How to Transform Dull Skin Into Glowing Instagram Skin

Updated 07/30/19
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Ever look in the mirror and think that your skin just looks blah? First, same. Second, you're probably dealing with dull skin, and luckily there is a way to perk it up. "Dull skin is a bit of an all-encompassing term for skin that doesn't look healthy," New York City–based dermatologist Dhaval Bhanusali, MD, FAAD, says. "Some reasons include a pile up of dead skin cells, debris from the day (like pollution), or even dehydration."

If it's one of the first two causing your dull skin, he recommends exfoliating products that contain salicylic or glycolic acid. If your skin is dehydrated (i.e. it feels tight), he recommends using hyaluronic acid–infused products. "Hyaluronic acid helps retain moisture better than any other ingredient," he says. Lastly, try incorporating products rich in vitamins C and E into your routine, she says. These can help brighten your skin, especially if your dullness issue is pigmentation-related.

Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Facial Moisturizer With Broad Spectrum SPF 30 $19
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Hydro Boost Water Gel
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel $24
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Superfood Air-Whip Hyaluronic Acid Moisture Cream 2 oz/ 60 mL
Youth to the People Superfood Air-Whip Hyaluronic Acid Moisture Cream $48
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A lightweight moisturizer that blends hyaluronic acid with the veggies you'd find in a green juice (kale and spinach) for a nutrient-rich hydration boost for your skin. 

FLASHMUD(TM) Brightening Treatment 3.5 oz/ 100 g
GlamGlow Flashmud Brightening Treatment $59
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This vitamin C– and salicylic acid–laced treatment leaves skin looking seriously glowing after just one use (and it happens to smell amazing). 

Renée Rouleau BHA Clarifying Serum $50
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A powerhouse trio of lactic, glycolic, and salicylic acid not only makes skin look brighter but also clears pores and improves its texture. 

Glycolic Acid Toner
Mario Badescu Glycolic Acid Toner $18
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Use this non-drying toner twice daily to reap the benefits of skin-brightening glycolic acid and grapefruit extract. 

Pro-Glycolic 10% pH Resurfacing Gel
Tula Pro-Glycolic 10% pH Resurfacing Gel $34
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Glycolic acid plus probiotics is the combo you didn't know your dull skin needed. They work together in harmony to slough away dead skin cells. This product gets bonus points for also including hyaluronic acid. 

C-Firma(TM) Day Serum 1 oz/ 30 mL
Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum $80
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Pūrlisse Green Tea + Vitamin C Brightening Sheet Mask $36
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I'd 100% recommend popping this sheet mask—which is saturated with vitamin C and green tea—in the fridge for a few minutes before applying. The cool temperature feels great as the potent serum goes to work.

Power Dose Vitamin C 0.55 oz
Dr. Brandt Skincare Power Dose Vitamin C $69
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Douse your skin in this serum, which is 20% vitamin C (aka super-potent stuff). It both brightens and helps with fine lines and wrinkles. 

Opening Image: Lolita Says So

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