11 Best Lactic Acid Serums For Even-Toned, Bright, And Clear Skin

Written by Kirtana Divakar
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The elixir of beautiful and radiant skin — lactic acid is a remarkable ingredient revolutionizing skincare. Found naturally in milk, curd, and wine, lactic acid is an age-old component used to improve and enhance the skin tone and texture long before beauty products existed. It is known for its miraculous ability to renew dead skin cells, treat pigmentation, and increase collagen production in the skin for better elasticity and skin texture. Of late, lactic acid serums have been the talk of the town as they penetrate deep into the skin and have high concentrations of active ingredients that work tirelessly for skin that is flawless without skin imperfections.

If you’ve been on the hunt for a potent lactic acid concoction to rid dead skin cells and achieve glass skin, you’re in the right place! Having combed the far end of the Internet, we bring you the 11 best lactic acid serums for even-toned, bright, and clear skin. Read on, and we’re sure you’ll find the one that meets all your skin requirements.

TOP 10 PRODUCTS
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Sunday Riley Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Acid Treatment
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QrxLabs Nature Enhanced Glycolic Acid/AHA Renewal Serum
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Measurable Difference Lactic Acid Serum
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[re]fresh Skin Therapy Lactic Acid Gel Facial Peel
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Elastalift Anti-Aging Face Serum
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Ren Clean Skincare AHA Smart Renewal Body Serum
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Paula's Choice Advanced Smoothing Treatment
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Balshi Derma-Ceuticals MD Glycolic Resurfacing Serum
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Biossance Squalane + Lactic Acid Resurfacing Night Serum
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Divulge Beauty Daily Exfoliating Lactic Acid Serum
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Enhance Your Glow With The 11 Best Lactic Acid Serums Of 2021

1. Sunday Riley Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Acid Treatment

If you feel your skin could do with some pampering without the harmful chemicals, give this lactic acid facial serum from Good Genes a try. Enriched with natural and nourishing ingredients like purified lactic acid, lemongrass, prickly pear, and aloe vera, it clears dead skin cells, unclogs pores of impurities, rids the skin of excess oil, and refreshes skin for an even-toned complexion. It also contains licorice and arnica flower extract to soothe and brighten the skin. Clinically proven for clear, brighter skin, it boosts radiance in less than 3 minutes.

Pros:

  • Soy-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Cruelty-free and vegan
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Free of sulfates, parabens, and phthalates

Cons:

  • In rare circumstances, it may cause redness and irritation

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2. QrxLabs Nature Enhanced Glycolic Acid/AHA Renewal Serum

Here’s a glycolic and lactic acid serum with a lightweight texture and a natural fragrance that effectively combats skin aging. Sourced from sugar cane, bilberry, sugar maple, and citrus fruit extracts, it minimizes age lines, improves elasticity, exfoliates the skin, encourages healing, and reduces inflammation. The citric acid in this formula clears clogged pores, while the malic and tartaric acids enhance the skin’s natural glow for younger-looking, brighter skin. Bid your skincare woes farewell, once and for all!

Pros

  • Silicone-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Alcohol-free
  • Improves skin tone and texture
  • Free of artificial dyes and coloring agents

Cons

  • It may take longer than expected to show results.

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3. Measurable Difference Lactic Acid Serum

We’re all too familiar with the skin damage caused by the harsh rays of the sun, including pigmentation, dark spots, and sagging skin. Reverse the sun damage, achieve even skin tone, and embrace clear skin with this lactic acid hydrating serum. It is formulated with the goodness of hydrolyzed collagen, hyaluronic acid, salicylic acid, and lactic acid, which washes away dirt, grime, and pollution while evening out the skin tone. It also locks in moisture and hydrates the skin, leaving it plump and supple.

Pros:

  • Hydrating formula
  • Natural ingredients
  • Free of harmful chemicals
  • Fights skin damage caused by the sun

Cons:

  • May not be best suited for sensitive skin

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4. [re]fresh Skin Therapy Lactic Acid Gel Facial Peel

Are heavy creams and serums weighing your skin down? Give your skin the breather it needs and nourish it with this gentle lactic acid serum that not only fights premature skin aging but also increases collagen production for brighter and more beautiful skin. The formula is suitable for the body, face, and lips. It peels away dry and rough skin, diminishes the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, fades age spots to reveal clearer, softer, and smoother skin.

