15 Best Brightening Serums for Smooth, Supple, And Radiant Skin

Written by Anoushka Sinha, Skincare Coach & Writer
Updated on Feb 13, 2024
Brightening Serums for Smooth, Supple And Radiant Skin
Brightening Serums for Smooth, Supple And Radiant Skin
The products curated for this article are independently chosen by the editorial team. If you make a purchase through the links mentioned below, we may receive a commission. Check out our product research & curation process

Uneven pigment and dull skin problems seem unavoidable due to a demanding lifestyle that keeps us on our toes 24/7. Fortunately, the best brightening serums are here to provide rejuvenation and deal with uneven skin tone for a more uniform look. Skin brightening serums can occasionally be mistaken for skin whitening treatments, which may cause some shoppers to disregard them. Brightening serums are a much better option than skin-lightening products, as they contain a healthy amount of antioxidants and vitamins that assist in refreshing the skin's top layer of dead skin cells and nourishing the skin from the inside out. 

Though it might be challenging to come across the correct product to get more radiant-looking skin, the task isn't impossible. We've tested and rounded up the best skin-care products,, to help you attain glowing skin — plus all the other feel-good benefits. 

Scroll down to know more!

15 Best Brightening Serums

For an inexpensive hydrating serum to use on dry skin, we suggest this one by TruSkin, for a skin-replenishing experience. Ingredients like vitamin C increase collagen turnover and illuminate the skin. Hyaluronic acid moisturizes the skin while also reducing the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. Vitamin E nourishes and protects the skin against oxidative damage and premature aging. Furthermore, the formulation is balanced with witch hazel extracts and aloe vera that tightens pores and calms irritated skin. This vegan and cruelty-free serum is an ideal choice for all skin types and a must-have for brighter results!

Pros
  • Ideal for dry skin
  • Easy to use
  • Fragrance-free
  • Weightless texture
  • High-quality ingredients
Cons
  • Not hypoallergenic
  • Best Value

    Tree of Life Vitamin C, Retinol, and Hyaluronic Acid Serum - Pack of 3

    Tree of Life Vitamin C, Retinol, and Hyaluronic Acid Serum - Pack of 3
  • Those searching for an all-in-one regimen that glows visibly, reduces dark spots, while also mollycoddling the skin, then you must opt for the Tree of Life Serum bundle. The pack contains individual serum bottles of vitamin C, retinol, and hyaluronic acid for an all-day and night routine. Start with the vitamin-based serum to brighten the skin, follow it up with the retinol serum, and at night apply the hyaluronic acid to hydrate your dull and dry skin. Follow this routine and we promise the results are immaculate and worth the try.

    Pros
    • Versatile uses
    • Free of PEGs and sulfates
    • Suits all skin types
    • Easy to dispense
    • Good ingredient quality
    Cons
    • Might feel heavy on oily skin
  • Best Dermatologically Tested

    Éclat Vitamin C Serum

    Éclat Vitamin C Serum
  • Éclat Vitamin C Serum refines skin texture and tone with the benefits of five skin rejuvenators. The product is fortified with the goodness of retinol, jojoba oil, vitamin E, aloe vera, and MSM to increase the potency and benefits of vitamin C's antioxidant properties. It reduces blemishes and lightens dark spots caused by sun damage. What makes it better is the formulation that is cold pressed at 39°F to preserve and maximize its antioxidant properties to deliver results sooner than any run-at-the-mill face serums.

    Pros
    • Dermatologist-approved
    • Climate pledge friendly
    • Has anti-aging properties
    • Vegan
    • Cost-effective
    Cons
    • Irritates the eyes when applied
  • Best for Skin Nourishment

    La Roche-Posay Hyalu B5 Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum

    La Roche-Posay Hyalu B5 Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum
  • This hyaluronic acid serum by La Roche-Posay not only helps brighten the skin but also hydrates thirsty skin, leaving you with soft and even-toned skin. It is also infused with vitamin B5, which regulates melanin production to treat and prevent signs of aging, including age spots, fine lines, and dull skin. Using this serum on a regular basis will make your skin appear plumper and smoother. This marvelous serum can be used alone or along with a moisturizer to provide intense and long-lasting hydration to the skin. Its allergy-tested formula makes it safe to use for all skin types, even sensitive ones. 

