Navigating the vast and sprawling world of serums and oils is a daunting prospect. All too often do we go into it not really knowing what we’re after – and that’s not even the tricky part. With more targeted types than you can count on two hands, finding the parfait personalised pairing for your skin is mind-boggling at the best of times...

That’s why, to help you get skincare savvy and cut through the noise, we’ve cherry-picked five of the best that top their respective categories. Have at it!

Best for… Hydration 
For its ability to act like a sponge and draw water into the skin, hyaluronic acid has long been hyped about by those in-the-skincare-know – and Dr. Dennis Gross, who founded an entire range around the humectant, will be the first to rave about its benefits. If it’s moisture that you’re missing, this grease-free Hyaluronic Marine Hydration Booster boasting its namesake, evening primrose oil and coconut fruit, locks in dewy radiance – banishing fine lines and wrinkles – when applied either alone or bolstered by a slathering of moisturiser.

Best for… Firming
‘Lifting’ and ‘sculpting’ may sound like two words you’d expect to hear in a legs, bums and tums class circa 1990, but they too have a place in the realm of serums. However, unlike an aerobics regime, Caudalie’s featherweight Resveratrol Lift Firming Serum does all the work for you – visibly plumping, smoothing and re-contouring to counteract sagging. It’s comprised of a patented concoction of vine-derived, antioxidant-rich resveratrol and micro-hyaluronic acids – in other words, you won’t find its equal elsewhere.

Best for… Calming Redness
We could listen to Dr. Barbara Sturm for days… An industry leader in molecular cosmetics, who works to undo the harm of exposure to environmental pollutants, blue light, sun-worshipping with abandon and self-inflicted stresses to the body, Dr. Sturm knows full-well what makes our skin tick – and what we can do to get it back on track when it’s not! Formulated as the ultimate antidote to all of the above, her plant-based Calming Serum bids adieu to redness and burning, activating the skin’s clever antioxidant system that soothes cells and protects against free radicals. London, we’re ready for you!

Best for… Improving Skin Tone
The clue is in the name… Sarah Chapman’s Skin Tone Perfecting Booster is your calling card for catering to skin that’s thrown off its natural balance thanks to hormonal issues, pigmentation, overuse of peels or UV damage. A rose-scented hybrid serum – containing probiotic agents, botanical brighteners and lightening actives – it brings complexions back to a happier time, soothing and reducing inflammation to improve uneven tone, age spots and blemishes. 

Best for… The ‘Glow’
OK, so we’re slightly cheating here… Though Sunday Riley’s cult oil-not-oil (a unique dry-blend in a category of its own) Juno Hydroactive Cellular Face Oil is not quite a serum, it is the absolute bee’s knees for nailing the elusive glow. Packing more nourishing agents than we’ve had hot dinners – blending Omega-3, 6 and 9, Vitamin C, essential amino acids, cranberry and raspberry seeds that boast natural UV protection – it will totally transform even the most lacklustre of complexions. Ready, steady… Glow!

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