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14 Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serums for Radiant Skin (2024)

The skincare industry is constantly evolving, and with it, the demand for ethical and cruelty-free products has skyrocketed. Consumers are becoming more aware of the impact their purchases have on animals and the environment, and are searching for alternatives that align with their values.

In this article, we’ll be taking a look at 14 of the best cruelty-free face vitamin C available in 2024. These products have been carefully selected for their effectiveness, ingredients, and commitment to cruelty-free and eco-friendly practices.

Whether you’re looking for a vitamin C serum for aging skin, hyperpigmentation or dull skin, there’s something for everyone on this list.

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Our Pick for The Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Alpyn Beauty – Vitamin C & Bearberry Instant Glow Serum

Alpyn Beauty stands as a pioneering skincare brand that ethically gathers wild plants when they are at their prime, harnessing their natural potency and enhancing their effectiveness with clinically-proven actives.

WHY WE LOVE IT

– Cruelty-Free Certified by Leaping Bunny 
– Vitamin C + Bearberry to brighten your skin tone
-Sustainably hand-harvested wild plants

SHOP HERE

For more information about clean beauty, check our articles about cruelty-free cleanserscruelty-free moisturizers, and  vegan & cruelty-free makeup brands.

In a 2023 article of the New York Times, dermatologists acknowledge the potential benefits of vitamin C for the skin, including its ability to brighten, firm, and reduce signs of aging. Dr. Fatima Fahs notes that while some vitamin C formulations seem to benefit the skin, the overall results are inconsistent. She emphasizes that “human studies showing efficacy are still very limited.” Dr. Whitney Bowe highlights vitamin C’s antioxidant properties, its role in collagen production, and dark spot reduction. However, challenges include ensuring vitamin C’s stability and skin penetration. For choosing products, Dr. Fahs recommends those with vitamin E and ferulic acid to enhance stability and effectiveness.

Why Choose Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serums?

Choosing cruelty-free skincare is a conscious decision that speaks about your values and compassion. It’s about making a stand for the rights and well-being of animals, while still pampering yourself with effective products.

When you choose cruelty-free skincare, you actively contribute to ending the needless suffering of animals. You become part of a movement that believes in finding alternative, humane methods for testing and developing products. By supporting brands that prioritize animal welfare, you send a powerful message to the industry, urging them to embrace compassion and embrace change.

Beyond the ethical considerations, cruelty-free skincare also offers other benefits for your own well-being. These products are often crafted with natural and organic ingredients. Free from harmful chemicals and toxins, cruelty-free skincare helps you achieve a radiant complexion safely.

Many cruelty-free skincare brands go the extra mile to embrace sustainability. They make mindful choices, from eco-friendly packaging to sourcing ingredients responsibly that participate to the preservation of our planet.

Ultimately, opting for cruelty-free skincare is about empowerment. It’s about taking control of your choices and investing in products that align with your values. By doing so, you inspire others to follow suit, creating a ripple effect of change in the beauty industry.

Key Benefits of Vitamin C Serums

Vitamin C serums offer several key benefits for the skin.

1. Help combat free radicals and protect the skin from damage caused by environmental factors with powerful antioxidant properties.

2. Stimulate collagen production, promoting skin elasticity and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

3. Contribute to brightening and evening out the skin tone, resulting in a more radiant complexion.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serums

When selecting cruelty-free vitamin C serums, there are a few factors to keep in mind.

1. Consider the ingredients used in the product. Look for serums that incorporate natural and organic ingredients, as they tend to be gentler on the skin and more environmentally friendly.

2. Vitamin C concentration is another essential consideration. Opt for serums with a minimum of 10% vitamin C to ensure optimal effectiveness. Higher concentrations may be more potent, but it’s important to assess your skin’s sensitivity and tolerance before using stronger formulations.

3. Check for the presence of additional beneficial ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and botanical extracts. These components can enhance the serum’s moisturizing and rejuvenating properties, providing extra nourishment for the skin.

