Estee Lauder Enlighten Dark Spot Correcting Night Serum: Expect Skin Radiance. Lightening? Not So Much

Estee Lauder Enlighten Dark Spot Correcting Night Serum

This serum landed on my desk for review a few months ago and I can’t believe I haven’t reviewed it yet even though I’ve been using it almost daily. You may or may not be able to tell from my photos but I have hyperpigmentation developing on my cheeks. I don’t think it’s due to the lack of sunscreen because goodness knows I apply it religiously.

The hyperpigmentation I have is pretty much a genetic thing; my mum has severe hyperpigmentation and so did my late grandparents. My freckles started to show some time around 6-7 years ago. It may look cute to some now but if I’m not careful, in time it will spread to the rest of my face where even my freckles will have freckle babies. If there’s anything I can safely use that can help lighten any of those dark spots, I’ll happily give it a go.

I’ve been using the Estee Lauder Enlighten serum for a few months now and thought I’d share my views on it with you. From the title, I think you can already guess my opinion on this, right? 😛

Water, Dimethicone, Isododecane, Polysilicone-11, Butylene Glycol, Ascorbyl Glucoside, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Morus Bombycis (Mulberry) Root Extract, Gentiana Lutea (Gentian) Root Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract, Yeast Extract, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Salicylic Acid, Caffeine, Hydrolyzed Rice Bran Extract, Sodium PCA, Resveratyl Ferulate, Molasses Extract, Polysorbate 20, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Xanthan Gum, Tocopheryl Acetate, Acetyl Glycosamine, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Caprylyl Glycol, Hydrolyzed Prunus Domestica, Dimethyoxyyltoyl Propylresorcinol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Isohexadecane, Glyceryrrhetinic Acid, DI-C12-18 Alkykl Dimonium Chloride, PEG-6, Polysorbate 80, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Fragrance (Parfum), Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Sulfite, Sodium Metabisulfite, Tromethamine, Hexylene Glycol, Silica, Dimethicone Silylate, Disodium EDTA, BHA, Phenoxyethanol, Titanium Dioxide, Mica.

Estee Lauder Enlighten Dark Spot Correcting Night Serum

The serum is a very light, oil-free lotion that feels velvety smooth on the skin. It absorbs very quickly and leaves no greasiness behind. It’s also quite heavily fragranced which I found really unnecessary because 1) it can irritate sensitive skin (thankfully, my skin was unscathed) and 2) the floral scent can be slightly too strong for some. I would have liked this serum a whole lot more if it wasn’t that strongly perfumed.

The purpose of this serum is to reduce the appearance of dull skin and even out uneven skin tone. While I didn’t notice any lightening of my dark spots (especially on one particular large dark spot on my left cheek), my skin did perk up and didn’t look dull (this was prior to my holiday to Malaysia). It gave my skin an all-round radiance, which was exactly what I wanted.

Estee Lauder Enlighten Dark Spot Correcting Night Serum

Unfortunately, as I left this serum behind when I travelled to Malaysia, my skin went downhill. It became lacklustre, dull and felt gritty like sandpaper. When I came home to Melbourne, I started using it again and while it’s taking its time to add that radiance back to my skin, at least it’s helping (albeit slowly) my skin to get its lustre back. However, if we’re talking about reduction in the appearance of dark spots and discolourations, I’m afraid I didn’t see any improvement in those areas at all.

Mind you, this is not a bad serum but I prefer and would recommend the Advanced Night Repair over this serum any time. That serum worked a lot better for me and it doesn’t smell strongly of perfume. If you’re going to splurge on a good serum, I say go for the popular brown bottle instead.

Estee Lauder Enlighten Dark Spot Correcting Night Serum

Estee Lauder’s Enlighten Dark Spot Correcting Night Serum retails at AU$95.00 for 30ml and AU$140.00 for 50ml and is available at Estee Lauder counters at major departmental stores nationwide.

What I like about it: Lovely texture, gave my skin an overall radiance, helped reduce dullness.

What I do not like about: Heavily fragranced, didn’t notice any reduction in the appearance of dark spots, discolourations and redness on my skin.

Have you tried this Estee Lauder serum? What are your thoughts on it? If not, do you use any “dark-spot correcting” serums?

This product was provided for editorial consideration. For more information, please read our disclosure policy.

For weekly updates, news and heaps more fun stuff, do subscribe and join the awesome BA Insider community!

