8 Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serums For Glowing Skin

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Vitamin C, whether for skin or overall health, is a vital nutrient we all need.

And while you can find it in foods like oranges and bell peppers, sometimes it’s easier (and more effective) to get your Vitamin C in serum form.

citrus fruit and Vitamin C serum in a blue background

A Vitamin C serum can brighten skin and dark spots, help with wrinkles and fine lines, and even out your skin tone.

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of Vitamin C serums on the market. But, not all of them are cruelty-free.

If you are vegan or are just against animal cruelty in general, you’ll want to ensure that the serum you’re using is cruelty-free.

Luckily, there are quite a few cruelty-free Vitamin C serums on the market. We’ll be sharing eight of our favorites with you today.

What Is Vitamin C Serum?

Vitamin C serum is one of the most popular products in today’s skincare.

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that can help brighten skin, improve wrinkles and fine lines, and even out your skin tone.

When applied topically, Vitamin C can also help to protect your skin from environmental damage like pollution and UV rays.

Additionally, Vitamin C is known to boost collagen production. Collagen is a protein that helps to keep skin looking plump and youthful.

So, not only can Vitamin C help improve the appearance of your skin, but it can also help to keep it healthy in the long run.

If you want to get the most out of your Vitamin C serum, apply it to clean skin and follow up with a moisturizer.

Benefits of Using A Vitamin C Serum

There are other benefits of using a cruelty-free Vitamin C serum besides the ones mentioned above.

Below are a few more benefits of using Vitamin C serum on your skin:

Compatible with most skin types

Whether you have dry skin, oily skin, or combination skin, chances are you can use a Vitamin C serum.

Vitamin C only has minor side effects like redness and irritation, which usually go away after a few minutes.

If you have sensitive skin, we recommend doing a patch test on your arm before applying it to your face.

You can also ask your dermatologist if you’re unsure whether a Vitamin C serum is suitable for your skin type.


Another benefit of a Vitamin C serum is that it’s non-comedogenic and won’t clog your pores.

This is important because if you have acne-prone skin, you want to ensure you’re using products that won’t worsen your breakouts.

In fact, Vitamin C helps to reduce acne-scarring and can even help to prevent breakouts from happening in the first place.

By unclogging pores and keeping your skin clear, you can say goodbye to acne for good.

portrait of young beautiful woman applying Vitamin C serum on her face

Hydrates the skin

People with healthy and dry skin can benefit from a Vitamin C serum.

When you have dry skin, it means your skin isn’t retaining enough moisture. This can lead to flakiness, redness, and even itchiness.

Vitamin C is a humectant, meaning it draws moisture from the air and into the skin. Therefore, it can help to hydrate your skin and keep it looking plump and healthy.

If you have dry skin, we recommend using a cruelty-free Vitamin C serum that contains hyaluronic acid.

Hyaluronic acid is another ingredient that helps to keep skin hydrated by drawing moisture from the air and into the skin.

When used together, Vitamin C and hyaluronic acid work wonder for dry skin.

Soothes inflammation

You know that even the gentlest products can sometimes cause redness and irritation if you have sensitive skin.

Since Vitamin C is an anti-inflammatory, it can help to soothe any inflammation or irritation caused by harsh skincare products.

Remember not to use a Vitamin C serum if your skin is already red and irritated. If you do, it might make the irritation worse.

8 Cruelty-Free and Vegan Vitamin C Serum That Fight Signs of Aging

We assure you that these cruelty-free and vegan Vitamin C serums can give you the same or even better results as their non-vegan counterparts.

Plus, you’ll sleep better at night knowing that no animals were harmed in making your skincare products.

Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum with Vitamin E

We love the Ferulic acid in this cruelty-free and vegan Vitamin C serum because it gives an extra boost of antioxidants.

Primary benefits: Prevents and repairs damage from free radicals, brightens skin, and diminishes fine lines and wrinkles


  • With Vitamin E
  • Grapefruit scent
  • Ideal for acne and sensitive skin

Mad Hippie’s Vitamin C Serum is formulated with sodium ascorbyl phosphate, a form of Vitamin C that’s more stable and less likely to irritate other forms of Vitamin C.

