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Oily skin affects many people. It can lead to clogged pores and increase the risk of acne. People with oily skin may feel that they do not need a moisturizer. However, moisturizing may help treat acne while keeping the skin hydrated.
This article describes which moisturizers might be best for oily skin, including what to look for and a list of options.
- Best for smaller budgets: The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors+ HA
- Best moisturizer with SPF: Skin Authority Daily Defense Moisturizer
- Best for targeting sebum: Bioderma Sébium Mat Control
- Best for reducing shine: Avène Cleanance Mattifying Emulsion
- Best for minimizing the appearance of pores: SkinCeuticals Daily Moisture
- Best for vegans: Peach & Lily Acne Oil-Free Moisturizer
- Best phthalate-free moisturizer: Eminence Organics Mangosteen Gel Moisturizer
- Best for reducing discoloration: PCA Skin Clearskin Moisturizer
- Best Japanese botanicals: Tatcha The Water Cream
- Best for sensitive skin: Alastin Ultra Nourishing Moisturizer
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, a person with oily skin should use moisturizer daily to keep their skin hydrated.
It is also important to protect the skin from sun damage, so people may wish to use moisturizers that contain sunscreen.
When a person is treating acne, a moisturizer may help:
- make the treatment more effective
- relieve any associated dryness
- ease any discomfort
Ingredients vary from product to product, and some may be unsuitable for oily skin. A person may wish to consult a healthcare professional before choosing a moisturizer.
A person should opt for a moisturizer that:
- is oil free
- is noncomedogenic, meaning that it will not block pores
- relieves dry skin
- locks in moisture
Some moisturizers for oily skin also contain sunscreen. However, it is important to avoid scented sunscreen products and those that contain oil.
Everyone has different skin, and it is possible to have an allergy to one or more ingredients in moisturizers. A person may wish to speak with a healthcare professional before making a purchase.
Below are 10 of the best moisturizers for oily skin.
How we choose products
Medical News Today chooses products that meet the following criteria:
- Price: The products suit a range of budgets.
- Ingredients: The products contain ingredients scientifically proven to be effective for oily skin.
- Reputation: The products have received positive user reviews.
Best for smaller budgets
The product is vegan and cruelty free, and it does not contain oil, alcohol, or silicone. The manufacturer recommends using it after applying serum.
The cost at the time of publishing was $5.80 for a 30 milliliter (ml) tube and $7.70 for a 100 ml tube.
Best moisturizer with SPF
The company says that this product leaves the skin hydrated and nourished. It recommends using this moisturizer before sun exposure because it contains SPF 30.
The product also contains marine extracts, vitamins, and aloe.
A 0.7 fluid ounce tube costs $11.00, and a 4.0 fluid ounce tube costs $48.00.
Best for targeting sebum
This moisturizer is formulated for oily or combination skin. Its makers say that it reduces shine and moisturizes and smooths the skin.
Patented ingredients target sebum and keep the pores from becoming clogged, the company says, and it recommends using the product after cleansing the face, once or twice a day.
A 1.01 fluid ounce tube costs $19.99.
Best for reducing shine
This moisturizer reduces shine right away and reduces the amount of oil on the skin after 8 days, its manufacturer says.
The product is made with thermal spring water and milk thistle extract, and it is free from:
- mineral oil
A 1.35 fluid ounce tube costs $26.00.
Best for minimizing the appearance of pores
This moisturizer is designed for people with normal to oily skin. Its key ingredients are vitamin E and extracts from algae and botanicals.
According to SkinCeuticals, this product:
- restores and retains moisture
- reduces the appearance of pore size
- protects the skin while leaving a smooth, nongreasy finish
Its makers recommend applying it twice daily after serum.
A 2 fluid ounce jar costs $63.00.
Best for vegans
According to its makers, this lightweight, oil-free moisturizer is part of a three-step acne system.
The product contains prescription-strength levels of salicylic acid, the company says, to prevent breakouts and clear existing ones.
Other ingredients include:
- hyaluronic acid for hydration
- niacinamide to even skin tone
- cica to reduce redness
- cucumber to refresh the skin
Peach & Lily recommends starting with one daily application after cleansing the skin and increasing to two or three times a day, as needed.
The price is $12.99 for an 80 ml tube.
Best phthalate-free moisturizer
This moisturizer minimizes pores and hydrates the skin. According to its makers, this product also leaves a matte finish without a greasy residue and leaves the skin feeling soft and looking refreshed.
The product is free from parabens and phthalates, and it contains organic, natural ingredients, such as:
- red clover flower extract
- ribose from corn seeds
A 2 fluid ounce jar costs $64.00.
Best for reducing discoloration
This moisturizer contains 4% niacinamide to reduce oil production and even out skin tone. It is suitable for people with normal, oily, or combination skin.
- lemongrass extract
- marigold flower oil
- cucumber fruit extract
- vitamin A
The manufacturer recommends using a nickel-sized amount of this lightweight cream in the morning and at night.
A 1.7 ounce jar costs $50.
Best Japanese botanicals
This product uses Japanese botanicals to moisturize, refine pores, and even out the skin’s texture. It is suitable for combination to oily skin.
The manufacturer says that this cream:
- has antiaging properties
- is oil free
- does not block pores
- does not irritate the skin
A 0.34 fluid ounce jar costs $20.00 and a 1.17 fluid ounce jar costs $68.00.
Best for sensitive skin
This product is made with a blend of peptides to boost the production of healthy collagen and elastin. It is designed to nourish and hydrate the skin, and it also contains oat kernel extract to help calm sensitive skin.
The manufacturer recommends using the amount in one pump in the morning and evening.
A 2 fluid ounce container costs $70.
A wide variety of products can keep oily skin moisturized. It may be a good idea to ask a healthcare professional for guidance.