The Best Facial Moisturizers of 2018

Finding a really great moisturizer is sort of like finding a really great pair of boots that you'll wear every single winter day for five years.

In this article, we rate the best moisturizers on the market today from cheap to steep and for every skin type: dry, oily, combination and more. (Not sure what your skin type is? Find out in How to Tell What Type of Skin You Have). Every moisturizer chosen for this list has passed with high marks the exacting standards of the best makeup artists, beauty editors, and dermatologists in the business.

The good news is you don't need to spend a lot of money on a great moisturizer. Even the best dermatologists recommend basic moisturizers you can find in the average drugstore. But the pricey, fabulous serums and moisturizers in this list, are actually quite fabulous because they contain ingredients that aren't cheap (you know, things like hyaluronic acid). I have a rule that I tend to abide by: I spend money on products that stay on my face (moisturizers and makeup) and I save my money on products that wash down the drain (think cleansers and body washes).

Let's start with (drumroll please) the one product my dermatologist swears by....

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Best Serum for Super Dry Skin: Neocutis Hyalis

Neocutis Hyalis. Amazon

I went to the famous New York Dermatology Group and I asked the highly approachable and very lovely Dr. Jessica Weiser just what I could do for my extremely dry, sometimes flaky facial skin. I told her nothing was working except the super greasy Aquaphor (buy it from Amazon) that I spread all over my face at night and before applying my favorite tinted sunscreen.

Aquaphor, she agreed, was great. She said she uses it on her eyelids (?!?). But it's way too greasy for the face. What I needed was "hyaluronic acid."

Hyaluronic acid (pronounced hy-a-lur-on-ic a-cid) is having its moment in the skin care spotlight. It's THE most hyped, talked about ingredient among beauty editors, bloggers, and dermatologists right now. And it turns out, it's not just hype. Hyaluronic acid is legit, according to Paula Begouin, the self-ascribed "Cosmetics Cop," who makes a living studying the effects of ingredients on skin.

Hyaluronic acid works on all skin types, but is especially beneficial for aging, dehydrated skin (hello, me!). Many skin care brands have a hyaluronic acid product, but Weiser recommends Neocutis Hyalis, which to me sounds so... dermatological.

It's so great, Weiser said, that they sell it in the office but they can't keep in stock during our famous brutal NYC winters because everyone buys it up.

But you and I can get it from Amazon. Mine arrived just last night and already I feel like I've met my skin care soulmate.

Weiser uses it herself in the morning and at night. I recommend cleansing first with an oil cleanser. Right now, I'm obsessed with Tracie Martyn's Amla Purifying Cleanser (buy it from Amazon).

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Great Night-time Cream: Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream

Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream. Olay

A huge favorite, this moisturizer is an ultra-rich formula that's beloved because of its secret ingredient: hyaluronic acid. This works to moisturize dehydrated skin while diminishing fine lines and wrinkles. An Allure Magazine Readers' Choice Award winner.

Buy it online from

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Best Drugstore Cream: Eucerin Daily Protection SPF 30

Eucerin Daily Protection SPF 30. Eucerin

My dad and I are both huge fans of Eucerin's facial moisturizer with SPF 30 ever since Dad's dermatologist recommended it after a bout of minor skin cancer on his face. It's moisturizing and it protects skin so you get a 2-for-1. Dad wears it religiously and his face has not burned in years, what's more, he tells his female cousins about it because he thinks he looks younger since using it. Note, this is cute because Dad is in no way a metrosexual, he lives in the Texas countryside! Whenever I'm in Texas, I forego my $60 facial sunscreen and borrow Dad's Eucerin.

If you do use a moisturizer with sunscreen, make sure to wash it off before you do to bed.

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Best Moisturizer for Dry, Dehydrated Skin: Embryolisse Lait Cream Concentrate


Beloved by so many of what I call "Women in the Know," this facial moisturizer is a cult favorite among women who have amazing skin and great style sense. It's known as a "miracle cream" because it works to moisturize skin by day and night, but also acts as a makeup remover, can be used on the hands and even on baby's skin.

Buy it online from

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Best Organic Face Oil for Dehydrated Skin: Rodin Olio Lusso

Rodin Olio Lusso. Rodin

When I read that Vogue Teen editor Amy Astley swears by Rodin's Olio Lusso, I knew it was a winner. Astley has been a beauty editor for decades, so she has a healthy cynicism when it comes to what's really good for your skin and what's just ad dollars talking.

This is the perfect oil to pat on for day or for night to leave your dehydrated skin looking dewy. I recommend applying this and then following with a creamy moisturizer to lock in the oils.

This facial oil is composed of an aromatic blend of 11 essential oils, all derived from botanicals known for their skin-soothing, softening and glow-giving properties. To apply, cleanse face first and pat dry, leaving some moisture, then apply 2-3 drops of oil, massaging in.

