Our editors independently research, and recommend the best products; learn more about our editorial policy. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links; learn more about how we make money.
Teens looking to create an effective skincare routine should consider trying out a serum. Here are our recommendations for the best serums for teenage skin.
The Inkey List Serum for Large Pores, Excess Oil, and Redness
The Inkey List Niacinamide
This affordable serum from The Inkey List uses the power of niacinamide to control sebum production, minimize redness, and more.
Skin types: Normal, Oily and Combination
Best for: Large Pores, Excess Oil, and Redness
Tested on animals:
How to use: After cleansing, apply an even layer of the serum all over the face. Follow up with a moisturizer, and sunscreen during the day.
This lightweight serum contains a 10% concentration of niacinamide (vitamin B3), a multi-tasking skincare ingredient. It has been shown to control excess oil and minimize the appearance of large pores, so it is particularly great for those with oilier skin. Niacinamide also helps minimize redness and control blemishes for a clear and even complexion.
Some people can have a niacinamide sensitivity, which may cause irritation (patch test before using)
In addition to the niacinamide, this daily serum contains a 1% concentration of hyaluronic acid, which helps keep the skin hydrated.
This is an excellent serum for those who need to calm and strengthen the skin while reducing redness. The formula is particularly great for sensitive and/or irritated skin. It is formulated with centella asiatica (AKA tiger grass) extract, which soothes inflammation and protects the skin. This gentle serum also contains Jartbiome, Dr. Jart’s microbiome complex that helps strengthen and balance while improving the skin’s ability to fight against irritation and damage. The company’s Cicabond blend (which contains proteins and minerals) repairs and rebuilds damaged skin.
Contains fragrant essential oils, which may irritate those with fragrance sensitivities
In addition to the ingredients mentioned above, this serum contains additional ingredients that calm, hydrate, and soothe redness, including niacinamide, glycerin, and panthenol.
One of the key ingredients in this gentle serum is centella asiatica extract. This plant extract has been shown to effectively treat wounds and soothe inflammation in the skin. It also contains vitamin B5 (AKA panthenol), an anti-inflammatory ingredient that improves hydration and elasticity while soothing the skin.
Lightweight and non-sticky
Vegan and cruelty-free
The lighter hydration may not be hydrating enough for very dry skin
In addition to the ingredients mentioned above, this Korean serum contains madecassoside, which has antioxidant benefits, and allantoin, which soothes.
This is an excellent choice for those looking for an affordable retinol. This fragrance-free retinol serum not only helps with acne scars and large pores, but it can also help fight signs of aging and brighten the skin.
Developed with dermatologists
May cause irritation or dryness
This non-comedogenic retinol serum also contains ceramides and niacinamide, which work to calm and restore the skin while maintaining its barrier. Additionally, this formula contains licorice root extract, which gives a brightening boost. That extra benefit may further help lighten discolored scars.
Yes, teenagers can safely use vitamin C serums. These types of serums are especially well-suited for teens looking to fade post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (dark marks caused by breakouts) for a more even skin tone.
Can a teenager use a niacinamide serum?
Yes, teens can absolutely use serums containing niacinamide, like the Niacinamide Serum from The Inkey List. This multi-tasking ingredient targets a variety of skin concerns, including large pores, redness, excess sebum, and blemishes.
Should a 13-year-old have a skincare routine?
It’s a great idea to establish a basic skincare routine in the tween or early teen years, particularly since this is when many people will start to develop acne. Start by picking a face wash, moisturizer, and sunscreen. After you’ve picked out those foundational items, you can consider adding treatments and/or serums to your routine to tackle specific skin needs (like acne, hyperpigmentation, redness, or excess oil).
The Bottom Line
It’s a great idea to develop a skincare routine in your teen years, and a serum can be incredibly beneficial if you’re looking to target specific concerns. If you’re a teen, consider adding one of these serums to your routine.
About the author
Kyra is a content writer based in Los Angeles, CA. She works in the health and wellness sphere, and covers everything from beauty to skincare to fitness. She has been passionate about skincare since she was a teenager, and loves uncovering the absolute best routines and products available to help people reach their skin goals.