Hada Labo vs La Roche-Posay | Which Serum Is Better?

written by: Tom Qiao
last update: February 21, 2024

As a skincare editor who tests countless serums, I often receive questions asking how Japanese skin-saver Hada Labo compares to French pharmacy leader La Roche-Posay. While both companies formulate hydrating […]

As a skincare editor who tests countless serums, I often receive questions asking how Japanese skin-saver Hada Labo compares to French pharmacy leader La Roche-Posay. While both companies formulate hydrating serums powered by proven ingredients, they take different approaches. Here’s my take on how these popular serums measure up.

Star Ingredients

The star ingredient in Hada Labo’s Premium Hyaluronic Acid Lotion is—you guessed it—multiple molecular sizes of hydration magnet hyaluronic acid to quench thirsty complexions. Meanwhile, La Roche-Posay’s Hyalu B5 Pure Hyaluronic Acid Serum contains lightweight hyaluronic acid paired with vitamin B5 to attract and seal in moisture.

Texture and Feel

Out of the two, Hada Labo’s serum has a slightly thicker, viscous gel texture I liken to a hybrid of a serum and moisturizer. It feels comforting and cushiony. By contrast, the watery fluid serum from La Roche-Posay has an ultra-featherlight consistency that seems to vanish into skin, leaving no residue behind.

Hydration Effects

When it comes to boosting moisture levels, both serums deliver in my experience. The Hada Labo option provides soothing hydration you can feel right away, perfect to mix with creams. Over time, the La Roche-Posay subtly plumps the look of fine lines too by drawing moisture into the skin and holding it there.

Skin Type Suitability

The rich gel serum from Hada Labo better flatters and nourishes drier skin types needing an extra moisture surge. For oilier or breakout-prone complexions, the lighter serum from La Roche-Posay makes a wise choice since it won’t feel heavy or pore-clogging. Both brands suit sensitive skin.

Reviews

Devoted fans call the Hada Labo serum a “holy grail hydrator” that makes skin look dewy and supple even in dry climates almost instantly. Meanwhile, La Roche-Posay receive praise from customers with sensitive skin for hydrating without irritation, redness or greasiness—a common issue with many serums.

Budget-Friendly Pricing

At only $18 for a generous 5 oz bottle, Hada Labo’s effective HA serum comes at a steal of a price for the quality. And while the La Roche-Posay serum costs more at $30 for 1 oz, a little goes a long way. Ultimately both provide impressive hydration at an affordable price point compared to spa or dermatologist brands.

If your skin’s moisture barrier needs reinforcement, you can’t go awry with either hydrating serum. I’d opt for the rich Hada Labo HA serum to intensely nourish drier complexions with the look and feel of a moisture drink. For lightweight hydration suitable for acne-prone skin, grab La Roche-Posay to subtly smooth and perfect skin texture over time. Both are wallet-friendly winners!

Article written by Tom Qiao

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