The best daytime moisturizers I’ve ever used and the ones that I recommend over and over to friends and family without reservation.
There are thousands of moisturizers on the market at every possible price point. For me, what makes a great daytime moisturizer is the inclusion of anti-aging, active ingredients that have a compound effect over time and are most beneficial for my skin. For me to classify a moisturizer as “great,” it has to work well under makeup meaning it doesn’t pill or roll off the skin after I’ve applied foundation.
None of these moisturizers contain SPF as I prefer to use a separate high-factor SPF product in my routine. All of the products below are designed for morning or evening use, but I adore them because of their performance in my morning routine whether it be under makeup or on its own.
Higher Price Point
Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream – Make-up artist, Charlotte Tilbury created this luxurious and hydrating cream backstage for her model clients. Chocked full of hydrating hyaluronic acids, plumping peptides, and vitamins, it wears like a dream.
Chanel Hydra Beauty Creme – Chanel skincare is heavily fragranced. This might turn off potential customers otherwise interested in their excellent skincare range. If you are not bothered by strong scents, this is wonderful.
Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream – This rich cream is a bit on the thicker side but my dry skin soaks it up. I appreciate its intense ingredient list of hyaluronic acid, oils, and ceramides. A potent rescue and repair cream or all-around moisturizer.
Kate Somerville Goat Milk – This moisturizer is fantastic for its nourishing, thirst-quenching properties. It contains goat milk proteins, vitamins, and amino acids, lactic acid, jojoba, coconut and avocado oil, aloe, grape seed extract, witch hazel, and more.
Malin + Goetz Vitamin E Face Moisturizer – A terrific bare-bones moisturizer that contains Vitamins E and B5. Skincare is a unisex product. Battling his own skin conditions, Matthew Malin co-founded Malin + Goetz. Men would enjoy this light, non-greasy formula.
Mid-Range Price Point
Clarins Beauty Flash Balm – I’ve been using this for years. It’s magic on tired, dull skin instantly brightening and moisturizing. It helps me look a little more awake in the mornings. I use it as a brightening primer after moisturizer or as a moisturizer on its own. One tube is sold every 20 minutes worldwide!
Dr. Jart+ Water Fuse Ultimate Hydro Gel – Fuzed with Hyaluronic Acid (it can hold up to a thousand times its weight in water), this is a deeply hydrating daytime moisturizer that perfectly preps the skin for makeup or worn on its own. This is a gel formulation, not a cream.
DR. JART+ Ceramidin Cream – I love this light, creamy, and hydrating moisturizer designed for use, day or night, and for all skin types. Ceramidin is also effective as a soothing balm so if your skin is angry or problematic, give it a go.
Budget Daytime Moisturizers
A-derma Epitheliale A.H Skin Repair Cream – A somewhat obscure choice. I first discovered this in France and again in Canada and Prague. I buy several tubes every time. A warrior product for dry, damaged, or irritated skin that needs some TLC.
Embryolisse Lait Cream Concentrate – A long-time staple for make-up artists everywhere, this creamy moisturizer won’t disappoint. It’s lightweight, mild, hydrating, affordable and fragrance-free.
Soap & Glory Speed Plump – Super hydrating for dry skin and affordable. It contains watermelon extract and marine plant and raspberry stem cells.