• 10 Best Serums for Acne-Prone Skin in the Philippines 2022 |  Buying Guide Reviewed By Dermatologist 1
  • 10 Best Serums for Acne-Prone Skin in the Philippines 2022 |  Buying Guide Reviewed By Dermatologist 2
  • 10 Best Serums for Acne-Prone Skin in the Philippines 2022 |  Buying Guide Reviewed By Dermatologist 3
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10 Best Serums for Acne-Prone Skin in the Philippines 2022 | Buying Guide Reviewed By Dermatologist

Serums are incredibly helpful for those who suffer from specific skin concerns, such as acne-prone skin, since they aim to improve acne by delivering high concentrations of specific active ingredients into your skin. By doing so, it helps you see visible results in a shorter amount of time. They're typically applied after cleansing and before moisturizing.


Since a lot more people are incorporating serums into their skincare routines, many brands have released their own versions, making it quite overwhelming to choose the best one. Let us put an end to your skin troubles with our top 10 product recommendations and a buying guide with comments from Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz! Now, let's get started!

This article's contributors

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Editorial Team
  • Last updated: 08-29-2022
Table of Contents

How to Choose a Serum for Acne-Prone Skin - Buying Guide

Here are some points to consider:


  1. Look for active ingredients that can address your skin concern.
  2. Check the concentration of your serum to make sure your skin doesn't get irritated.
  3. Steer clear of oil-based serums to prevent breakouts.

For more detailed information, read through our buying guide below.

Look for Active Ingredients That Can Address Your Skin Concern

The active ingredients that your serum has are the stars of the show since they are what makes your serums work well for you. Make sure to check what the bottle contains to see if the serum will truly be able to address acne-prone skin.

Retinol Can Help Unclog Pores and Control Sebum Production

Retinol Can Help Unclog Pores and Control Sebum Production

Acne usually occurs because of oil and dirt blocking your pores, making retinol an excellent ingredient because it unclogs pores and enables your skin to heal itself. It also reduces sebum production, which means that it controls the oil on your skin so that you will get fewer breakouts.


Retinol also reduces swelling and smoothens the skin, helping ease the appearance of acne marks and scars. Aside from treating acne, other benefits that you can get from retinol include reducing pigmentation and improving skin elasticity. Something to keep in mind, though, is that it’s a strong ingredient, so be careful when using it. For a gentler ingredient that can help calm acne, you can look for tea tree oil, witch hazel, and Centella Asiatica.

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Acne 101: How does acne form?
  1. Skin cells accumulate in the pores
  2. Increased sebum/ oil production
  3. Bacteria (Cutibacterium acnes) thrives
  4. Inflammation develops

The great thing about retinoids (retinol included) is that it increases the cell turnover of the skin and controls oil production, thus, addressing step 1 and 2 in acne formation.

Exfoliate and Improve Skin Texture With AHAs and BHAs

Exfoliate and Improve Skin Texture With AHAs and BHAs

AHAs and BHAs are chemical exfoliators that remove dead skin cells for improved skin texture and decreased inflammation. AHAs slough off the top layer to reveal smoother skin and stimulate collagen production. A good AHA for acne is glycolic acid since it unclogs pores without drying out your skin.


Meanwhile, BHAs go deep into the surface of your skin to decrease oil production. It’s great for acne-prone skin because it addresses both excess sebum and clogged pores. It calms down skin redness and inflammation, too. Salicylic acid is a common BHA found in many products and is widely known to treat mild to moderate acne.

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz

AHAs such as glycolic acid work as great exfoliants. Did you know it reduces unwanted discoloration, stimulates collagen production, and hydrates the skin too? BHA, like salicylic acid, is another mainstay in acne treatment, given its ability to reach deeper into those pores.

The new kid on the block is PHAs which act similar to AHAs and BHAs but are particularly useful for those with sensitive skin. It has a larger molecular size, thus, penetrating the skin at a slower rate for less irritation.

