This new product has completely refreshed my skin

In our series test ride, TZR editors and writers test the hottest new beauty products and share their honest reviews. This week beauty writer Khera Alexander is testing the ALASTIN A-LUMINER Brightening serum.

Considering the fact that I’ve been a beauty lover for as long as I can remember, it’s no surprise that I turned that passion into a career as a beauty writer and makeup artist. After years of learning about different products, ingredients and techniques, I still find it amazing to be able to do something that I love so much as a profession. And while testing new makeup drops never gets old, I’ve always had to be selective in my approach to skincare.

With my specific skin issues (mainly rashes and acne), I haven’t been able to experiment with different products the way I could have experimented with makeup – just what my dermatologist told me to do is what I will stick to. This year I made the decision to use oral acne medication, which gave me more opportunities as a beauty writer (and product fanatic in general) to try new things. while treating other skin issues in the process.

Now that my skin is improving, I was able to correct my hyperpigmentation issues without experiencing more breakouts, and the serums have proven to be a huge help. I decided to try a new one: ALASTIN A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum. Created to brighten skin and reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation, dark spots and sun spots, A-LUMINATE is ideal for anyone struggling with post-acne scars, dark spots or melasma. To learn more about this serum – and my experience with it – keep scrolling.

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Fast facts

  • Price: $168
  • Size: 50ml
  • Clean/Cruelty Free? Yes
  • Best for: brightening skin, reducing the appearance of dark spots, sun spots, age spots, redness and general discoloration
  • Key ingredients: moisture-binding squalane, antioxidant milk thistle extract, ashwagandha root extract to fight inflammation and tranexamic acid to brighten,
  • What we like: light, comfortable, does not irritate the skin
  • What we don’t like: Expensive
  • Your rating: 3.8/5
My skin before using ALASTIN A-LUMINATE.Khera Alexander

My skin

After trying to self-medicate my skin issues for a long time, I started using Accutane this year and my skin has improved dramatically. Now that I’m using the treatment, I’m focusing on fading stubborn scars on my cheekbones and temples. I’ve used a few different serums that address hyperpigmentation, but was curious to see what my skin would look like after trying A-LUMINATE.

ALASTIN A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum

ALASTIN A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum is a product specially designed to treat skin discoloration such as dark spots, age spots, redness, hyperpigmentation and dark spots. This serum is non-irritating and is intended for long-term daily use. A specific blend of active ingredients and antioxidants work to fight hyperpigmentation and protect against future damage and discoloration.

Take a look at the packaging for ALASTIN A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum.Khera Alexander

The Science Behind ALASTIN A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum

A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum contains a handful of key ingredients: squalane, niacinamide, tranexamic acid, ashwagandha root extract, milk thistle extract and peptides.. Squalane, a non-comedogenic oil, helps protect the skin’s moisture barrier, and niacinamide is an anti-inflammatory ingredient that calms skin and treats hyperpigmentation.

Dr. Geeta Yadav, board-certified dermatologist and founder of FACET Dermatology Clinic, develops the products’ formulation: “Ashwagandha contains a compound called glabridin,” she says. “Glabridin offers anti-inflammatory effects. Inflammation can cause hyperpigmentation, especially in the case of acne. A powerful antioxidant, Dr. Yadav notes that milk thistle extract “contains compounds that help protect the skin against collagen breakdown and prevent the formation of hyperpigmentation.” Basically, these extracts work to soothe irritation and maintain skin health while tackling discoloration – pretty impressive.

Powerful and gentle, tranexamic acid is another brightening agent. “Tranexamic [acid] is called a tyrosinase inhibitor – the enzyme responsible for triggering melanin production in the skin. By inhibiting this enzyme, it reduces the formation of dark spots,” says Dr. Yadav. “Tranexamic acid also reduces communication between our melanocytes, [the] pigment-producing cells and keratinocytes, [the] skin cells, which are triggered by UV exposure, making it an effective ingredient for treating UV-induced hyperpigmentation, including melasma. In other words, if you have sunspots or dark spots, tranexamic acid is an incredible, slightly sleepy ingredient you might want to check out.

Peptides are another set of key ingredients that complement the serum, providing a host of benefits that contribute to the overall health and appearance of the skin. “Peptides are the building blocks of amino acids – the basis of proteins,” says Dr. Yadav. “Collagen, elastin, and keratin are all proteins, so supporting them with peptides can help smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while making skin firmer and more resilient.”


The ALASTIN serum has a sleek design: It is housed in a compact bottle with a retractable pump. You twist the top of the bottle to reveal the pump and twist it down to lock the dispenser in place – that way you have no leaks or wasted product.

My first impressions

The first time I pumped the ALASTIN Serum into my hands and applied it to my face, the product had a texture and look that I didn’t expect. I was expecting a watery feel, but A-LUMINATE is more like a lotion and has a pearly, radiant look. It is very moisturizing and light, rubs easily into the skin and absorbs quickly.

The look and feel of ALASTIN A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum.Khera Alexander

How I used it

To really get a feel for the product’s effect on my skin, I stopped using my current serum and replaced it with A-LUMINATE for two weeks. After cleansing my face morning and night, I would use two pumps of serum on my skin and apply my moisturizer or SPF on top.

My results

Although my skin clarity has improved since using Accutane, it can still look dull and my dark spots are still a concern. In the two weeks that I used the ALASTIN serum, my skin is more radiant and the dark spots on my temples are noticeably clearer. I can’t wait to see what my skin will look like after two or three months of regular use.

My skin after two weeks of using ALASTIN A-LUMINATE Brightening Serum.Khera Alexander

Is it worth it?

A-LUMINATE is priced around $168 for 50ml, which is expensive, but for a prestige serum, that’s to be expected. The last two serums I used – Omorovicza Even Tone Serum and Skinceuticals CE Ferulic Serum – are about the same price as A-LUMINATE. I think this serum is a good investment, especially if someone has dark spots or melasma.

BDG product reviews and recommendations are written and produced by writers and editors with expertise in their field. Testers often have specific experience with the situation or product in question, and/or their opinion or recommendation is provided in consultation with experts. You can read more about our standards here.

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