The cult-followed skin- and haircare brand is available on Amazon.

By Marisa Spyker
August 28, 2020
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For beauty junkies, skincare tends to fall into the budget category of seriously splurge-worthy. We’ll spend half a paycheck on a few droplets of a supposed miracle-working essence, trusting that the spring waters from some exotic land will magically banish all of our imperfections. And it’s all in the name of healthy, glowing skin. Totally worth it, right?

It can be—until you discover that underground gem that’s been hiding deep in the arsenals of Amazon’s beauty section, quietly garnering thousands of five-star reviews from skincare experts and novices alike for its effectiveness and, yes, unbelievable affordability.

Courtesy of Amazon

I uncovered the cult-followed brand Pura D’or earlier this year while searching tirelessly for a Vitamin C serum that worked and wouldn’t break the bank. Their 20 percent Vitamin C elixir was my fourth attempt at an Amazon-purchased serum of a new-to-me brand, and it was also the cheapest (per fluid ounce) by far. Needless to say, I didn’t expect much for $15—especially when it arrived in a whopping four-once bottle. (For comparison, an ounce of my favorite Kiehl’s product costs $50.)

I soon happily learned, however, that quantity and quality are most certainly not inversely related, in this case. Pura D’or’s Vitamin C Serum is a mirror image of much pricier serums in many ways. Aside from Vitamin C, the ingredients list includes a cocktail of beauty powerhouses, including retinol, hyaluronic and ferulic acids, Vitamin E, and jojoba oil. For conscious consumers, it also checks a whole lot of boxes: It’s free from sulfates and parabens, not tested on animals, made from recyclable packaging, and manufactured in the USA.

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But let’s not just judge a book (or beauty product) by its cover. For me, Pura D’or’s product very much lives up to its promises. I love that it goes on smooth (not sticky, as other serums do), dries quickly, and leaves my skin feeling hydrated right off the bat. It also seems to accomplish what Vitamin C serums are supposed to, including evening skin tone and lessening the appearance of fine lines. (I swear it makes me look a little more alive after sleepless nights with a regressing six-month-old.) One Amazon reviewer even went so far as to say that her skin was “the best it’s ever been.”  

Want to see for yourself just how effective a $15 serum can be? Purchase your own bottle of Pura D’or Vitamin C Serum here, before it sells out.