    Pros
    • Enriched with nourishing ingredients
    • Plumps the skin
    • Anti-aging benefits
    • Locks in moisture to make the skin soft
    • Hypoallergenic
    Cons
    • Overpowering fragrance
  • Best for Boosting Skin Elasticity

    StriVectin Super-C Retinol Brighten & Correct Vitamin C Serum

    StriVectin Super-C Retinol Brighten & Correct Vitamin C Serum
  • Allow your skin to heal naturally and glow with this wonderful serum by StriVectin. It has a powerhouse of ingredients, including retinol, vitamin C, and acerola cherry. A blend of these ingredients helps combat various skin woes, such as loss of elasticity, uneven skin texture, dehydration, fine lines, and tired skin. You can see your skin visibly getting brighter with each application of this serum. It has a lightweight formula that easily gets absorbed into the skin, working its magic to ease out the signs of aging and making the skin appear brighter and softer.

    Pros
    • Gentle formula
    • Makes the skin tone even
    • Treats discoloration
    • Reduces the appearance of fine lines
    Cons
    • Strong scent
  • Eva Naturals Vitamin C+ Serum

    Eva Naturals Vitamin C+ Serum
  • This non-comedogenic serum is the right pick for individuals who want to restore their natural radiance and unclog blocked facial pores. Featuring weightless ingredients like niacinamide, retinol, salicylic acid, and hyaluronic acid helps boost collagen production and reduce fine lines and wrinkles. The lightweight formula absorbs quickly, leaving no greasy residue. It is a must-have addition to your skincare routine, as this antioxidant serum can tackle any early skin aging problem while diminishing dark spots with regular use.

    Pros
    • Moisturizing formula
    • Clears skin
    • Ideal to use day and night
    • Cruelty-free
    • Clean ingredients
    Cons
    • Results take a long time
  • CeraVe Skin Renewing Vitamin C Serum

    CeraVe Skin Renewing Vitamin C Serum
  • If you are sensitive to strong odors in skin care products, the CeraVe Vitamin C serum is for you. To help brighten the complexion and promote a more even skin tone, this product contains 10% l-ascorbic acid — the purest form of vitamin C (1). On top of that, the gel-like serum is smooth to apply and spread on the skin without weighing much on the skin. Better yet, the nozzle on this spot treatment delivers just the right amount of product for a  gorgeous, dewy glow to the skin — making it one of the best brightening serums for the face.

    Pros
    • Fragrance-free
    • Travel-friendly
    • Free of parabens and sulfates
    • Non-comedogenic
    • Lightweight formula
    Cons
    • Not ideal for sensitive skin
  • Most Innovative Serum

    Neutrogena Rapid Tone Repair 20% Vitamin C Serum

    Neutrogena Rapid Tone Repair 20% Vitamin C Serum
  • This face serum for brightening encapsulates and delivers fine-line treatment and skin-brightening benefits in one tiny bronze capsule. For those exploring better routes of skincare, these biodegradable sea-weed derived capsules contain 20% l-ascorbic acid, the purest form of vitamin C, to fade dark spots. It gets absorbed quickly, penetrates the deepest layer, and fights external skin-aging factors. When tested by our experts, we found the serum capsule quiet portable and easy to break and left a dewy-gloss finish. The product is perfect to give a revitalizing boost to tired and dull skin.

    Pros
    • Non-comedogenic
    • Oil-free
    • Free of parabens and alcohol
    • Biodegradable capsules
    Cons
    • Less amount of product
  • Best for Mature Skin

    RoC Multi Correxion Revive + Glow Daily Serum

    RoC Multi Correxion Revive + Glow Daily Serum
  • The supercharged formula of RoC Multi Correxion Revive + Glow Daily Serum delivers an instant glow to dull skin. Developed with a 10% blend of vitamin C and peptides, the serum is super light in texture and feels weightless on oily skin. The peptides moisturize and help smoothen fine lines and wrinkles to put a brake on early signs of aging. The formula promises results in almost four weeks and many customers have supported the claim with their satisfactory reviews. Furthermore, the squeeze and drop applicator makes it simple to dispense and use daily.