14 Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serums 

ProductReviewPrice
TruSkin – Vitamin C Serum4.3/5 Stars over 139,386 Reviews$21.91 for 1 oz
Murad – ​​Vita-C Glycolic Serum4.8/5 Stars over 362 Reviews$88 for 1 oz/30 mL
Indie Lee – Daily Vitamin Infusion4.8/5 Stars over 138 Reviews$67 for 1 oz/30 mL
Milk Makeup – Sunshine Oil4.4/5 Stars over 929 Reviews$39 for 0.5 oz / 15 mL
True Botanicals – Vitamin C Booster4.4/5 Stars over 555 Reviews$90 for 49 oz | 14 g
Dermalogica – Biolumin-C Vitamin C Serum4.6/5 Stars over 1943 Reviews$95 for 1 oz
One Love Organics – Botanical C Facial Serum4.5/5 Stars over 95 Reviews$75 for 1 oz
OSEA – Vitamin C Enzyme Polish4.7/5 Stars over 111 Reviews$72 for 0.9 oz
Alpyn Beauty – Vitamin C & Bearberry Instant Glow Serum4.8/5 Stars over 176 Reviews$59 for 1.7 fl.oz / 50 ml
Pacifica Beauty – Glow Baby Booster Serum4.5/5 Stars over 1,799 Reviews$16 for 1 oz
Elf Cosmetics – Vitamin C Serum4.4/5 Stars over 277 Reviews$16 for 0.95oz
Obagi – Medical Professional-C Serum 15%4.76/5 Stars over 455 Reviews$112 for 1 fl. Oz
Sunday Riley – C.E.O. Glow Vitamin C Turmeric Face Oil4.4/5 Stars over 77 Reviews$40 for 0.5 oz
Tata Harper – Resurfacing Serum4.9/5 Stars over 918 Reviews$92 for 1 oz/30 mL

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum with Over 90,000 5 stars reviews

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | TruSkin – Vitamin C Serum

Review | 4.3/5 Stars over 139,386 Reviews

Price | $21.91 for 1 oz

  • Vitamin C to even skin tone, neutralize free radicals and boost collagen
  • Blend of  botanical hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, aloe vera, jojoba oil and MSM to help brighten, calm and protect skin
  • Fragrance free formula without parabens and other harmful chemicals 
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Leaping Bunny 

Customer Review | “This product has helped me so much with acne and skin tone and just everything! I am a healthcare worker so between the PPE and mask especially the last few hrs my skin went from clear to just hectic to deal with bad try and keep up with so this product is a game changer and I only use it at night so it doesn’t need tons of routine or supply it last forever as well! Not to mention I have eczema and struggle between dry and oily skin and sensitive skin so products for my face are hard to come by! Amazing stuff Teylar

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum for Aging and Mature Skin

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Murad – ​​Vita-C Glycolic Serum

Review | 4.8/5 Stars over 362 Reviews

Price | $88 for 1 oz/30 mL

  • Vitamin C and glycolic acid serum to brighten the skin
  • Glycolic acid exfoliates and removes dead, dulling surface cells.
  • Ideal for all skin tones and skin types, from oily to dry.
  • Formulated without fragrance and artificial colors
  • Free from Parabens, Sulfates, Phthalates, Gluten, Animal-derived ingredients, Mineral oil, Formaldehyde, Oxybenzone, Petrolatum
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Peta

Customer Review | I Love this product. It glides on my skin without any residue. It brightens my complexion and gives me a more youthful appearance.” Esther

Top-Rated Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Indie Lee – Daily Vitamin Infusion

Review | 4.8/5 Stars over 138 Reviews

Price | $67 for 1 oz/30 mL

  • Plant-derived Ceramides and Sugar Cane derived Squalane create a rich moisture.
  • Vitamins A, C, E and Rosemary Leaf provide skin nutrients and an antioxidant boost.
  • Formulated without Parabens, Mineral Oil, Sulfate-based Detergents, Synthetic Fragrance, Petroleum-based Ingredients, Phthalates, Phenoxyethanol, Formaldehyde and GMO Ingredients.
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Leaping Bunny 

Customer Review | I love the texture of this serum, it’s on the thicker side for a serum but it absorbs easily and my combination skin feels hydrated. You can easily skip moisturizer with this and just apply sunscreen so cuts down the amount t of products you need in the morning! It has great ingredients for sensitive skin like mine and I love the antioxidant benefits it provides.” Josie Jump

