About Face

To keep your youthful glow, the skin on your face, neck and chest deserve some serious TLC.  Starting at a young age a really good beauty routine is key and should include a gentle facial cleanser, an exfoliator and a quality face moisturizer at least once, but preferably twice a day. These moisturizers enhance skin's natural moisturizing capabilities and form a barrier to protect your skin from environmental damage. 

Moisture for All Skin Types

There are also moisturizers for various skin types. Most are for normal skin but there are effective versions for dry, oily, and sensitive skin too.

Moisturizers designed for dry or sensitive skin are usually very creamy and have very mild ingredients that have less irritation or other adverse reactions. Many do not contain sunscreen or fragrance, as those can be common irritants for sensitive skin, as can be lanolin or other comedogenic (pore-clogging) ingredients.

Oily or acne-prone skin requires a lighter noncomedogenic lotion or gel to avoid clogging your pores instead of heavy creams. Other suggested ingredients include alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), which are especially useful for exfoliating your skin and clearing your pores.

Before using moisturizers on your face, it's advised to test on a patch of skin on your inner arm first.  If that area shows irritation, you'll know not to use that product on your face, as your skin is to sensative for it.

Common Face Moisturizer Ingredients

It's important to know some of the common ingredients that go into face moisturizers, heck into any product that you put on your body, so it's best to make an effort to understand what they are and what they do. 

Moisturizers – conditioning agents that add moisture to the skin: plant oils, shea butter, cocoa butter, silicones and animal oils (like lanolin).

Restorative Properties - ceramides, hyaluronic acid,  elastin

Humectants - attracts water to the skin: sorbitol, glycols, glycerin and sodium PCA.

Soothing agents / anti-irritants - helps counteract the irritation that may be caused by other common ingredients: bisabolol, allantoin, burdock root, aloe, licorice root, glycyrrhetinic acid, green tea and chamomile extract.

Exfoliants - clears pores and remove dead skin cells, leaving your face smooth and hydrated: alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), Salicylic acid, Glycolic acid, lactic acid and citric acid.

Sunscreen - protects skin against UVA / UVB: titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, avobenzone, tinosorb and mexoryl SX.

Antioxidants - helps prevent some of the damage caused by free radicals: Vitamins A, C and E, green tea extract, grapeseed oil.

Researching Ingredients

When it comes to ingredients in your skincare products, a little research from credible sources can help you make wise decsions when purchasing any product and even help to weigh out when to splurge or to stick with less expensive options. There are several resources available for your research but we find Ingredient Dictionary at cosmeticsinfo.org to be very useful.

To help in your search, we've featured some of the top selling face moisturizing products on the market AND have listed some of the key ingredients to help you make the best decision for your needs.

Stemology Cell Renew Moisture Complete

Price Range: $75.00

Rich and creamy moisturizing formula moisturizes in 3 ways to revive dry, dehydrated skin while minimizing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

  • Increases skin moisture and improves moisture barrier
  • Restores youthful glow, resiliency and tone
  • Naturally occurring glycoproteins provide unique emollient and moisturizing benefits to the skin

Key Ingredients:

Aloe Barbadensis (Organic Aloe Vera) Juice, Potassium Olivoyl Hydrolyzed Oat Protein, Sea Kelp (Lactobacillus/Kelp Ferment Filtrate) Bioferment,  Lactobacillus/ Arundinaria Gigantea (Bamboo) Ferment Filtrate, Hyaluronic Acid, Glycine Betaine (Beta Vulgaris (Beet)) Sugar Extract Ecocert, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Water, Pisum Sativum (Pea) Peptides, Lactobacillus/Arundinaria Gigantea (Bamboo) Leaf Ferment Filtrate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Garcinia Indica (Kokum) Butter, Theobroma Grandiflorum (Cupuacu) Butter,  Olea Europaea (Olive Oil), Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Sterols, Hydrolyzed Candida Saitoana Extract, Algae Extract and Arnica Montana Extract, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil,  Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Zinc PCA, Organic Avena Sativa (Oat), Organic Argania Spinosa (Argan) Oil, Daucus Carota (Carrot) Seed Oil, Myrciaria Dubia (Camu Camu) Extract, Salicylic Acid, Ubiquinone (Coenzyme Q10), Alpha Lipoic Acid, Coffea Arabica Extract, Symphytum Officinale Root Cell Extract, Human Stem Cell Derived Conditioned Media

Charlotte Tilbury Charlotte’s Magic Cream

Price Range: $100.00

BioNymph Peptide Complex, fights the aging process on all fronts: it stimulates collagen production and cell energy and fights free radicals, to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and smooth the skin. A hyaluronic acid booster called Sodium Hyaluronate floods skin with moisture, re-plumping the skin. And an infusion of rose hip oil and vitamin E bring your complexion back to life.

