I am not what most would define as a makeup wearer. As a beauty journalist whose job is to trial and test all of the new makeup launches, I’d go as far as to say that makeup for me is strictly a work thing. Spending my days swatching, buffing and blending means that when it comes to non-work hours, I’d rather let my skin do its thing and avoid the laborious task of applying makeup altogether.
Instead, I prefer to select my morning skincare products carefully. I look for cleansers that deliver an instant glow boost, SPFs that come with subtle blurring benefits and, most importantly, serums that leave my complexion looking plump, healthy and radiant. And I say serums are the most important part of my morning skincare routine because it is through the wonders of serums that my skin gets all of the goodness it needs to stay healthy in the long term.
I’ve spent countless years trying to find a morning serum that delivers such a glow I can skip makeup (I’m lazy—what can I say?), and I’ve tried hundreds. So imagine my surprise at the fact the one I forever find myself coming back to is the UK’s number one serum (and the second most-searched-for skincare product on Google this year). Yes, it’s Clarins Double Serum.
And while I’m obviously overjoyed that I can sit here and tell you that the glowiest, most skin-loving serum I’ve ever come across is widely accessible and easy to get your hands on, I must admit that a little part of my beauty editor heart is sad. My job is to tell you what you don’t already know, and the fact that one bottle of Double Serum sells every five seconds worldwide and that it has won 394 beauty awards implies you already know how good it is.
But on the off chance you don’t, I’m here to confirm it. Seriously, this product is good. It’s marketed predominantly as an anti-ageing serum, which, needless to say, I’m not particularly in favour of. It doesn’t contain retinol, and it isn’t going to get rid of any deep-set wrinkles. If you ask me, Double Serum is just healthy-looking skin in one very clever bottle. (It contains two vials to keep oil-soluble and water-soluble ingredients separate for ultimate potency.)
Championing anti-inflammatory turmeric along with a plethora of other plant ingredients (21 to be exact), Double Serum delivers the core things your skin needs to look healthy and radiant. It delivers lightweight but intense hydration to plump, turns skin supple and radiant thanks to skin barrier support, has antioxidant benefits to protect skin against potentially dulling damage and, on top of all of this, leaves skin looking noticeably smoother thanks to a boost in collagen production.
It is so good at what it does, in fact, that my choice to avoid makeup application in the morning is no longer just down to the fact that I simply can’t be bothered but also that I genuinely don’t feel as though my skin needs it. If anything, applying makeup risks only flattening and dulling Double Serum’s handiwork. And the best bit is there’s something for my disastrously dark under-eye area now, too.
For years, I have preached the message that dark circles and eye wrinkles cannot be tackled with topical products. Unless you’re prepared to try something invasive (tear-trough filler, I’m looking at you), concealer and cover-up are the only ways. But now, Clarins Double Serum Eye is a thing, and with 89% of people saying that signs of fatigue are visibly minimised after 28 days of use, I must admit that if it’s anywhere close to being as good as the original Double Serum, I might be tempted to give it a go.
Shop More Glow-Boosting Serums
Formulated specifically to make skin look great from the minute it's applied, this serum from Charlotte Tilbury is a surprisingly great skincare product containing peptides, polyglutamic acid (which is essentially supercharged hyaluronic acid) and vitamin C. There really isn't a great need for makeup over the top.
If your skin is prone to looking dull, dehydrated and tired first thing in the morning, a quick layer of Kiehl's Super Serum is all it needs to look its healthiest all day long.