12 Best Korean Vitamin C Serum 2021

by Jih Yun

Vitamin C can do wonders for your skin with its antioxidant properties. Here are the best Korean Vitamin C serums that can help improve your overall skin health and promote collagen production to battle signs of aging, dark spots, pigmentation, and other similar skin concerns. 

If your skincare routine doesn’t include a vitamin C serum then choosing one of these Korean vitamin C serums that suits your skin type is one of the best things you can do for your skin, especially if you want healthy, bright, and youthful skin – I mean, who wouldn’t want that? 

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum: Quick Summary

Best Korean Vitamin C SerumBest For 
KLAIRS Freshly Juiced Vitamin DropSmooth Complexion
Seoul Ceuticals Day glow serumSigns of aging
DERMALOGY by NEOGENLAB Vitamin C SerumSkin Brightening
PURITO Pure Vitamin C SerumDamaged Skin
Goodal Green TangerineSensitive Skin
Wishtrend Pure Vitamin CBlemishes and Dark spots
SKINFOOD Peach Sake Pore SerumOily Skin, Acne-prone Skin
Mizon Real Vitamin C AmpouleHyperpigmentation
MISSHA Vita C PlusSpot Correction
Mizon AHA 8% Peeling Serum Exfoliation
TIA’M MY SIGNATURE C SOURCE Acne Scars

Top Picks For Best Korean Vitamin C Serum

  1. Wishtrend Pure Vitamin C – Fades blemishes and dark spots
  2. MISSHA Vita C Plus – Recommended for spot correction
  3. Mizon AHA 8% Peeling Serum – Gently exfoliated the skin

Which is the best Korean Vitamin C serum?

Based on our tests and ratings on parameters like ingredients, Vitamin C concentration, application, and formula, we found that KLAIRS Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop is the best Korean Vitamin C serum.

KLAIRS Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop contains 5% active ascorbic acid. This helps brighten dark skin and reduce dark spots. This Korean Vitamin C serum also Centella asiatica extracts which is a great ingredient for acne prone skin as it has skin soothing properties. KLAIRS Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop is available on Amazon for $22.00

Top Korean Vitamin C Serum

KLAIRS Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop: Best Korean Vitamin C Serum

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For A Smooth Complexion

Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop is our experts overall pick for the best Korean vitamin C serum.

This small bottle of vitamin C serum by Dear, Klairs is just what you need to watch your skin glow day after day.

With a mix of the best ingredients your skin can ever get, and all literally juiced and packaged fresh, it works miracles on your complexion by fading pigmentation, dark spots and evening out the skin tone.

Try using this overnight to wake up every morning with brighter skin. 

best korean vitamin c serum

Key Features:

  • Contains the active ingredient 5% ascorbic acid
  • Brightens the skin and fades dark spots
  • Contains centella asiatica extracts
  • Soothes the skin and keeps away inflammations

Pros: 

  • Effective ingredients

Cons: 

  • Since these ingredients work best when they are fresh, the shelf life of this serum is short once you open it
  • Not suitable for sensitive skin

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by Klairs below!

Related: Go from oily skin to dewy skin with these amazing Korean serums for oily skin. Check it out!

Seoul Ceuticals Day Glow Serum

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Anti-wrinkle & Anti-ageing Treatment

Seoul Ceuticals Day Glow Serum is our experts pick for best Korean vitamin C serum for aging skin.

With a high concentration of vitamin C included, the Seoul Ceuticals Dayglow serum is an effective anti-aging tonic for your skin. The serum tightens the skin, minimizes wrinkles, and adds elasticity to the skin.

As your skin ages, it loses its natural ability to produce sebum and begins to sag. This serum takes care of that and replenishes your skin with all that it needs. 

Key Features:

  • Contains the active ingredients: 20% vitamin C, ferulic acid, hyaluronic acid, and Vitamin E
  • Ferulic acid increases the effectiveness of vitamin C
  • Antioxidant properties of vitamin C slow down the aging of the skin
  • Hyaluronic acid attracts and locks in moisture 
  • Skin stays well hydrated throughout the day
  • Vitamin E protects the skin from damage

Pros:

  • A hydrating anti-ageing serum
  • Can be used by any type of ageing skin

Cons: 

  • Exposure to sun should be limited, or a good quality sunscreen must be used

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by Seoul Ceuticals below!

Related: Keep your skin’s pH level balanced with these nourishing Korean toners for oily skin!

NEOGEN DERMALOGY Real Vita C Serum

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Skin Brightening

Trust Dermology by Neogen Lab to always come up with the highest and most focussed concentrations of active ingredients to ensure that the serum works quickly and effectively.