    Pros
    • Ideal for aging skin
    • Easy to dispense
    • Weightless formula
    • Absorbs well
    Cons
    • Contains fragrance
  • Best for Dry Skin

    Bliss Bright Idea Vitamin C + Tri-Peptide Serum

    Bliss Bright Idea Vitamin C + Tri-Peptide Serum
  • Bliss Bright’s duo-powered serum highlights essential vitamins as a key player. The creamy-opaque formula features Bliss's patented signal tri-peptides to visibly boost skin’s natural elasticity and licorice root extract to help with discoloration and protect against new spots forming. The glycerin infused in the formula works as a fantastic humectant, meaning it retains skin moisture providing glowy light skin after use. It helps skin stay hydrated and relieves dryness as it is free of dyes and fragrances, making it safe for all skin types.

    Pros
    • Travel-friendly
    • Affordable pricing
    • Creamy formula
    • Ideal for super dry skin
    Cons
    • Not hypoallergenic
  • Best for Uneven Complexion

    DERMA.E Vitamin C Concentrated Serum

    DERMA.E Vitamin C Concentrated Serum
  • The DERMA.E serum with the goodness of vitamin C, retexturizes the skin as it encourages collagen health. Filled with key ingredients like hyaluronic acid and probiotics, the serum leaves skin looking plumper and feeling firmer. The innovative composition boosts cell turnover, thereby enhancing your skin texture and minimizing fine lines and wrinkles. After experimentation with the serum, we found the skin care product's ingredients and concentrations are displayed for everyone to observe and see whether it suits their skin. Using this serum a must-have in our books!

    Pros
    • Evens skin tone
    • Non-GMO ingredients
    • Gluten-free
    • Affordable pricing
    • Recyclable packaging
    Cons
    • Might smell pungent
  • Best pH-balanced Formula

    Naturium Vitamin C Complex Serum

    Naturium Vitamin C Complex Serum
  • Turmeric extract and neo glucosamine in the Neutrogena Bright Boost Illuminating Face Serum gently exfoliate and decrease the appearance of dark spots and uneven pigmentation. When we tried the product, we noticed the innovative composition boosts skin cell turnover and helps brightens the skin without irritating the skin. Moreover, this moisturizing and brightening face serum is suitable for all skin tones and helps to minimize redness. To sum it all up, it is a holy grail product to a much-needed lift to give weary and drab skin.

    Pros
    • pH-balanced formula
    • Fragrance-free
    • Paraben-free
    • Sulfate-free
    Cons
    • Sticky texture
  • Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops

    Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops
  • Inside this pretty pink bottle, you'll find a combination of hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, and moringa oil, which soothes skin and quenches the thirst of dry skin. The serum provides the hydrating goodness of watermelon to the skin, and the niacinamide works as a hyperpigmentation treatment and supports the skin barrier while acting as a pore minimizer. Customers love the glow derived from the fruity dew drops and mention how it reveals luminous skin without the need for mica, glitter, or pearls. And to make it better, the product smells like juicy watermelon pop! It's among the best brightening serums for darker skin tones seeking a glossy finish without a tacky white cast or residue.

    Pros
    • Buildable formula
    • Lightweight texture
    • Ideal for delicate skin
    • Pleasant scent
    Cons
    • Might feel sticky
  • Paula's Choice RESIST Super Antioxidant Concentration Serum

    Paula's Choice RESIST Super Antioxidant Concentration Serum
  • This silky serum with stabilized vitamin C, peptides, and potent antioxidants restores hydration to dry sun-damaged skin. The face brightening serum also includes other antioxidants, such as vitamin E, coenzyme Q10 as well as ceramides, to help repair the skin barrier and calms any signs of irritation.  We have found from using this product, that the formula didn't leave skin sticky or tacky like other serums tend to do, and shows results immediately after use. Addedly, it's gentle on sensitive skin and is suitable for all skin types, including mature skin.

