Bioderma Hydrabio Serum (£17.50 - link here)
As part of my skincare assessment with Debbie Thomas, I was given this Bioderma serum for tackling my dehydration, and I am blown away. It is one of the most hydrating serums I've used, and actually pairing it with a moisturiser is almost too much for me - but it's in an awkward space where not using one is not enough. But if you suffer from extreme dehydration (pinch your cheeks - do you get horizontal wrinkles?), or you're looking for a lightweight, gel-based product to use instead of a moisturiser - this is an affordable option to try. As for the formula, it is a gel texture that sinks in beautifully and the packaging is also super practical. For the price, I'm very impressed at what it can do!
Lancome DreamTone Serum 02 for Medium Skin Tone (£69 - link here)
After being so impressed with L'Oreal's Skin Perfection Serum, I really expected for Lancome's skin correcting serums to be magical (L'Oreal owns both brands, and you may notice throughout their products that L'Oreal often produce the high street version of popular Lancome products) - especially with their reputation in the Genefique and Visionnaire lines. Unfortunately, it really didn't do much for my acne scars in the long term at all, unlike the L'Oreal one - maybe it brightened my skin for the day.. but no one should have to pay £69 for that (I thankfully won this in a giveaway by one of the department stores).
And what's even more infuriating is how they have organised this product. Number 1 is for fair skin, to correct redness. Number 2 is for medium skin, to correct dark spots. Number 3 is for dark skin, to correct scarring. Now obviously, this misleads consumers as to whether they should purchase according to their skintone or their needs. I obviously went with skintone, and it was a mistake. There's some serious rebranding needed here.
The texture is great - it sinks in well, and creates a really nice and smooth base for your primer, but the skincare benefits were virtually non-existent for me. It doesn't do anything bad, but for the price, you want some big time results.
skinChemists Bee Venom Facial Serum (£135 - link here)
The price tag on this baby also sends shockwaves through my body, but at least it delivers.. and oh, does it deliver! This is a step up from Bioderma, in the sense that it is super duper hydrating and I could eaaasily get away with not wearing moisturiser if I use this. It's a thick gel consistency that smells like honey (I'm not a massive fan, but the smell does go away - phew). It sinks in beautifully and leaves with you with plump, hydrated and smooth skin. I'd go so far as to say it was a 3-in-1 with serum, moisturiser and primer which really more than justifies its price - you can easily find products that are £40+ in each bracket. It's a hefty amount to part with in one shot, but I can't question its quality. skinChemists sometimes run sales on their websites to encourage new users, so keep an eye out - you're talking £100+ products on sale for £20 :)
Origins Make A Difference Skin Rejuvenating Serum (£34 - link here)
This has been my day serum of choice for ages now - it's just perfect. A smooth liquid that is weightless, and sinks in very quickly to give you a nice hydrated base. This is one I pair with a moisturiser (currently the Jurlique Calendula Redness Rescue Soothing Moisturising Cream) and it keeps my oils at bay and my skin nice and hydrated. Because of its light texture, I could recommend this to pretty much anybody - I can't imagine it being too much for many people. It's a "does what it says on the tin" serum - it hydrates, and won't intervene with anything else you've got going on. This is a ridiculously minor point, but I have this problem of taking lids off pump-based products and just never putting it back on - this one comes with a twist lock and no lid so it's pretty much made for me.. pretty much.