Pros

  • Fragrance-free
  • Glutten-free
  • Cruelty-free
  • Vegan
  • Anti-aging fomula
  • Increases collagen production
  • Paraben-free
  • Alcohol-free

Cons

  • Might take time to show results

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5. Elastalift Anti-Aging Face Serum

A must-have in every vanity bag, this vitamin C and lactic acid serum has everything you need and more from a skincare product. Its non-greasy formula contains skin-loving acids like glycolic, lactic, ferulic acids, which work together to protect the skin against environmental damage while reducing visible signs of aging like wrinkles, fine lines, and dark spots. Vitamin C, along with natural ingredients like soya bean extract and aloe vera, nourish the skin and target pigmentation for healthy and radiant skin. Trust us, this is vitamin C serum for all your skin concerns.

Pros:

  • No PEGs
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Non-greasy, fast-absorbing formula
  • Free of parabens, sulfates, and silicone
  • Does not contain alcohol, dyes, or talc

Cons:

  • May contain added fragrances

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6. Ren Clean Skincare AHA Smart Renewal Body Serum

Show your body some love! Often neglected, the skin on our body is also subjected to skin damage. Left untreated, it may cause long-lasting, irreversible harm to your skin, leading to rough, dry, and dehydrated skin. Using a natural lactic acid serum like this one can go a long way in nourishing your skin, exfoliating dead skin cells, and hydrating it for skin that looks and feels soft and healthy. It is formulated with ingredients like shea butter, grapefruit peel oil, mandarin peel oil, and citric acid to fortify the skin’s moisture barrier and replenish it with lost moisture. Add this serum to your skin care routine for skin that won’t disappoint.

Pros:

  • Cruelty-free
  • Natural ingredients
  • Suitable for dry skin
  • pH balanced formula
  • Free of harmful chemicals

Cons:

  • Contains ingredients that may cause skin sensitivity, so it must always be paired with a suitable sunscreen.

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7. Paula’s Choice Advanced Smoothing Treatment

Gone are the days stressing over unclear, texture skin. Made from 4 potent alpha hydroxy acids, this lactic acid serum for skin enhancement is the best thing you can give to yourself. Lactic acid exfoliates the skin, while malic and glycolic acids smooth wrinkles and fine lines and combat sun damage. This antioxidant-rich formula is filled with peptides and ceramides for an even-toned and textured skin that is bright and flawless. It also contains natural ingredients like licorice and green tea that calms irritates skin and promote skin healing. Continuous use of this serum will give you the poreless, smooth skin you’ve always wanted.

Pros:

  • Paraben-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Lightweight texture
  • Antioxidant-rich formula

Cons:

  • Contains added preservatives

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8. Balshi Derma-Ceuticals MD Glycolic Resurfacing Serum

Pamper your skin with nothing but the best! Crafted carefully with ceramides, retinol, glycolic and lactic acids, this transformative daily lactic acid serum helps skin detox and destress while preventing acne, blackheads, and whiteheads. Aloe vera and glycerine restore the skin with moisture and erase fault lines and wrinkles. Timeless beauty with smooth skin is now only one skincare product away!

Pros:

  • Restores moisture
  • Prevents blemishes
  • Free of harmful chemicals
  • Exfoliates and detoxifies skin

Cons:

  • The scent may be overpowering for some

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9. Biossance Squalane + Lactic Acid Resurfacing Night Serum

Let this vegan lactic acid serum work its magic at night while you blissfully enjoy your beauty sleep. With a high concentration of lactic acid and other natural ingredients like squalane and lavender, this potent concoction supports skin cell turnover. It also minimizes the effects of pollution, dirt, and other environmental stressors. The lavender extracts promote tranquility to ensure that you sleep well while this effective serum exfoliates the skin, removes dead skin cells, and offers a luminous glow.

Pros:

  • Vegan
  • Non-toxic formula
  • Weightless texture
  • Eco-friendly packaging
  • Free from synthetic fragrances, parabens, phthalates, and mineral oils

Cons:

  • May initially cause a tingling sensation

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10. Divulge Beauty Daily Exfoliating Lactic Acid Serum

An effective lactic acid face serum may be hard to find, but lucky for you, we’ve done all the hard work! We bring you this exfoliating product for an even-toned, radiant complexion. It contains glycerine, lactic acid, and citric acid to diminish scars, hyperpigmentation, and sun damage. Clearing the pores of dirt, excess oil, and grime, it fights acne, removes dead skin cells, and reduces blemishes to reveal spotless, brighter, and smoother skin. If this lactic acid serum for acne isn’t a product worth grabbing, we don’t know what is!

