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10 Best Oil Free Moisturizers in 2020

If your skin tends toward oily, you may be tempted to skip moisturizer or cream. But counterintuitive as it sounds, some dermatologists warn that cutting out moisturizer may actually encourage more oil production – and besides, you may have noticed that neglecting your oily or combination skin leaves it prone to dry spots and flakes.

Oil-free moisturizers walk the line between pampering your skin and exacerbating shine and blemishes, so we’ve researched and ranked the best products we found. All provide light hydration without greasiness, and some are specially formulated for sensitive or mature skin. From bargains to splurges, read on for our top ten:

View The Best Oil Free Moisturizer Below

1. Neutrogena Oil-Free Facial Moisturizer

Neutrogena Oil-Free Facial Moisturizer

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For nearly a century, Neutrogena has been at the forefront of dependable skincare. Their oil-free moisturizing line includes this sensitive-skin formulation, without oil, alcohol, or fragrance. We liked it for under makeup and on a freshly cleansed face at bedtime, too – this moisturizer absorbs quickly leaves your skin smooth. Bonus points for the pump design – it’s quick and convenient.

Pros:
+Made without additives like fragrance and dyes
+Acts as an SPF 15 sunscreen
+Absorbs quickly – you can apply makeup almost immediately

Why We Like It – Those of us with sensitive skin appreciated the alcohol-free formula, and even reviewers who weren’t on the lookout for an additive-free product liked the feel of this moisturizer.


2. La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer

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Developed in partnership with dermatologists, this product combines prebiotics (which nourish the microbiome that keeps your skin healthy) and high-quality ceramide and vitamin B3. The result is a moisturizer that supports your skin’s natural hydration while helping to restore its natural protective qualities. Soothing, light, and replenishing, this luxury purchase will reward you every time you use it.

Pros:
+Contains antioxidants and prebiotics
+Moisturizer provides up to 48 hours of hydration
+Safe for sensitive skin

Why We Like It – A visit to a dermatologist may be out of your reach, but a La Roche-Posay product may be the next best thing. We loved that this moisturizer reflects the latest advancements in skincare, and noted that while it’s expensive, a little goes a long way.


3. Clean & Clear Hydrating Watermelon Gel Facial Moisturizer

Clean & Clear Hydrating Watermelon Gel Facial Moisturizer

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One of the most lightweight options that we reviewed, this gel moisturizer, turned out to be a heavyweight champ when it came to refreshment. It smells great and leaves your skin feeling fresh. The gel formation is a real bonus for acne-prone skin as it won’t leave you shiny – and the low price won’t leave you broke.

Pros:
+Very lightweight and quick drying
+A nice option for acne-prone skin or for achieving oil control
+Priced for skincare on a tight budget

Why We Like It – Here’s oil control moisturizer mastery: this affordable gel keeps skin hydrated without creating a sheen. It can be used under makeup or as part of your evening skincare routine. (And the watermelon scent is a delectable bonus.)


4. CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion

CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion

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We rarely find a body moisturizer that we’re willing to use on our faces as well, but CeraVe is known for its gentle, nonirritating formulas. Hyaluronic acid works to retain the skin’s natural moisture, and a combination of ceramides repair the surface. Restorative enough for the body, but gentle enough for your face, this versatile product is one of the best lotions we found.

Pros:
+Moisturizes both face and body
+Fortified with three ceramides and hyaluronic acid
+Specially created to deliver moisture over time

Why We Like It – Long a go-to brand for dermatologists, CeraVe is recommended for eczema sufferers and others with sensitive skin. This lotion can be used on face or body without irritation – we appreciated the convenience of two products rolled into one.


5. Aveeno Clear Complexion Daily Face Moisturizer

Aveeno Clear Complexion Daily Face Moisturizer

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Finding a balance between fighting acne and keeping skin hydrated can be a struggle. Aveeno offers this oil-free moisturizer, which contains salicylic acid to combat blemishes and a proprietary soy supplement to keep even oily skin smooth and bright. It’s gentle enough for everyday use and comes in a convenient pump bottle.

Pros:
+Fights acne but won’t dry out your skin
+Active Naturals Total Soy Complex works to reduce discoloration
+A hypoallergenic oil-free moisturizer
+Formulated as both a teen and adult acne control moisturizer

Why We Like It – Salicylic acid sets the standard for acne treatment and prevention, but it can dry out your skin. Aveeno’s light touch with this chemical delivers enough power to fight blemishes but still leaves skin hydrated.