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum for Vegan Formulation

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Milk Makeup – Sunshine Oil

Review | 4.4/5 Stars over 929 Reviews

Price | $39 for 0.5 OZ / 15 ML

  • Vitamin C and plant-derived squalane moisturize and brighten skin tone.
  • Vegan, clean, cruelty-free, paraben-free, silicone-free, and gluten-free.
  • Use as the last step in your nighttime skincare routine.
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Leaping Bunny 

Customer Review | “Since turning 40 , I’ve really noticed some heavy sun damage and even a few spots!! After some research, I decided to try Sunshine Oil, and it’s been bordering on MIRACULOUS. Plus it smell like a fresh peeled super ripe orange and that’s just awesome. This is THE stuff! I’m a tried and true user and fan!” Sarah

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum with Ferulic Acid

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | True Botanicals – Vitamin C Booster

Review | 4.4/5 Stars over 555 Reviews

Price | $90 for 49 oz | 14 g

  • Instructions: Mix 1-2 shakes of Vitamin C Booster into 2-3 pumps of a water-based serum or moisturizer. 
  • Vitamin C Powder to avoid instability and degradation. 
  • Enhanced with Ferulic Acid to boost the benefits of Vitamin C
  • Supporte skin integrity and help to reduce the appearance of dark spots.  
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Leaping Bunny 

Customer Review | “I added the vitamin c booster to my True Botanicals routine a couple weeks ago and have noticed a definite difference. I am 48 years old with a lot of sun/age spots. All of the dark spots have lightened and many are no longer visible anymore! My face, neck and declottete areas all look much younger and smoother. I’m definitely happy with my purchase and highly recommend.” Nichole

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum for Dark Spots

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Dermalogica – Biolumin-C Vitamin C Serum

Review | 4.6/5 Stars over 1943 Reviews

Price | $95 for 1 oz

  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Exfoliates and reduces unbalanced pigmentation
  • Reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Prevents and corrects free radical damage
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Peta and Leaping Bunny

Customer Review | “Ive been using the Vitamin C from Dermologica for about 5-6 months now and i absolutely love it. the quality of the product is unmatched! my skin is so bright and looks flawless. The texture of my skin is so smooth. I can’t recommend this product enough. Holy Grail for dull skin!” Alicia

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum for Sensitive Skin

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | One Love Organics – Botanical C Facial Serum

Review | 4.5/5 Stars over 95 Reviews

Price | $75 for 1 oz

  • Vitamin C to boost radiance
  • Rosehip, baobab, acerola and sea buckthorn oils to hydrate and nourish the skin 
  • Synthetic fragrance-free and dermatologist tested for use on sensitive skin
  • ECOCERT® certified natural and organic
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Peta

Customer Review | “This product is the best moisturizer I’ve ever used. I have been using it for almost one year and it’s kept my skin very soft, moisturized, and youthful looking. I have melasma and this has helped to keep it under control. I also love the smell! It’s very light which is great because I can’t deal with strong scents. I definitely recommend this product.” Maria

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum for Acne Prone Skin

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | OSEA – Vitamin C Enzyme Polish

Review | 4.7/5 Stars over 111 Reviews

Price | $72 for 0.9 oz

  • Water-activated powder exfoliant to remove debris and dead skin cells. 
  • Vitamin C, fermented pomegranate enzyme and rice flour to smooth skin and increase radiance
  • Suitable for all Skin Types
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Leaping Bunny 

Customer Review | “I am in my 50s and it has been very hard to find a vitamin C polish that does not irritate my skin. After use, my skin was not red, tingly or irritated. It was smooth and noticeably softer.” Lisa

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum with Retinol Alternative

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Alpyn Beauty – Vitamin C & Bearberry Instant Glow Serum

Review | 4.8/5 Stars over 176 Reviews

Price | $59 for 1.7 fl.oz / 50 ml

  • Vitamin C + Bearberry to brighten your skin tone
  • AHA and Bakuchiol—a plant-based alternative to retinol to bring luminosity and smooth skin
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Leaping Bunny 

