The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
“This is one of the best options out there, and added bonus is the affordable price,” says Dr. Love. “It combines the powerhouse ingredient of niacinamide with zinc, another great anti-inflammatory and soothing ingredient.” At under $10, the price point is hard to beat…not to mention it’s lightweight, safe for acne-prone skin, cruelty-free, and vegan, Dr. Love points out. “Dab all over the face morning and evening before applying heavier creams or moisturizers,” she advises.
What the reviews say: “I’ve been using this serum for two years now and couldn’t live without it,” said one reviewer. “I can honestly say that my skin has never looked better and I rarely get any pimples at all now.”
CeraVe Resurfacing Retinol Serum
Retinol stimulates skin cell turnover to reveal fresh skin underneath the surface, helping to fade dark and red marks. The addition of niacinamide brightens and guards against the potentially irritating effects of retinol. Testers love the silky texture and credit it for reducing the appearance of acne scars and melasma.
What the reviews say: “It really did even out my complexion, tightened my pores, and I’m not being paid to say this.”