There are two things you can expect from K-Beauty brand Glow Recipe: a game-changing skincare product and cute packaging. Their latest is a hydrating hyaluronic acid serum nestled in a pretty pink, plum-shaped bottle. The new Plum Plump Hyaluronic Serum ($42) harnesses the antioxidant power of plums, hyaluronic acid, vitamin b5, and vegan collagen and silk protein. The results? Visibly plump and ultra-hydrated skin—in a word, healthy. I put it to the test, but first, let’s break down these ingredients.
First up—hyaluronic acid. The hydrating acid we all know (and love) that draws moisture into your skin and helps skin retain moisture is the key ingredient in this serum. But while hyaluronic acid is already hydrating on its own (and plump up the skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines), Glow Recipe's formulation has an even deeper level of hydration. What makes theirs a standout is the combination of different weights of hyaluronic acid for different levels of skin penetration—five, to be exact. In other words, this isn't your average hyaluronic acid serum.
Next up—plum is the true star of the serum because Glow Recipe knows your favorite fruits and veggies are good for more than a smoothie bowl (see their watermelon and avocado infused lines). If you thought only oranges were chock full of vitamin C, allow us to introduce you to Kakadu plums, which contain a higher count of vitamin C than your go-to citrus. Glow Recipe's formula is a blend of Kakadu and two other kinds of plum rich in antioxidants to help brighten and rejuvenate your skin. Other welcome additions to this serum include vitamin B5 to aid in the protection and repairing of your skin’s barrier, as well vegan collagen and silk protein—perfect if you’ve been exfoliating a little too much to deal with maskne or stress breakouts. The brand praises both elements as being "potent, plant-based powerhouse ingredients that strengthen the skin barrier by guarding against free radicals."
My first impression: the serum has a silky gel-like texture, thanks to the plant-based silk protein that glides on smoothly and absorbs quickly. A little goes a long way. I tested a dime-sized amount on the back of my usually dry hands (thanks, excessive hand washing and eczema), and they felt hydrated and soft, like I just applied hand cream. Following my usual skincare routine, I gently patted two pumps of the serum into my skin. The feel was comparable to post-sheet mask skin—you know, where your skin feels so dewy, smooth, and hydrated following a sheet mask you feel like you could skip a moisturizer. I, of course, followed up with a moisturizer but skipped the usual final step of my routine, which is adding squalane or another hydrating oil because it just didn’t feel like my skin needed it.
"For even deeper hydration, layer the serum twice. Follow up by applying Pineapple-C Bright Serum to achieve maximum potency. Next, blend vitamin C and hyaluronic acid together and—voilà!—supple, radiant skin," Glow Recipe recommends.
Within a couple of days of use, the results didn’t look drastic, but they felt that way. I don’t have very visible fine lines or dry patches since my combo skin isn’t as dry in the summer, but my skin usually absorbs any sort of hydrating product instantly, then will look dull and matte, or shiny and oily a few hours later. Instead, my skin looked and felt hydrated long after applying—a rarity. Seriously, I’ve gone through tons of moisturizers before landing on the one I use now and it’s still not as instantly hydrating as this. One thing I am looking forward to is working this into my winter skincare when my combination skin is extra dry—but for now, it’s quickly become a new favorite in my skincare routine.