Pros:

  • Oil-free
  • Cruelty-free
  • Sulfate-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Non-comedogenic

Cons:

  • Some may find the texture to be a bit watered-down.

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11. Medix 5.5 Firm And Brighten Serum

Indeed a bottle of liquid gold, this soothing and nourishing lactic acid serum for sensitive skin contains glycolic acid, ferulic acid, and lactic acid to exfoliate skin and brighten its complexion. It shields the skin from environmental damage and reduces expression lines, dark spots, skin discoloration and more, for even-toned, clear skin. It also contains vitamin C, which is a powerful antioxidant that rids rough and dull skin.

Pros:

  • Cruelty-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Mineral oil-free
  • No drying alcohols
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons:

  • Some may find the scent unpleasant

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Now that you know of the 11 best lactic acid serums, it’s time you look at our buying that will help you choose the best one for your unique skin requirements.

Tips And Tricks Of Choosing The Best Lactic Acid Serum For Your Skin

  • Skin type

The benefits of lactic acid serums are endless. Though lactic acid is suitable for all skin types, many serums contain additional ingredients that make it unique for your skin. For normal to combination skin, pick ones with nourishing elements like vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, and peptides. They soothe the skin and promote healing while providing hydration. For dry skin, choose thick formulations with hydrating ingredients like shea butter, aloe vera, and ceramides to replenish lost moisture and leave the skin feeling plump and soft. For oily skin, it is advisable to stay away from moisture-adding ingredients like butters and hydrating creams. Instead, choose ingredients like tea tree oil, niacinamide, glycolic acid, retinol, and salicylic acid. They control excess sebum while promoting healthy skin. For sensitive skin, choose ingredients that are non-toxic and fragrance-free so that they do not cause any irritations.

  • Formula

The formula is crucial when picking a serum that works best for your skin. Always select weightless and quick-absorbing formulas as they penetrate deeper into the skin and show more immediate results. Also, pick non-comedogenic, gentle formulations that cleanse and exfoliate the skin effectively without clogging your pores.

  • Harmful chemicals

Last but not least, always steer away from harmful chemicals like parabens, sulfates, silicones, mineral oils, and petroleum as they may lead to over-drying of the face and do more harm than good. They also alter the skin’s natural pH level and strip it away from its natural oils. Hence, choose products free of toxic ingredients to ensure skin is left feeling clean and clear.

  • How To Use A Lactic Acid Serum

Step 1 – Cleanse your face thoroughly and add a few drops of your favorite lactic acid serum onto your palms.

Step 2 – Gently rub the palms to activate the serum and press lightly onto the skin.

Step 3 – Lightly tap the serum all over the face and press it in, allowing the serum to absorb into the skin.

Step 4 – Follow with a suitable sunscreen if being used during the daytime.

Skin concerns are a tale as old as time, but not anymore! Adding a lactic acid serum to your skincare routine can do wonders for your skin, allowing you to achieve the glowing, radiant skin that is of everyone’s envy. Simply add a few drops of onto your skin before you sleep and see it work its magic over night. Lactic acid contains potent enzymes that can instantly brighten your face, even skin tone, fight visible signs of aging, treat skin dislocation, exfoliate dead and rough skin to reveal a smooth, supple, and healthy skin. Let our list of the 11 best lactic acid serums be your guide to the skin you’ve always wanted!

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I use lactic acid on my face?

This depends on the concentration of lactic acid in the serum. If it is high, it is advisable to start using lactic acid 1 or 2 times a week. Lower concentration can be used daily.

Is a concentration of 5 or 10% of lactic acid better?

If you are not a regular user of lactic acid and are sensitive to potent ingredients, we suggest you start with 5%. But if you’re not a novice and have been using lactic acid serums for a while, you can go up to 10.

Should I moisturize after using a lactic acid serum?

Yes. Using a moisturizer after applying a lactic acid serum could be beneficial as it adds hydration and moisture to the skin. If you have particularly oily skin, you can skip this step.

Can I use Ordinary lactic acid every day?

Yes, you can. But if you’re just starting, we recommend using it every 2-3 days.

How quickly does lactic acid work on the skin?

It can take between 4-6 weeks to see visible results.

Are there any potential side effects of using lactic acid serums?

Lactic acid is essentially a harmless skincare ingredient. However, it is always advisable to speak to your dermatologist before adding a new skincare ingredient into your routine.

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