SVR Sebiaclear Serum – Review

Today’s review is about an amazing product I am going to say it up front. It’s packed with powerful ingredients, and don’t let the advertising to mislead you. You can use whether you’ve got acne or not. 

Sebiaclear Serum was developed for adults with acne-prone skin and it has ‘a triple action: anti-blemishes, marks, and wrinkles.’ Moreover, SVR promise us that our skin will be ‘smoother, plumper, and protected against external aggression.’ All thanks to the unique formula combining 14% gluconolactone and 4% niacinamide, a retinoid-like ingredient, hyaluronic acid, botanical antioxidants, and antipollution sugar. If sugar could fight pollution from the inside, it would be even better. SVR advertise the serum for adults and they promise results in 7 days ( Let’s crack those claims and see what we’ve got.

Overall, it’s a nice hydrating serum packed with a lot of antioxidants, I agree with SVR on this one. There’s 4% niacinamide, plant extracts, vitamin E, and lovely hydrating ingredients such as glycerine and hyaluronic acid. Moreover, the serum contains 14% gluconolactone which is a PHA (polyhydroxy acid) same family as azelaic and mandalic acids, so it provides gentle and effective exfoliation. This PHA combined with niacinamide (great for fighting hyperpigmentation and blemishes) gives us an excellent base for anti-acne serum. Then there are also the extracts containing antioxidants making it a perfect serum both for adults and teens and not only for acne sufferers. SVR, however, have decided to target it as a serum for adults with acne-prone skin, and I understand why. 

Of course, if you are a teen you can use this serum, as it isn’t truly an ‘anti-wrinkle’ product, but it will not do much for teenage acne. Teenage acne in most cases is bacterial, there are also hormones involved, and the ingredients here are not suitable for fighting bacteria. Also, if you suffer from fungal acne (Malassezia), it will not be helpful. It will moisturise your skin, and you will get the benefits of an antioxidant serum, but this serum will not do much for bacterial or fungal acne. You need more specific products for either of these cases. For example, SVR’s treatment products like Sebiaclear Active or Cicapeel will more helpful in fighting bacteria causing acne as they contain salicylic acid (BHA). You could use both the serum and the aforementioned products if you are keen on trying it.  You could also incorporate the serum with actives of your choice.

Let’s talk about the ‘retinoid-like’ ingredient. I have reached out to SVR to ask which ingredient it is, as I couldn’t identify it myself in the list. The word ‘retinoid’ sounds quite intriguing, especially now with all the hype for using retinoids. SVR responded saying, it’s crithmum maritimum extract (sea fennel extract), which supposedly works like a retinoid aka it has keratolytic properties minus the irritation and all the fuss involved with using retinoids. From my research, the plant contains antioxidants, here’s one paper that I’ve found about this ingredient ( But the claims that SVR make about this plant seem to come from the supplier. I would take SVR’s claims about this extract with a grain of salt. If it was such an incredible plant, I am sure other companies would be hooked on it as well. I am not trying to say it isn’t a good extract to use in skin care, but comparing it to retinoids is an exaggeration.

So the bottom line is, this is a good hydrating, anti-acne, anti-oxidant serum that will work for adults and teens. Perfect for anyone whose acne is triggered by the environment and lifestyle changes, diet, etc. And how does it work?

So here’s my story and why I started using this serum. When I moved to Italy (mentioned in my update) in October, I adopted the Italian lifestyle and mainly the cuisine. The Italian way of eating involves a lot of sweets, especially in my version when I want to try them all at once (I have a sweet tooth). A typical Italian breakfast involves coffee and sweets – how lovely; then you also grab something sweet throughout the day. Back in October, there were 30 degrees in Milan, so it would be nice to have ice cream once in a while to cool down, right? In short, the sugar was adding up, without me even realising how much sugar I was consuming in a day. On top of that, there were other changes in my life like the environment. Let’s be honest, the air in Milan is poor. It’s a huge industrial city, there’s smog, and it affects the skin. Also, the water is quite hard here. My skin is still trying to get used to it. Another thing, the stress involved with moving, it was a total nightmare for me during the first few weeks. All of these showed up on my face, quite quickly. Normally, I would apply some Skinoren in this kind situations and fight the blemishes with whatever else I have in my collection. However, when I moved here, I didn’t have much as most of my belongings would arrive a couple of weeks after me, so I need to rely on what I can get locally.