This Vitamin C serum instantly refreshes the skin and moisturizes it intensely without making your skin greasy. Neogen Dermalogy Real Vita C serum is formulated with a vitamin C derivatise called sodium ascorbyl phosphate. The combination of vitamins B, C, and E nourish your skin from within to give it that smoothness and glow.

Key Features:

  • Vitamin C of 22% concentration is the main ingredient
  • Brightens the skin and fades pigmentation
  • Vitamin B5 makes the skin stronger
  • Vitamin E protects the skin from damage
  • Contains niacinamide that is effective in lightening the skin complexion
  • Fades dark spots and removes tan

Pros:

  • Effective in brightening the skin
  • Hydrates well

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by Neogen Dermalogy below!

Related: Choosing the right toner for sensitive skin can make or break your skincare routine. Here are some Korean toners you’ll love!

PURITO Pure Vitamin C Serum

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Anti-ageing, Skin repair & Hydration

Purito Pure Vitamin C serum is a gentle Vitamin C serum and is our experts pick for best Korean vitamin C serum for damaged skin.

If you want an all in one serum that brightens your skin, repairs it, slows down aging, and moisturizes, go for the Purito Pure Vitamin C serum.

Containing natural red ginseng as one of its active ingredients, this serum repairs your skin, revitalizes it, and energizes it. You can also use this for fading dark spots and getting rid of hyperpigmentation.

Key Features:

  • Contains 5% ascorbic acid and natural red ginseng as its main ingredients
  • Red ginseng helps in cell regeneration
  • Heals the skin and fades scars
  • Fades blemishes and hyperpigmentation
  • Brightens the skin
  • Contains a high amount of hyaluronic acid
  • Locks in moisture and keeps the skin supple
  • Makes the skin softer and more elastic
  • 100% vegan and natural ingredients

Pros:

  • Effective in fading hyperpigmentation

Cons:

  • Not suitable for oily skin as it is heavy in texture

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by Goodal below

Related: The wrong serum for acne-prone skin can cause breakouts. Here are some gentle Korean serums for acne!

Goodal Green Tangerine Vitamin C Dark Spot Facial Serum

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Sensitive Skin

Goodal Green Tangerine vitamin C serum proves that even sensitive skin can benefit from a Vitamin C serum. This is made with extracts of rare green tangerines that are delicate on the skin compared to other vitamin C extracts.

I love the colorful packaging, it reminds me of bright and sunny days. It is also free of alcohol and other ingredients that could irritate the skin and cause inflammation. And what’s even better is that this serum smells amazing!

Key Features:

  • Contains vitamin C extracts from green tangerines
  • Less prone to oxidation from exposure to the sun
  • Gentle on the skin
  • Free of harsh ingredients
  • Contains no alcohol
  • Light in texture
  • Can be used by dry, oily and normal skin types as well

Pros:

  • Mild and hypoallergenic
  • Refreshing fragrance

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by Goodal below!

Related: You cannot miss out on these top K-beauty products. Check it out!

Wishtrend Pure Vitamin C 21.5

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Smooth Skin

Wishtrend may not be as popular as most other Korean skincare brands, but the Pure Vitamin C serum brings in it a very effective solution for smoother, brighter and lighter skin.

The vitamin C content in this serum is quite high at 21.5%, and along with vitamin E and panthenol, this product exfoliates the skin as well. As a result, you notice your skin getting softer and the pigmentation fading.

Key Features:

  • 21.5% vitamin C along with 75% vitamin E are the main ingredients
  • Vitamin E strengthens the skin and fights free radical damage
  • Improves texture of the skin
  • Fades blemishes and hyperpigmentation
  • Free of parabens
  • Contains no fragrances or irritants
  • Light in consistency and easily absorbed
  • Intensely moisturises the skin
  • Non-sticky formula

Pros:

  • Gentle enough to be used by sensitive skin

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by Wishtrend below

Related: Give your under eye skin some extra nourishment with these amazing Korean eye creams. Check it out!

SKINFOOD Peach Sake Pore Serum

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Oily And Acne-prone Skin

Skinfood Peach Sake Toner is our experts pick for best Korean Vitamin C serum for oily and acne prone skin.

I understand the troubles of acne-prone skin. You need to carefully consider what you apply on your face and most of the time, it’s a hit or a miss.

The Peak Sake Pore Serum by Skinfood is definitely a hit for acne-prone skin as it effectively minimizes the appearance of pores, tightens your skin, absorbs excess sebum produced, ensuring that you have lesser breakouts. 

