The Ordinary’s Hyaluronic Acid Serum Is the Key to Soft Skin

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.


The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5

Byrdie / Olivia Hancock

What We Like
  • Affordable

  • Hydrating ingredients

  • Absorbs fast

  • Leaves skin feeling soft and smooth

What We Don't Like
  • Slightly off-putting scent

  • Doesn’t deliver all-day hydration

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 is an affordable version of an incredibly buzzworthy skincare product. It delivers an instant boost of hydration to the skin upon application.


The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5

Byrdie / Olivia Hancock

We put The Ordinary's Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 Serum to the test after receiving a complimentary sample from the brand. Keep reading for our full product review.

Hyaluronic acid. It’s one of the most buzz-worthy ingredients in the skincare industry. In recent years, countless beauty brands have rolled out their own version of the acid, and others have even debuted products infused with it. What makes it so special? Well, it’s garnered so much praise for its ability to hydrate the skin, replenish cell moisture, reduce wrinkles, and speed up wound healing.

For someone who deals with chronically dry skin, it seems like hyaluronic acid would work like a dream. So, when I had the chance to test out The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5, I was able to see if my inkling was correct.

Ahead, find my honest thoughts on the brand’s hyaluronic acid serum, from its ingredient quality to the effect it had on my skin.

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5

Best for: All skin types

Uses: Hydrating the skin, replenishing cell moisture, reducing wrinkles, and speeding up wound healing

Active ingredients: Hyaluronic acid, vitamin B5

Byrdie Clean?: Yes

Price: $7

About the brand: The Ordinary is a skincare brand known for its affordable yet highly effective products and treatments.

About My Skin: Chronically dry 

As previously mentioned, I have perpetually dry skin (especially on my face). During the fall and winter months, I am always slathering on deeply hydrating serums and creams to keep my skin moisturized and plump. 

How to Apply: Super easy

I’ve been applying The Ordinary's Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 serum after thoroughly cleansing my face in the morning and evenings. The Ordinary recommends applying a few drops to the skin before creams. So, I did exactly that. 

If your skin is incredibly sensitive, the brand recommends patch testing the acid before applying it all over your skin.  

The Feel: A cool, lightweight gel 

The product has a slightly sticky gel texture. However, it still feels incredibly lightweight. It soaks effortlessly into the skin and doesn’t leave behind any stickiness on the surface of my skin.  

Immediately after applying it to my skin, my skin felt like it had taken a bath in the most hydrating serum.

Ingredients: A beautiful blend of hydrators 

So, there’s a little bit of science happening inside this jar. This product combines low, medium, and high molecular weight hyaluronic acid with an H.A. crosspolymer at a combined concentration of 2 percent to allow it to deeply hydrate your skin. In addition to hydration, hyaluronic acid is good to use on the skin because it is fast-absorbing and for the most part, safe to use on all skin types. Vitamin B5 exists in the product’s formulation to amp up the serum’s hydrating benefits. It is also worth noting that the acid is vegan, cruelty-free, and formulated without oil, alcohol, silicone, nuts, and gluten.

the ordinary hyaluronic acid 2% + B5
 Byrdie / Olivia Hancock

The Scent: Faint but lingering

The scent of the product is one thing that I didn’t enjoy about the product. While faint, the acid has a scent that lingers that I personally don’t care for. It's not foul-smelling, but not really pleasant, either.

Interactions & Sensitivity: None to worry about

As noted in our Byrdie guide on hyaluronic acid, there are no known substances that cause negative reactions with hyaluronic acid. 

The Results: Less dryness and increased softness

With this product, the results were more so felt than seen. Immediately after applying it to my skin, my skin felt like it had taken a bath in the most hydrating serum.

My skin’s softness and bounciness also felt enhanced. But because my skin is often dry, it drinks up products quickly. And for me, the serum didn’t provide me with intense hydration all day as I hoped. By the evening, my skin wasn’t desert-dry like usual but it definitely needed another application of the product. 

the ordinary hyaluronic acid 2% + B5
Byrdie / Olivia Hancock 

The Value: A budget-friendly pick 

The Ordinary is known for offering budget-friendly skincare products. The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 typically retails for around $7. For that price, you get 30 milliliters of the product. And since you only need to use a few drops of the product daily, it’ll last you a while. When surveying the other hyaluronic acid serums on the market, this one is definitely a steal as other versions come with a double or triple-digit price tag like Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Hyaluronic Serum which retails around $300. 

Similar Products: You have options

Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Hyaluronic Serum ($300): If you want to treat yourself to a luxury serum, go for Dr. Barbara Sturm's Hyaluronic Serum. While it comes with a price tag of $300, Byrdie has ranked it as one of the best of the best due to its standout skin benefits. It contains long- and short-chain hyaluronic molecules that deeply penetrate every layer of your skin. The luxurious formula delivers long-lasting moisture, plumps the skin, and reduces the appearance of irritation. 

ROSE Ingleton MD Skin Calming Booster ($70): If you are looking to hydrate and calm your skin, try the ROSE Ingleton MD Skin Calming Booser. The serum is infused with hyaluronic acid to moisturize your skin, but it also contains sea whip extract, allantoin, green tea extracts, and white tea extracts to soothe any skin irritation. This one has also landed itself on Byrdie’s top hyaluronic acid serums list.

Final Verdict

For those wanting to test out hyaluronic acid in their skincare routines, The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 is a great entry point to see how your skin responds. Despite my qualm with its smell, it does deliver an instant boost of hydration to the skin upon application.


  • Product Name Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5
  • Product Brand The Ordinary
  • UPC 769915190199
  • Price $7.00
  • Weight 1 oz.
  • Ingredients Aqua (Water), Sodium Hyaluronate, Pentylene Glycol, Propanediol, Sodium Hyaluronate Crosspolymer, Panthenol, Ahnfeltia Concinna Extract, Glycerin, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Citric Acid, Isoceteth-20, Ethoxydiglycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Hexylene Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol.

Related Stories