11 Best Brightening Serums (2022 ✅)

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Are you looking for the best brightening serum?

(TLDR: our top pick is Vichy Vitamin C Serum)

Our editors have combed through hundreds of brightening products and thousands of customer reviews to bring you the crème de la crème.

Whether you're struggling with age spots, dark spots, post-acne marks, or uneven skin tone, you're sure to find the perfect melanin inhibitor on our list!

RELATED ARTICLES:

What Is The Best Brightening Serum?

Here are our top picks:

Editor's Choice

Vichy Liftactiv Vitamin C Brightening Skin Corrector

5.0
$28.50 ($83.82 / Fl Oz)

Experience an exceptional vitamin C serum with the No.1 bestseller from Vichy featuring 15% pure vitamin C at an affordable price.

Best For: Dark Spots, Uneven Skin Tone
Ingredients: 15% Pure Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Hyaluronic Acid, Pycnogenol (Pine Bark)
Pros:
  • Pure Vitamin C (L-Ascorbic Acid)
  • Lightens Dark Spots
  • Evens Skin Tone
  • Good Reviews
  • Affordable
Cons:
  • Small Bottle Size (0.34 oz)
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12/05/2022 09:14 pm GMT
The Original Bestseller

Meladerm

5.0
$58.00
For best results, Meladerm is a potent skin brightening serum with natural ingredients and no hydroquinone.
Best For: Age Spots, Dark Spots, Melasma, Uneven Skin Tone
Ingredients: Bearberry (Beta Arbutin), Emblica Fruit, Kojic Acid, Lemon, Licorice Root, Niacinamide, Vitamin C Derivative, Mulberry, Alpha Arbutin, Azelaic Acid, Sepiwhite™, SymWhite® 377
Pros:
  • Natural Ingredients
  • No Hydroquinone
  • Brightens & Corrects
  • Bestseller for 20+ Years
  • 30-Day Money Back Guarantee
Cons:
  • Expensive
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Best Splurge

SkinMedica Lytera® 2.0 Pigment Correcting Serum

5.0
$160.00 $128.00 ($64.00 / Fl Oz)

Erase even the most stubborn hyperpigmentation with Lytera 2.0, clinically proven to fade dark spots and balance melanin levels.

Best For: Dark Spots, Hyperpigmentation
Ingredients: Tranexamic Acid, Phenylethyl Resorcinol, Niacinamide, Tetrapeptide-30, Marine Extract Blend, Phytic Acid
Pros:
  • Clinically Proven in 1 Medical Study
  • See Results In As Early As 2 Weeks
  • Treats Even Stubborn Discoloration
  • Pairs Well with In-Office Treatments
  • Great Reviews
Cons:
  • Expensive (but note it's 2 oz)
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12/05/2022 12:18 pm GMT
Best Budget Pick
Dear, Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin Drop
4.5
$23.00 ($19.49 / Fl Oz)

Brighten on a budget with the iconic Dear, Klairs vitamin drop featuring 5% pure vitamin C and soothing botanicals.

Best For: Dull Skin, Uneven Skin Tone
Ingredients: 5% Pure Vitamin C, Centella Asiatica, Fruit Extracts, Green Tea Extract, Amino Acids, Peptides, Hyaluronic Acid
Pros:
  • Over 2+ Million Sold Worldwide
  • Safe for Sensitive Skin
  • Brightens & Hydrates
  • Great Reviews
  • Very Affordable
Cons:
  • Contains Essential Oils
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12/05/2022 03:46 pm GMT
Best Drugstore Pick

La Roche-Posay Vitamin C Serum

4.5
$39.99 ($39.59 / Fl Oz)

Soothe your skin with thermal spring waters from La Roche-Posay while pure vitamin C brightens and salicylic acid clears congestion.

Best For: Anti-Aging, Discoloration
Ingredients: 10% Pure Vitamin C, Salicylic Acid, Neurosensine, Hyaluronic Acid, La Roche-Posay Thermal Spring Water
Pros:
  • Smoothes Wrinkles & Fine Lines
  • Brightens Complexion
  • Safe for Sensitive Skin
  • Outstanding Reviews
  • Affordable
Cons:
  • Contains Silicones
  • Contains Fragrance
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12/05/2022 04:15 pm GMT
Best Reviews

PCA Skin Vitamin B3 Brightening Serum

5.0
$120.00

Join the brightening club with this professional dark spot corrector from PCA Skin with niacinamide, antioxidants, and rave reviews!

Best For: Anti-Aging, Hyperpigmentation
Ingredients: 6% Niacinamide, Mulberry, Green Tea, Oligopeptide-51, Plankton
Pros:
  • Brightens Complexion
  • Fades Dark Spots & Reduces Redness
  • Reverses Signs of Aging
  • Improves Skin Barrier Function
  • Outstanding Reviews
Cons:
  • Expensive
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12/05/2022 07:59 pm GMT
Best Quality

Obagi Professional-C Serum 20%

5.0
$136.99

Give your skin the professional treatment it deserves with a powerful vitamin C serum that rivals SkinCeuticals.

*Data from Obagi survey in 2010

Best For: Anti-Aging, Hyperpigmentation
Ingredients: 20% Pure Vitamin C
Pros:
  • Preferred 2-to-1 to SkinCeuticals*
  • 5x Better Absorption Levels
  • Fades Age Spots & Wrinkles
  • Professional Quality
  • Outstanding Reviews
Cons:
  • Expensive
  • Contains Alcohol
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12/05/2022 07:50 pm GMT
Cult Favorite

Sunday Riley C.E.O. 15% Vitamin C Brightening Serum

4.5
$85.00 $59.50

Get glowing with this fan favorite from Sunday Riley featuring vitamin C and soybean for smooth & spotless skin.

Best For: Dark Spots, Uneven Skin Tone
Ingredients: 15% Vitamin C Derivative, Phytosterols (Soybean), Vitamin E, Glycolic Acid, Saccharide Isomerate
Pros:
  • Diminishes Dark Spots
  • Promotes A Healthy Glow
  • Reduces Redness & Shrinks Pores
  • Lightweight Gel Texture
  • Great Reviews
Cons:
  • Rare Reports of Empty Bottles
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12/05/2022 08:24 pm GMT
Best of K-Beauty

The Face Shop White Seed Brightening Serum

4.5
$30.00 ($17.75 / Fl Oz)

Erase signs of past pimples and acne scars with this Korean serum featuring acne-fighting niacinamide and botanicals.

Best For: Blemishes, Post-Acne Marks
Ingredients: 2% Niacinamide, 0.25% Squalane, White Willow Bark, White Daisy, White Lupine Seed
Pros:
  • Clears Up Blemishes
  • Refines Enlarged Pores
  • Brightens & Hydrates
  • Good Reviews
  • Affordable (note it's 1.7 oz)
Cons:
  • Rare Reports of a Broken Pump
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12/05/2022 08:29 pm GMT
Best of J-Beauty

Tatcha Violet-C Brightening Serum

4.5
$89.00

Reveal your radiance with a skincare ritual from Tatcha featuring two types of vitamin C and Japanese botanicals.

Ingredients: 20% Vitamin C Derivatives, Japanese Beautyberry, 10% Fruit AHAs, Japanese Angelica Root
Best For: Anti-Aging, Hyperpigmentation
Pros:
  • Clinically Proven to Improve Skin Tone
  • Diminishes Wrinkles & Fine Lines
  • Lightens Dark Spots
  • Outstanding Reviews
  • Fragrance-Free
Cons:
  • Expensive
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12/06/2022 12:07 am GMT
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