The best drugstore face moisturizers are effective, affordable, and better yet, you don’t have to step foot into an actual drug store to buy them (thanks, online shopping!). Moisturizers for your face will help combat dry skin, and if you choose the right product, it’ll offer a host of other benefits, too. For instance, there are formulas that offer non-greasy hydration for acne-prone skin, anti-aging ingredients for mature skin (because self-care needs change for women in their 40’s, amiright?!), brightening benefits for dullness, and extra-rich creams for nighttime. And in the name of giving your beauty cabinet a makeover, why not snag a budget-friendly eye cream, tinted moisturizer, and shampoo and conditioner set, too?
But back to caring for that beautiful face of yours: It all starts with identifying your individual needs. For the record, we can’t blame our dry skin entirely on winter. I mean there are the kids, the pets, the A/C, our bosses, the sun, the kids (did I already say that?). Regardless of why our skin feels drier than leather, we can all use a full serving of hydration with a side of protection. Our face goes through a lot each day, and we don’t really have the time to layer-up as we should (10 steps, really K-Beauty?). We are all getting older, too, which means we need extra everything. That includes every vitamin that exists and anything that helps with nourishment, moisture, elasticity, smoothness, and plumping.
If your current moisturizer just isn’t doing the job, don’t hesitate to change up your current skincare regimen. It’s not like we need an excuse to add some new to the bathroom counter anyway. (This is why we need our own bathroom counter and our private bathroom if we’re being honest).
Best Drugstore Moisturizer For Dry Skin
Can you tell that we’re major suckers for packaging?! Not only does this hydrating watermelon gel facial moisturizer from Clean & Clear sound yummy enough to eat but, more importantly, it works. Apply daily evenly to the face and neck for hydrated, shine-free skin that looks (and feels) so fresh, so clean. We especially recommend this to moms with dry, patchy skin. Users report back that they experienced a cooling sensation upon application (most likely thanks to sodium hyaluronate), so it won’t burn or leave any redness. It also won’t cause you to break out if you have super sensitive skin. This Amazon buyer jokes, “The smell alone makes me want to wash my face more often and it even encourages my teenage son to wash his face more frequently.” Perhaps, our favorite part is that it’ll only set you back $6! If that’s not a win, then we don’t know what is.
If intensely hydrated skin is what you’re after, then allow this fast-absorbing face gel moisturizer from Neutrogena to boost your skin’s hydration level from zero to 100. The oil-free, dermatologist-recommended formula can be worn under makeup for a more supple and smooth finish. It’s non-comedogenic (meaning, it won’t clog pores) and contains hyaluronic acid, a substance that is naturally produced by the body to retain water like a sponge. Treat yo’self mamas! One Amazon customer raves that it’s like a mini-facial in a jar. “There’s no sticky residue, no overt fragrance, and there’s no oily feeling at the end of the day… It feels like a mini-facial. I think as an indulgence, I love this product, and it is fantastic for oily skin—as it will keep your skin moisturized so you don’t produce excess oil during the day—AND dry skin, so I highly recommend it.”
Even with all of the new brands on the market, sometimes the classics are still the best. That’s how we feel about Burt’s Bees in general, and we especially love this Intense Hydration Clary Sage Day Lotion. It’s light, but very effective. And the mess-free pump that sits nice on the countertop is so thoughtful.
This “clean” moisturizer works like a multi-vitamin for your skin. Rosehip oil, cranberry seed oil and a mineral complex (zinc, copper and magnesium) help to rejuvenate, nourish and protect the skin. It’s really good- we use it first thing in the am every day.
First of all, we are sorry. Yes, this is only a mini size (although it does come with an equally amazing facewash), but you MUST try this moisturizer. AKA wellness in a jar, this blend of kale, spinach, green tea, alfalfa, vitamins C/E/K and hyaluronic acid makes it #toogoodforwords.
When you’re feeling dry, so dry that your skin is almost croc-like, a balm is the concentrated moisture you desperately need. Rub it in your palms and pat it on your face, rub it into your cuticles and tap around around the nose and lips. Relief from winter. At least for a while.
Best Drugstore Moisturizer For Acne-Prone Skin
When it comes to skin care, h-y-d-r-a-t-e is our favorite seven-letter word these days. This watermelon-infused jelly moisturizer from Bliss will leave you with smoother skin and a brighter, rejuvenated complexion. Key ingredients—including watermelon extract, electrolytes, and willow bark—replenish lost vitamins and minerals while treating stressed acne-prone skin. If you deal with excess oil, then fear not, this weightless formula sets out to eliminate shine while providing vital hydration to areas that need it. Simply massage the product into skin daily for an instant refresh (GREAT for days when you want to do a sheet mask but don’t have time). Jolie from Ulta weighs in: “It smells like yogurt and the texture is amazing. I use this product after using my CeraVe hydrating cleanser, and in the morning before I do my makeup. Overall I love this product and recommend it for COMBINATION skin.”
Aveeno hears you and your acne prone skin. Whether it’s your period, your work stress, or your kids teacher (and all of that homework!) causing the break-outs, this daily moisturizer has salicylic acid to clear up blemishes and prevent future breakouts. The green and white packaging even makes us feel soothed.
Dr Pimple Popper knows how to pop those pimples (you’ve seen the YT videos, right?). She also knows how to keep them from coming back. She formulated this lightweight, oil free daily moisturizer for all of us, acne prone or not. And because she is a Dermatologist, she added in all important SPF.
Best Drugstore Moisturizer Mature Skin
Mature skin needs retinol, plain and simple (the % of retinol is specific to YOUR skin). This rich cream takes time, so start using 30+ days before your next big moment to appreciate the benefits. It’s hydrating, smoothing, anti-wrinkle and anti-aging, all phrases we mature skinned women live by.
Not only do you lose your mind with age (baby brain never goes away!), but also hydration, elasticity, and Coenzyme Q10. Eucerin replenishes that and more with Vitamin E and Beta-carotene to *help* reduce the signs of aging and wrinkles.
Best Drugstore Moisturizer For Night
Mamas, let’s get real. This stuff is sticky and thick, but every January and February, this saves our lives. Rub it in your palms, and slather it *everywhere* before bed. Bonus points for wearing sleep gloves. And socks. It’s not about him.
Let’s just pretend you wanted to spend $40+ on a thick, soothing, hydrating night cream, but instead discovered a $12 version that was better? You’re welcome.
We love CeraVe for its simplicity and longevity and trust them for their ingredients and effectiveness. This Skin Renewing Night Cream, with Hyaluronic Acid and Niacinamide (but no fragrance) is the BFF for mature, and all, skin types.
Best Brightening Drugstore Moisturizer
This moisturizing gel is infused with citrus and citrine crystals to help you shine like a diamond — er — glow like a citrine. It has a non-greasy, glide-on formula that absorbs into skin and locks in moisture to brighten your completion. And, it’ll help with your inner glow, too; the charge of citrine is meant to uplift your spirits from the inside out. We recommend pairing it with the fan-favorite Rosewater Refreshing Facial Mist for when you need a midday refresher — it’ll awaken all the senses!
Make space on your countertop! There are lots of other beauty-must haves on our list.