    Pros
    • Ideal for dry, normal skin
    • Sheer application
    • Non-sticky texture
    • Easy to dispense
    Cons
    • Might cause breakouts in sensitive skin
  • Acure Brightening Glowing Serum

    Acure Brightening Glowing Serum
  • Acure's Brightening Glowing Serum is a must-have for sensitive skin. It fortifies the skin with nutrient-rich ingredients like argan oil for moisture, borage oil for soothing red skin, and lastly accompanied by cranberry and pumpkin seed oils for antioxidant protection from sun damage. "My facial skin definitely looked refreshed, smoother and brighter," says a happy customer after using the product for merely a month. The all-natural serum is the get-go product for all skin types and integrates the deepest layer of the skin to supply hydration, keeping it from drying, flaking, and breaking out.

    Pros
    • Climate pledge friendly
    • Brightens skin
    • Organic ingredients
    • Invigorating formula
    Cons
    • Might feel greasy on mature skin

    Now that we have suitably introduced our best picks for skin-brightening serums, we thought it's also essential to provide a small buying guide for the perfect purchase. Scroll down for more information on how to choose your ideal serum.

    How to Choose the Best Brightening Serum?

    These are the factors to consider before picking up the best brightening serum.

    • Texture: Consider the texture and consistency of the serum. The texture of the serum should be more clear and less oily, to avoid clogging the pores or making the skin look greasy. The serums must comprise equal parts of natural oils and water-based ingredients that make the overall texture and composition light on the skin. 
    • Ingredients: When selecting the ideal skin-brightening serum, consider peptides as they assist in skin firming, and antioxidants like vitamin E and green tea extract shield the skin from oxidative damage. Moreover, vitamin C is the powerhouse ingredient to promote the likes of skin brightening and gives a luminescent glow to your face. Many skin-brightening products also incorporate hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid, ceramides, glycerin, and aloe vera to help visibly improve your skin’s cells and reduce the appearance of dryness.
    • Formulation: To get the most out of the brightening serums, try searching for a highly absorbent one that spreads evenly and cake under your makeup if you tend to apply a full face makeover. Always keep an eye out for highly-absorbent and non-comedogenic serums that integrate with the skin when applied.

    Achieving a bright complexion and youthful glow is a cakewalk with the best brightening serums under your palm. These serums may effectively promote collagen formation, enhance skin suppleness, and minimize wrinkle appearance. However, select brightening products that replenish and invoke skin-lightening qualities with each use. Be noted, each serum in the above list was assessed based on the effectiveness of its formula, the feel of its consistency, the degree of absorption, the overall experience, and the end outcome. We hope you find the best products to brighten dull skin from our nifty list!

    FAQ's

    How can I brighten my face?
    To brighten your face, we recommend planning a skincare routine for the day and including one of our best brightening serums for a brighter complexion.
    Which vitamin is best for face brightening?
    Vitamin C and E are considered the best ingredients for face brightening.

    Why Trust Pinkvilla

    Apart from following a lengthy skincare routine, you need to add a brightening serum to ensure you get a natural glow. Our in-house skincare enthusiast, Anoushka, asserts the importance of adding Vitamin C to your AM routine. Vitamin C helps in minimizing the appearance of pores, pigments, and fading acne scars. The author loves to use brightening serums by eva, ECLAT, DERMA - E among many others. 

    Our product experts study the specifications of every product we suggest and try them out to bring what’s proven to be worthy of your money, time, and energy. We also have subject matter experts from various fields like Fashion, Skincare, Haircare, Home Decor, and Health & Fitness onboard to make sure our suggestions are credible and trustworthy. You can trust select to be your faithful shopping guide for all the right reasons! 

    Author BIO
    reviewer
    Anoushka Sinha
    Skincare Coach & Writer

    Anoushka is certified in Professional Skincare and is a Mass Media (Journalism) graduate from Mumbai University. As a More