14 Best Vitamin C Serums to Brighten Your Skin

Using a good vitamin C serum can quickly brighten your skin and is a common ingredient in popular dark spot correctors. Vitamin C offers various benefits, including protecting your skin from UV rays and pollution, as well as reducing hyperpigmentation by limiting melanin production.

However, choosing the right vitamin C product can be tricky due to different concentration levels available, ranging from 5% to 30%.

Keep in mind that vitamin C can be unstable, so it’s essential to invest in well-formulated products for effectiveness. After testing 40 Vitamin C Serums on the market, we have picked 14 best for you to choose.

14 Best Vitamin C Serums

1. L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Vitamin C Face Serum

L'Oreal Paris Revitalift 10% Pure Vitamin C Face Serum, Brighter Skin, Reduced Wrinkles, Fragrance Free 1 0z.

L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Vitamin C Face Serum is a budget-friendly skincare product that contains 10% vitamin C. It aims to rejuvenate and brighten the skin over time, although noticeable results may take a few months to appear. The serum’s lightweight, non-sticky texture is designed to be applied smoothly, leaving the skin feeling refreshed.

Pros:

  • Budget-friendly option
  • Contains 10% vitamin C for skin rejuvenation
  • User-friendly tube design minimizes waste
  • Lightweight, non-sticky texture

Cons:

  • Results may take a few months to become noticeable
  • Not an immediate solution for skincare concerns

2. Yes To Grapefruit Brightening Serum

Yes To Grapefruit Brightening Serum is a wallet-friendly skincare gem that rejuvenates your skin with over 95% natural ingredients. Formulated with PHAs for gentle exfoliation and vitamin C for a radiant complexion, it swiftly combats dullness, leaving you with visibly brighter skin in just days.

Pros:

  • Affordable and effective.
  • Quick results, noticeable in a few days.
  • Refreshing feel on the skin.
  • Non-greasy and non-sticky.
  • Can be used daily, even under makeup for added radiance.

Cons:

  • Strong scent, which may not be suitable for fragrance-sensitive individuals.

3. SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic

SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic

SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic is a top-notch vitamin C serum renowned for its ability to enhance skin radiance, smoothness, and combat signs of aging. Its potent formula includes 15% pure vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid), 1% vitamin E, and 0.5% ferulic acid. This powerful blend works together to shield the skin from damage caused by UV rays and pollution, while also diminishing photodamage, fine lines, wrinkles, and dark spots.

Pros:

  • Boosts skin radiance and smoothness.
  • Effectively fights signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Provides protection against UV rays and pollution.
  • Fades dark spots and diminishes photodamage.
  • Works well with other skincare products.

Cons:

  • Has a noticeable scent upon application.
  • Higher price point compared to other options.
  • Contains potentially irritating ingredients for sensitive skin types.

4. CeraVe Skin Renewing Vitamin C Serum

CeraVe Vitamin C Serum with Hyaluronic Acid | Skin Brightening Serum for Face with 10% Pure Vitamin C | Fragrance Free | 1 Fl. Oz

CeraVe Skin Renewing Vitamin C Serum is a wallet-friendly skincare gem, especially for those with sensitive or breakout-prone skin. Packed with 10% L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C), ceramides, hyaluronic acid, and vitamin B5, it’s a powerhouse for nourishing your skin, leaving it looking healthier and more radiant. Its lightweight formula makes application a breeze.

Pros:

  • Affordable option
  • Suitable for sensitive or breakout-prone skin
  • Contains beneficial ingredients like vitamin C, ceramides, hyaluronic acid, and vitamin B5
  • Lightweight and easy to apply
  • Effectively reduces marks from breakouts and fine lines

Cons:

  • Packaging can be difficult to open

5. Klur Brilliant Light Repair Serum

Klur Brilliant Light Repair Serum

Klur Brilliant Light Repair Serum is a luxurious skincare product designed to address various skin concerns, particularly suited for mature skin. It boasts a potent formula containing 20% bioavailable vitamin C and a blend of soothing plant extracts. This powerful combination works to strengthen the skin, even out skin tone, and reduce irritation, leaving the skin feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

Pros:

  • Potent formula with 20% bioavailable vitamin C and soothing plant extracts.
  • Effective at evening out skin tone and reducing irritation, suitable for sensitive skin.
  • Hydrating and smoothing upon application, quickly absorbed by the skin.
  • Noticeable firming effect observed even by older users.
  • A little goes a long way, making it a worthwhile investment despite the high price.

