13 women try the $35 serum meant to hit refresh on your skin barrier.

Thanks to our brand partner, Sukin

Picture this: You've bitten the bullet and invested in the skincare lineup you keep seeing around the internet, and your girlfriends “heard was good.” You're slugging, skin cycling, retinol-ing... surely all the right things?? It's an absolute TASK, but any day now your skin is surely going to clock your efforts and deliver the radiant skin you ordered. Right? Right! 

Except it... hasn't yet. It's been MONTHS. And you don't think your skin (or bank account) is actually vibing it. At all.

Your skin barrier is a very dear friend you want to put plenty of time and love into maintaining – it protects you from an armful of baddies (UV radiation, wind, pollution) while also holding in precious, natural moisture. However, don't forget that jazzy skincare routines containing ALL the things (kitchen sink etc) can also take a huge toll on our skin barrier. 

The new wave of skin-barrier-friendly skincare products are a handy opportunity for a skincare reset, with a fresh focus on curating a gentle, functional routine that supports the skin microbiome at every step.

As if the beauty Gods were staring right down at us, Sukin (trusty Australian pharmacy brand that's been around for yonks) went and launched their new Natural Active Barrier Balance Serum ($35). 

This multi-tasking serum is formulated to help balance the skin microbiome and support its natural barrier function. As with all Sukin products, it heroes natural ingredients – this time including a complex of prebiotics and bio-fermented ingredients to promote skin resilience.


It contains niacinamide to balance uneven skin tone, and a unique combo of ashwagandha root, radish root and carrot root extract to target dry skin. After use, your skin's meant to feel revitalised with a healthy, radiant-looking glow. (Our kinda jam.)

So since we were after the goss on how this serum actually performs, like, yesterday, that's why we asked 100 women from our You Beauty Panel to trial it and tell us. Honestly. 

Here's what 13 of them reported back after using for four weeks, to help you decide if it's something you should try too.

Penny, 45: "My face is much more healthy-looking."

"Before I started using this by serum, I was suffering from red blotchy skin and a breakout on both cheeks. Within a few days of using this serum, my face calmed down and the redness went away for a more even skin tone. After one week, my face is much more healthy-looking. The smell of the serum is pleasant, and the consistency was nice – not sticky like other serums."

Sarah, 41: "Paired well with my retinol."

"A lovely light and simple serum. No irritation to my skin either, which I do struggle with. I used it in both in my AM and PM routine, and it paired well with my retinol. I'd happily recommend and buy this serum again."

Cynthia, 27: "Noticeably softer, smoother, and hydrated after just one use." 

Image: You Beauty Panel.


"This Sukin serum made my skin noticeably softer, smoother, and hydrated after just one use. I have enjoyed using this product and will continue using it to see how it affects my skin long-term. Will definitely be purchasing again."

Shivaun, 36: "Helped with redness and hydration."

"I'd score this product a 4 out of 5 – it applies so smoothly and absorbs into the skin quickly. It also wears well under other skincare and makeup. I often have sensitive skin when trying new products but this serum suited me perfectly. I have been applying it in the evenings and found it helped with redness but also provides a good amount of hydration."

Alana, 31: "My skin looks much more radiant."

"Overall experience with the product was good, I'd purchase again and recommend! The texture of the product was nice, and it feels very luxurious when applying it to your face. It doesn’t have an overwhelming smell which is also a positive. My skin looks much more radiant."


Phillippa, 45: "My skin is just so glowy, hydrated and feeling amazing."

Image: You Beauty Panel.

"Excellent experience! Initially, I was a bit guarded as it had a particular smell but honestly my skin is just so glowy, hydrated and feeling amazing!! Love it, 5 out of 5."


Jennifer, 34: "My skin was noticeably healthier-looking and even."

"I enjoyed using the product and saw results. It had a very enjoyable light floral scent with a thick milky consistency, and I found the pump mechanism worked well for giving the right amount of product; once for each aspect of the face (cheeks, forehead, neck). After 7 days, my skin was noticeably healthier-looking and even, soothing the sensitivity that I usually have."

Sarah, 36: "My skin is feeling soft and supple."

"What timing! I’ve recently needed to remove all acids and actives from my routine. This arrived, and it’s been like a literal fresh start for my skin. The smell is amazing, it’s clean and fresh, and I love applying it morning and night. My skin is feeling soft and supple, which is huge considering it was previously very dry. Really happy with how the product absorbs, and will definitely be purchasing in the future."

Sarah, 35: "It made my skin glow."

Image: You Beauty Panel.


"As a 35-year-old who hasn’t yet ventured into retinols or anti-ageing procedures, I enjoy simple skincare products which do their job, and keep my face feeling fresh and hydrated. This was a lovely serum/lotion texture which absorbed quickly into the skin, making it great for under makeup. I found it made my skin glow when I was using it consistently morning and night, and I felt confident to go out bare-faced. I’d buy this again!"

Navya, 33: "Left my face with a nice glow."

"This product was great! It left my face with a nice glow and very hydrated. I found that I got through the product quite quickly and I liked using 2-3 pumps per application. I'd rate this a 4 out of 5, and would definitely use again."

Nina, 31: "A multi-tasking all-rounder."

"Great! Really liked this for a multi-tasking all-rounder. Good consistency, smell and nice feel on the face."

Rebecca, 32: "Sat beautifully under makeup."

Image: You Beauty Panel.


"I really liked this serum. The texture was so lightweight and easy to apply. The serum absorbed so well and was really easy to incorporate into my skincare routine because it was able to be play well with my other products. Also sat beautifully under makeup."

Gabby, 35: "Skin is radiant, smooth and hydrated."

"Loved this product! Skin is radiant, smooth and hydrated. While I didn’t love the scent, I will purchase again for sure!!"

Shop Sukin's Natural Active Barrier Balance Serum online or from your nearest pharmacy.

Feature Image: You Beauty Panel/Mamamia.

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