Popular Active Ingredients in Serums [Infographic]

Hyaluronic acid facial serum bottles


I have written these hyaluronic acid serum reviews to help you decide which facial serum is the best for your skin. Whilst I was writing them, I realized that an article explaining the benefits of each active ingredient was a good idea. So whilst every serum is unlikely to have all of the following ingredients, I have covered the most common ingredients here.


Active Ingredients in youth serums

Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid

The benefits of hyaluronic acid are due to its super absorbent properties – it can penetrate your skin deeply and absorb more than 1000 times its own weight in water.

Our bodies naturally produce hyaluronic acid and we start our lives with an abundance of it, that’s one reason why a baby’s skin is so soft and velvety.

The problem is that as we age, our production of hyaluronic acid rapidly diminishes leaving us with dry and rough textured skin that has lost its luster, suppleness and youthful vitality.

Serums with hyaluronic acid return a powerful and intense pulse of hydration to our skin, returning a more youthful and radiant glow to our complexion.

Benefits of Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a super antioxidant that is essential in wound healing and cellular repair. It also helps to fight the signs of aging caused by free radical damage and promotes the production of collagen.

Serums that include vitamin C help to rejuvenate our skin, reducing discolorations such as age spots or sun spots and give us a blemish free complexion that looks younger and more radiant than we have seen in years.

Vitamin C is a super antioxidant, which reverses the signs of aging in our skin by fighting the effects of free radicals from pollutants in the air and in our diet. Left unchecked, free radicals reduce the elasticity of our skin, its resilience and suppleness, causing fine lines, wrinkles and a tired or aged look to our skin.

Vitamin C helps to prevent free radical damage by stopping the free radical molecules (from pollutants) interacting with our skin’s cells and molecules. Free radicals lack an electron and so must combine with other molecules to steal one of their electrons.

The problem is that in many cases, the molecule attacked by the free radical becomes injured and its DNA is damaged. This damage is what causes our skin cells to appear aged.

So vitamin C prevents free radicals stealing electrons from other molecules and in the process, prevents untoward damage to our skin cells. Vitamin C also protects our skin for damage caused by the sun, reduces inflammation and dark spots on our skin and promotes the production of collagen.

Benefits of Vitamin D

Vitamin D is another potent antioxidant that helps to fight the signs of aging in our skin caused by free radicals. It is also essential to cellar repair and skin growth and so helps to rejuvenate our skin.

The problem is that as we age, our body’s production of vitamin slows and we lose the great benefits of this super antioxidant. That’s why skincare products that include vitamin D, help to give our skin an added boost in cellular repair.

Benefits of Vitamin E

Long used in skincare products because of its moisturizing effects, vitamin E is also a strong antioxidant and helps to reverse the signs of aging in our skin caused by free radicals.

Having both vitamin C and vitamin E in your face serums, really gives your skin a rejuvenative boost and helps to even out your skin tone and give your skin that extra level of vibrancy seen in younger looking skin.

Benefits of Vitamin A

Vitamin A helps promote the production of collagen in our skin and so aids in reducing those annoying fine lines and wrinkles in our skin.

As we age, the production of collagen in our skin reduces leaving us with an aged and tired look, but vitamin A helps to stimulate collagen, rejuvenating our skin and giving us back a more youthful feel and softness to our skin.

Vitamin A also helps to even out our skin tone and reduce hyper-pigmentation. It also has an exfoliant property that encourages skin turnover, giving our skin a younger appearance.

This exfoliative property is also useful in acne prone skin as it prevents pores becoming clogged with dead skin cells and reduces both acne and acne scars.

Benefits of MSM

MSM is a sulfur compound that aids other hydrating ingredients to penetrate deeply into your skin. It has anti-inflammatory properties and is essential in cellular repair.

Sulfur has long been used to reduce the effects of acne and in healing scars, but is also effective in reducing the effects of eczema and psoriasis and in reducing dark spots, aged spots and hyper-pigmentation in our skin.