Key Features:

  • Contains Japanese rice wine and peach extracts
  • The vitamin C from peach extracts brighten the skin and fade scars left behind by acne
  • Sake tightens the pores
  • It also smoothens the skin and improves the texture
  • Also contains silica powder
  • Absorbs excess sebum produced by the skin
  • Keeps the skin free of shine

Pros:

  • Reduces oiliness in the skin

Cons:

  • Not meant for dry skin type

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by SkinFood below!

Mizon Real Vitamin C Ampoule

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Fading Hyperpigmentation

You know you can rely on Mizon for efficient solutions with their pure and concentrated ingredients.

With absolutely no water to dilute it, the 19% vitamin C contained in Mizon Real Vitamin C Ampoule works like magic to clear up your skin of blemishes and hyperpigmentation.

Use it overnight, or if using during the day, stay away from the sun and follow up with a good sunscreen for best results. 

Key Features:

  • Contains 19% vitamin C in its purest form
  • Contains no water to dilute it
  • Light and easy to spread
  • Gets absorbed quickly
  • Brightens the skin
  • Moisturises lightly

Pros:

  • Very effective in brightening the skin

Cons:

  • Very strong solution
  • Not meant for sensitive skin

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by Mizon below!

MISSHA Vita C Plus

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Spot Correction

Use the Vita C Plus spot corrector throughout your face for immediate tightening of your skin and giving it a lift. This gentle formula by Missha is delicate on your skin, getting rid of dark spots and brightening it. 

Key Features:

  • Mild formula
  • Meant for sensitive skin
  • Gets rid of dark spots
  • Tightens the skin
  • Brightens and evens the texture

Pros:

  • Gentle formula
  • Effective for spot correction

Check out the best Korean vitamin C serum by MISSHA below!

Mizon AHA 8% Peeling Serum 

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Exfoliation

Exfoliate your skin the right way and regularly, and you know you will have brighter and smoother skin. Exfoliation also keeps away unwanted skin troubles.

The Mizon AHA 8% Peeling Serum is one of the most effective Korean Vitamin C serums for keeping your skin healthy and glowing. It not only gets rid of dead skin cells, but it also lightens dark spots and pigmentation and leaves your skin feeling smoother.  

Key Features:

  • Contains glycolic acid and centella asiatica extracts as the main ingredients
  • Mild exfoliant 
  • Gets rid of dead skin cells
  • Keeps away blackheads and acne
  • Diminishes dark spots and scars
  • Brightens the skin
  • Makes skin softer and smoother

Pros:

  • Gently exfoliates leaving you with brighter skin

Cons:

  • Not for acne-prone skin

TIA’M MY SIGNATURE C SOURCE 

Best Korean Vitamin C Serum For Getting Rid Of Acne Scars

Ti’am My Signature C Source is our experts selection for best Korean vitamin C serum to reduce acne scars.

Using the purest form of vitamin C, Tia’m My Signature C Source is what you need if you want to get rid of those unwanted scars left behind by acne.

The vitamin C fades the scars, lightens blemishes and dark spots and makes your skin brighter. It also keeps away blackheads through its exfoliant properties. 

Key Features:

  • Contains 20% pure vitamin C
  • Acts as a good exfoliant
  • Gets rid of dead skin cells
  • Effective in fading dark spots, blemishes and acne scars
  • Keeps away blackheads from forming
  • Evens and smoothes out the skin tone
  • Brightens the skin, removes tan effectively

Pros:

  • Almost instant lightening of scars

Cons:

  • Contains alcohol
  • Can dry the skin a bit, so not meant for dry skin

How we tested the Korean vitamin C serums?

Along with the help of certified skincare experts, my team tested over 10+ Korean vitamin C serums to find the best one. We tested the vitamin C serums based on the ingredients, vitamin c concentration, formulation, efficacy, sensitivity to skin, moisturization and hydration power as well. We then rated each Korean vitamin c serum based on these parameters. We also considered Amazon customer reviews when selecting the Korean vitamin C serums. According to our tests and ratings by our skincare experts, we found that Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop is the best best Korean vitamin C serum.

Important Skincare tip when using Korean Vitamin C serum

If you decide to add the best Korean Vitamin C serum for you skin type to your skincare routine, make sure that you always apply sunscreen. Vitamin C is known oxidise when it comes in contact with heat and sunlight. This will increase skin damage cause by sun and reduce the effectiveness of the serum. To avoid this, apply sunscreen whenever you head out!

How to choose the best Korean Vitamin C serum

Choose the best Korean Vitamin C serum depending on your skin type and skin concern. Use a Korean Vitamin C serum based on what results you wish to achieve. If you want, you can use two different serums too, but use them at different times as most Korean Vitamin C serums have active ingredients that might react with each other. 

