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My skin and I have a love-hate relationship. On one hand, it's tough enough to handle the gamut of products I apply weekly, allowing my beauty obsession to continue. On the other, it's more parched and pore-filled than you can imagine, and I don't say that lightly. Sometimes it feels like applying serums, heavy-duty moisturizers, and oils pre-makeup is a requisite, unless the look I'm after is a dull, flaky base (spoiler alert: it's not). Needless to say, I'm always looking for a hydrating skincare product that makes me radiate, and while many have left me feeling defeated, I've recently discovered one that's earned quickly earned a spot in my regimen.
Enter Peach & Lily's Glass Skin Refining Serum ($39), a serum that not only hydrates and makes the skin glow, but as its name suggests, promotes a "glass-like" appearance. These before and after pictures are impressive, so it's no surprise a bottle sells every three minutes, it has over 1,000 5-star reviews, and has sold out 12 times. Intrigued? Me too. I tapped the founder of Peach & Lily, Alicia Yoon, to learn the ins and outs of glass skin as well as about the product behind its 25,000-person wait list.
Meet the Expert
Alicia Yoon is the founder of Korean beauty e-commerce site Peach & Lily.
Keep scrolling to read my full review on the glass serum.
Peach & Lily Glass Skin Refining Serum
Star Rating: 4.8/5
Best For: All skin types
Uses: Brightens, firms, calms, and hydrates the skin
Key ingredients: Peach extract, niacinamide, East Asian mountain yam, madecassoside, peptides, and hyaluronic acid.
Byrdie Clean?: Yes
About the Brand: Peach & Lily is a Korean beauty e-commerce brand dedicated to providing innovative, high-quality products.
About My Skin: Dull with dry patches
While my skin is tough and doesn't typically suffer from breakouts (unless it's 2020 and I'm having a serious case of 'maskne'), it's no stranger to dullness, dry patches, and pores galore. Even on makeup-less days, you likely won't find me without wearing a primer (shout out to Dr. Brandt's Pores No More Pore Refining Primer, $45—you're welcome). That said, I'm always looking for ways to treat my skin issues versus covering them up, and when I hear of a skincare product that tackles pores, makes the skin appear more luminous, and firms, I'm all ears.
The Feel: Barely-there and non-sticky
This serum had an extremely soft texture. It felt extremely lightweight, and as someone who loathes stickiness in beauty products generally, this is one of the few that doesn't feel tacky to the touch after absorbing. Still, I wondered what exactly "glass skin" was, why this product boasted such claims, and what this meant for my skin. According to Yoon, glass skin refers to skin so healthy it appears poreless, luminous, and translucent, much like a crystal-clear pane of glass. "When we launched this serum in 2018, 'glass skin' was not really a trend in the U.S., and I was nervous people might mistake it for a bad thing (e.g., skin that’s fragile and breakable like glass) instead of recognizing it as a healthy ideal," she explains. Now, the movement has taken off.
Ingredients: One-of-a-kind and holistic
This serum takes a holistic approach to skin for visible results. "Brightening ingredients are often used to help suppress overactive melanocytes. Many of our clients grew frustrated because they were using brightening ingredients, yet their dark spots were not fading," says Yoon, who says the most likely culprit is dehydration. "We created a smart formula that includes clinically-proven ingredients along with supporting ingredients so that skin can achieve those visible results. For example, we use different molecular weights of hyaluronic acid for foundational and deep hydration, 2% niacinamide to help improve dark spots and to help quell inflammation, peptides to help skin look much firmer, madecassoside to help soothe and calm, peach extract for the abundance of vitamins, minerals and fatty acids, and mountain yam extract for the antioxidants." This holistic formula, she says, approaches skincare in a multi-dimensional way to ensure results you can actually see.
The Results: Smooth
Initially, I noticed how beautiful the serum layered underneath makeup (thanks to its super lightweight feel) and made my cheek area, in particular, look airbrushed. This is the part of my face that has the most enlarged pores, so the fact that this serum contributed to a smooth, poreless finish was a huge game changer. It also made my skin appear dewy come morning, but not in a greasy way that made me feel like I wanted to immediately wash it off. After two weeks of consistent use, I noticed that my skin appeared more even, both in color and in texture, and that I was beginning to glow even when I didn't have the product on.
Though I don't mind scents in my skincare products, I quite enjoyed that this had zero scent—it was a nice change than my normal wave of citrus and floral that can be overpowering at times.
The Value: Appropriately priced
The serum contains 40ml of product, and because I only need one pump's worth of product to cover my whole face (plus an extra for my neck), I'd say it's priced appropriately for the high-quality ingredients you're getting. Yoon herself struggled with severe eczema growing up, which she learned to manage by attending esthetician school in Korea, and through the thoughtful application of K-beauty technology. And because the product doesn't contain pore-clogging ingredients and doesn't leave behind a sticky residue, it's suitable for all skin types—an anomaly in skincare.
Similar Products: You have options
Farsali Liquid Glass Radiance Serum: This serum is pricier and contains less product, but reviewers love it for its ability to work well with other skincare products, and in particular, mixed in with foundation.
Truly Glass Skin Facial Serum: The hero ingredients in this serum are willow extract, rose, and coconut oil. Blended together, they work to exfoliate the skin, promoting a clear, poreless, luminous finish.
Our Verdict: Stock up
If you love serums but hate the grease that so often accompanies it, this is the product for you. Not only does it absorb quickly, but it quenches thirsty skin, ups the glow-factor, and makes you look radiant and truly "glass-like." Before it sells out again, I recommend stocking up.