Key Ingredients:

  • The BioNymph Peptide Complex is a unique, patented anti-age ingredient that multi-tasks in the skin, fighting the aging process on all fronts. It increases collagen & fiber levels, prevents fiber break-down, fights free radicals and stimulates cell energy to reduce the appearance of wrinkles, improve skin elasticity & generally smooth things over.
  • Sodium Hyaluronate forms a film of hyaluronic acid over the skin to seal in moisture, whilst extracts of Wild Pansy promote the renewal of hyaluronic acid in the skin surface to retain moisture. Skin is plumped-up and youthfully dewy.
  • A mix of rose hip oil, camellia oil and anti-oxidant vitamin E transforms a gray complexion into hydrated, mirror-shine skin, nourishing Vitamin A helps improves skin firmness and smoothness and energetic Vitamin C is able to promote collagen activity for more youthful skin.
  • Damask rose water and organic aloe vera stimulate skin regeneration, fighting the signs of aging, naturally and gracefully.
  • Extracts of Frangipani, the symbol of eternity, form a soothing, purifying and hydrating comfort-blanket on the skin.
  • Paraben-free

Perricone MD Hypoallergenic Nourishing Moisturizer

Price Range: $80.00

Luxurious and velvety-rich in texture, the Nourishing Moisturizer helps to improve the skin’s natural barrier while softening the appearance of wrinkles for the look of firmer, more supple skin. Formulated with Dr. Perricone’s patented Olive Polyphenols, this moisturizer conditions and comforts the skin while being hypoallergenic, non-irritating and safe for sensitive skin.

  • Delivers essential moisture with a velvety-rich texture perfectly suitable for dry skin.
  • Helps to improve the appearance of firmness and tone.
  • Hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic and dermatologist-tested.

Rare extracts of Hydroxytyrosol from the olive fruit and Oleuropein from the olive leaf combine to make ideal anti-aging therapies for sensitive skin. Free of fragrance, parabens, phthalates, sulfates, mineral oil, petroleum and synthetic dyes.

Key Ingredients:

Water/Aqua, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, PEG-8 Dimethicone, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Acacia Decurrens/Jojoba/Sunflower Seed Wax/Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Cetyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Ethoxydiglycol, Squalane, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, PEG-75 Stearate, Benzyl Alcohol, Panthenol, Ectoin, Tribehenin, Ceteth-20, Steareth-20, Butylene Glycol, Phospholipids, Hydrolyzed Sericin, Allantoin, Xanthan Gum, Olea Europaea (Olive) Leaf Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Stearyl Glycyrrhetinate, Dehydroacetic Acid, Ceramide 2, PEG-10 Rapeseed Sterol, Elaeis Guineensis (Palm) Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Extract, Tocotrienols, Arginine, Tocopherol, Phosphatidylcholine, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide12% (Olea europaea, Organic Olive Juice Extract)

Eve Lom Oil Free Moisturiser

Price Range: $75.00

Eve Lom Oil Free Moisturiser is a lightweight, hydrating fluid that controls shine for oily to combination skin types. With a base of flower waters made up of witch hazel and cornflower that provide natural antiseptic benefits and help soothe inflammation. Swiss Alpine flower helps to control excess sebum production and works with salicylic acid to help treat existing blemishes. Lentil saccharides and mastic help minimize pores and refine skin texture and are combined with pomegranate enzyme to encourage cell turnover. Oil free, the refreshing, non comedogenic and weightless lotion leaves skin comforted with a matte finish.

Provides lightweight hydration, controls shine and excess sebum production, soothes inflammation, treats existing blemishes, minimizes pores, refines skin texture, oil free and non-comedogenic.

Key Ingredients:

Centaurea Cyanus Flower Water, Hamamelis Virginiana Flower Water, Lens Esculenta (Lentil) Seed Extract, Allantoin,  Salicylic Acid, Lactobacillus/Punica Granatum Fruit Ferment Extract,  Leuconostoc/Radish Root Ferment Filtrate, Aesculus Hippocastanum (Horse Chestnut) Seed Extract, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Leaf Extract,  Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf Extract.  

Toleriane Daily Soothing Moisturizer

Price Range: $28.99

Toleriane is a daily soothing moisturizer designed and formulated for sensitive skin.

  • With antioxidant Thermal Spring Water: soothe skin.
  • Contains a limited number of ingredients designed with the tolerance of sensitive skin in mind.

Key Ingredients:

Water/Aqua, Cyclopentasiloxane,  Isocetyl Stearate, Squalane, Glycerin, Isononyl Isononanoate, Pentylene Glycol, Aluminum Starch, Octenylsuccinate, Cetyl Alcohol, PEG-100 Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate, Dimethiconol, Ethylhexyglycerin, Acrylates Crosspolymer, Sodium Hydroxide

E.L.F Daily Hydration Moisturizer

Price Range: $8.00

This lightweight, lightly scented moisturizer helps hydrate and nourish for glowing, healthy looking skin. Infused with Purified Water and skin-nourishing Jojoba, Aloe, Vitamin E and Cucumber to help soothe and protect the delicate skin area. Rich in antioxidants such as Shea Butter, Grape and Orange. 