Cons:

  • High price point may be a deterrent for some.
  • May not deliver instant results for all users, requiring consistent use for optimal effects.

6. Goodal Vitamin C Dark Spot Serum+

GOODAL Green Tangerine Vitamin C Serum 1.01 fl oz.

Goodal Vitamin C Dark Spot Serum+ is a serum designed to tackle dark spots and uneven skin tone. Packed with ingredients like green tangerine extract rich in vitamin C, niacinamide, and arbutin, it targets dark spots and post-acne marks while strengthening the skin barrier and promoting collagen production. Its blend also includes centella asiatica for added skin protection and rejuvenation, resulting in clearer, more radiant skin.

Pros:

  • Effective at reducing dark spots and improving skin texture.
  • Affordable option for skincare.
  • Contains powerful ingredients like vitamin C and niacinamide.
  • Strengthens the skin barrier and boosts collagen production.
  • Offers skin protection and rejuvenation with centella asiatica.

Cons:

  • Has a tangerine scent that may not be appealing to everyone.
  • Results may vary for individuals.
  • Some users might experience sensitivity to certain ingredients.

7. iNNBEAUTY PROJECT Vitamin C + Green Superfoods Jelly Serum

iNNBEAUTY PROJECT Vitamin C + Green Superfoods Jelly Serum

The iNNBEAUTY PROJECT Vitamin C + Green Superfoods Jelly Serum is a skincare product that combines vitamin C and superfoods to refresh and nourish the skin. It’s designed like a smoothie for your face, blending ingredients such as 15 super greens, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate (a form of vitamin C), azelaic acid, and 250,000 pomegranate stem cells. This serum-oil combo aims to provide a lush and effective skincare experience.

Pros:

  • Unique blend of vitamin C and superfoods for refreshing skin care.
  • Helps to reduce acne flare-ups and promotes faster healing.
  • Contains eco-friendly ingredients and packaging.
  • Nourishing and hydrating for the skin.

Cons:

  • May not be suitable for those who prefer oil-free skincare.
  • Does not completely prevent acne.
  • Some individuals may prefer a different texture or formulation.

8. Sephora Collection Super Glow Serum with Vitamin C+E

Sephora Collection Super Glow Serum with Vitamin C+E

The Sephora Collection Super Glow Serum with Vitamin C+E is a skincare powerhouse designed to deliver a radiant and youthful complexion. Formulated with 97% natural ingredients, including vitamin C, vitamin E, and natural peptides from marine algae, this serum deeply hydrates the skin, combats wrinkles, and improves overall texture. With regular use, it can visibly enhance skin’s appearance, leaving it dewy and healthier-looking in just a few weeks.

Pros:

  • Contains 97% natural ingredients for clean and effective skincare.
  • Formulated with vitamin C, vitamin E, and marine algae peptides to hydrate, fight wrinkles, and improve texture.
  • Users report dewier, smoother, and younger-looking skin with consistent use.

Cons:

  • May be too rich for oily skin types.
  • Comes in a delicate glass bottle, which may require extra care during handling.

9. Drunk Elephant C-Firma Fresh Vitamin C Day Serum

Drunk Elephant C-Firma Fresh Day Serum – Firming and Brightening Serum for Damaged and Aging Skin

Drunk Elephant C-Firma Fresh Vitamin C Day Serum is a renowned skincare product that contains a unique formula designed to maintain the potency of its active vitamin C for up to a year after mixing. With a blend of 15% L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C), ferulic acid, and vitamin E, this serum aims to deliver remarkable results. It promises softer, plumper, and more radiant skin within a few weeks of regular use, along with the added benefit of reducing breakouts.

Pros:

  • Unique formula preserves active vitamin C potency for up to a year.
  • Contains 15% L-ascorbic acid, ferulic acid, and vitamin E for effective results.
  • Users report softer, plumper, and more radiant skin after consistent use.
  • Effective in reducing breakouts.

