The five best face serums under $30 to add to your skincare routine

*This story features curated selections from the selection team and affiliate links that allow NZ Herald to earn a commission.

Budget-friendly skincare is in.

If the internet has taught us anything, it’s that a hefty price tag doesn’t equate to a more effective product! Plenty of affordable skincare options work just as well for less.

Serums can address everything from premature aging or dehydration to acne. Everyone’s skin is different, and so are their preferences. That’s why using a serum tailored to your specific needs helps take your skin to the next level.


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Whether you’re already a serum fanatic, or you’re finally ready to try one for the first time, here are some great affordable picks to take your skincare routine to the next level.

Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence – $27

Want your skin to look like you just ate a plate of veggies and drank a gallon of water? Look no further than the Cosrx Snail Mucin Serum. This highly concentrated essence protects your skin against moisture loss while promoting a smooth and healthy skin barrier. While the concept of using snail mucin on your face may seem a bit strange, I guarantee the results are totally worth it! The lightweight texture absorbs quickly into the skin, leaving you with a natural glow. Buy now

Main ingredients: The serum is made by snails that are left alone to roam free and leave their mark, so you can rest easy knowing that no snails were harmed in the making of this serum. This alcohol-free, fragrance-free and essential oil-free serum is perfect for sensitive skin.

Bondi Sands Thirsty Skin Hyaluronic Acid Serum 30ml – $20

Want plump and perky skin but find it hard to remember to moisturize throughout the day? Bondi Sands Thirsty Skin has you covered. Designed to intensely hydrate your skin and lock in moisture, this hyaluronic acid serum is a classic that won’t break the bank. Buy now

Main ingredients: The serum is not only enriched with hyaluronic acid, but also contains algae extract, which is good for fighting problems like dryness, eczema and acne. This dermatologist-tested formula is fragrance-free, non-comedogenic, won’t clog pores, and is suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

iUNIK Tea Tree Relief Serum – $29

Korean skin care is trending, from the natural ingredients to affordable prices. If you struggle with breakouts but find most products too harsh, this natural Korean formula is perfect for those with acne-prone, stressed skin that needs treatment but also needs soothing relief.

The iUNIK Tea Tree Relief Serum is a lightweight, pure serum designed to soothe sensitive skin, reduce inflammation and clarify. Buy now


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Main ingredients: This natural serum ccontains 67% tea tree leaf water, hyaluronic acid and 19.5% Centella Asiatica leaf water.

The Regular Caffeine + EGCG 30ml – $14

If you’re tired of your under-eyes betraying your sleep schedule, or lack thereof, The Ordinary’s Caffeine Solution might be for you! This under eye serum can help reduce dark circles and puffiness. The caffeine content also helps with inflammation, making your under-eye area appear brighter and more awake. Buy now

Main ingredients: This serum contains a high concentration of 5% caffeine from green tea leaves.

Inkey List Niacinamide Facial Serum – $16

Niacinamide is a powerful ingredient that can tackle everything from enlarged pores and oily skin to premature aging and dehydration, making it the perfect balancing serum. The Inkey List Niacinamide Face Serum is a lightweight serum formulated with 20% niacinamide to balance excess sebum, improve skin texture and reduce enlarged pores. Buy now

Main ingredients: The naturally occurring vitamin B3, niacinamide, is an excellent choice for blemish-prone skin as it helps reduce excess sebum and redness. Formulated with 1% Hyaluronic Acid, it also helps to soothe and hydrate the skin.

* Prices are as quoted at the time of publication, these prices may vary at the discretion of the brands listed.

The five best face serums under $30 to add to your skincare routine

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