best japanese vitamin c serums

10 Best Japanese Vitamin C Serums 2024

13 de June, 2024Shopify API

Here are the best Japanese vitamin C serums for beautiful skin. Check it out!

Illuminate your skincare routine with the best Japanese Vitamin C serums, meticulously formulated for radiant, youthful skin. 

Our selection highlights serums that blend cutting-edge technology with potent antioxidants, providing a defense against aging and environmental damage. 

Discover the secret to a luminous complexion with Japan's finest skincare innovations.

Which is the best Japanese Vitamin C serum?

We tried and tested several Japanese vitamin C serum formulations and found that Rohto Melano CC Intensive Anti-Spot Essence is the best Japanese vitamin C serum. Here’s why: 

Firstly, Rohto Melano CC Intensive Anti-Spot Essence boasts a potent L-ascorbic acid formula, offering effective brightening and targeting dark spots. Secondly, it's surprisingly affordable. Additionally, it contains anti-inflammatory ingredients that can help manage acne breakouts. Finally, its unique airtight tube packaging helps maintain the formula's freshness by preventing oxidation. 

Best Japanese Vitamin C Serum

Rohto Melano CC Intensive Anti-Spot Essence

The Rohto Melano CC Intensive Anti-Spot Essence is a popular Japanese vitamin C serum known for its ability to target dark spots and brighten the complexion.

Here's a closer look at its pros and cons to help you decide if it's the right choice for you:


  • Potent L-Ascorbic Acid: This serum boasts a high concentration of pure vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that effectively brightens the skin and fades dark spots.
  • Affordable: Compared to other high-potency vitamin C serums, Melano CC is significantly cheaper, making it an accessible option for many.
  • Multi-Purpose: It not only addresses dark spots but also helps calm acne breakouts with its anti-inflammatory ingredients.
  • Unique Packaging: The airtight, light-protected tube helps maintain the stability and potency of the vitamin C, preventing oxidation and ensuring its effectiveness.


  • Potential Irritation: Due to its high L-ascorbic acid content, this serum may be too harsh for sensitive skin, causing irritation or redness.
  • Thin Consistency: The lightweight texture may feel watery to some, potentially requiring multiple layers for desired coverage.
  • Fragrance: While not overpowering, the serum does contain a light citrus fragrance that might be unpleasant for individuals with fragrance sensitivities.

Related: Best Japanese Serums

Obagi C Serums (C5, C10, C20, C25)

The Obagi C Serums offer a tiered system of vitamin C concentrations (C5, C10, C20, C25) catering to various skin types and needs. 

Obagi C Serums are a powerful and effective system for tackling hyperpigmentation and achieving a brighter complexion. 

However, their high cost and potential for irritation make them a consideration for individuals with tolerant skin and a significant budget.

Here's an overview of this popular brand:


  • Wide Range of Options: Obagi provides four concentrations (5%, 10%, 20%, and 25%), allowing users to gradually increase potency as their skin tolerates it.
  • Visible Results: Users report experiencing brighter, more even-toned skin with consistent use, addressing hyperpigmentation and sun damage.
  • Clinically-Tested: Backed by clinical research and dermatologist development, offering peace of mind for those seeking evidence-based skincare.
  • Advanced Formula: Obagi C20 and C25 serums incorporate the TPI (Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate) delivery system, promoting deeper vitamin C penetration.


  • High Price Point: Obagi C Serums are considerably more expensive than many other vitamin C options on the market.
  • Potential Irritation: Due to their high vitamin C content, some users may experience irritation, redness, or dryness, especially with higher concentrations.
  • Prescription Required: In certain countries, the Obagi C20 and C25 formulas might require a prescription due to their potency.

Hada Labo Shirojyun Premium Whitening Lotion

Hada Labo Shirojyun Premium Whitening Lotion is a unique product – while not strictly a serum, it's a popular Japanese lotion beloved for its brightening and hydrating properties.

