin issues are? Take Skin Inc.’s online quiz to hone in on your skin identity. They’ll recommend some ingredients, like Vitamin C or collagen, which come in a patented seaweed encapsulation for better absorption, and ship out a customized serum just for you. Skin Inc. My Daily Dose Custom-Blended Serum, $90,

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