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Laura Kennedy's Best Skincare Buys of 2021, So Far

Featuring the market's first true moisturiser and SPF in one!

The beauty editor shares her list of this year's most special skincare.

This year has been a strange one for beauty. Without the usual bustle of day-to-day life and social interaction, the products we use most have changed, and some of the best launches of this odd year have fallen under the radar a bit.

To give them the attention they deserve, here are my top launches of 2021 so far. Though there is still a lot of the year to go, skincare launches in the first four months have been uncommonly good.

1. HA Serum, €18, CeraVe – SHOP
Hyaluronic acid is a heroic hydrating ingredient, but luxury serums can cost over €200. CeraVe is a beloved affordable brand for a reason. Its new hydrating serum is by far one of the best skincare launches of this year, let alone affordable launches. It plumps and hydrates, plays well with other skincare, and just works, frankly.

2. Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment, from €15, Dr Jart+ – SHOP

This cult US range has been a viral TikTok sensation (yes, skincare Tik Tok is a thing and yes, I also feel old knowing that), and launched on our shores this year. The whole range is deliciously calming, but this magical colour corrector is the star. It neutralizes redness without looking conspicuous and doesn’t look or feel heavy on the skin.

3. Silymarin CF Serum, €160, Skinceuticals – SHOP
A potent antioxidant blend especially for aging skin that is prone to blemishes, this
serum has been invaluable in tackling maskne this year. It helps to reduce excess
sebum and neutralise pigmentation scarring after breakouts too.

4. Brightening Dark Circle Eye Cream, €50, REN – SHOP
I fell for this eye cream the moment I first used it based on the melting texture
alone, which is substantial but still sinks right into the skin. While eye creams can
never do very much for dark circles, this has done more than any I’ve ever used
before to brighten the area around and under my eyes. I’ll never be without it now.

5. Anthelios Age Correct SPF 50+, €28, La Roche Posay – SHOP 

This is the first true moisturiser and SPF in one (moisturisers with added SPF do not provide sufficient protection). This one has beauty editors in palpitations of excitement for good reason. It really protects the skin, and it actually feels like a moisturiser – something many SPFs promise, but none truly deliver on, till now.

6. T.L.C Sukari Babyfacial, €76, Drunk Elephant – SHOP
This cult US product finally made it to Ireland this year and has absolutely lived up to the hype. I much prefer it to gritty physical exfoliants. Just spread a thin layer over clean skin, wait twenty minutes, and witness the glow and baby softness.

7. Vinoperfect Dark Spot Correcting Glycolic Night Cream, €35 , Caudalie – SHOP
This non-irritating night cream resurfaces skin while you sleep and is proven to improve pigmentation and dark spots. It gently exfoliates too, keeping skin supple and in prime condition to receive your morning skincare. 

8. Intense Recovery Cream, €86, Murad – SHOP 

I first tried this after overdoing the retinol and finding myself with red, furious, peeling and sensitised skin. This thick, cooling, deeply moisturising cream manages to achieve an unctuous texture without congesting the skin. It’s perfect for firefighting or dry skin days.

9.  Silk Face Mask, €45, Slip – SHOP

Although not technically launched this year, this mask has spent more time on my face than any other product, and it is the best face mask I have used since they became an obligatory part of daily life. I class it as skincare since it’s the only one I have found which snugly covers the face, can be adjusted around both the nose and ears, won’t fog up glasses, and noticeably minimises friction and mask-induced breakouts.

Read More: Laura Kennedy's Best Makeup Buys of 2021, So Far