Photo by Jacqueline Kilikita.
Aldi's beauty offering is not to be sniffed at. There's the Bonded haircare range (some products rival Olaplex), not to mention the Bobbi Brown and IT Cosmetics dupes, which TikTokers say are difficult to distinguish from the real deal. If you're an R29 regular, though, you'll know that we're often most impressed by the supermarket's skincare.
Not long ago, I tried (and adored) the brand's £4.99 Lacura vitamin C serum. The smoothing, brightening results blew me away — so much so, I used it right down to the last drop. Prone to hyperpigmentation and dullness, I certainly reaped the radiance-boosting benefits. Then came the £3.49 Lacura salicylic acid facial toner, which contributed to keeping my pesky breakouts under control.
Fast forward to September, however, and Aldi has lifted the lid on yet another Lacura skincare collection. It's safe so say that the brand is leaning into its strengths, once again focusing on vitamin C. It makes total sense. Lookfantastic recently reported that the skincare ingredient is one of the most searched for and sought after of 2022 so far, while on TikTok the hashtag #VitaminC has amassed an enormous 2.2 billion views. An antioxidant, it shields skin against the environment (we're talking damaging UV rays and pollution), but it also kickstarts collagen production, keeping skin plump and supple.
Aldi has served up a full skincare routine featuring a cleanser, serum, moisturiser and an eye cream. Some have pointed out the similarities between Aldi's vitamin C range and Ole Henriksen's Truth collection. At a quick glance, the only noticeable difference is the price. Aldi's Lacura Vitamin C Brightening Daily Cleanser is a humble £3.99, as is the Lacura Vitamin C Brightening Eye Cream, while the Lacura Vitamin C Brightening Gel Cream and Lacura Vitamin C Brightening Serum come in at a purse-friendly £4.99 each.
Intrigued, I got my hands on the cleanser, which combines vitamin C and PHA, also known as polyhydroxy acids. PHAs are very gentle chemical exfoliators, like glycolic acid and lactic acid. The difference is that they're a lot less harsh, and so are much better to those with sensitive or easily aggravated skin. I expected this to be a cream-based cleanser with no foam, and while it felt luxuriously pillowy and soft against my skin, it also lathered up a treat on contact with water. This took me by surprise and I realised I had been a little overzealous with the application. A pea-sized squeeze is all that was needed to slice through my heavy foundation, mascara and matte lipstick in one go. In fact, it's so effective, I didn't need to go in with a second cleanse, which I usually do at the end of the day.
Though there are suds, this cleanser is incredibly gentle, so I've been using it in the morning, too. The sherbet-like scent wakes me up without being too overpowering and I love the soft, luxe texture. My face often feels like it might crack post-cleanse after using foaming cleansers, but this doesn't strip, nor does it tingle like lots of vitamin C and acid-based face washes. I got off to a good start with this product. It has actually replaced my Trinny London Better Off AHA/PHA Cleanser (which is seven times the price at £28). I can't fault it.
Next up, the vitamin C serum. This combines 15% vitamin C with PHAs and hydrating hyaluronic acid. I have sensitive skin, and often, high strength vitamin C makes my face sting. Somehow, this doesn't at all. Since using it every morning for the past week, the skin staining left behind by breakouts has minimised greatly and my skin appears slightly more even in tone.
I do have one big gripe, though: the bottle. Vitamin C is notoriously unstable, and when exposed to air, it becomes less effective. Unlike lots of other vitamin C serums, the screw top and pump lid isn't air tight, so I do wonder how long this will stay powerful for. When vitamin C oxidises, it turns a dubious shade of copper, but as this product has a slight orange colour to it anyway, it'd be difficult to tell that air had reached the inside. That said, it's a relatively small bottle at 30ml, and when used diligently as part of a daily routine, it's likely you'll get through it quite quickly. If you are giving it a go, just be sure to tighten the lid. If not, I'd recommend The INKEY List's 15% Vitamin C + EGF Serum, £14.99, or Murad's Vita-C Glycolic Brightening Serum, £74, which come in airtight bottles.
