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 • Skincare  • Skincare Reviews  • I Put The Ordinary’s Viral Pink Serum to the Test: Here Are My Results

I Put The Ordinary’s Viral Pink Serum to the Test: Here Are My Results

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Main image – @theordinary/Instagram

If you’ve been on TikTok or Instagram over the past couple of months, I’m betting you’ve seen The Ordinary’s bright pink serum *everywhere*. 

Sort of Pepto Bismal looking, this Soothing & Barrier Support Serum has been making the rounds on every skincare influencer’s account, and the results appear to be pretty good.

As a huge fan of the brand, as well as suffering from a damaged skin barrier this winter, I knew I had to try out this product (and at £17.30, it was a bit of a no-brainer).

Intrigued by whether this serum was just a bit of a gimmick due to its Instagrammable hue that makes it perfect for videos and images and its claims to “rebuild the skin barrier in 2 hours”, I wanted to find out whether it could actually aid my tight and flaky skin, reduce redness on my cheeks. And if the rumours were true that it makes skin look and feel plumper.

As someone with typical combination skin that often suffers during dramatic temperature drops, I thought this could be my saving grace this winter – but was I right?


the ordinary pink serum barrier repair review

Image – The Ordinary


So, what’s in The Ordinary’s Soothing & Barrier Support Serum?

Firstly, the pink colour is down to a plant extract called cyanocobalamin which is Vitamin B12. It’s fragrance-free, dye-free, and it applies on the skin clear (don’t worry, your face won’t be bright pink!)

Packed with “lipids, vitamins, and phytotechnologies for epidermal repair”, this serum also contains hero ingredients like niacinamide (a soothing and brightening form of vitamin B), bisabolol (a calming ingredient derived from chamomile flower), plant-derived ceramides (which help to prevent skin hydration loss), and a combination of 3 activated forms of gallic acid (an anti-inflammatory typically found in tea leaves and some berries).


the ordinary pink serum barrier soothing review

Image – Courtesy of Writer


This serum claims to “help repair the skin barrier, soothe discomfort, and reduce the look of redness”. Your skin barrier is essentially the outer layer of your skin and it’s made up of dead cells, lipids, proteins and fats that help protect your skin from the environment.

But, can this serum’s blend of ingredients really soothe my dry winter skin?


the ordinary pink serum barrier soothing review

Image – Courtesy of Writer


How do you use it?

A few drops of the serum should be used after cleansing your skin in the morning and evening and after water-based products. My fave cleanser at the moment is CeraVe’s SA Smoothing Cleanser (£14.00 on the Boots UK website/$12.39 on the Target website), it gently exfoliates and smooths any rough, bumpy patches.

Apply a few drops onto your fingertips (I always avoid using the dropper directly on my face- no matter how many influencers I’ve seen doing it on social media- to avoid any contamination and any product wastage), then smooth the serum gently onto your skin.

When the serum has been absorbed, lock it in with a moisturiser. I’m really loving Byoma’s Moisturizing Gel Cream, which easily absorbs into the skin and is really hydrating (£12.99 on the Cult Beauty UK website/$15.99 on Ulta Beauty).

I also really love The Ordinary’s Natural Moisturizing Factors + Beta Glucan (£12.00 on The Ordinary UK website/$13.50 on The Ordinary US website) for lightweight hydration that helps to protect the skin barrier. This product should be used last in your skincare routine as a way to “seal” in ingredients.

If you’re using the pink serum with retinol, The Ordinary recommends applying it before retinol, then applying your moisturiser.


the ordinary pink serum barrier repair soothing review

Image – Courtesy of Writer


My results

I’ve been using the serum for almost 1 month now, and I’m absolutely loving it!

It claims to repair your skin barrier within 2 hours and, while I think that might be a *bit* of a stretch, I really did notice a difference within a couple of uses. My skin felt noticeably smoother, less irritated, plumped, and super hydrated.

It melts into the skin pretty quickly and, despite its pink colour, it reduced any redness I had as well as getting rid of the flaky patches around my chin. It’s easily layered between other products and makes my skin look brighter.


the ordinary pink serum barrier repair soothing review

Image – Courtesy of Writer


It feels silky and luxurious (amazingly so considering its price tag), and I’ve had no adverse effects whatsoever. As for the smell, it’s quite hard to describe, but I would say it doesn’t really have a scent and smells natural and almost woody.

And I’m not the only one who is benefitting from this bubblegum pink product, with a rating of 4.5 stars on The Ordinary website (out of hundreds of reviews), it’s pretty highly regarded. 

@p_salm_118 said on The Ordinary’s insta page, “This Serum works wonders for my skin when my skin flare [sic] up due to allergic to Salicylic Acid 2% Solution. It calmed down my skin & the rashes, inflammation & itching subsided instantaneously.”

Another customer (with dry skin and signs of ageing) says “LOVE this product!! I have fairly sensitive skin that would breakout regularly until I started using this product.

“It is the ONLY thing I changed in my skin routine and diet. My face has been extremely clear since using this. I would highly recommend.”

The only less than positive reviews mainly revolve around irritation.  But since it’s possible to be sensitive to any skincare product, it’s always worth doing a patch test first.

Some people also aren’t a fan of the colour, but I’ve found that doesn’t affect the application and, as you can see from my photo, it doesn’t turn your skin pink at all…


The takeaway

Well, in case you hadn’t realised already, I really like this product and the price point is spot on – in fact, I’d probably pay quite a lot more for it. And that says a lot considering I go for low-cost brands!

I don’t actually have anything negative to say and, judging by other reviews, it seems to suit many different skin types including sensitive.

As mentioned, it’s always worth doing a patch test with any new product. Although loads of customers have said it helps their acne and reduces inflammation when they have a breakout, a couple of people did say it caused some irritation.

All in all, another great product from this budget-friendly, no-frills brand!


The Ordinary Soothing & Barrier Support Serum is £17.30 on the UK website and $17.00 on the US website).


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Senior Beauty Editor

Laura Kemp started her journalism career as a news reporter for one of the largest newspaper groups in Europe before moving into features and editorial writing. Combining her love of hard-hitting journalism with her passion for beauty, she’s now Senior Beauty Editor at Live That Glow. When she’s not writing, researching, or interviewing her favourite experts, you’ll find Laura practicing her downward dog or drifting on her paddleboard.

Expertise: Hair care, nails
Education: University of Salford

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