Skin-Care Tips

This 2-in-1 ‘Glass Skin’ Serum Will Give Your Complexion a Hydrated, Mirror Finish

Photo: Getty Images/ jacoblund
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Since its launch in 2021 MERIT Beauty has been known for its “five-minute face” makeup products, designed to help you get out the door and on with your day as quickly as possible. The brand’s core lineup—which consists of a complexion stick, a blush balm, a highlighting stick, a mascara, a brow gel, and a tinted lip oil —has reached viral fame on TikTok, primarily because it's got everything you need to glam yourself up in less time than it takes to listen to a Taylor Swift song. And now, MERIT is working to make your mornings even easier with the introduction of its first-ever skin care product.

The MERIT Great Skin Instant Glow Serum ($38), which launched earlier this month, is a hydrating, bi-phase serum that promises a smooth, mirror finish with zero residue. It’s basically dewy, #cleangirlaesthetic skin in a bottle, and I for one am on board.

The star ingredients happen to be two dermatologist favorites: hyaluronic acid (for moisture) plus niacinamide (for brightening)—and pairs them with cacao seed extract, which uses caffeine to boost circulation and offer plumping effects. The fact that the formula is bi-phase means that you’ll have to shake it vigorously before each application, because its components separate in the bottle when they’re not in use (kind of like salad dressing). Think: two types of products in one.

MERIT encourages trying this serum as a base for makeup, but it can also be used on its own for a dewy finish. After using it for a little over a week myself, I can confirm this is a really nice product. It’s hydrating but not oily, nourishing yet light, and truly does leave your skin with a glow. I also like that it’s not heavily perfumed, and it absorbs well into my semi-dehydrated visage. Plus, it was formulated "without acne-triggering ingredients,” which is a nice touch—I always hope my skincare routine isn’t triggering acne. I leave that up to my raging hormones.

If packaging plays a role in your purchase decisions, the weighty (recycled) glass bottle gives an air of serious luxury to this modestly-priced serum (it’s only $38!). I do have one hangup with the format, though. While I like the thinner viscosity of the product itself, I don’t love the combination of a liquid product with a pump dispenser… IMO, this serum needs a dropper. The dispenser/liquid combo was rather messy, and without fail got product splatter all over my sink, countertops, and medicine cabinet mirror each time I’ve used it.

Don’t let that discourage you from trying it, though. It’s been out for a matter of weeks, and already has hundreds of reviews on Sephora alone, with a near-perfect star rating. Safe to say, this is gonna be another staple on the social media “For You Pages” of beauty fans the world over.

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Our editors independently select these products. Making a purchase through our links may earn Well+Good a commission.

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