Like they say in Game of Thrones, winter is coming. And when the temperatures start to chill, it's time to reevaluate your skin care regimen. During this time of year, one of the most important things you can do is apply one of the best face moisturizers for winter each day, since the cold weather and harsh winds tend to dry out skin. Even the oiliest and most acne-prone skin among us aren't immune. And if you already have dry skin, you need to pay extra attention to ensuring it's being kept properly hydrated.
Of course, skin care products — especially those for your face — aren't one size fits all, so when deciphering between the best moisturizers for cold weather, it's important to consider your skin type first. Those with oily complexions, for example, will want a formula that's oil-free, while extra-dry skin types should go for something that contains heavy-duty moisturizing ingredients like shea butter and hyaluronic acid. Texture is also important. The dryer your skin is, the thicker you want your cream to be. On the other hand, if you're oily and prone to greasing up throughout the day, reach for a gel, which, unlike traditional moisturizers and lotions, have a water base, as opposed to oil. So without further ado, here are five great winter moisturizers for every skin type (and budget).
1. The Best Winter Moisturizer For Dry Skin
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream
If going into winter your skin is already dry, you'll want a heavy-duty moisturizer like this one from First Aid Beauty. It contains a collection of nourishing ingredients, like colloidal oatmeal, which is known to soothe redness, flaking, and itching, so it's also a great choice to help relieve the symptoms of eczema. There's also shea butter, another powerful moisturizing ingredient that helps keep the skin's natural protective barrier healthy, as well as allantoin, ceramide 3, and the brand's very own antioxidant complex. Because the formula is free of harsh ingredients, like alcohol, sulfates, propylene glycol, and artificial fragrance, this is also an excellent choice for people with sensitive or acne-prone skin. The best thing about this cream, though, is the texture. Though it's rich, it's not too thick, and it doesn't feel greasy or heavy on your skin. It also happens to have a near-perfect 4.5-star) rating on Amazon, with over a thousand reviews.
"This stuff is amazing! My son has very sensitive skin and suffers from dry cracked chapped skin in the winter. One application of this on his hands and the next morning his red chapped skin was healed," one reviewer raved, while another happy customer said, "Healthiest my skin has ever been! Everyone should use this!"
2. The Best Winter Moisturizer For Oily Skin
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel
Oily skin types need to be careful about what types of moisturizers they use, since many can cause greasiness throughout the day. If this sounds familiar, try a gel moisturizer like this one from Neutrogena. Unlike most lotions and creams, gels are based with water (instead of oil), which is why they're recommended for oily skin. What makes this moisturizer so great is that it contains a hefty dose of hyaluronic acid, a "miracle ingredient" that can hold 1,000 times it weight in water. It actually pulls moisture from the air and binds it to your skin, so it's not just moisturizing — it's actually hydrating, too. Additional highlights include a non-comedogenic formula (that means it won't clog your pores, which is especially important for oily skin types) that's also fragrance-free, and it wears beautifully under makeup. This is another pick with a hard-to-achieve 4.5-star rating and over a thousand positive reviews.
"This winter has been brutal, especially here in Oklahoma with the high winds, dry air, and really low wind chills," said one reviewer. "This product saved my skin from looking like an alligator purse. I ordered it again because it is just that good."
3. The Best Winter Moisturizer For Combination Skin
Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré
If your skin is dry in some places and oily in others — most likely the T-zone — you've got combination skin, which means you can't go wrong with the cult-favorite Lait-Crème Concentré by French brand Embryolisse, also hailed as the '24-hour miracle cream.' It's lightweight, non-greasy, fast-absorbing, and wears wonderfully under makeup, which is why it's such a staple in most makeup artists' kits. It also gives you a healthy glow, which is why some artists use it to highlight the cheekbones — but others also use it to remove makeup, or as an after-shave.
One reviewer said, "My daughter went to school to be a makeup artist. They said this is the best thing for all skin types. Great as a base for makeup. Great on its own. I love it on my cheeks and neck for all day moisturizing. No joke, it lasts all day, even on the coldest windiest days, and in the driest heat indoors."
4. The Best Winter Moisturizer For Sensitive Skin
Avène Skin Recovery Cream
Though the first three options on this list are all suitable for sensitive skin, Avène's Skin Recovery Cream is for the person who wants to take no chances, as it was formulated specifically for people with 'hypersensitive and irritable skin'. Its hero ingredient, paracerine, works to soothe irritation, reduce redness, and rebuild the lipid layer, which tends to be compromised in sensitive skin types, all while providing intense nourishment. The formula is also incredibly gentle. It's non-comedogenic, hypoallergenic, and free of parabens, preservatives, fragrance, and coloring agents.
"I developed eczema on my cheeks and chin due to cold weather and turning on the furnace. I have hyper sensitive, reactive skin and have had no negative reactions to Avene products. Avene Recovery Cream was the only product I could use on my eczema without feeling like my face was on fire. After two days, the eczema was healed," said one happy customer.
5. The Best Winter Moisturizer For Acne-Prone Skin
Proactiv Green Tea Moisturizer
Those prone to acne might want to consider this green tea moisturizer from Proactiv. In addition to keeping skin moisturized, it also helps soothe breakouts, reduce redness, and calm inflammation, thanks to its antioxidant- and mineral-rich non-comedogenic formula. While none of the options on this list should cause breakouts or irritate troubled skin, this stuff comes from the OG acne experts, so it's an extremely safe bet if you're wary of trying new products/brands.
"Works WONDERS on hydrating my face," said one reviewer. "In the winter... my face feels like it's superglued together and can't move it's so dry. This stuff literally takes all flakes and dryness away and hydrates it again, smells EXTREMELY clean, AND does not break me out whatsoever which is good because I have very acne prone skin."
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