Versed Skincare Review: Two Editors’ Honest Thoughts


You’ve undoubtedly seen it on the Target shelves or your Instagram feed, so here’s the honest Versed skincare review you’ve been looking for. Two of our editors—Isabelle, our Managing Editor, and Bridget, Contributing Editor, took a deep dive into the wide world of Versed skincare products. And while we’re admittedly not experts, we’d like to think that our skincare obsessions (and many interviews with derms and estheticians) give us some credibility. We’re down to try whatever the latest and greatest trend in skin care is. And right now? It’s definitely products from Versed. Our TikTok, Instagram, and Pinterest feeds are full of rave reviews, so we knew it was time to test it out for ourselves.

Two Editors Share Their Honest Versed Skincare Review

Versed markets itself as the cleanest, most affordable drugstore skincare brand. Its mission? To deliver high-quality skincare without high markups. Not only are the products clean, but the packaging is sustainable as well. Everything is vegan and cruelty-free including zero artificial fragrances, parabens, and sulfates, along with 1,350+ other toxins that the brand avoids.

When a skincare brand has so many products, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and confused about what to use, and when. Versed, however, smartly includes How, Where, and When instructions on every bottle, making it easy to remember what each product is for (without having to keep track of the original packaging!). And the best part? We could pick up every item we needed to test from the beauty department at Target.

Together, we tried 13 of Versed’s most loved products, reviewing their active ingredients, textures, smells, and, of course, results. Does it really live up to the hype? Let’s find out.   

Our Skin Types

Bridget: Combination, but with dry tendencies and some sensitivity.

Isabelle: Combination, leaning toward oily with some sensitivity.

Just Breathe Clarifying Serum

This is my favorite Versed skincare product and the one that I will 100% keep in my skincare regimen. It’s designed to calm inflammation and decongest pores, and it does just that. Since I have sensitive skin, a lot of acne-clearing products dry out my skin too much, but this Clarifying Serum is lightweight and not at all drying. I also like that I can apply it all over my face 3-4 nights a week preventatively, instead of waiting for a pimple to pop up and treating it with spot cream. — Bridget

Star ingredients: 

  • Willow Bark regenerates the skin
  • Niacinamide minimizes redness, pore appearance, and regulates oil
  • Zinc is anti-inflammatory

Buff It Out AHA Exfoliating Body Scrub

This is the latest in the cult-favorite line. I’ve been wary of body exfoliants in the past (they’re often way too harsh on my sensitive skin. Thankfully, this gentle but effective scrub has saved the day when it comes to replenishing my winter skin. When I’m taking *the shower* (IYKYK), it’s my favorite part of my multi-step routine. A simple quarter-sized dollop of the product lathered over my skin gave me noticeably brighter and smoother skin all over. — Isabelle

Star ingredients:

  • Glycolic Acid (a type of alpha hydroxy acid) supports exfoliation, removing dead skin cells and allowing for new skin cell generation
  • Lactic Acid is one of the gentlest alpha-hydroxy acids, making it suitable for dry and sensitive skin.
  • Pomegranate Enzymes support the skin with antioxidants, promoting cell renewal while brightening the skin

Press Restart Gentle Retinol Serum

Retinol is perhaps the buzziest skincare product right now, and it’s designed to “press restart” on your skin and help with everything from texture to acne. If you’ve been nervous to implement retinol into your skincare routine (like me), this is the perfect starter product. It’s super gentle because while it does contain retinol, it also contains retinol substitutes. I used this three times a week and didn’t experience any redness or dryness, so I feel confident in using retinol more often. Just make sure to always wear SPF to protect the new skin cells. — Bridget

Star ingredients:

  • Encapsulated retinol promotes cell turnover but releases over time, which reduces risks of irritation
  • Vitamin A speeds up healing and has anti-aging properties
  • Bakuchiol is a plant-based, retinol-like ingredient that improves brightness and uneven skin tones

Doctor’s Visit Instant Resurfacing Mask

Now in my late 20s, I’ve been more conscious of booking regular facials as a part of my preventative skincare routine. This Resurfacing Mask has been a game changer in between treatments, leaving my skin smoother and more rejuvenated. I also love that it’s a quick mask that lends noticeable results after 2-3 minutes. While there are some self-care Saturdays when I’m all about a 20-minute or more mask, when it comes to weekday skin care, I want to keep things streamlined, but effective. Glycolic and lactic acid team up to brighten skin while pineapple and papaya enzymes infuse skin with a healthy boost of vitamin C (key for hydrated, glowy skin). A little goes a long way, so expect this jar to last you a while. — Isabelle

Star ingredients:

  • Salicylic acid helps skin retain moisture while clearing out pore buildup for blemish-free skin
  • Pineapple and papaya enzymes are rich in vitamin C, brightening skin

The Shortcut Overnight Facial Peel

This product is called “The Shortcut” for a reason because, after cleansing, it’s the only product you need to use. Facial peels have always intimidated me a bit since I’m wary of intense treatments, but this particular peel was so gentle. While I am not sure if I saw many visible results with this product, my skin did feel smooth and soft every morning after sleeping with this peel on. — Bridget

Star ingredients: 

  • Lactic and glycolic acid break down dead skin
  • Rosehip hydrates and moisturizes the skin
  • Vitamin E keeps the skin calm