Here's a breakdown of its pros and cons:


  • Gentle Brightening: This lotion utilizes a stable vitamin C derivative, along with tranexamic acid, for a gradual brightening effect that's suitable for most skin types.
  • Deep Hydration: Contains multiple types of hyaluronic acid for serious moisture retention, leaving the skin plump and supple.
  • Lightweight Texture: The watery-light consistency absorbs quickly and layers beautifully under other skincare products.
  • Affordable: Compared to many brightening serums, Hada Labo's Lotion offers great value for its size and efficacy.
  • Multi-Purpose: Can be used as a toner, essence, or even as a hydrating sheet mask by soaking cotton pads with it.


  • Slow Results: Due to its gentler formula, brightening effects may take longer to become visible compared to high-potency vitamin C serums.
  • Not for Extreme Hyperpigmentation: Those seeking to target stubborn dark spots might find this lotion insufficiently powerful.
  • Fragrance: While the scent is subtle, those exceptionally sensitive to fragrance may find it off-putting.

Dr. Ci:Labo VC100 Essence Lotion EX

The Dr. Ci:Labo VC100 Essence Lotion EX is a Japanese lotion containing a stable vitamin C derivative, offering a gentle yet effective option for those seeking to improve their skin's brightness and overall complexion. Here's a closer look at its benefits and drawbacks:


  • Stable Vitamin C Derivative: Formulated with Ascorbyl Glucoside, a gentler form of vitamin C, making it suitable for most skin types, including those on the sensitive side.
  • Multi-Benefit Formula: Enriched with collagen, hyaluronic acid, and ceramides, this lotion not only brightens but also hydrates, firms, and strengthens the skin's barrier.
  • Lightweight and Absorbent: The smooth, slightly milky texture sinks in quickly, making it an excellent addition to your skincare routine without feeling heavy.
  • Budget-Friendly: Compared to high-potency vitamin C serums, Dr. Ci:Labo offers a more affordable option.


  • Gradual Results: Due to its milder form of vitamin C, visible brightening effects may take longer to show compared to serums with higher potency.
  • Not for Targeted Issues: This lotion may not be powerful enough for those seeking to address stubborn dark spots or hyperpigmentation.
  • Limited Information: While popular in Japan, it can be challenging to find extensive information or reviews in other regions.

Kosé Cosmeport Clear Turn White Vitamin C Serum

Kosé Cosmeport Clear Turn White Vitamin C Serum is an affordable and accessible Japanese serum offering a blend of brightening ingredients for a more even-toned and radiant complexion. 

Here's a look into its pros and cons:


  • Affordable: This serum is a budget-friendly option for those seeking to incorporate vitamin C into their routine without breaking the bank.
  • Combines Ingredients: Along with vitamin C, this serum includes tranexamic acid, known for its brightening and spot-fading properties.
  • Easy to Find: Kosé Cosmeport is widely available in Japanese drugstores and through online retailers, offering great accessibility.
  • Gentle Formula: Suitable for most skin types and a good option for those looking to introduce a vitamin C serum to their routine.


  • Lower Concentration: The exact concentration of vitamin C in this serum is not disclosed, leading to uncertainty about its potency.
  • Potential Irritation: While generally gentle, some users might experience slight sensitivity due to the combination of ingredients.
  • Packaging: The serum comes in a jar rather than an airtight tube or bottle, which could increase oxidation risk and decrease the stability of vitamin C over time.

Naris Up Cosmetics Luques Vitamin C Serum

The Naris Up Cosmetics Luques Vitamin C Serum is a high-end Japanese serum boasting a unique blend of ingredients for a comprehensive brightening and anti-aging experience. Here's an analysis of its potential benefits and drawbacks:


  • Potent Blend: Formulated with a combination of L-ascorbic acid, ascorbyl glucoside, and tranexamic acid, it offers a potent approach to addressing hyperpigmentation, uneven skin tone, and dullness.
  • Anti-Aging Benefits: Additionally, the serum includes ingredients like retinol and coenzyme Q10, targeting fine lines, wrinkles, and promoting overall skin health.
  • Luxurious Experience: The serum boasts a silky texture and elegant packaging, elevating the skincare routine into a sensorial experience.


  • High Price Point: This serum is significantly more expensive than many other vitamin C serums on the market.
  • Potential Irritation: The combination of active ingredients, including retinol and L-ascorbic acid, may be too harsh for sensitive skin types and cause irritation.
  • Limited Availability: Naris Up Cosmetics is not as widely available as other Japanese brands, making it harder to find and purchase.