  • If you have sensitive skin, use a mild, hypoallergenic serum that won’t irritate your skin as most Korean serums have active ingredients
  • If you want to get rid of blemishes and pigmentation, use one with a higher concentration of Vitamin C that also has an exfoliating ingredient like glycolic acid
  • If you have dry skin, opt for a serum that includes hyaluronic acid to hydrate your skin
  • If you have oily skin, use a serum that can control the sebum production in your skin without drying out your skin
  • If you want to get rid of blemishes and pigmentation, use one with a higher concentration of Vitamin C 
  • If you have mature skin, use one that has collagen that will improve the elasticity and act as an anti-ageing serum

How vitamin C slows down skin aging

Skin aging is a natural process and is inevitable. But we can slow it down and protect it from prematuring. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps us do just that! 

A vitamin C derivative, L-ascorbic acid, in a Korean vitamin C serum can be anywhere between 5% – 15% in concentration. This slows down the skin’s aging process by:

  • Attacking oxidants caused due to exposure of sunlight which otherwise can lead to premature aging of the skin 
  • Getting rid of oxidants due to pollutants
  • Promoting collagen production

Vitamin C serum can also help prevent hyperpigmentation as it stops tyrosinase enzyme that’s responsible for melanin production. 

Formulation on Korean Vitamin C serums

The formulation of the Korean vitamin C serum depends on the brands formula. The most common derivative of Vitamin C is the L-ascorbic acid aka Ascorbic acid. Other than that, some other brands also use Vitamin C derivatives from fruits rich in Vitamin C like lemons, oranges and citrus fruits.

Adding Korean Vitamin C Serum to your skincare routine

In general, serums are packed with nutrition for the skin which is why adding a serum to your skincare routine is extremely beneficial. And vitamin C is great for your skin and by applying it topically by using a product like Vitamin C serum, you can maximise the benefits. 

Vitamin C Serums Oxidise Very Quickly

Vitamin C serums oxidize very quickly which is why it’s extremely important to store it properly. Make sure the bottle is airtight and you store it in a dark, cool place. 

Skin Sensitivity 

Korean vitamin C serums are high in ascorbic acid this may irritate your skin, especially if you have sensitive skin. This is why whenever you first start using potent serums, it’s always better to do a patch test and check how your skin reacts to it. 

If the vitamin C serum is highly concentrated and your skin doesn’t agree with the product then there are even chances of burning the skin. So even if you don’t have sensitive skin, always make sure to do a patch test before you apply the vitamin C serum to your face. 

If the vitamin C serum agrees with your skin and you don’t see any negative reaction, you can then slowly introduce your favorite Korean vitamin C serum into your skincare routine. 

Always make sure to apply a moisturizer after the vitamin C serum. And if you plan on stepping out then make sure you apply sunscreen. This is because high amounts of vitamin C can make your skin a tad bit sensitive than normal. 

It’ll take a while until your skin naturally builds up tolerance for Korean vitamin C serum. If you’re new to vitamin C serums, you may feel a slight tingling sensation the first few times you apply it. Which is why I mentioned that you should introduce a Korean vitamin C serum slowly into your skincare routine. 

Start with applying a thin layer of vitamin C serum the first few times and then once your skin gets used to it, you can apply more.

If, even after the first few times you apply the vitamin C serum, the tingling sensation doesn’t go away and your skin always feels extra sensitive, you might want to consider opting for a Korean vitamin C serum with lesser ascorbic acid. Any Korean vitamin C serum will mention the percentage of vitamin C in the packaging itself.

Pairing Korean Vitamin C serum with other skincare products

There’s a lot of controversy around what skincare products can and can’t be used with Korean vitamin C serums. 

For example, a lot of you may have heard that skincare products with ingredients like retinol and niacinamide can’t be used along with a vitamin C serum. 

But in reality, there are several skincare products that use both these ingredients. 

While I love both these ingredients – vitamin C and niacinamide, I prefer using them in separate skincare products layering them on top of each other. I feel it’s more beneficial to your skin that way. 

Why?

Vitamin C helps lighten your skin and niacinamide helps battle signs of aging. Both these ingredients have different pH levels. Vitamin C serum is beneficial to your skin if it has a low pH level and niacinamide is beneficial when it has a higher pH level. Which is why it’s better to layer these ingredients on top of each other rather than using a skincare product that mixes both these ingredients. 

Now if you want to continue using retinol (honestly, I’m not a fan of this product and here’s why) along with your Vitamin C serum, that’s also fine. But just make sure you don’t use it together. What I mean is if you apply a vitamin C serum in the morning then leave  out retinol serum from your morning skincare routine and only apply it in the night. And vice versa.