Cons:

  • The 15% vitamin C concentration may be too strong for newcomers or those with sensitive skin.
  • Some users notice a temporary strange smell upon application.

10. Olay Vitamin C Peptide 24 Serum

Olay Vitamin C Peptide 24 Serum

The Olay Vitamin C Peptide 24 Serum is a skincare product designed to provide visible results while enhancing your skincare routine with its refreshing citrus scent. Packed with vitamin C, niacinamide (vitamin B3), and hydrating peptides, this serum is clinically proven to boost skin hydration within a day and improve brightness within a month. It delivers an immediate glow and long-lasting hydration, making it a fantastic addition to daily skincare rituals.

Pros:

  • Clinically proven to hydrate skin in just one day and brighten in a month.
  • Provides immediate glow and long-lasting hydration.
  • Refreshing citrus scent enhances the skincare experience.

Cons:

  • Initial glow may fade after about an hour.
  • Citrus scent might not be suitable for those sensitive to fragrances.

11. TruSkin Vitamin C Facial Serum

TruSkin Naturals Vitamin C Face Serum Anti Aging Face & Eye Serum with Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin E Brightening Serum, Dark Spot Remover, Even Skin Tone 1 Fl Oz

TruSkin Vitamin C Facial Serum is a popular skincare product designed to enhance skin appearance quickly. Packed with beneficial ingredients like botanical hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, aloe vera, jojoba oil, and MSM, this serum is absorbed in just 30 seconds, providing fast results. It hydrates the skin effectively and can be used as a standalone moisturizer. Many users have reported achieving a brighter and glowing complexion after regular use. However, the exact percentage of vitamin C in the serum is not disclosed, and it’s advisable to perform a patch test before applying to sensitive skin.

Pros:

  • Fast-absorbing formula for quick results
  • Contains beneficial ingredients like hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, and aloe vera
  • Can be used as a standalone moisturizer

Cons:

  • Percentage of vitamin C not specified
  • Patch test recommended for those with sensitive skin

12. Biossance Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil

BIOSSANCE Squalane and Vitamin C Rose Oil. Facial Oil to Visibly Brighten, Hydrate, Firm and Reveal Radiant Skin 1.0 ounces

Biossance Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil is a luxurious skincare serum that combines vitamin C, squalane, and rose oil to rejuvenate and revitalize the skin. Designed to absorb easily, it hydrates, brightens, and firms the skin, leaving it with a radiant complexion. The serum’s key ingredients, including Damascus rose oil and Chios crystal oil, work together to deliver transformative results.

Pros:

  • Luxurious skincare experience with vitamin C, squalane, and rose oil.
  • Absorbs well without leaving a greasy residue.
  • Hydrates, brightens, and firms the skin.
  • Suitable for various skin types, including oily and combination skin.
  • A little goes a long way, making it a smart investment despite the higher price point.

Cons:

  • Expensive compared to some other skincare products.
  • May not be suitable for those with specific allergies or sensitivities to any of the ingredients.
  • Results may vary depending on individual skin type and concerns.

13. OLEHENRIKSEN Banana Bright Vitamin C Serum

OLEHENRIKSEN Banana Bright 15% Vitamin C Dark Spot Serum 1.0 oz/ 30 mL

OLEHENRIKSEN Banana Bright Vitamin C Serum is a powerhouse skincare product that combines vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, and special pigments to give your skin a youthful glow. With a strong 15% vitamin C concentration and the added benefits of polyhydroxy acids (PHAs), it works to boost collagen production, even out skin tone, and protect against pollution. Hyaluronic acid keeps your skin hydrated, while gentle exfoliation leaves your complexion smooth and radiant.

Pros:

  • Powerful 15% vitamin C concentration for youthful skin.
  • PHAs help to gently exfoliate and protect against pollution.
  • Hyaluronic acid keeps skin hydrated for a dewy look.
  • Gentle enough for daily use.

Cons:

  • May be too strong for sensitive skin or those new to vitamin C.
  • Some individuals may prefer a lower concentration product for gradual introduction.

