For Out-of-This-World Skin in Your 20s, Derms Highly Recommend These 23 Serums


(Image credit: @shawnasimonee)

In my book, January will always be a somewhat special time. Although I'm biased because it's my birthday month, I always like to use this month as a way to refresh and look ahead. Obviously, that usually entails journaling out new goals and dreams, but I'm also talking about streamlining things like my makeup, skincare, and hair routines to reflect my newly evolved philosophy. As I continue to move through my late 20s, I find myself seeking a simpler routine that allows me to do less and still look the most youthful. Yes, it's entirely possible.

I'm always a fan of a good serum to help out in this department, but with so many different ones out there, how is it possible to know which ones are truly the best for folks in their 20s who want to do a little preventative care while still addressing other skin concerns like adult acne? Luckily, according to board-certified dermatologist and Paula's Choice advisory board member Corey Hartman, the solution doesn't require 10 different products. "Fortunately, most active ingredients that address acne and the resulting hyperpigmentation are also beneficial for fine lines and wrinkles," Hartman says. "Retinol, hydroxy acids, niacinamide and azelaic acid are also helpful for acne and hyperpigmentation as well as being great for prevention and treatment of the signs of aging."


(Image credit: @stellasimona)

I know your next question might be What else? If you want to address early signs of aging sooner rather than later (wise choice), Macrene Alexiades, a board-certified dermatologist and the founder of Macrene Actives, also suggests a few things. "Look for ingredients such as peptides and hyaluronic acid to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. In contrast, you should include amino acids such as arginine and aspartic acid. Also consider amino acid derivatives like glucosamine and ergothioneine, plus vitamin C and citric acid to reduce the appearance of brown spots and sun spots. You'll want to avoid hydroquinone, which has been shown to cause DNA mutations and has been banned in several countries," she says.

Whew, I know that was a lot. But after hearing from both Hartman and Alexiades, I feel confident in choosing the right products for my own personal routine. To help you select the right ones for yours, they've also provided us with a few of their recs below. Keep scrolling for what they think are the absolute best serums to use in your 20s along with a few of my own favorites.

Macrene Alexiades

Corey Hartman

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Shawna Hudson
Associate Beauty Editor

Shawna Hudson has worked in editorial for over six years, with experience covering entertainment, fashion, culture, celebrities, and her favorite topic of all, beauty. She graduated from California State University, Fullerton, with a degree in journalism and has written for other publications such as Bustle, The Zoe Report, Byrdie, Elite Daily, Mane Addicts, and more. She is currently an associate beauty editor at Who What Wear and hopes to continue feeding her (completely out-of-control) beauty obsession as long as she can. Stay up to date on her latest finds on Instagram @shawnasimonee.