I went to a local pharmacy, and I started browsing through the shelves, looking for something that could help me. Probably many people would go for LRP Effeclar, but it’s just too harsh for my skin. I had to find something gentle and effective. Then I came across this serum, and I read the label. I wasn’t fully convinced, but I thought it’s SVR so it should work. With a leap of faith, I invested 20 euros in this serum. I must admit that it was well worth it. Within a short period of time, I noticed a change. The number of spots decreased, pigmentation started to fade, and I regained my confidence and happiness. After I’d moved here my face went crazy, and this serum worked its magic on me. I just used the serum alongside with my salicylic acid wash from Sylveco, and it helped me to get control over my face. Obviously, I also cut down on sugar to the minimum, but this serum has done an incredible job. I am usually not into serums specifically targeting acne, but this one is really good. It’s hydrating, packed with wonderful ingredients, and it’s relatively affordable. Lastly, as I usually comment on the fragrance, it’s barely there, so no worries about that.

I highly recommend this serum to someone who struggles with acne triggered by lifestyle and environmental changes. Also, to someone who has acne-prone skin and wants a good product that will hydrate the skin and keep blemishes at bay, in a gentle way. It can be used on its own or as a supportive treatment, which would be the case with bacterial, fungal acne. However, I believe it’s worth a shot. If you use other products to battle acne, this can help you both to hydrate the skin and to fight against blemishes and hyperpigmentation, as it contains niacinamide and a PHA. It’s suitable for all skin types, though people with skins prone to allergic reactions and sensitivities should be careful, as always.

Folks without acne-prone skin or acne, if you live in urban or industrialised areas or lead a stressful life, I would say give this serum a try. It’s a great serum packed with antioxidants that will help your skin to cope with air contamination to which we all are exposed. If you live in a pristine environment – lucky you! Antipollution or antioxidant skincare is on the trend, now. Understandably, the air gets worse and worse in cities, and we want to protect our skin. But for some reason, antipollution or antioxidant skincare seems to be quite pricey, but this one isn’t. The price of this serum is another reason, why I think it’s worth giving a shot, even if you don’t have acne. 


SVR’s Sebiaclear Serum is available on Amazon worldwide [aff]. 

While you’re here, I want to ask all of you a favour. I am petitioning for a ban on sunbeds in the EU; the Petitions Committee approved my petition last Friday, and it’s now available to supporters. I would love it if you could support my petition on the EU’s petitions website – here. Unfortunately, you have to register on the EU’s petitions website – I know it’s a dealbreaker for many people, so it’s ok if you don’t want to. Also, you don’t have to be an EU citizen/resident to register. If you have any questions regarding my petition or the registration process, please do not hesitate to ask; you can contact me via email, Instagram, and Weibo. I really appreciate any help you can provide.


16 thoughts on “SVR Sebiaclear Serum – Review

  1. Hi! I bought this serum but I have sensitive skin and when I put it on it makes my skin a bit more red and also burns a little bit.
    I only used it two times. Do you think I definitely should stop using it? Or make a progressive use ( 1 time a week, for example and then 2…) to see how the skin reacts?
    Thank you! Sílvia

    1. Hi Sílvia, this serum contains PHA which is an exfoliant. It might be the reason why you get redness and irritation. Have you ever used acid exfoliants before?
Since your skin is sensitive I would introduce the serum slowly. Give your skin a couple of days to calm down. Then start using the serum by mixing it with your moisturiser and don’t apply it everyday. You can do it like you mentioned, once a week, then twice a week, etc. Once your skin tolerates the serum, you can try to use it on its own and see what happens. I hope this helps and keep me updated.
      Dom 🙂

      1. Hi Dom! Thank you so much for your quick answer. I will give it a second chance and then I´ll inform you! You´ve got a new follower 🙂 Keep up the good work!

