The best new moisturisers for every skin type
The wrong moisturiser can cause problems – something too rich can cause congestion while anything too light can be inadequate
Skingredients Skin Good Fats, Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Moisturiser, Origins Clear Improvement Oil-Free Moisturizer with Bamboo Charcoal, Dermalogica Clear Start Clearing Defense SPF 30, and Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream
Moisturiser is an important product in your skincare routine, but not for the reasons most of us think. I am often asked to recommend moisturisers that are good for fine lines, or dehydration, or red marks left after breakouts. For all of these problems, a serum is far more effective.
It helps to think of moisturiser as primarily playing a supporting role for other skincare – it is like a layer of cling film, trapping moisture and other skincare underneath, supporting the skin’s natural barrier function. A good moisturiser protects and, when necessary, restores the skin’s own barrier mechanism. The wrong one, however, can cause problems – something too rich for your skin type can cause congestion, while anything too light can be inadequate for the task at hand.
Skingredients Skin Good Fats (€42 at skingredients.com and stockists nationwide) is a wonderfully restoring layer as a last step to your skincare routine. Rich in nourishing glycerine, it also contains grape seed oil and niacinamide to strengthen skin and improve skin tone. This is a good day or night moisturiser option for most skin types, but may be slightly rich for oily skin. You can even use it on dry patches of your body, if you’re feeling flaithulach.
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Moisturiser (€14.99 at Boots) is a great light option for oily and combination skin types, or for anyone who prefers a hydrating gel texture for summer. With hyaluronic acid, this goes on beautifully under makeup and skin drinks it in – just wait a few minutes after application before putting on your foundation. This one is best avoided if you dislike a fragranced cream.
Origins Clear Improvement Oil-Free Moisturizer with Bamboo Charcoal (€34 at Arnotts) is similarly light, but a better option if you are prone to breakouts. Non-acnegenic, it does not congest pores, or worsen or irritate breakouts. Oil absorbing bamboo charcoal gives the gel a slightly grey cast, but it won’t show on the skin. Decongesting salicylic acid works on blocked pores and breakouts.
Not everyone who is prone to breakouts wants a light, hydrating texture, and it isn’t just those with temperamental skin who are terrified of SPF exacerbating congestion and spots. Though I would always recommend using a separate SPF for UV protection because we tend not to apply enough of the moisturiser to give adequate sun protection, the SPF in Dermalogica Clear Start Clearing Defense SPF 30 (€31 at dermalogica.ie) won’t break you out. The cream feels rich enough to soothe and moisturise any patches of dryness, and the matte finish is ideal for those prone to shine.
For something delectably, unapologetically rich, Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream (£50 at cultbeauty.co.uk) is lovely, particularly for mature skin. Anyone with legitimately dry skin can use it, though. Avoid this if you don’t get on with oils – this contains a lot of them, though no essential oils (these can upset sensitive skin). It contains nourishing ceramides which maintain and restore the skin’s barrier. Use morning or night (or both) as you prefer. If you’re applying this before makeup, massage it in well and wait for a couple of minutes before buffing in your foundation.