Join the BA Insider Community



7 comments… add one
  1. Paris B

    I actually have a bit of a bone to pick with these dark spot correcting serums. Few, if any work and have you noticed how when you stop using these ‘brightening’ products, your skin goes downhill? I have a suspicion we’re creating a dependency and that bugs me because it just shouldn’t happen. If it does treat the skin, then it should look good even after you stop using the product, not look noticeably more dull. It’s just my view anyway, and it’s why I’ve stopped using these sorts of serums and creams. I’ve found that a good anti-aging and hydrating regimen does more for skin glow than a brightening serum and that’s what I’m focusing on now. Plus my skin likes it better. I find these whitening/brightening products very drying as well, but hey, I live in Asia and here’s where the market is! I just refuse to push it haha 😀
    Paris B recently posted..8 yearsMy Profile

    1. Tine

      Hmmm I don’t think my skin has gone downhill when I stopped using those brightening products. Oh dear, it did for you? 🙁

      I’ve only used a few dark spot correcting serums and truth be told, none of them actually worked in lightening the dark spots. If I’m only going to depend on those and not bother with sunscreen, I can bet you my best bag that my dark spots will get a lot worse even if I ply heaps of these dark spot correcting serums on.

      I must say though, Vitamin C serums do work well for me. Say 15-20%? I can definitely tell the difference. But yeah, I’ve changed my skincare routine around about a year or two ago and have definitely concentrated a lot more on hydration than brightening. Skin cannot tahan without a good boost of hydration. I wanna say that age is surely catching up with me but erm, better not. Ahem. 😛

  2. Robert C.

    I think no matter how many serums that EL puts out in the market, the brown bottled classic is the best and forever go-to, in my opinion. I don’t know why, I just feel that it triumphs EL’s other serums. I also agree with Paris, that a good hydrating regimen does better for the skin. Plus, these dark spot reducing or whitening serums are becoming extremely popular which kinda bugs me, they often are priced higher than most products too (EL’s Cresent White range), and for some reason, most often it’ll be “specifically and tested for asian skin”. Sigh.
    Personally, I’ve stopped using these whitening/brightening products partly because there aren’t much in the UK market due to the lack of demand (tanning is a thing here, the idea does not sit well with me haha) and because I find that I have to use most if not all of the whole range to even get minor “brightening” effect, for some reason, thus making it inconvenient.
    Robert C. recently posted..Facials, do you need them? + TipsMy Profile

    1. Tine

      Oh I most definitely agree. Estee Lauder has done a lot of serums over the years but by far the best I reckon is still the Advanced Night Repair. Many a time I feel that that “tested for Asian skin” thing is to target the Chinese market. They’re such a large demographic to tap into. I know a lot of people who aren’t Asian but used all these so-called “tested for Asian skin” products and they work for them as well.

      Oh tanning is huge in Australia too! But I must say, a lot of brands are slowly but surely bringing out more of their “brightening” ranges because they realised that not everyone wants to have tanned skin.

  3. MonicaP

    I haven’t tried the Estee Lauder lightener, but I’ve tried the Clinique Even Better Clinical Spot Corrector and this does make my skin brighter with regular use (as in every day use). Once I stop or start using other products the brightness rather fades.

    I’ve also tried Garnier Clinical Skin Renew Dark Spot Anti Sun Damage (Spf 28) lotion and this product is a dud. It make my face greasy and causes some itchy allergic reaction on my neck and chest .. ugh, nasty product.

    MonicaP recently posted..Time to get up and goMy Profile

    1. Tine

      Ouch! That’s awful. I don’t think we have that here but I reckon I’ll be staying away just in case. >.<

  4. Nevaeh

    Thank you for such an awesome article dear and from my experience with sheamoisture. I want to share that i am using dark spots removal for my hair Because this non-greasy skin care product which absorbs easily and penetrates deep into the skin to correct dark spots leaving you with soft, beautifully toned skin!

Leave a Reply

Share your latest blog post with us!

Scroll To Top

Not another bloody pop-up! I know. But now that I've gotten your attention (because this is how I roll *ahem ahem*), come join the BA Insider community! Sign up for a weekly newsy letter for your beauty and lifestyle fix. Straight to your inbox.

Because I love you for reading this and not closing the pop-up just yet, you'll also receive a FREE Skincare Cheat Sheet where I share some of my tips for taking better care of your skin. Let's keep that gorgeous mug of yours glowing!

We hate spam as much as baked beans. We also won't share your details with anyone because we're selfish like that.