Why?

This is because both are extremely potent and active ingredients. Layering both vitamin C and retinol might overload your skin and cause irritation. 

Benefits of Korean Vitamin C serum

What I love about vitamin C is that it works for all ages and skin issues. With regular use, I have seen a lot of my friends overcome their skin issues with vitamin C. Since Korean vitamin C serums are so potent, people with sensitive skin might face some irritation. So if you have sensitive skin then opt for a vitamin C serum with lower vitamin C concentration. 

Here are some of the benefits of Korean vitamin C serums:

  • Promotes Collagen production: Vitamin C stimulates skin cells by increasing the blood flow to the top layers of the skin. This in turn promotes the production of collagen which slows down the skin aging process. 
  • Intensely Hydrating: Vitamin C also helps lock in moisture in the top layer of the skin 
  • Skin lightening effect: Vitamin C is loved for its skin lightening properties. This is great for those who want to target hyperpigmentation, acne scars, and blemishes. Vitamin C serums help give your skin a glow, fight skin aging and make your skin look radiant and youthful .
  • Skin Repairing properties: Vitamin C is also known for its healing properties. So if you’re dealing with damaged skin or acne scars then vitamin C serums can help heal your skin. 

Tips for Korean vitamin C users:

Korean Vitamin C serum is great for skin and help you achieve more radiant and youthful skin. However there are precautions you need to take if you’re going to use the best Korean vitamin C serum for you skin type:

  • Vitamin C serums are best applied in the morning so it’s a good idea to include a vitamin C serum in your morning skincare routine and not your pm skincare routine. If you plan on stepping out, wait for a while till the vitamin C serum is properly absorbed into your skin before you step into the sun. Additionally, apply moisturizer and sunscreen after. 
  • Avoid layering other active ingredients on top of vitamin C serums. You don’t to overload your skin. If you have sensitive skin, you might feel a stinging sensation. If this is persistent then opt for a serum with lower concentrations of vitamin C. 
  • Make sure you do a patch test before you apply the vitamin C serum on your face. Patch test is especially important for those with sensitive skin or even if you’re unaware about your skin’s sensitivity levels. 
  • If you have sensitive skin, I suggest you opt for magnesium ascorbyl phosphate-based vitamin C serum and not L-ascorbic acid-based serums. The former are gentler and less likely to cause irritation 
  • You will find Korean vitamin C serums for varying concentrations from 5 – 30%. I recommend you opt for anywhere between 5 – 20% concentration depending on your skin’s sensitivity levels. 

How should I store my vitamin c serum?

As vitamin C serums oxidise quickly. It’s important to store it in an air tight container and keep it in a dark, cool place. 

Do you need vitamin c serum for oily skin?

Vitamin C serums benefit oily skin in multiple ways. Vitamin C serum won’t add to the oiliness of the skin as long as you choose a vitamin C serum that’s formulated for oily skin like SKINFOOD Peach Sake Pore Serum.

Why Korean Vitamin C serums are better?

The reason why Korean vitamin C serums are better is because Korean vitamin C serums are free of chemicals and environmentally friendly as they are mostly formulated using natural ingredients. Best Korean vitamin C serums can help you get visibly better, healthier, more radiant and youthful skin with consistent use.

Do you need vitamin C serum for oily skin?

Vitamin C serum is great for oily skin as vitamin C contains antioxidants that helps maintain oily skin and acne. Vitamin C is also known to help with inflammation that comes with oily and acne prone skin.

When to use Korean Vitamin C serum?

Include the best Korean Vitamin C serum meant for your skin type as part of your daily skincare routine, after your cleansing and toning and before your moisturiser. You must use your serum at least once a day but if you are using two different serums, apply the second one at night. Don’t forget to follow it with a sunscreen or UV protection. Not using sunscreen along with a Vitamin C serum can do more harm than good.

Best Korean vitamin C serums are highly potent in nature and formulated with natural ingredients. In general, Korean skincare believes in gradual but effective results. But this possible only with regular application. 

The sooner you invest in a Vitamin C serum, the better. As we get older, the skin’s ability to heal soon weakens. The skin also loses its elasticity as we get older resulting in hyperpigmentation and fine lines.

Using the best Korean vitamin C serum that’s suitable for your skin type and concern will give your skin that extra care and nourishment it needs as you age.

Along with improving your skin texture and appearance, Korean vitamin C serums also provide UV protection that gives your skin protection against skin complications like skin cancer.

Using the best Korean vitamin C serum will definitely help you with maintaining beautiful, radiant, and healthy skin!

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