Plus, it contains Vitamin E and ferulic acid, which are both antioxidants that help to protect the skin from free radical damage.

Free radicals are unstable molecules that can damage cells, leading to inflammation and premature aging.

So, using a Vitamin C serum containing ferulic acid can help prevent free radical damage and keep your skin looking young and healthy.

What’s great about it is that this serum also contains hyaluronic acid—which adds an extra boost of hydration to the skin.

Volition Beauty Strawberry-C Brightening Serum

We love how hydrating and nourishing the strawberry extract is in this berry-wonderful face serum.

Primary benefits: Soothes inflamed and irritated skin, brightens skin tone, and reduces excess oil


  • With Kakadu Plum
  • Brightening
  • Ideal for all skin types

Who doesn’t love strawberries? They’re not only delicious, but they’re also great for your skin.

Strawberries are rich in Vitamin C, so we love Volition Beauty’s Strawberry-C Brightening Serum.

Strawberry fruit and seed extract give you a dose of Vitamin C while also brightening and improving your skin tone.

Volition’s Beauty Strawberry-C Brightening Serum also has salicylic acid, azelaic acid, and mandelic acid, all ingredients that help fight acne.

Not only will this serum help to brighten your skin, but it will also help to clear up any breakouts you might have.

Drunk Elephant C-Firma

We love the potent blend of Vitamin C and fruit enzymes in this serum that work together to brighten and exfoliate the skin.

Primary benefits: Improves skin elasticity, provides intense hydration, and unclogs pores


  • With Vitamin E and ferulic acid
  • Woody scent

Drunk Elephant is popularly known for their innovative and effective skincare products, and its C-Firma serum is no exception.

This cruelty-free Vitamin C serum contains L-ascorbic acid, the most active form of Vitamin C.

It also contains ferulic acid and C-Firma™, which help brighten the skin and fight signs of aging and hyperpigmentation.

Plus, it has a woody, herbal scent that will leave you feeling refreshed and invigorated.

And be sure to follow up with sunscreen in the morning, as L-ascorbic acid can make your skin more sensitive to the sun.

artnaturals Anti-Aging Vitamin C Serum

We love how this serum has botanical ingredients that help to soothe and nourish the skin.

Primary benefits: Diminishes fine lines and wrinkles, improves skin's elasticity, and moisturizes dry skin


  • Gentle and pure formula
  • Fast absorbing
  • Nourishing

If your goal is to diminish fine lines and wrinkles, artnaturals ‘ Anti-Aging Vitamin C Serum is a great option.

This vegan and cruelty-free serum packs a powerful punch with its high concentration of Vitamin C and mix of botanical extracts.

Your skin will love the dandelion and wild geranium extract that works to fight acne, while gotu and kola minimize crow’s feet, fine lines, and wrinkles.

The ingredients include all of the stuff you’d expect in a Vitamin C product, and according to the brand, it also has hyaluronic acid, which is known to plump and hydrate skin.

And, the best part is that this serum is suitable for all skin types. So, whether you have dry or oily skin, you can use it without worry.

Fleur & Bee Nectar of the C Vitamin C Serum

We love how this cruelty-free serum is made with all-natural ingredients that are gentle on the skin.

Primary benefits: Tightens pores, boosts collagen production, and fights free radicals


  • 10% Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate 
  • Leaping Bunny certified
  • Lightweight

This Vitamin C brightening serum is Leaping Bunny certified and cruelty-free, so you can rest assured that no animals were harmed in its making.

It’s also made with all-natural and organic ingredients, so it’s gentle on the skin.

The key ingredient is Vitamin C, which helps to brighten the skin and fight signs of aging.

But, this serum also contains other skin-loving ingredients like Aloe Vera, a natural anti-inflammatory that can help soothe the skin.

Plus, it has squalane and jojoba oil that help to lock in moisture, so your skin stays hydrated all day.