  2. Hello there!
    My dermatologist recommended this for me because of my adult acne, we did the test and found out it was not from hormones. The thing that “worries” me is that she said not to use it with other ingredients (my moisturiser is CERAVE moisturizing cream, and I also aplly Vichy Mineral 89. For washing I use the CeraVe Foaming Cleanser and Eucerin DermoPure cleansing gel with salicylic acid) in other words I don’t put a lot on my skin, but winter is coming so i’m worried that this serum will not be enough to moisturize my face. Why did she tell me NOT to use it with my other products, especially with my DermoPure that contains salicylic acid. She made me kinda scared of this serum lol
    Sorry if i’m annoying with my questions. Much thanks.

    1. Hi San!
      You are not annoying at all. I am glad you asked.
      I guess she wanted the serum to work on its own and not to be interrupted by other products, so if you apply something else, simply wait until the serum is absorbed completely. CeraVe Foaming Cleanser is perfectly fine to use with any routine; you need something gentle to wash your face with. But, I can understand why your doctor did not want you to use this serum with Eucerin’s DermoPure cleanser. This serum contains gluconolactone which is acid from the family of polyhydroxy acids. It has the property of exfoliating the dead skin. So gluconolactone and salicylic acid from the cleanser may be too much for your skin to handle. Though, you can switch between the two products. As for the Mineral 89 and cream that you use, in my opinion, this serum is perfectly fine to layer with your hydrating products. I agree with you, winter is coming, and your skin will get dry, so you need them. You can skip the Mineral 89 (or you can use it on the same days as the DermoPure cleanser), but stick to your CeraVe cream. Also, do you mean the CeraVe Moisturising Cream in a pot or the CeraVe Facial Moisturising Lotion (also known as the Facial Moisturising Lotion PM)? If you use the CeraVe Moisturising Cream, then it may not be the best choice for acne-prone skin. The Moisturising Cream contains petrolatum, which is considered to be possibly comedogenic. Some people with oily or acne-prone avoid it at all cost. However, if your skin is okay with it, then carry on using it.
      I hope this helps you, and if you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to ask.

  3. Much appreciate the fast answer!
    Sooooo, I am actually using the Cream, that containst, as you said petrolatum. That might be a reason for my breakouts. Damn, I am currently ordering the Moisturising Lotion. Thanks for enlightening me on that ❤
    What about using the serum at night and washing my face with the DermoPure in the morning? Or is it too short of a time period between the two products?

    1. You’re welcome! I’m sure that changing your moisturiser to the lighter version will help.
      That’s perfectly fine, then you can follow with the Mineral 89, your moisturiser. Don’t forget to use SPF as you use acids.

    1. Hi there, this serum has the potential to fight blemishes, but for blackheads specifically, I would recommend a product with salicylic acid as it can penetrate through sebum. I am not sure what you mean by brown spots if you refer to hyperpigmentation left by acne spots, then the niacinamide in this product can help with that.

  4. […] Update 14/01/2021: When I was writing the review, I focused too much on salicylic acid and completely forgot to mention gluconolactone in the product. Gluconolactone (PHA) is a fantastic exfoliant, and it contributes to the effectiveness of the product. One of my favourite serums has gluconolactone as its main ingredient, the SVR Sebiaclear Serum. […]

  5. […] Let me start by saying that this product is not the same as the Effaclar Serum in a transparent phial sold in the USA and Spain. The other thing is, why did it take so long for L’Oréal to release this type of serum? Similar formulations have been in their line-ups for years like the now discontinued La Roche-Posay Biomedic LHA Serum or SkinCeuticals Blemish + Age Defense. I am not going to try to understand the logic behind it, anyway, 2020 was too late for launching this sort of serum; it should’ve happened around the time SVR released their Sebiaclear Serum.  […]

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