The Best Hydrating Serums For Dehydrated Skin

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If your skin is feeling itchy or tight, or looking flaky and dull, you may be experiencing dehydrated skin. Not to worry, though: With the right products, you can reverse that dehydration in no time. First up? Start with an intensely hydrating serum. According to board-certified dermatologist Dr. Tess Mauricio, who spoke to Elite Daily for this article, look for serums that contain aloe, hyaluronic acid, ceramides, and glycerin to “instantly” help your skin. And though Dr. Mauricio says ingredients like retinol, vitamin C, and glycolic acid are all great, when overused they can cause dehydration, so start off slow if using any of these and “work up to daily use as tolerated.” You can further repair your dehydrated skin by steering clear of harsh products like bar soaps and scrubs, and be sure to layer a nourishing moisturizer on top of your hydrating serum.

Keep in mind, dehydrated skin is not the same as dry skin, Dr. Mauricio clarifies. She explains that dry skin is a skin type, and it typically determined by genetics, whereas dehydrated skin can happen to anyone (even if you have oily skin, your skin can still become dehydrated). Dehydrated skin can be caused by all sorts of factors, such as living in a dry climate, using products with too-harsh ingredients, or taking certain medications. Fortunately, dehydrated skin is easily remedied by using the right products, such as any of the serums featured ahead.

1. The Overall Best Hydrating Serum For Dehydrated Skin

La Roche-Posay Hyalu B5 Serum is made with expert-approved ingredients like glycerin and hyaluronic acid, the latter of which works like a magnet for moisture, along with vitamin B5, another effective, soothing hydrator (also known as panthenol), and the brand’s mineral-rich prebiotic thermal water. Finally, the formula contains nourishing madecassoside, derived from the centella asiatica plant, which has both healing and skin-evening benefits. The result? Skin that immediately feels bouncy and soft, and looks amazing over time.

2. The Best Budget Hydrating Serum For Dehydrated Skin

In the more affordable category, you can’t go wrong treating dehydrated skin with anything from the Neutrogena Hydro Boost line, which includes the brand’s hydrating serum. The oil-free formula is great for all skin types dealing with dehydration, from oily to dry, and with an ingredients list that includes hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and bisabolol, which Dr. Mauricio says is one of her favorite calming ingredients, this light-as-air serum gives thirsty skin all the moisture it needs without causing irritation.

3. The Best Korean Hydrating Serum For Dehydrated Skin

If you’re obsessed with Korean beauty products, try AHC’s Aqualuronic Serum. Made with moisture-attracting hyaluronic acid, skin-strengthening ceramides, and mineral-rich French sea water, this is another amazing choice for quenching dry, dehydrated skin. It has a lightweight gel consistency and instantly makes your skin look plumper, in addition to glowier and less dull. The brand makes an amazing, hydrating moisturizer, as well — use them together for best results.

4. The Best Hydrating Serum Serum With SPF

MARA’s sunscreen serum will make your skin look dewy and hydrated while simultaneously protecting it from the sun with a non-nano zinc oxide-based SPF 30. The elegant formula contains nourishing ingredients like hemp seeds, blue sea kale, which is a gentle way to get a boost of vitamin C without stinging or irritation, raspberry seed oil, and moringa, a source of both vitamins and amino acids. There’s also a blend of maritime-sourced botanicals and algae in here to calm skin, reduce redness, and protect your face from blue light and pollution. What more could you want from a single skin care product?

5. The Best Tinted Serum For Dehydrated Skin

This tinted makeup, skin hydrator, and sunscreen in one is made with hyaluronic acid, squalane, niacinamide, shea butter, bisabolol, and aloe, all of which care for dry, dehydrated skin, while the non-nano zinc oxide keeps your face protected with an SPF of 40. The serum is free of silicones, fragrance, and oil, available in 25 shades, and safe for use on sensitive skin. It gives skin just a light, natural tint, so it’s great for no-makeup makeups days; or, you can use it as a base for fuller-coverage makeup.

6. Best Splurge: The Best Serum & Cream In One

For a really unique, two-in-one product, try Tatcha’s Indigo Overnight Repair, an elegant serum and cream in one. The lightweight, fragrance-free cream is made with ceramides and hyaluronic acid to strengthen and hydrate your skin, as well as rare botanicals like calming Japanese indigo and red sage root, and microbiome-balancing mondo grass. It’s excellent for dry, dehydrated, and irritated skin as it helps balance, smooth, and strengthen; calm inflammation and redness; and bring out your most radiant complexion.


Dr. Tess Mauricio, M.D., F.A.A.D., board-certified dermatologist, CEO, M Beauty Clinic


Madecassoside Inhibits Melanin Synthesis by Blocking Ultraviolet-Induced Inflammation