Here's where I'd usually apply my sunscreen, but Aldi's vitamin C range also features a Brightening Gel Cream. If you have oily or acne-prone skin like me, you'll appreciate the lightweight gel texture, which absorbs quickly without any tackiness whatsoever. It makes my skin feel satisfyingly smooth every time (that'll be added moisturising ingredients squalane and glycerin) and as a result, is an excellent makeup primer. If you're after an affordable daytime moisturiser to wear indoors, this is a great shout. But on top of serum and followed by sunscreen (the latter of which I always apply when headed outside) it's not particularly necessary — unless your skin is very dry and you're in need of an extra moisture boost. This moisturiser is lovely, but in all honesty, I could take it or leave it.
Last but not least, the brightening eye cream. Skin experts suggest that regularly using an eye cream with vitamin C can regulate pigmentation and act as a brightening agent for dark circles — to a limited degree. Unfortunately, I haven't noticed any long-lasting difference since using this product. The inclusion of vitamin C is quite low down on the list of ingredients, meaning there isn't as much in the product. That said, the colour-correcting pigments did work to slightly blur the blue-ish tinge under my eyes, though only temporarily. I was most impressed by its ability to smooth out my fine lines (again temporary) and I think that's down to the high inclusion of dimethicone, a silicone which forms a film on the skin.
One thing I would say is that you don't have to use all of these products at once. The first time I gave everything a go together, I realised that the eye cream step was too far. On top of the serum and moisturiser, the product started to pill and roll off, so I ended up having to pick bits of skincare out of my brows and lashes! Like dermatologists, I believe that you don't need to use eye cream if you take your moisturiser up to the eye area. Just make sure it is ocular tested (safe for use around the eyes). It should say so on the label or in the product description online.
When it comes to vitamin C, choosing a product like the serum and combining it with SPF is what most skincare experts would recommend in the morning if you're serious about skin protection. Though the cleanser is a top pick, leave-on vitamin C products are arguably more effective at fighting the environmental damage you'll encounter throughout the day. Vitamin C can be used at night, but it's much better suited to daytime use for the above reason. In the evening, you might like to use something like retinol to boost the collagen which vitamin C creates in the AM.
At just under £5, you can't really go wrong with this range. It's available in Aldi stores right now until stocks last — and you know it'll be a sell-out.
Refinery29's selection is purely editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items we love! As part of our business model we do work with affiliates; if you directly purchase something from a link on this article, we may earn a small amount of commission. Transparency is important to us at Refinery29, if you have any questionsplease reach out to us.
At 86 per cent cheaper than leading brands such as Glossier, Lacura's Super Booster range of serums are designed to deliver key ingredients to your skin. This Vitamin C serum aids the skin's natural regeneration process and brighten complexions and is comparable to Glossier's Super Glow serum.
As well as the significant anti-ageing benefits, the serum also works wonders on skin texture, with one reviewer saying: “I use this serum every day under moisturiser. It's a boost for my dry sensitive skin. “It really helps and seems to improve my skin texture”.
ALDI'S own beauty brand, Lacura, is expanding its skincare range to launch a new premium beauty line this month.
Four of our dermatologists recommend SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic, which they (and our editors) hail as the gold-standard vitamin-C serum and is suitable for all skin types.
The SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic Serum blows the competition out of the water with its triple-threat combination of Vitamin E, Vitamin C, and ferulic acid. As loved as it is by dermatologists and beauty editors alike, we know it's pricey.
If wrinkles are your biggest concern, SkinCeuticals is the serum you need. Formulated with niacinamide, this formulation was the best at reducing the look of lines and wrinkles in the GH Beauty Lab's test — lessening their appearance by 5% over just four weeks.
Works well to clear lines on my face and my skin looks much brighter." "Simply the best cream. This amazing pot of cream (along with the night cream, night mask and eye cream- when Aldi stock it) has reversed my lines by five years," a fourth claimed. "The difference I can see is just miraculous!
Lacura Multi-Peptide Moisturiser (£6.99, 50ml)
Formulated with a powerful complex of seven peptides, proteins and nutrients and enriched with Waterlily Extract, the gel-cream is designed to help improve skin tone, texture, firmness and elasticity.