Customer Review | “This is one of my favorite skin care products of all time. It acts almost like a color corrector; I feel like the color in my face is evened out and my skin just looks brighter and smoother. Even my husband noticed the glow! 🙂 I don’t have to use very much and it feels light and makes me feel like a princess!” Cassandra

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum to Brighten Skin

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Pacifica Beauty – Glow Baby Booster Serum

Review | 4.5/5 Stars over 1,799 Reviews

Price | $16 for 1 oz

  • Vitamin C and glycolic acid to moisturize and relieve dull
  • Improves skin texture and brightness
  • Formulated without parabens, phthalates, SLS, mineral oil and petrolatum, as well as sulfate-free and silicone-free
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Peta

Customer Review | “I really love this product from pacifica. I use a lot of expensive skin care, yet include two pacifica products into my routine and love them. This Vitamin C booster smells heavenly and feels really luxurious on your skin. There is no sticky residue as you may find with other vitamin C serums and I do feel as if it brightens my skin after application.’ Stephanie

Best Affordable Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum 

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Elf Cosmetics – Vitamin C Serum

Review | 4.4/5 Stars over 277 Reviews

Price | $16 for 0.95 oz

  • Vitamin C to brighten skin
  • Vitamin E to nourish and hydrate skin
  • Pomegranate Extract to provide a boost of protective antioxidants
  • Vegan formulation without phthalates, parabens, nonylphenol ethoxylates, triclosan, triclocarban, sulfates and hydroquinone
  • Made in a Fair-Trade Certified factory
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Peta

Customer Review | “This product has really helped even out my skin tone, reduces redness and softens my skin. It has a very light citrus scent but not overbearing. I apply in the morning under my moisturizer.” Shana

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Obagi – Medical Professional-C Serum 15%

Review | 4.76/5 Stars over 455 Reviews

Price | $112 for 1 fl. Oz

  • Highest concentrated serum with antioxidant L-ascorbic acid, 
  • Reduces the appearance of skin aging and leave skin feeling silky soft.
  • Encourages the growth of collagen and elastin fibers.
  • Best suited for normal to oily skin. 
  • Non-prescription Obagi products have not been tested on animals.

Customer Review | “ This is my ride or die vitamin c. I have used it for ten plus years. Absolutely worth every penny. I have sensitive skin but have no issues using this product, even a few days post lasers once I am allowed to by my provider to resume my regular skincare routine. Helps to keep my skin glowing and hydrated. This is a must buy!” Lesley

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum for Hyperpigmentation

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Sunday Riley – C.E.O. Glow Vitamin C Turmeric Face Oil

Review | 4.4/5 Stars over 77 Reviews

Price | $40 for 0.5 oz

  • Anti-aging effects: THD Ascorbate (Vitamin C) and Pomegranate Seed Oil combat signs of aging such as dullness, loss of firmness, and the appearance of lines and wrinkles.
  • Improved skin appearance: The Golden Turmeric in the serum contributes to reducing surface redness and enhancing skin evenness, resulting in a more balanced complexion.
  • Skin nourishment and soothing: Evening Primrose Oil, Ginger Root Extract, and Bisabolol work together to replenish moisture, promote a healthy glow, and soothe sensitive skin while promoting evenness of skin tone.
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Peta and Leaping Bunny

Customer Review | “I love the way my skin feels and smells after I use it. It leaves my skin feeling smooth and mosturized all day long. I will definitely continue to use this as a part of my skin care routine. “ Christina

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum with Natural Ingredients

Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum
Best Cruelty-Free Vitamin C Serum

Product | Tata Harper – Resurfacing Serum

Review | 4.9/5 Stars over 918 Reviews

Price | $92 for 1 oz/30 mL

  • The combination of 5 AHAs and 2 BHAs remove dead skin cells to give you a healthy-looking glow. 
  • Antioxidants help fight dull and uneven skin 
  • 100% of the total ingredients are from natural origin & 47 % of the total ingredients are from Organic Farming.
  • Cruelty-Free Certified by Peta

Customer Review | “A daily part of my skin care regime – I love this product! Since I”ve been using my skin has appeared healthier, with a natural glow.” Melanie


All photos credits belong to respective brands. Prices are the ones at the time of the article publication.

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