An antioxidant, vitamin C is the skincare’s answer to illuminator: it guarantees good glow. But the perks don’t stop there: it’s also been shown to reduce redness and pigmentation; fight free radical damage and boost collagen production to boot.
The most effective form is ascorbic acid (keep your eyes peeled on products’ ingredients lists), but vitamin C can also appear as sodium ascorbyl phosphate, ascorbyl palmitate and retinyl ascorbate, among others.
Natural sources of vit-C include citrus, kiwi fruit, berries, broccoli and capsicum, to name a few, but double down on your intake by incorporating a vitamin C serum into your morning skincare routine and your complexion will reward you with the kind of lit-from-within glow you assumed could only come from an Instagram filter. What is the best vitamin C serum? We could never pick just one! Here, a round up of our top 10 favourites.
The Best Vitamin C Serums You Can Buy In Australia
The Ordinary Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20%, $24.90 at Adore Beauty
The Ordinary is beloved for bringing the world high-quality skincare at an affordable price point, and this vitamin C serum is no exception: the vit-C is combined with essential fatty acids for a formula that's ideal for dry skin types.
Olay Luminous Niacinamide + Vitamin C Super Serum, $59.99 at Priceline
Olay’s recently-released Luminous Niacinamide + Vitamin C Super Serum is another strong contender for the best vitamin C serum in Australia. A powerful combination of niacinamide (to prevent pigmentation), vitamin C (to fade dark spots), pro-vitamin B5 (to soothe and moisturise) and vitamin E (to protect against free radical damage) work in synergy to brighten skin. Perfect for all skin types from dry to oily, this non-greasy formula sinks in easily and delves deep into the skin’s top 10 layers to create real, long lasting results.
Sometimes what a brand leaves out is just as important as what it puts in; this serum is formulated without sulphates, parabens, phthalates, petrolatum and mineral oils.
Skinceuticals C E Ferulic, $214 at Adore Beauty
A true cult product, Skinceuticals C E Ferulic is beloved by beauty editors for its highly efficacious formulation - 15% ascorbic acid - combined with vitamin E and Ferulic acid to brighten and protect against free radical damage. Suitable for normal to dry skin types.
KORA Organics Noni Bright Vitamin C Serum, $86 at Adore Beauty
The product Miranda Kerr credits with handling her pregnancy-induced pigmentation, this lightweight serum features a mix of 12% vitamin C derived from antioxidant-rich fruit, hyaluronic acid and olive leaf to brighten and restore your skin to its glowiest state.
Ole Henriksen Truth Serum, $68 at Sephora
Another cult favourite, this is a classic vitamin C serum that reviewers rave about. Enriched with orange and green tea extracts, its fast absorbing formula boasts an energising citrus scent and a silky texture that glides deliciously on the skin.
Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum, $116, at Mecca
As far as we're concerned, this is the Holy Grail of vitamin C skincare. Containing an impressive 15 per cent ascorbic acid, plus fruit enzymes, hyaluronic acid and pumpkin ferment acid, this vitamin C serum brightens, evens out skin tone and hydrates simultaneously. It's also free of synthetics like parabens, pthalates and fragrance. Read our detailed review here.
La Roche-Posay Redermic C10 Anti-Ageing Serum, $69.95 at Adore Beauty
Claiming to reduce wrinkles after just one week of use, this anti-ageing powerhouse by French pharmacy favourite La Roche-Posay is perfect for hydrating and brightening sensitive and mature skin types. A powerful yet gentle form of vitamin C skincare, this multi-tasking wonder contains 10% ascorbic acid.
Andalou Naturals Turmeric+ C Enlighten Serum, $34.99 at Nourished Life
Seeking out chemical-free vitamin C skincare? Newly available in Australia, the Andalou range uses only natural (and many organic) ingredients. This vitamin C serum contains turmeric, aloe vera, hyaluronic acid and rosehip oil to hydrate and restore glow.
Sunday Riley C.E.O 15% Vitamin C Brightening Serum
While vitamin C is undeniably has the starring role here, it's supporting co-stars are what set this brightening elixir apart from the rest. Along with the collagen-boosting antioxidant, it includes glycolic acid to gently lift away dead skin cells and boost cellular turnover, and hyaluronic acid, which plumps the skin by holding 1000x its own weight in water.
Alpha-H Vitamin C With Grape Seed, $70 at Sephora
Made in Australia, vegan and cruelty-free, this beautifully bottled serum combines a potent blend of vitamin C, grape seed and hyaluronic acid to target pigmentation, improve overall complexion and enhance collagen production.