This cream is making my skin super soft and smooth and I love the smell, the feel and texture of it. The night cream absorbs right into the skin. After just one week my skin feels definitely firmer.
Use it after cleansing, toning, exfoliating but before moisturising. Also, if the product you are using has a high concentration of Vitamin C, using it once at night should be enough, while a product with a lower concentration can be used twice a day.
Use Vitamin C face wash which is mostly designed to target hyperpigmentation, much Brighter Skin lightens dark spots caused by acne, post-inflammatory pigmentation, ('pimple scars'), UV damage, or hormonal changes.
Vitamin C is a powerful free-radical fighter that provides your skin with an array of benefits, as well as your overall health. Adding a vitamin C face wash to your skincare routine can nourish your aging skin, repair skin damage, remove impurities, reduce hyperpigmentation, and prevent imperfections.
While vitamin C is most notable for helping to brighten and improve hyperpigmentation, retinol is typically considered best-in-class for wrinkles and fine lines. And if you really want to give your skin a one-two punch to get noticeably healthier, you can certainly try incorporating both into your routine.
In addition, vitamin C slows the rate of free radical damage to collagen, preventing dry skin, fine lines, and wrinkles, while vitamin E prevents premature aging and damage to DNA.
Hyaluronic acid works to leave the skin looking plump and keeps it hydrated and moisturized over time, while vitamin C specifically works to protect the skin from sun damage and fades discoloration in the skin due to acne.
AHAs and BHAs, such as glycolic, salicylic, and lactic acids should never be used with Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an acid, too, and is unstable, so the pH balance will be thrown off by layering these ingredients together and might as well be useless.
Absorption of a vitamin C is largely contingent on its pH level. If you have normal skin, look for one with a low pH of approximately 3.5 for optimal absorption. If you have sensitive skin, you should use a formula with a pH of 5 to 6. "This is the skin's natural pH and will not be as irritating," says Wexler.
"When I used it, I didn't find that it made my skin dry feel dry or strict." Shirazi adds Kardashian's Vitamin C8 Serum ($90) could be worth the money for those who have sensitive skin.
- Best Overall: SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic (1 fl. ...
- Best Value: The INKEY List Retinol Anti-Aging Serum. ...
- Best Drugstore: No7 Protect & Perfect Intense Advanced Serum. ...
- Best Splurge: LA MER The Revitalizing Hydrating Serum. ...
- Best Exfoliating: Sunday Riley Good Genes All-In-One AHA Lactic Acid Treatment.
- EltaMD Skin Recovery Face Serum. ...
- SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic Combination Antioxidant Treatment. ...
- Sunday Riley Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Acid Treatment. ...
- The INKEY List Retinol Anti-Aging Serum. ...
- Biossance Squalane + Copper Peptide Rapid Plumping Serum.
- L'Oreal Revitalift Derm Intensives Night Serum. ...
- The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2% Exfoliating Serum. ...
- Pixi Skintreats Glow Tonic Serum. ...
- Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Hyaluronic Acid Serum. ...
- Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Serum Max. ...
- La Roche-Posay Retinol Face Serum. ...
- RoC Multi Correxion Hyaluronic Acid Night Serum Capsules.
Vitamin C can also help fend off the signs of aging because of its vital role in the body's natural collagen synthesis. It helps to heal damaged skin and, in some cases, reduces the appearance of wrinkles. Adequate vitamin C intake can also help repair and prevent dry skin.
Peptides, growth factors, vitamin C, and hyaluronic acid are the ingredients experts say comprise the best wrinkle creams along with retinol. “[Formulas featuring] ingredients like retinol, growth factors, and peptides are going to take time to see improvement,” Marino says.
Use a cream formulated with retinol two or three times a week. Why it works: Vitamin A derivatives (such as retinol) are a great ally in the fight against wrinkles, age spots and acne. Retinol accelerates cellular renewal to exfoliate and reveal healthier, youthful-looking skin.
- Protect your skin from the sun every day. ...
- Apply self-tanner rather than get a tan. ...
- If you smoke, stop. ...
- Avoid repetitive facial expressions. ...
- Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet. ...
- Drink less alcohol. ...
