Skin moisturizers have been around since skincare was invented. From the time when Ancient Greeks bathed in olive oil, to the concoctions victorian ladies used to achieve glowing skin that required minimum makeup, moisturizing the skin has always been a priority for those who fancy radiant skin. In the 60s, Clinique introduced and marketed the skin regimen that many still use nowadays: cleanse, tone, moisturize. However, in the past 20 years, with many new formulas being introduced in the market, moisturizers have seen a bit of a decline in popularity. So what are moisturizers? Should everyone use one? What is the difference between serum, moisturizer, lotion, or sunscreen? Stick with us, we’ll give you all the answers.
On this post:
- What is a moisturizer?
- Should I use a moisturizer?
- How do I choose a hydrator?
- When should I use my cream?
- The best moisturizers for every skin need
What is a moisturizer?
A moisturizer is a product that has the main function of keeping the skin hydrated. It can be a water-in-oil emulsion (more oil than water) or an oil-in-water (more water than oil). In either case, what matters the most is to achieve a perfectly balanced formula. These moisturizers will act in a way to both add more water to the skin and prevent the loss of the water content. This means that the skin will become supple, hydrated, and bouncy.
How does a product do this? It starts by containing a relevant percentage of water in the formula, combined with humectants. These humectants are able to grab the water and stop it from evaporating, keeping it on the skin. Ingredients that act as humectants are things like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, or panthenol. Then add bits and bobs to make sure the formula is stable and easy to preserve, select a few extras to ensure added benefits and you’re done.
Should I use a moisturizer?
The short answer is “yes”. The long answer, however, is a bit more tricky. The fact is that you should be using a moisturizer, in the sense that you should be keeping your skin hydrated. However, what actually IS a moisturizer is another thing entirely. One could argue that cream is a synonym for moisturizer. However, some “creams” are so light that they actually are lotions. And a lot of serums are hydrating. All in all you just really need to make sure your skin is comfortable. It’s totally ok to skip your cream if your serum is doing the job and your sunscreen nourishes your skin. Or you can use the three of them. Whatever rocks your boat and keeps your skin happy.
How do I choose a hydrator?
Firstly, you need to know exactly what your skin needs. Most creams not only hydrate but also contain other benefits. Secondly, you need to know your skin type in order to choose the best texture. Heavier and balmy textures are usually perfect for dry skins, and gel-like formulas are ideal for oily skins. To sum it up, you need to look for two things: what you want it to do and how it should feel on the skin.
When should I use my cream?
Ideally, you should use it in the morning and evening. As for the routine step, the moisturizer should come after the toner and serum, but before sunscreen and makeup.
The best moisturizers for every skin need
No matter your skin type or skin needs, we’re confident we can find a suitable moisturizer for you. Keep reading to find your new cream!
La Roche-Posay Nutritic Intense Rich Cream
Best for Very Dry Skin
Sometimes all you need from your moisturizer is one simple thing: that it is the most nourishing thing you’ve ever tried. If that’s your case, then this is the one for you. This cream is ideal if you’re always looking for something a bit more nourishing. Whether your skin feels tight or you’re facing harsh weather, a replenishing cream is all you need.
COSRX Full Fit Propolis Honey Overnight Mask
Ideal for Oily Skin
Finding a moisturizer for oily skin is something close to trying to find the Holy Grail. It looks both impossible and marvelous at the same time. However, we’ve done the work for you, and feel safe to declare that we’ve found the one. We know it says mask, but it’s an overnight mask that can be used daily. It’s technically a daily moisturizer and we’ll go with it. The gel-like formula leaves no residue behind and helps to reduce oil and blemishes.
Bioderma Sébium Global Intensive Purifying Care Acne-Prone Skin
Acne-Prone Skin’s Best Friend
When acne is the issue, we want to be targeting it in every step of the routine. This light lotion helps to reduce acne breakouts by combining several ingredients. The idea is to soothe the skin, while targeting breakouts. For that purpose, it contains ingredients such as enoxolone, bakuchiol, AHA, and patents such as SeboRestore to regulate sebum production.
CeraVe Facial Moisturising Lotion
Perfect for Dry Skin
The ideal moisturizer for dry skin should be easy to apply and accessible. Therefore, CeraVe is a no-brainer when it comes to hydrating dry skin. The pump makes it ultra-usable, and it’s also incredibly affordable. If anything, one good thing about skin hydrators is that you don’t need to spend a lot to get the results you wish for.
Avène Tolèrance Extrême Emulsion Light Texture
Soothing Balm for Sensitive Skin
People with sensitive skin are usually tired of spending money that leads to nowhere. However, some brands are just everything one looks for. This is the case with Avène, one of the go-to brands for sensitive skin. This Tolèrance emulsion combines a very light texture with an ultra-soothing formula. Thus, it’s ideal for those who need their skin to calm down, but don’t want intensely nourishing formulas.
YOUTH LAB Balance Mattifying Cream
Combination skin can be tricky. Usually, it needs to be treated as if one has two different skins. However, some genius products are just spot-on. This moisturizer from YOUTH LAB. creates a perfect oil-free hydrating experience without breaking you out. Additionally, it contains salicylic acid, thus improving the texture and reducing blemishes.
NUXE Crème Fraîche de Beauté 48h Moisturizing Cream
Natural ingredients hero
If you’re hunting for natural products, NUXE has both vegan formulas and highly natural ingredients percentages. This Crème Fraîche de Beauté range combines an invigorating fragrance with highly hydrating ingredients. Thus, it’s one of the ideal products for those who want the full spa-like experience.
Evolve Multi Peptide 360 Moisture Cream
The Eco-Friendly Moisturizer
Evolve is a hero brand for those looking for eco-conscious products. The fun fact is that they don’t just have one moisturizer, they always have extra added benefits. We’ve selected the one with peptides, that provide an anti-aging action, besides the hydrating formula.
SVR Sensifine AR Cream
Redness Has Been Cancelled
If you suffer from rosacea, it’s highly probable that redness is part of your life. However, there are some products that are able to help with that. This Sensifine helps to reduce redness and also soothes the skin. Therefore, it’s the perfect complement to add before your sunscreen in the morning.
La Roche-Posay Redermic Retinol Anti-Aging Corrector
One cannot talk about anti-aging without mentioning retinol, so we bring you one of our best-selling retinols. There’s a good reason why it’s so popular: it’s suitable for all skin types and contains a high percentage of retinol. However, it’s also a great one for those who are starting their retinol journey.
If you wish to check out more options, be sure to stop by our moisturizers section. We’re sure you’ll be able to find out the perfect one for you.
Head of Content at Care to Beauty