6. Olay Total Effects Daily Moisturizer

Olay Total Effects Daily Moisturizer

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Sheer color correction, moisturizer, and fine-line minimization are just a few of the benefits of this cream. We liked the seven-in-one advantage here: it brightens and evens skin tone, makes your pores less visible, and quenches without oiliness. This facial cream best serves combination or oily skin types but also does a nice job on dry skin.

Pros:
+Fights dryness, dullness, and sagging
+Boosted with vitamins and antioxidants
+This cream is one of the best values in its class

Why We Like It – Countertop clutter- the struggle is real, and this lightweight moisturizer packs a multitude of benefits into one package. Olay is always evolving to embrace advances in mature skincare – they’ve merged a lot of their expertise into this cream.


7. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Moisturizer

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Moisturizer

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It absorbs and dries quickly like a gel but moisturizes like a lotion, which is one of the reasons we put this offering from Neutrogena in our top ten. The lightweight, water-based gel contains hyaluronic acid, a natural ingredient that won’t contribute to excess oil. As oil-free moisturizers go, this one has lasting power – it retains your skin’s natural moisture all day long.

Pros:
+Hyaluronic acid works with your skin’s natural hydration process
+Exceptionally lightweight, but still effective
+Dries quickly and leaves even oily skin smooth and makeup-ready
+Oil-free formula with lasting power

Why We Like It – This is a refreshing oil-free moisturizer option for summer, when oily skin might be irritated from sun and sweat. We enjoyed the cool boost that left our faces feeling clean but hydrated. The effects are longlasting, too.


8. Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue Face Moisturizer

Garnier SkinActive Moisture Rescue Face Moisturizer

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A gel-cream hybrid, this oil-free blend from Garnier combines the best of both worlds, making it an appealing option for combination or oily skin. Packed with antioxidants, the gel cream refreshes and soothes – and keeps skin hydrated under makeup or alone, all day long. Its fresh, luxe scent is appealing without being overwhelming.

Pros:
+The lightness of a gel with the hydration of a cream
+Oil-free formula hydrates without a greasy feel
+Antioxidants like vitamin C defend against dryness
+Appealing scent

Why We Like It – This oil-free moisturizer is gentle on oily skin and acne-prone faces, but if you also suffer from dry spots, it’s a potent tool in your beauty kit. One reviewer took notice of how quickly this absorbs without leaving your skin tight or shiny from excess oil.


9. COSRX Oil Free Ultra Moisturizing Lotion

COSRX Oil Free Ultra Moisturizing Lotion

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Ol-free moisturizers are typically water-based; this one ups the ante with its birch sap base (the natural ingredient helps retain moisture. With a pH of 5.5 – your skin’s ideal level – it’s gentle on both oily and drier skin types. We think it may be the best dry skin moisturizer (sans oil) out there. Too, we’re always attracted to pump bottles – they’re faster and more hygienic.

Pros:
+Oil-free moisturizers are usually water-based; this one’s made with birch sap
+Can be used alongside exfoliating acid treatments
+Neutral pH level keeps it gentle for sensitive or oily skin

Why We Like It – The birch sap formula feels good; your skin will soak it up quickly, and it can calm irritation. It’s recommended for all skin types, and those of us who go from dry patches in winter to oily spots in summer appreciated its adaptability.


10. Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel

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Sometimes it’s as much about what’s not in your moisturizer as what is. Clinique has found equilibrium with its upmarket line. Made without fragrance, parabens, or phthalates, their moisturizing gel provides exceptional results for oily skin: hydration and a bit of a glow, but no shine.

Pros:
+Delivers top-notch results
+Backed by Clinique’s years of expertise
+Made with minimal chemical additives

Why We Like It – Silky but not oily, this gel glides over your skin, but is fully absorbed, leaving only a hint of luminosity. Clinique is a solid choice if you want to go beyond drugstore brands without overspending.


Oil Free Moisturizers Buyer’s Guide

Closeup shot of hands applying moisturizer. Beauty woman holding a glass jar of skin cream. Shallow depth of field with focus on moisturizer.

Whether it’s a lotion, cream, or gel – and whether you have oily skin or dry – when you’re choosing an oil-free moisturizer, look for ingredients that boost hydration without creating shine. Hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and amino acids work with your skin to both create and retain natural moisture. As a bonus, check for sun protection; SPF 30 is a good bet, and your skin will thank you.

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