Key Ingredients:

Butylene Glycol, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Stearic Acid, PEG-100 Stearate, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Chrysanthellum Indicum Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract, Vaccinium Myrtillus Fruit/Leaf Extract, Citrus Sinensis (Orange) Fruit Extract, Acer Saccharum (Sugar Maple) Extract, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Fruit Extract 

Philosophy Hope in a Jar

Price Range: $44.00

This award-winning, original formula, lightweight daily moisturizer hydrates and provides antioxidant protection while improving skin texture and tone, leaving it smooth and radiant. This moisturizer contains lactic acid, a gentle alpha hydroxy acid that helps remove surface dead skin cells, and beta-glucan to promote overall skin health by helping to strengthen skin’s natural rejuvenation potential. hope in a jar dramatically improves skin radiance and gently exfoliates, revealing smoother, healthier looking skin and texture.

Key Ingredients:

lauryl lactate, behenic acid, behenoxy dimethicone, glycerin, glyceryl stearate se, behenyl alcohol, pentaerythrityl tetracaprylate/tetracaprate, cyclopentasiloxane, tocopheryl acetate, benzyl alcohol, cyclohexasiloxane, retinyl palmitate, arginine, stearic acid, panthenol, beta-glucan, lavandula angustifolia (lavender) oil, xanthan gum, triethanolamine, propylene glycol, geraniol, limonene, linalool, methylparaben, propylparaben, diazolidinyl urea

SK-II Brightening Derm Moisturiser

Price Range: $140.00

SK-II Brightening Derm Moisturizer is specially formulated with SK-II Exfoliation Complex that combines Pitera, salicylic acid and phytic acid to accelerate skin turnover with gentle exfoliation. This moisturizer revives dull, rough, tired-looking skin leaving it smoother, brighter and more translucent looking. Light, cooling, gel-cream texture that sinks into your skin within minutes.

Key Ingredients:

Cyclopentasiloxane, Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate, Glycerin,  Polyethylene, Niacinamide, Butylene Glycol, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Dimethicone, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Panthenol, Propylene Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Tocopherol, Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate, Sodium Metabisulfite, Allantoin, Agarum Cribosum Extract, Zea Mays (Corn) Oil, DNA, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sodium Hydroxide, Titanium Dioxide, Alumina, PEG-10 Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Bis-PEG/PPG-14/14 Dimethicone, PEG-10 Dimethicone, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, Carbomer, Benzyl Alcohol, Disodium EDTA, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben, Methylparaben, Butylparaben, Beta-Carotene (CI 40800).

PCA SKIN Silkcoat Balm 

Price Range: $39.00

Helps calm and improve the appearance of aging skin. Silk protein provides deep, non-greasy moisture. Formulated with antioxidants, botanicals and hydrolyzed silk, this moisturizer is the ultimate treatment for dry and mature skin, and skin in harsh or cold climates.

Key Ingredients:

  • Jojoba seed oil – a natural ingredient with moisturizing properties.
  • Hydrolyzed silk – a light, non-greasy moisturizer and skin conditioner.
  • Vitamin E – a powerful antioxidant.
  • Squalane – naturally occurring in olives and wheat germ, this ingredient keeps skin moist.

Tatcha Moisture Rich Cream

Price Range: $150.00

Luxurious yet weightless feeling gel-cream of silk extracts, squalane, royal Jelly and our anti-aging HADASEI-3TM Complex. 
Long-lasting anti-aging moisturizer without heavy oils. 
Ideal for normal/combination skin. Non-comedogenic. Non-irritating. Non-sensitizing. Formulated without: Mineral Oil, Synthetic fragrances, Sulfate Detergents, Parabens, PEGs, PPGs, Urea, DEA, TEA or Phthalates.

Key Ingredients:

Glycerin, Squalane (Olive Origin), Inositol (Rice Extract), Oryza Sativa (Rice) Germ Oil, Hydrogenated Lecithin (Soy Origin),  Ethylhexylglycerin, Arginine, Bis-behenyl/Isostearyl/Phytosteryl Dimer Dilinoleyl Dimer Dilinoleate,  Sericin (Silk Extract),  Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Thymus Serpillum Extract, Algae Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract

La Mer Crème de la Mer

Price Range: $310.00

Born from the sea, Crème de la Mer has the power to transform the skin. In a short time, firmness improves, lines, wrinkles and the look of pores become less visible, skin looks virtually ageless. Even the driest complexions are renewed and rejuvenated. With the nutrient-rich Miracle Broth, the heart of La Mer's powers of transformation, skin is immersed in moisture, sensitivities soothed, radiance restored.

The Miracle Broth in Crème de la Mer is suspended in an extraordinary formula. The secret to activating its renewing power and enjoying its profound benefits lies in a soothing ritual. Crème de la Mer must be warmed for a few seconds between the fingers until it becomes translucent, then pressed gently into the skin.

Key Ingredients:

Seaweed (Algae) Extract, Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum), Petrolatum, Glycerin, Isohexadecane, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Extract, Microcrystalline Wax (Cera Microcristallina, Lanolin Alcohol, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Eucalyptus Globules (Eucalyptus) Leaf Oil, Magnesium Sulfate, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seeds, Medicago Sativa (Alfalfa) Seeds, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seeds.