Control Oil and Address Pigmentation Using Niacinamide

Control Oil and Address Pigmentation Using Niacinamide

Known as a star ingredient, niacinamide has a lot of good benefits for your skin, including treating acne. This is because it’s an anti-inflammatory agent and can inhibit the production of oil. Aside from that, it’s non-drying and less irritating compared to other anti-acne ingredients, so it’s safer to use for those with sensitive skin.


It can also address fine lines, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation, so niacinamide can hit many birds with just one stone if you have those skin concerns. If you’re not ready to try stronger ingredients or you just have mild acne, this is a good and gentle one to start with.

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz

Niacinamide is dubbed the "jack-of-all-trades" in skincare, given its multiple benefits. However, remember niacinamide is not for everyone. Make sure to check the concentration of niacinamide. Studies have shown that for niacinamide, higher is not always better. Use tests have shown no irritation in concentrations up to 5% only.

Hyaluronic Acid Can Keep All Skin Types Hydrated

Hyaluronic Acid Can Keep All Skin Types Hydrated

Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, which means that it brings moisture from within to the surface of your skin to make sure that it stays hydrated. This allows it to help with skin elasticity and will help your skin appear dewy and youthful. It works well with other ingredients, too, like other anti-acne acids or products.


Since keeping your skin moisturized is still a must no matter what your skin type is, hyaluronic acid is good to have in your arsenal of skincare products. This is especially important if you’re using any topical treatments for your acne since those tend to be pretty powerful and can really dry out your skin.

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz

The tip for hyaluronic acid is to read the label! Hyaluronic acid comes in different sizes - higher molecular weight HA and lower molecular weight HA. In general, high molecular weight HA does not penetrate the skin as deep compared to low molecular weight hyaluronic acid (e.g., sodium hyaluronate). If your skin is extra dry after applying a hyaluronic acid serum, you can even seal in the moisture by applying a moisturizing cream after!

Vitamin C for Healing Scars and Lightening Blemishes

Vitamin C for Healing Scars and Lightening Blemishes

Vitamin C has many benefits for your body, including your skin. First, it treats acne scars by increasing collagen production, which is vital for healing wounds and rebuilding new skin cells. It’s also a brightening agent that can address hyperpigmentation, so it can lighten dark marks brought about by acne.


It’s an anti-inflammatory agent as well and can help reduce redness and swelling. Overall, Vitamin C is an all-around active ingredient that can address acne in multiple ways. This will truly benefit a lot of people, especially those with specific skin concerns such as acne scars and marks that they want to heal and lighten. Glutathione is another ingredient that can help lighten the skin, on top of other benefits.

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz

Vitamin C is a crowd favorite amongst the topical vitamins of the skin, and for a good reason! The great thing about vitamin C is it possesses antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties at the same time it can help reduce pigmentation. It is best to do a patch test first! Not everyone can tolerate Vitamin C, so you might want to start low by trying out 5% first

Check the Concentration of Your Serum to Make Sure Your Skin Doesn't Get Irritated

Check the Concentration of Your Serum to Make Sure Your Skin Doesn't Get Irritated

It’s important to check the concentration of your serum, more so if you’re new to using them. You need to start small and slow in introducing new products to your skin to avoid aggravating it. Use serums with lower concentrations of active ingredients before using one with higher concentrations.


Make sure to do your research on the minimum concentration of the active ingredients that your serum has. For example, retinol will already be effective in concentrations as low as 0.01% to 0.03%. Meanwhile, hyaluronic acid is best used in concentrations lower than 2%. 

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz

Definitely checking the concentration of certain ingredients in skincare products is important. Remember, higher is not always better! Ingredients incorporated into skincare products typically undergo use tests that show at what percentage certain ingredients are effective without causing adverse effects such as irritation.

Steer Clear of Oil-Based Serums to Prevent Breakouts

Steer Clear of Oil-Based Serums to Prevent Breakouts

If you have acne-prone skin and oily skin, it’s best to stay away from oil-based serums and make sure that the product you choose is non-comedogenic. This is to ensure that it won’t clog your pores and give you more breakouts. Instead, it’s best to go for water-based or oil-free serums.