Fleur & Bee’s Nectar of the C Vitamin C Serum is also free of synthetic fragrances, parabens, sulfates, and phthalates.

Herbivore NOVA 15% Vitamin C + Turmeric Brightening Serum

We love the Turmeric root extract and arbutin in this serum that fights dark spots and brightens the skin.

Primary benefits: Improves hyperpigmentation, provides antioxidant protection, and reduces  inflammation


  • With Turmeric
  • Gel formula

Turmeric is a popular ingredient in skincare because it has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

In addition, turmeric can help to brighten the skin and give it a healthy glow.

Herbivore’s NOVA 15% Vitamin C + Turmeric Brightening Serum is cruelty-free and vegan, containing both Vitamin C and turmeric root extract.

This potent face serum also has arbutin, a natural skin-lightening ingredient that evens skin tone.

We recommend this for those with dull skin that needs a brightening boost!

Pacifica Sea & C Sheer Face Serum SPF 55

We love that there is also sunscreen included in this cruelty-free serum!

Primary benefits: Provides broad-spectrum SPF 55 sun protection and improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles


  • Concentrated formula
  • Sheer finish
  • Can work as a sunscreen

This is one of the best affordable Vitamin C serums that work just as expensive ones do.

The cruelty-free and vegan formula contains SPF 55, which provides broad-spectrum sun protection.

It’s also formulated with pure Vitamin C and Ashwagandha—a powerful adaptogen that helps to reduce stress and inflammation.

Plus, it has a sheer finish that makes it perfect for wearing under makeup.

Its light citrus scent is not too overwhelming, and it’s ideal for those with sensitive skin.

Pacifica is also Leaping Bunny certified, meaning that no animals were harmed in making this product.

Youth To The People 15% Vitamin C + Clean Caffeine Energy Serum

We love how this cruelty-free serum contains both Vitamin C and caffeine!

Primary benefits: Reduces puffiness, increases collagen production, and evens out skin tone


  • Clinical grade
  • Contains caffeine

Youth To The People’s 15% Vitamin C + Clean Caffeine Energy Serum is a cruelty-free and vegan serum that is clinical-grade and super potent.

This non-toxic Vitamin C serum has dragon fruit extracts and a cocktail of potent antioxidants that help to brighten and protect the skin.

The addition of caffeine helps to reduce redness and inflammation while also giving your skin a temporary lift.

This is the perfect serum for those with tired skin needing a pick-me-up!

Frequently Asked Questions

You might have some questions if you’re new to using Vitamin C serums. Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered!

How Often Should I Use A Vitamin C Serum?

Skincare experts recommend using a Vitamin C serum every day, both in the morning and at night.

If you have sensitive skin, you might want to start using it every other day and then work up to using it daily.

When using in the morning, follow up with sunscreen, as Vitamin C can make your skin more sensitive to the sun.

pipette of Vitamin C serum with lemon slices and green leaves

Do I Need To Use A Moisturizer after Applying Vitamin C Serum?

Yes, following up with a moisturizer after using Vitamin C serum is essential.

Vitamin C is a powerful ingredient that can sometimes cause dryness, so it’s essential to lock in moisture with a good-quality moisturizer.

Ingredients that work well with Vitamin C include hyaluronic acid, aloe vera, and glycerin.

Vitamin C Is A Powerful Skincare Ingredient

With so many benefits and minimal side effects, it’s no wonder that Vitamin C is such a popular skincare ingredient.

If you’re looking for a cruelty-free and vegan option, any of the serums on our list would be a great choice!

Hopefully, this article has helped you narrow your options and find the perfect cruelty-free Vitamin C serum for your needs!

Read more about Vitamin C here:


  • Stephanie Martin

    Stephanie Martin blends her beauty industry background with expertise in communications to lead in the fashion and beauty world. As a fashion and beauty editor, she is known for engaging and informative articles. Her lifelong passion for fashion, makeup, and hair shines through her work, earning her widespread respect among readers and clients. Stephanie's style, a mix of classic and contemporary, makes her a dynamic and influential figure in the industry, inspiring others with her knowledgeable and approachable insights.

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