Senka White Beauty Serum

Senka White Beauty Serum is a popular Japanese drugstore serum that aims to brighten the complexion and promote a dewy, hydrated glow. 

Senka White Beauty Serum is a great choice for those seeking a gentle, hydrating serum with a mild brightening effect. 

It's particularly well-suited for normal to dry skin types needing an extra dose of moisture and a dewy, radiant look. 

However, those with severe hyperpigmentation or needing a more potent brightening treatment might find this serum lacking in strength.


  • Gentle Formulation: Designed for all skin types, including sensitive skin, with its focus on soothing and hydrating ingredients.
  • Focus on Hydration: Contains Senka's signature White Silk Cocoon Essence for deep moisture, along with hyaluronic acid, leaving skin plump and supple.
  • Brightening Boost: Includes a form of vitamin C and other brightening ingredients to help even skin tone and create a radiant, dewy finish.
  • Affordable: Senka offers budget-friendly skincare, including this serum, making it an accessible option for many.


  • Subtle Brightening: The brightening effect is gradual and may not be sufficient for targeting stubborn dark spots or severe hyperpigmentation.
  • Fragrance: While the scent is light, it might be a downside for those sensitive to fragrances in their skincare products.
  • Not Oil-Controlling: Those with oily skin might find the heavy focus on hydration a bit too rich.

Ishizawa Lab White Revolu C Lotion

The Ishizawa Lab White Revolu C Lotion is a lightweight Japanese lotion that promises to brighten skin and address hyperpigmentation using a combination of vitamin C and rice bran extract. 

Here's a closer look at its pros and cons:


  • Dual Brightening Ingredients: Features a stable vitamin C derivative alongside rice bran extract, rich in ferulic acid, for a brightening and antioxidant boost.
  • Hydrating Formula: Includes ingredients like hyaluronic acid to replenish skin's moisture, leaving it feeling plump and hydrated.
  • Affordable: Reasonably priced and accessible, making it a good option for trying brightening-focused Japanese skincare for the first time.
  • Lightweight and Absorbent: The watery consistency sinks in quickly and doesn't feel heavy, making it suitable for various skin types.


  • Gradual Results: Due to the gentler form of vitamin C, brightening effects might take time to become noticeable.
  • Not for Extreme Dark Spots: Those with severe hyperpigmentation may find this lotion insufficient in tackling stubborn dark spots.
  • Potential Fragrance Sensitivity: Contains a subtle fragrance that might be bothersome for individuals sensitive to scented skincare.

How To Choose The Best Japanese Vitamin C Serum?

Choosing the best Japanese vitamin C serum depends entirely on your individual skin needs and preferences. Here's a breakdown of factors to consider to make an informed decision:

Skin Type and Concerns:

  • Sensitive Skin: Look for serums with stable vitamin C derivatives like Ascorbyl Glucoside or Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, which are less irritating. Brands like Dr.Ci:Labo, and Senka often cater to delicate skin types.
  • Hyperpigmentation: Choose serums with high concentrations of L-Ascorbic Acid (pure vitamin C) for maximum potency. Consider Rohto Melano CC or Obagi (if you can get a prescription for stronger concentrations).
  • Dry Skin: Opt for serums with hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid and check out options from Hada Labo or Ishizawa Lab.
  • Oily/Acne-Prone Skin: Look for lighter serums, or try lotions containing vitamin C. Fancl and Kosé might have good options.

Vitamin C Form and Concentration:

  • L-Ascorbic Acid: The most potent and researched form but can be irritating.
  • Vitamin C Derivatives: Gentler on the skin, with gradual brightening effects.
  • Concentration: Start with lower percentages (5-10%) and gradually increase if tolerated.


The world of Japanese vitamin C serums offers a diverse range of options for various skin concerns and budgets.

Exploring the information and factors mentioned above will equip you to make an informed decision.

Remember, consistency, responsible use, and choosing a product suited to your unique needs are key to unlocking the brightening and revitalizing potential of Japanese vitamin C serums for your skin.

So, embark on your personalized journey and discover the perfect fit for your path towards a radiant and even-toned complexion!

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