This is also recommended for those with sensitive skin since it may cause irritation. Furthermore, it would be good for your serum to only have a few ingredients or additives because the active ingredients are the most important components. To find out what type of serum a product is, read its description or packaging in full.

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz

In general, people with acne-prone and oily skin types would not only be able to benefit more but also generally tolerate water-based serums better. At the end of the day, it all boils down to listening to your skin!

Compare the Best Serums for Acne-Prone Skin

Image
1
The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% 1

The Ordinary

2
Wildleaf Vitamin C Serum 1

Wildleaf

3
Elizabeth Arden Retinol Ceramide Capsules Line Erasing Night Serum 1

Elizabeth Arden

4
Céleteque® DermoScience™  Acne Solutions Pore Minimizing Serum 1

Céleteque® DermoScience™

5
Mario Badescu Anti-Acne Serum 1

Mario Badescu

6
Luxe Organix Miracle Repair Niacinamide 4% Serum 1

Luxe Organix

7
Garnier White Hyaluronic Acid Serum 1

Garnier

8
SOME BY MI Miracle Serum 1

SOME BY MI

9
Gluta-C Intense Whitening Facial Night Serum 1

Gluta-C

10
Dr. Sensitive Tea Tree And Aloe Vera Pimple Relief Serum 1

Dr. Sensitive

Name

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

Vitamin C Serum

Retinol Ceramide Capsules Line Erasing Night Serum

Acne Solutions Pore Minimizing Serum

Anti-Acne Serum

Miracle Repair Niacinamide 4% Serum

White Hyaluronic Acid Serum

Miracle Serum

Intense Whitening Facial Night Serum

Tea Tree And Aloe Vera Pimple Relief Serum

Features

Clears Out Pimples and Acne Marks for Blemish-Free Skin

Local Crowd Favorite to Achieve a Healthy Glow

Pre-Measured Capsules for Precise Application

Tightens Pores and Controls Oil

Lightweight Remedy for Breakouts

Fades Dark Spots and Hyperpigmentation From Acne

Quick-Absorbing for Maximum Hydration

Renews Skin Cells for a Clearer Complexion

Say Goodbye to Dullness and Dark Marks

Reduces Inflammation and Blemishes

Price Starts at₱800₱1,190₱3,900₱325₱1,550₱499₱434₱629₱230₱150
Amount60 mL30 mL60 Capsules20 mL29 mL30 mL30 mL50 mL30 mL30 mL
Active IngredientsNiacinamideVitamin CRetinolWitch Hazel ExtractSalicylic AcidNiacinamideHyaluronic AcidCentella Asiatica, Tea Tree Oil, AHA and BHAVitamin C, GlutathioneTea Tree Oil
Concentration10%18%Not SpecifiedNot Specified0.49%4%Not Specified14.5% (Centella Asiatica)Not SpecifiedNot Specified
Oil-FreeYesNot SpecifiedNot SpecifiedNot SpecifiedYesNot SpecifiedNot SpecifiedNot SpecifiedNot SpecifiedNot Specified
Link

10 Best Serums for Acne-Prone Skin to Buy Online

The products we introduce below were carefully curated by the mybest team, from the best-sellers of E-commerce sites like Lazada, and using the points mentioned in our detailed and thoroughly researched buying guide.

Disclaimer: These products are recommendations made by our team at mybest Philippines. Our expert, Dr. Katrina Erika Habaluyas Luz, is not affiliated with, nor is she endorsing any of the brands we mention below.