- Exercise most days of the week. ...
- Cleanse your skin gently.
- The Ordinary Argireline Solution 10%
- True Botanicals Chebula Active Immunity Serum.
- Peach & Lily Glass Skin Refining Serum.
- PCA Skin Rejuvenating Serum.
- CeraVe Skin Renewing Retinol Serum.
- Drunk Elephant Protini Powerpeptide Resurf Serum.
- CeraVe Skin Renewing Vitamin C Serum.
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid).
Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant, which means it protects the skin from free radicals — unstable oxygen molecules that break down skin cells and cause wrinkles. Vitamin C may help protect skin from sun damage and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
Because it packs a potent punch with retinol and peptides, Drunk Elephant's A-Passioni Retinol Cream tops our list of wrinkle creams. If you're looking for a less pricey product, we recommend RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream for its resurfacing results.
For example, caviar has antioxidant properties that protect and nourish the skin, and it also contains omega-3 and 6 fatty acids, which moisturize and improve skin texture. Caviar is a highly effective moisturizing agent, in fact, and is primarily used to hydrate the skin and make it more soft and supple.
Lacura Luxe = Marc Jacobs Decadence
So many people have been looking for a Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin dupe so I know this will be good news to them!
So, we were pretty intrigued when Aldi announced that its newest cream was inspired by Elizabeth Arden's Eight Hour Cream. Launched as part of Aldi's popular Lacura range, the new Lacura Miracle Cream claims to “protect, moisture and soothe normal, dry and irritated skin”.
RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream
Houshmand recommends RoC's Deep Wrinkle Night Cream, which is one of the highest-strength retinol you can get over the counter, meaning you may see its resurfacing effects sooner than with other products.
The sensual scent of Lacura Lady Pour Femme boasts dark notes of sandalwood and tonka bean that complement undertones of orange blossom and Bulgarian rose.
If you compare with the Nivea Q10 face cream, it has more SPF (20 v 145) and is vegan as well (everything Aldi Lacura is). Both of the jars at 50ml, but the Nivea skin cream looks smaller (it's in a fatter pot).
"If you're looking for an alternative to vitamin C, niacinamide is a great choice," says Dr. Charles. "It is oftentimes more gentle than vitamin C and is very well tolerated." On top of being a potent, gentle brightener, niacinamide also has antioxidant qualities and increases collagen production.
One shopper shared their finds with the caption: "New Aldi Dupes:- Guardian = Thierry Mugler Angel.
Best vitamin C serum overall: DR. DENNIS GROSS C+ Collagen Brighten & Firm Vitamin C Serum, £79, Space NK. Best vitamin C serum for sensitive skin: La Roche-Posay Pure Vitamin C 10 Serum 30ml, £28.50, Boots. Best vitamin C serum for oily skin: SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF Antioxidant Serum, £145, LookFantastic.
- THE MAN COMPANY 40% Vitamin C Face serum with Hyaluroni... 30 ml. ₹364.
- Dr. Alies Professional Vitamin C Face Serum - Anti-Agin... 30 ml. ₹208. ₹549.
- UrbanMooch 20% Vitamin C Serum With Hyaluronic Acid - A... 30 ml. 3.8. ₹179. ₹400.
- Vedlekha Vitamin C 20 % Face Serum- For Skin Whitening ... 30 ml. 3.8. ₹179. ₹450.
Shoppers can buy the woody Lacura Luxe,sweet Lacura Guardian and botanical Lacura Floral Love Eau de Parfum. And best of all, many have called out similarities to the likes of Marc Jacobs, Thierry Mulger and Viktor & Rolf - saving you 95% on these premium scents.
First up I bought the Lacura Pineapple Face Serum which is a dupe for the Glow Recipe Pineapple-C Bright serum.
You may choose to begin applying it every other day, and if tolerated you may apply it daily. It may take up to three months of consistent use to see a noticeable improvement. If you experience substantial discomfort or irritation, please stop using vitamin C and consult with your physician.
Neutrogena. The brand: You don't need to spend tons of money for effective products that derms love; Neutrogena is touted as the number one dermatologist-recommend skincare product and you can find it at the drugstore.