One downside: The price tag. At about $140, it's not in everyone's budget. But one bottle can last more than 9 months.

Buy it online from

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A Great Night Cream: RevaleSkin Night Cream

RevaleSkin Coffeeberry Night Cream. RevaleSkin

My hands-down favorite night cream is RevaleSkin Night Cream. It offsets the dryness of Retin-A, which I use for it's anti-aging benefits. Retin-A can be drying and the antioxidants in Revaleskin's moisturizers rejuvenate aging, tired skin. It's creamy, goes on smoothly and makes my skin glowy and moist.

You would never know I'm on Retin-A. When I first started using it, someone told me I looked "all glowy and fresh," and I said, "It's Retin-A and this coffeeberry stuff." Downsides: It's pricey, but a great night cream will last a long time and is one of those few beauty products you should splurge on.

Buy it online from

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Best Moisturizer for Dehydrated Skin: Yonka PampleMousse

Yonka PampleMousse. Yonka

My friend Daniel is obsessed with Yonka's Pamplemousse and got me addicted to it. I bought it and now hide it when I have houseguests because it's so luxurious and expensive and I'm afraid to share. It soaks into skin and doesn't leave us feeling greasy but rather super soft (think a baby's bottom). We tried the "normal to dry skin" product, but there's also a "normal to oily skin" version. It's on the pricey end. but worth every penny.

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Best... Moisturizer... Ever: Creme de La Mer The Moisturizing Cream

Creme de la Mer for the Face.

People ask me, "Does La Mer really work?" I have friends who swear by it. Sally Singer, the renowned Vogue editor, swears by it. And I'm one of those people who listen mostly to people I respect over stuff I read. 

Here's Singer on La Mer, "I use it sparingly to keep it going. There was this time at Vogue where I had a facial in Paris from a very famous facialist and I had such an allergic reaction, and it just happened to be the morning of the Neiman Marcus breakfast that you have to go to. Connie Anne Phillips (then the Associate Publisher) gave me a big pot of La Mer and said ‘just smear this all over your face.’ The La Mer calmed it down. I could not tell you why it does what it does, but I love that product.”

 Buy it online from

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Best Serum for Stressed Skin: Decleor Aromessence Neroli Oil

Decleor Aromessence Neroli Oil. Decleor

This facial serum is a favorite of makeup artist Lisa Houghton and is a staple in her beauty bag. It works beautifully on dehydrated or stressed skin and the oil, because you only need a few drops at a time, seems to last forever.

How to use it: After cleansing your face, pat it dry but don't dry it completely. Apply a few drops of this oil over your face and massage in.

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Best Pricey Night Moisturizer for the Face: Lancome Absolue Premium Βx Night

Lancome Absolue Premium Βx Night. Lancome

This heavy-duty moisturizer contains glycerin — a great humectant. The wild yam extract, sea algae and soy restore moisture. This is an extremely pricey moisturizer but luxurious and quite frankly, addictive. Once you start on this at night, you may never go back to your old drugstore brands. And if you find it's not worth the price tag, you can always return it.

Buy it online from Amazon.

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Best Organic Moisturizer: Dr. Hauschka Quince Day Cream

Dr. Hauschka Quince Day Cream. Dr. Hauschka

I was in my favorite organic beauty store in Brooklyn a few months back looking at their products when I started chatting with a woman who said she'd "tried everything" in the store. She was a self-described organic beauty nut so when she grabbed Dr. Hauschka's Quince Day Cream and deemed it her favorite moisturizer, I had to buy it and try it. It's become a favorite of mine, too. I tend to wear it at night though, under my Retin-A which can be drying.

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Luxurious Facial Moisturizer for Dry Skin: Chanel Hydra Beauty Nutrition

Chanel Hydra Beauty Nutrition. Chanel

My friend Janine introduced me to this amazing moisturizer recently. It gets great ratings on for its silky, light texture that leaves skin feeling dewy and supple.

Chanel has various moisturizers for different skin types and all are superb, top-of-the line moisturizers. Purity is for women with oily skin and my favorite: the Hydra Beauty Nutrition (pictured here) is for dehydrated skin.

Read more about it.

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Best Moisturizer for Irritated, Reddened Skin: Epicuren Aloe Vera Gel

Epicuren Aloe Vera Gel. Epicuren

This basic moisturizer can be used to treat and moisturize skin that's irritated, inflamed, reddened or sunburned. Made of 100 percent pure whole-leaf aloe vera gel, this moisturizer is a favorite among makeup artists. Slather over face in the morning before foundation application to hydrate skin. Great for oily or dry skin.

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Choosing the right moisturizer for your face is just a first step. There's much more to know about your skin.