**Prices may vary depending on the website and their campaign period**

1

The OrdinaryNiacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

From ₱800

Amount60 mL
Active IngredientsNiacinamide
Concentration10%
Oil-FreeYes
2

WildleafVitamin C Serum

From ₱1,190

Amount30 mL
Active IngredientsVitamin C
Concentration18%
Oil-FreeNot Specified
3

Elizabeth ArdenRetinol Ceramide Capsules Line Erasing Night Serum

From ₱3,900

Amount60 Capsules
Active IngredientsRetinol
ConcentrationNot Specified
Oil-FreeNot Specified
4

Céleteque® DermoScience™ Acne Solutions Pore Minimizing Serum

From ₱325

Amount20 mL
Active IngredientsWitch Hazel Extract
ConcentrationNot Specified
Oil-FreeNot Specified
5

Mario BadescuAnti-Acne Serum

From ₱1,550

Amount29 mL
Active IngredientsSalicylic Acid
Concentration0.49%
Oil-FreeYes
6

Luxe OrganixMiracle Repair Niacinamide 4% Serum

From ₱499

Amount30 mL
Active IngredientsNiacinamide
Concentration4%
Oil-FreeNot Specified
7

GarnierWhite Hyaluronic Acid Serum

From ₱434

Amount30 mL
Active IngredientsHyaluronic Acid
ConcentrationNot Specified
Oil-FreeNot Specified
8
Amount50 mL
Active IngredientsCentella Asiatica, Tea Tree Oil, AHA and BHA
Concentration14.5% (Centella Asiatica)
Oil-FreeNot Specified
9

Gluta-CIntense Whitening Facial Night Serum

From ₱230

Amount30 mL
Active IngredientsVitamin C, Glutathione
ConcentrationNot Specified
Oil-FreeNot Specified
10

Dr. SensitiveTea Tree And Aloe Vera Pimple Relief Serum

From ₱150

Amount30 mL
Active IngredientsTea Tree Oil
ConcentrationNot Specified
Oil-FreeNot Specified

Expert's Comment About the Top 10 Products

Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz
Dermatologist, Educator, and Digital Creator
Dr. Katrina Habaluyas Luz

Applying skincare products in a particular order helps you reap the most benefits from the products. I highly recommend applying a moisturizer after your serum to ensure the actives in your serum are absorbed well into your skin, not to mention to lock in that extra moisture.

Frequently Asked Questions Answered By Dr. Katrina Luz

Looking for more answers to your skin woes? We've got you covered! Read below for answers on how to stay on top of your skincare game.

What to Do Before Buying a Serum?

It's always a good idea to consult your board-certified dermatologist of choice before incorporating new products into your skincare regimen. So many factors come into play in selecting products that would suit each individual's skin and skin concerns - and they would be in the best position to give you advice.

Is It Better to Use a Different Serum in the Morning and at Night?

You can definitely maximize the benefits you get from certain ingredients incorporated into serums by applying them at a particular time of day. For instance, applying Vitamin C in the morning enables you to maximize its antioxidant properties which help reduce UV-related sun damage.

Aside From Using Serums, What Else Can You Do to Care for Acne-Prone Skin?

Definitely, sunscreen and a moisturizer are musts! Sunscreens are essential to provide the skin with the necessary protection from the harmful rays of the sun. Not to mention, it can help prevent the worsening of residual hyperpigmentation.

Moisturizers are equally important as they can help restore the natural barrier of the skin. Not to mention, some of the serums containing retinol and/or AHAs or BHAs can be slightly drying so adding a moisturizer would balance these effects out.

What Are Some "Don'ts" When Using Serums for Acne-Prone Skin?

Don't overdo it! Majority of the time people want a quick fix or immediate results. The best results come with patience and consistency.

Skincare Essentials for Acne-Prone Skin

If you want to get soft and smooth skin, an anti-acne serum isn't enough to help you achieve that. You need to build a solid skincare routine to address acne and maintain clear skin, so check out our other articles below for the best products that can help you.

Author: Bianca Angela Dela Cruz

Editor: R. Umlas

Reviewed by: Dermatologist, Dr. Katrina Erika Habaluyas Luz

How We Chose and Ranked Our Product Recommendations

Our buying guide was carefully researched and crafted by the mybest team of writers and editors, in collaboration with the expert featured in this article. We used the buying guide as a basis for choosing and ranking the product recommendations, and we looked at reviews and ratings from different E-commerce sites like Lazada, Shopee, and more.

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