You could definitely say that my face and vitamin C serum are best friends. I’ve tried almost every option, from the famed Skinceuticals CE Ferulic to the most effective drugstore versions. And honestly, I love them all. Dermatologists frequently recommend vitamin C because it noticeably brightens, evens texture, combats free radical damage from UV rays, and helps stimulate collagen. It’s a superstar of the skin care world.
My one issue with vitamin C is that the most powerful versions do their jobs with flair, but can also cause irritation in sensitive skin types. I usually stay away from my carefully guarded hoard of vitamin C serums during the winter, when the radiator—my face’s mortal enemy—greedily sucks the moisture out of me, leaving my face a parched, dried-up husk that’s more sensitized than usual.
By far the best workaround I’ve discovered? The new Beekman 1802 Golden Booster Amla Berry Vitamin C Brightening Serum, which is specifically developed to play nicely with sensitive skin. While most vitamin C serums feature a form of the ingredient called L-ascorbic acid, this one swaps it out for 2% amla berry extract: a plant-based source rich in vitamin C that’s also completely shelf stable and boasts additional benefits (vitamin B, phenols, and amino acids).
“Based on our research, 2% amla berry was the optimal amount recommended amount for sensitive skin types,” says Brent Ridge, M.D., physician and Beekman 1802 cofounder. “Most of our customers have very sensitive skin. So we researched and tested many ingredients until we found a potent alternative active, with all the clinical-proven benefits for vitamin C but without any downsides, like irritation or stability and storage issues.”
The result is a very cute and cheerful-looking bottle of the aptly named Golden Booster. Along with amla berry extract, the formula contains ashwagandha and holy basil to illuminate skin and help boost your natural barrier function (your face’s first line of defense in preventing moisture loss). While I was a little surprised at the small size at first, all became clear once I took it for a test run. As the name suggests, this is designed to work as a booster serum, which means you need no more than 1-2 drops max to enjoy the effects. Beekman 1802 recommends pairing it with the Bloom Cream Daily Probiotic Moisturizer by dropping it directly into the center of the dispenser and swirling the combination together.