Guards Up Daily Mineral Sunscreen

Meet my new favorite sunscreen. I got serious about my SPF use in my early 20s, but hadn’t found a sunscreen I was 100% happy with (i.e., no white cast, long-lasting, and didn’t irritate my skin). This broad-spectrum SPF is made for all skin types and offers everyday protection. As for the application, I’ve found that this sunscreen gives my skin a slight, but noticeable glow. And while the brand is careful to note that it’s not a tinted SPF, I’ve been loving the dewy, more radiant appearance it gives my skin. I can’t emphasize this enough: while the SPF 35 might not cut it in the middle of summer, this sunscreen is my daily go-to. — Isabelle

Star ingredients:

  • Sea Fennel Extract offers amino acid peptides, helping to boost elastin and keratin to firm skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles
  • Moringa Seed Extract contains vitamin A to build collagen and vitamin C to fight signs of aging

Stroke of Brilliance Brightening Serum

I loved using this serum in the mornings. While it is hard to see results right away with vitamin C serums, this product gave my skin an immediate glow. The licorice root extract also gave the serum a natural scent that reminds me of chocolate (weird, I know). Definitely wait for this to dry completely before putting on makeup, as it can be a little sticky. — Bridget

Star ingredients:

  • Vitamin C brightens and firms
  • Licorice root lightens the skin
  • Niacinamide evens out skin tone

Moisture Maker Hydrating Hyaluronic Serum

OK, I’ll admit—I’m super late to the game when it comes to incorporating this plumping, hydrating ingredient into my skincare routine. However, wary of the wrinkles that I’m told will begin setting in any day, I knew it was time to dive in. Thankfully, my skin immediately took to Versed’s serum. (I’ve heard from others that it’s taken multiple attempts before finding a hyaluronic acid serum they vibed with.) After cleansing, I patted my skin almost dry—this is key—before applying two drops of the serum to my face, neck, and chest. I waited a minute or so before applying my face oil and moisturizer.

After a few days following this process morning and night, I noticed that my skin seemed bouncier and had lost its dry, winter dullness. What’s more, as my skin typically leans oily, it was instead perfectly balanced and glowy. If you’re looking for a hyaluronic acid serum to add to your skincare routine, I can’t say enough good things about this (affordable) pick. — Isabelle

Star ingredients:

  • Hyaluronic Acid Complex helps skin retain moisture for noticeably plumper skin
  • Snow Mushroom Extract hydrates skin, boosts elasticity, and calms redness

Skin Soak Rich Moisturizing Cream

This is my new favorite ‘heavier’ moisturizer. It’s definitely on the rich side but still isn’t greasy. My dry skin tends to need an extra boost of hydration in the winter, so this has been my go-to. My only note with this product is that it’s a little too thick for underneath makeup, so I usually use it at night or on no-makeup days. — Bridget

Star ingredients:

  • Squalane hydrates and replenishes moisture
  • Hyaluronic acid draws in and retains moisture
  • Red algae extract restores skin

Press Restart Gentle Retinol Body Lotion

Like the retinol serum, this lotion is the refresh the rest of your body is looking for. As we’re rounding out winter, I’ve been conscious to keep up my body moisturizing game. But honestly, I hadn’t yet found a product that my skin fully absorbs without that dreaded sticky feeling. Instead, my skin soaks up this body lotion when I apply it immediately after my shower (in the name of retaining as much moisture as possible). TMI, but my cracked knees and elbows have never been happier—or more hydrated. — Isabelle

Star ingredients:

  • Cocoa Butter is a key ingredient in other body lotions for a reason—when it comes to moisturizing skin all over, it delivers
  • Encapsulated Retinol stimulates collagen production and cell renewal
  • Vitamin E moisturizes skin while fighting off free radicals

Day Dissolve Cleansing Balm

I love cleansing balms, so I was really looking forward to trying this product. Turns out, it was actually my least favorite of the bunch. Cleansing balms are meant to dissolve makeup without stripping away moisture, but I had to wash my face up to three times to completely remove makeup. I ended up using this first, then going in with a gel cleanser to make sure my face was truly clean. However, a little does go a long way and I liked the light scent from the eucalyptus oil. — Bridget

Star ingredients:

  • Eucalyptus and clove leaf oils are naturally antibacterial and add a spa-like scent
  • Vitamin E is moisturizing and healing
  • Avocado oil calms and heals dry skin

Wash It Out Gel Cleanser

The Wash It Out Gel Cleanser is soap-free, clean, and eye-safe. It gave my skin the squeaky clean feeling that I actually love, without leaving it feeling too dry or tight. Rosewater and mint give it a refreshing, cooling feel and smell. As previously mentioned, I used this product after doing an initial cleanse with the cleansing balm. I used this cleanser twice a day, every day, and barely made a dent in the bottle, so it will last you a long time. — Bridget

Star ingredients:

  • Ceramides are fatty acids naturally found in skin that keep the skin moisturized, plump, and youthful
  • Rosewater balances skin’s natural oils and adds a natural scent
  • Seaweed extract soothes and softens

Mood Lighting Luminizing Glow Drops

Of all the products in this Versed skincare review, these glow drops now have a permanent spot in my makeup bag. Versed describes this product as acting and feeling like a serum, but looking like the perfect glow. (I truly couldn’t have put it better myself!) I used these drops on no-makeup days to give my skin a natural glow and as the last step of my face makeup to add some extra brightness. I’m all about the glow, so I loved that this product acts as both makeup and skin care, as it hydrates and plumps. I have fair to medium skin and used the shade Sheer Golden. — Bridget

Star ingredients:

  • Peptide polyglutamic acid hydrates and strengthens the skin’s barrier
  • Blackberry extract is rich in antioxidants

Every product is curated with care by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a small commission at no cost to you.

This post was originally published on December 29, 2021, and has since been updated.

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