Benefits of Green Tea

Green tea is an even stronger antioxidant than vitamin C and so the value of your antioxidants is boosted by having both of these ingredients in your serum. Your skin looks healthier, more even tones, less hyper-pigmentation and has a more youthful glow.

This is another super antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties that helps to reduce the damage to our skin caused by free radicals. Green tea has a higher antioxidant value than either vitamin C or E and helps to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, dark spots on our skin and even sun spots.

Green tea is also said to help rejuvenate our skin by encouraging the dead skins to be replaced by new healthy cells, giving us a more radiant glow and more youthful texture to our skin.

Benefits of Aloe Vera

Described as the plant of immortality by the ancient Egyptians, Aloe Vera is a well-known as a powerful healing agent for burnt or sunburnt skin. It is just as effective when used directly from the plant as when used as a gel.

Aloe Vera is also of benefit in treating flaky or dry skin, and it is said to help relive the itchiness of psoriasis. It also helps in the treatment of acne, reduces skin inflammation and fights the signs of aging. Aloe Vera also contains many antioxidants, such as vitamin A, C and E, so it is an all-round great benefit to our skin.

Benefits of Witch Hazel

Long recognized for its anti-inflammatory properties, Witch Hazel helps to heal our skin from rashes and insect bites, as well as bruises and cuts. It is also used effectively to treat eczema and generally helps our skin to heal.

It is also used as a moisturizer to prevent moisture loss from our skin and helps to heal sunburn and dry, flaking skin. As a natural astringent, Witch Hazel also helps to reduce oil in our skin, helping to both heal and prevent acne.

Benefits of Lavender Oil

There is nothing quite like the fabulous smell of lavender in the garden and it was used by the Romans to soften the skin, by adding lavender oil to their bathwater.

Lavender oil also helps to reduce inflammation in our skin, so it’s great to treat redness, burns and eczema, and inhibits bacteria (so it’s good to treat acne).

Benefits of L-Arginine

L-Arginine helps in wound healing, collagen production and has documented anti-aging effects. it also contains anti-bacterial compounds which along with antioxidants helps to repair damage caused by free radicals.

Benefits of Jojoba Oil

Jojoba oil contains wax esters, which as we age are lost from our skin. Wax esters help to keep our skin highly moisturized and supple, a sign of youthful skin, the problem is that as the production of these esters in our skin diminishes over time, the ability to retain moisture in our skin is also lost.

Not only does jojoba oil contain essential wax esters, but it also contains Omega 6 and 9 fatty acids, as well as vitamins A, D and E. So you have the added benefit of other antioxidants to help fight the signs of aging and give us back a more youthful looking skin.

Benefits of Peptides

Peptides are chains of amino acids and are the building blocks of proteins. In skin care products, peptides help our skin to retain moisture, to repair itself and to produce collagen. All of this results in the reduction of fine lines and wrinkles and a softer look to our skin.

Benefits of Ferulic Acid

Ferulic acid is one of the most potent antioxidants (who knew?) and is made from rice bran oil and it actually can make the other antioxidants work better.

A 2008 study found that Ferulic acid, in combination with vitamins C and E reduced free radical damage caused by sun exposure, reduced fine lines and increased firmness, texture and the smoothness of the facial skin after 24 weeks when used twice a day.

Benefits of Organic Rosehip Oil

Rosehip oil is full of antioxidants, Omega 3, 6 and 9 and vitamin A. The oil is a rich amber color which comes from lycopene, a strong antioxidant that helps to fight the signs of free radical damage in our skin. The essential fatty acids (Omega 3, 6 and 9) aid in cellular repair and rejuvenation and so help to reverse the signs of sun damage, dry skin and wrinkles.

Rosehip oil is a really old remedy, used by the Aztecs for its super healing properties and the fact that it nourishes and moisturizes the skin so well.


Body Merry hyaluronic acid serum


Check out my review of the top rated hyaluronic acid serum and look forward to more radiant, youthful skin.