7 Skin Tightening Serums to Contour Your Face Without Makeup

We talk about wrinkles all the time. And we coverpigmentation almost as much. But saggy, loose skin often gets neglected (both literally and figuratively). And that’s because — until recently — there weren’t many skin-tightening serums available.

Like so many skin care trends these days, lifting products are swiftly making their way over from Asia. “For Korean women, the ideal face shape is heart with a pointy V-line chin and jaw area,” says Charlotte Cho, author of “The Little Book of Skin Care: Korean Beauty Secrets for Healthy, Glowing Skin.” This concept spawned legions of lifting serums, creams and masks. (Cho has some cool Korean imports on her site sokoglam.com.)

And it turns out there are plenty of American women who love the idea of skin tightening, as well. As we age, the skin around the jawline starts to sag and create jowls (think Bulldog face — not cute). Fortunately, there’s a serum for that — and we’ve rounded up seven of our favorite skin tightening formulas. Read on to learn more about them.

Plump-It-Up Serum

Plump-It-Up Serum Caudalie Resveratrol Lift Firming Serum, $82, is like a milky drink for your face. The skin tightening serum contains resveratrol (extracted from grapevines) for tightening and hyaluronic acid spheres for plumping and hydration. The key to its contouring effect is a special peptide blend that helps your skin create more collagen and elastin.

Ocean-Potion Serum

Ocean-Potion Serum The magic of La Mer is in the “miracle broth” — a marine extract that heals skin cells. La Mer The Lifting Contour Serum, $320, contains even more youth-ifying algae (brown and blue in case you’re curious) and peptides (also derived from the sea). Clinical tests showed a tighter jawline in only four weeks — which is seriously quick in the skin care world.

Contouring Serum

Contouring Serum The idea of a V-shaped face is huge in Asia, and Clarins believes in the trend so much they named their lifting serum after it. The Clarins Shaping Facial Lift Total V Contouring Serum, $80, contains guarana and ginger to tighten the skin and define the cheekbones. And they even created a special application technique — like a facial massage — to help sculpt the face.

Apple-A-Day Serum

Apple-A-Day Serum The secret ingredient in Clark’s Botanical Cellular Lifting Serum, $355, is Swiss apple stem cell, which protects cells from environmental aggressors like pollution. (It’s also the reason this serum is so pricey.) The lifting effect is thanks to an algae extract that binds to water and tightens skin.

Facelift Serum


Facelift Serum Tata Harper calls this a “facelift in a bottle,” and she’s not far off. After just five minutes, theTata Harper Boosted Contouring Serum, $185, starts to tingle and tighten skin. Two hours later, your face looks more toned. And after four weeks, jowls are reduced. While this creamy serum contains a laundry list of botanicals, it’s the brown algae extract that really does the contouring magic. (Notice a trend? Lots of algae on this list.)

Moisturizing Serum

Moisturizing Serum DHC Beauty Lift Essence, $49, feels light and silky, yet it’s incredibly hydrating. It contains a peptide complex to soften fine lines and oat kernel extract to lift sagging skin — plus a slew of moisturizing ingredients that make skin look instantly plumper.

Does-It-All Serum

Does-It-All SerumSure, The Organic Pharmacy Gene Expression Serum, $330, is a splurge, but this skin tightening serum addresses basically every skin concern — not just sagging. It contains a vegetable peptide to tighten loose skin by controlling the release of Progerin, a protein that accelerates aging (and probably sounds familiar if you saw the HBO documentary “Life According to Sam”). Hibiscus helps skin produce collagen, retinol fights wrinkles, aloe calms inflammation and grape stem cells protect skin from the sun. And there’s an overwhelming dossier of research to back it all up.


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