14. Mabox Vitamin C Serum

Mabox Vitamin C Serum Review

Mabox Vitamin C Serum is a skincare powerhouse formulated to tackle signs of aging and promote healthier, more radiant skin. Infused with Vitamin C, it acts as a potent antioxidant, fighting off free radicals that contribute to skin aging. By boosting collagen production, it enhances skin elasticity, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Its natural, plant-based ingredients make it suitable for all skin types, delivering noticeable results with regular use.

Pros:

  • Potent antioxidant properties combat free radicals.
  • Boosts collagen production for firmer, more youthful skin.
  • Natural, plant-based formulation suitable for all skin types.
  • Visibly reduces fine lines and wrinkles with regular use.

Cons:

  • Strong scent may not be suitable for sensitive noses.
  • Patch test required before full application.
  • Not a substitute for sunscreen; additional sun protection necessary.
  • Results may vary depending on individual skin type and concerns.

To learn more, read the honest review of Mabox Vitamin C Serum.

How to Choose the Best Vitamin C Serum

Here are some tips for choosing the right Vitamin C serum:

  1. Opaque Packaging: Vitamin C is sensitive to light and air, so pick serums in dark or opaque bottles or with airtight pumps. Look for products like SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic Serum and Klur Brilliant Light. Keep your serum in a cool, dark place for best results.

  2. L-Ascorbic Acid: To get the most potent Vitamin C, go for serums with L-ascorbic acid. It’s super effective but can be pricier and might irritate your skin. Options include Skinceuticals C E Ferulic and CeraVe Skin Renewing Vitamin C Serum. Klairs’ Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop is another choice with ascorbic acid and essential oils.

  3. Other Antioxidants: Vitamin C works even better with other antioxidants like vitamin E and ferulic acid. Check for serums that have these extras as they boost Vitamin C’s power and stability. Klur Brilliant Light serum, for instance, has vitamin E for added antioxidant benefits.

By keeping these factors in mind, you can confidently pick the right Vitamin C serum for your skincare routine.

What does vitamin C do for your face?

Vitamin C benefits your skin in several ways:

  1. Reduces Dark Spots: It inhibits excess melanin production, fading acne scars, melasma, and dark spots.

  2. Smoothes Fine Lines: Vitamin C helps in collagen formation, reducing fine lines and wrinkles over time.

  3. Protects from Damage: Its antioxidant properties protect against UV and pollution, keeping your skin healthy and glowing.

  4. Boosts Sunscreen: Using a vitamin C serum in the morning can enhance your sunscreen’s effectiveness, guarding against sun damage.

When should you apply vitamin C serums?

You can apply vitamin C serums either in the morning or at night. Just make sure to stick to the same time consistently.

Can you use vitamin C everyday?

Yes, you can use vitamin C every day. It’s safe for daily use and recommended for morning application. Make sure to choose a well-formulated vitamin C serum suitable for your skin type. Sensitive skin can opt for an emollient-based serum, while those with acne-prone or oily skin may prefer an alcohol-based formula.

How should you apply vitamin C serums?

Apply your vitamin C serum after cleansing your face. Avoid using it at the same time as benzoyl peroxide. If you use benzoyl peroxide at night, apply your vitamin C serum in the morning for the best results.

Is vitamin C safe?

Yes, vitamin C is safe to use, but it’s sensitive to light and air. To maintain its effectiveness, store it in a dark place and tightly seal the bottle to prevent degradation.

Does the packaging of my vitamin-C serum matter?

Yes, the packaging of your vitamin C serum matters. It should be in a dark or tinted bottle with a dropper to prevent exposure to light and air, which can cause it to oxidize and lose effectiveness.

Where should I store my vitamin-C serum?

Store your vitamin C serum in a dark, cool place, away from sunlight and heat. Consider using a skincare fridge if you want to be extra cautious about preserving its effectiveness. Avoid sunlit beauty shelves.

Can I use vitamin-C serum if I have eczema or rosacea?

If you have eczema or rosacea, be cautious with vitamin-C serums as they may cause irritation for sensitive skin. A gentler alternative recommended by experts is niacinamide, which also helps protect your skin from environmental damage.

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