Buy Now or Cry Later: A Made-in-Vancouver Serum That’s Evening the Heck Out of My Skin

The serum has sold out multiple times since its launch—and with good reason.

April 17, 2019

By Lucy Lau / Photo: Riversol

Buy Now or Cry Later is a bi-weekly(ish) feature that recommends the newest, coolest and best fashion, beauty and home finds in our fair city. Heed our advice and buy now—or risk a stream of tears later if and when an item sells out.

Like many people, I’ve suffered (and suffer) from acne. Unlike many people, I did not suffer from acne until after uni. Which is to say that when I did begin having breakouts in my early 20s, I was not as well versed in best acne practices (i.e., not picking at your pimples!) as I maybe should’ve been. Most likely because I had spent a good part of my teens flipping straight through skincare-related articles in Seventeen to get to the juicy stuff (i.e., dating tips courtesy of Joel Madden and first-person recounts of shocking real-life events like “How I Met My Brother on MySpace!”)

Given my uber sensitive skin, this has resulted in a not-so-bright complexion marked by some pretty distinct redness (or post-inflammatory erythema, if you really wanna get scientific) on my cheeks. Believe me when I say I’ve tried a lot in an effort to rid my skin of this scarring: creams, oils, oil-based creams and even, at one point, light-and-laser treatments. To the chagrin of both me and my dwindling bank account balance, however, most of these have been relatively ineffective. In fact, I was almost resigned to just letting time and patience do its thing before this blue bottle of goodness—Riversol’s recently launched The Corrector—came across my desk last month.

The latest addition to local dermatologist Dr. Jason Rivers’s Riversol skincare line, The Corrector is essentially a serum with four powerhouse ingredients: tranexamic acid, which deals with skin discolouration; Beta-T or Pacific red cedar, an antioxidant that’s found in every Riversol product; Tetrapeptide-30, a synthetic peptide that works to reduce—and prevent—hyperpigmentation; and niacinamide, a form of vitamin B3 that smooths and brightens skin. I’ve been using The Corrector twice a day—applied immediately after cleansing—for a month now, and will 100 percent be purchasing myself a refill.

The short review is that this stuff works. My skin isn’t completely clear of redness (yet, I hope), but I’ve noticed a significant decrease in scarring with regular use—more so than with any other redness-reducing product I’ve tried, anyway. I’ve even transitioned to using a light-to-medium coverage foundation, rather than a full-coverage one, and find myself reaching for concealer less and less to cover up any lingering red marks. I suspect that it’s the combination of tranexamic acid, the skin-brightening properties of which I’ve read much about online, and the Beta-T, an ingredient I haven’t seen listed in any other skin potion I’ve tried.

I also love that The Corrector is paraben-free and fragrance-free, given that I have sensitive skin that doesn’t always react well to new products. (It’s cruelty-free, and locally developed and produced, to boot, for all the conscious skincare junkies out there.) Is my complexion as even-toned, radiant and glowing as the glass-like visage in a K-Beauty ad after drinking up one bottle of this serum? Well, no. But it’s closer to that than it has been in years—and that alone is enough to keep it in my skincare arsenal until, hopefully, I won’t need it (as much).

Riversol The Corrector, $88

Available at Pacific Derm, Pure Integrative Pharmacies and other select clinics and retailers, as well as online.


More from our “Buy Now or Cry Later” series:

A Cheery, Reusable (and Locally Crafted!) Grocery Bag

A Quality, Affordable Bra That Actually Does Its Job!


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