Beauty/Skin/Serums & Treatments/Blemish & Acne Treatments
Top 10 Serums For Acne

These Are The Most Effective Facial Serums To Buy When Dealing With Stubborn Acne

These Are The Most Effective Facial Serums To Buy When Dealing With Stubborn Acne

Our Top 10 Lists help shoppers quickly and easily find what they need. Using an intense review and approval process (which you can learn more about here), we break down the best styles according to what consumers most commonly search for and want.


Acne. Is. The. Worst. It’s hard to predict, hard to deal with, and hard to cover up. It can ruin your day, an event, or a picture that will last a lifetime. Luckily, with the magic of a powerful serum, blemishes no longer have to rule our world. And even luckier for you, we found the 10 best serums that are specifically designed to treat and cure acne. These serums target acne-causing bacteria and use ingredients both nature-derived and scientifically-supported to heal current blemishes, prevent acne from forming, balance skin, and reduce irritation and redness. Sounds great, right? We think so. But what exactly makes these serums better than the products we’ve used in the past? They're fast-absorbing, lightweight, and contain more potent ingredients than cleansers and moisturizers alone. This means we can confidently keep our social schedule as is even when hormonal acne kicks in or a weekend of drinking becomes reflected in our skin since these serums promise to keep those clogged pores at bay. If you’ve been engaged in a life-long battle with acne, consider adding one of these Top 10 serums for acne to your skincare regimen ASAP. Opening image: sephora.com

Did you enjoy our 10 Best Serums For Acne? Check out our 10 Best Chemical Exfoliators next.

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May 25, 2021

Top 10 Lists serve as unbiased shopping guides to the most trusted product recommendations on the internet. Products are scored and ranked using an algorithm backed by data consumers find most valuable when making a purchase. We are reader-supported and may earn a commission when you shop through our links.

The Rankings

Peter Thomas Roth AHA/BHA Acne Clearing Gelsephora.com

Peter Thomas Roth AHA/BHA Acne Clearing Gel

Our Score


WHAT IT DOES: This serum helps to target and support natural cell turnover to give you smoother, healthier-looking skin.

USERS SAID: "I have deep hormonal cystic acne and I can honestly say that while I'm treating my skin for its issues, this is my go to every time I wash my face morning and evening for even toned and vibrant looking skin. Almost every product I've ever used has always irritated my skin...moisturizer included...this is one of my arsenal top picks because of how many good things it does for my skin!"

Shani Darden Skincare Retinol Reform

Our Score


WHY YOU NEED IT: This cult-favorite retinol serum helps you fight breakouts and diminishes the appearance of hyperpigmentation.

BEST FOR: This serum can treat a plethora of skin issues—dark spots, fine lines, acne, you name it.

Juice Beauty Blemish Clearing Serum

Our Score


USERS SAID: “I bought the entire juice beauty facial cleansing set through juice beauty a couple of months ago and have only run out of the serum, so I had to replenish. I have very sensitive skin and this is the first product I’ve tried that doesn’t make me red and break out more! My acne is almost completely gone and I feel so much more confident!”

WHAT IT DOES: The Juice Beauty Blemish Serum uses high-quality, clean ingredients to reduce breakouts, unclog pores, and even skin tone.

La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo Ance Treatment

Our Score


WHY YOU NEED IT: This acne-fighting serum delivers visible results in just three days and a 60% reduction of acne in as little as one week.

HELPFUL TIP: Got sensitive skin? No problem, this treatment is dermatologist tested and approved for sensitive skin types. 

First Aid Beauty Fab Skin Lab Retinol Serum

Our Score


BEST FOR: If you're new to the retinol game, no worries. This serum is ideal for sensitive skin and beginner retinol users. 

HELPFUL TIP: Start off using this serum around three times per week. Gradually increase usage to every other night based on your skin's tolerance. 

The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

Our Score


BEST FOR: This serum will help you achieve the radiant glow of your dreams on a budget. It's formulated to boost the overall appearance of your complexion and balance excess sebum levels without breaking the bank.

USER REVIEW: "This stuff is AWESOME! I have combo skin and it has really helped with keeping oil at bay. I am on my second bottle!"

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Hyaluronic Acid Serum

Our Score


LOVED FOR: This hydrating formula leaves skin feeling naturally moisturized, supple, and smooth.

UER REVIEW: "I combine this with my daily SPF and it goes on smooth and helps my skin feel more moist and plush! This is my second jar and I'd buy it again."

Sunday Riley UFO Ultra Clarifying Face Oil

Our Score


BEST FOR: If your skin is oily and acne-prone, snag this pick.

USER REVIEW: “The holy grail of holy grails! The only thing in my life (IN MY LIFE) that has worked for my stubborn acne which I like to define more as congested skin. It makes my skin look so dewy and I use this just as my face moisturizer morning and night.”

iS Clinical Pro-Heal Serum Advance Plus

Our Score


WHY YOU NEED IT: With kojic acid, vitamins C, A, E, and retinol, this antioxidant-rich serum can treat almost any skin issue in the book—think acne, rosacea, contact dermatitis, and even insect bites.

HELPFUL TIP: A little goes a long way with this stuff, so we recommend applying it sparingly to affected areas.

SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF Gel

Our Score


HELPFUL TIP: Apply two pumps onto clean skin in the morning to fight signs of aging all throughout the day. 

LOVED FOR: The gel formula is super lightweight and won't feel heavy on skin.

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