I Finally Found A Hyaluronic Serum That Plumps My Skin Without Leaving It Sticky
When it comes to skin care, so many of us simply do too much with our routines. We layer on active after active, overwhelming our skin cells with so much turnover. Even the most basic hyaluronic acid serums can also sneak in other hard-core players—like vitamin C or niacinamide—that can make the juice even stronger than you thought. And when you have multiple of these formulas in your routine, you may start to experience diminishing returns.
It can be difficult to find a simple hydrator that does nothing but provide dewy, necessary moisture—but rest assured, I found The One. Allow me to introduce you to the Kjaer Weis Beautiful Hydration Serum, a formula that plays nice with every product in your routine.
The stars of the show here are hyaluronic acid and polyglutamic acid (PGA), the latter of which is starting to become a real cult favorite in the beauty industry. "Polyglutamic acid is a powerful humectant that can hold four times more water than hyaluronic acid," board-certified dermatologist Hadley King, M.D., previously told mbg about the ingredient. (Hyaluronic acid, for reference, holds up to 1,000 times its weight in water1; so that means PGA can hold up to 4,000. Talk about a superb hydrator.)
Not to mention, PGA can actually help stabilize the hyaluronic acid you already have in your skin. See, your hyaluronic acid gets broken down by enzymes as you age; PGA can actually inhibit these enzymes so your skin is able to hold on to more of its own HA naturally. Neat, no?
And while PGA is a humectant—meaning you should layer occlusives on top to keep the moisture from evaporating—it also has some skin-barrier-supporting abilities. "It also forms a protective barrier over the skin that can help hold in the moisture," says King.
Aside from these lovely humectants, the Kjaer Weis formula also features lavender flower water, which offers soothing properties. And like many of the brand's other formulas, it also has organic dioscorea batatas extract, an antioxidant-rich Chinese yam known to gather light ether in its roots (Kjaer Weis refers to it as the "root of light"). All of these ingredients work harmoniously to plump the skin with moisture, prep the skin for makeup, and provide that elusive, lit-from-within glow.
I was expecting this hydrating serum to have a tacky texture. Nothing against this specific formula! It's just that most hyaluronic acid serums tend to feel syrupy, especially ones with a high concentration of the humectant. However, I was surprised to experience absolutely no stickiness with this serum—despite its pillowy texture, it instantly fuses to the skin.
That's what makes the serum a wonderful step pre-makeup: Many makeup artists prefer to prime the skin with a hyaluronic-acid-soaked sheet mask for a temporary plumping effect. This product provides just as much juicy moisture with none of the lingering sticky residue or dreaded pilling.
If you take a look at the ingredient list, you'll also find it includes naturally derived fragrance, but trust me, it's very subtle. I'm someone who hates smelling like a garden rose and tends to steer clear of any fragrant facial products (with body care, I'm a bit more lenient), but I can barely even tell it's there. Even the slight scent doesn't smell too flowery—it's more of a fresh, almost powdery aroma.
And thanks to those high-powered humectants, the serum effortlessly fills in fine lines and makes my skin appear so much softer and plumper. It's definitely a hydration serum I'll keep in my rotation, especially because it's so easy to layer with other skin care products.
If you're looking for a simple, hydrating formula that fits in seamlessly with your routine, you really can't go wrong with this Kjaer Weis pick. It features only hydrating, soothing actives you can count on, and the texture is simply unmatched—I wouldn't expect anything less from the iconic makeup artist Kirsten Kjaer Weis.
Jamie Schneider is the Beauty & Wellness Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.A. in Organizational Studies and English from the University of Michigan, and her work has appeared in Coveteur, The Chill Times, and Wyld Skincare. In her role at mbg, she reports on everything from the top beauty industry trends, to the gut-skin connection and the microbiome, to the latest expert makeup hacks. She currently lives in New York City.