Applying a moisturizer on skin serves two main purposes :
1 – To lock in (or conceal) hydration into skin
2 – To create a protective barrier between your skin and the environment.
〉 Types of moisturizers :
Typically oil free. These products can be interesting because they provide intense and instant hydration to dried out skin. But, these light formulas do not create a barrier as effective as a cream (containing oil) in order to lock in moisture. Therefore, they can end up drying out your skin, especially in winter conditions. This is why I recommend those products for summer and high humidity levels.
Due to their absence of oil, they also don’t protect your skin as much as a regular cream from the environment. This is why, despite the hype surrounding oil free products, I usually like to apply a more concealing cream (or sunscreen) afterwards. Powder foundation will help with the potential oily look.
Typically a mixture of water, emollients and oil. These products provide hydration (water) as well as a protective barrier to your skin thanks to the oil they contain. Creams vary greatly from lighter to thicker, find the right one for you!
In general, I don’t advise to invest big money on creams, especially if you are on a tight budget. The most effective way to provide active ingredients to skin is through serums applied under your moisturizer. The cream is mostly here to lock in the previous products and to provide a protective barrier. What you should be looking for is non irritating, simple (short ingredient lists) and fragrance free products. Avoid mineral oils and petroleum derived ingredients.
Facial oils can replace a moisturizing gel or cream. Those worried about preservatives and chemical ingredients tend to prefer pure organic oils Applied in a reasonable manner, they provide an effective protective barrier for skin without making skin overly oily. The trend right now would be dry oils, which – like their name implies – aren’t supposed to leave the skin oily. What’s interesting with these products is that they are also great to nourish and repair skin, providing lipids, essential fatties (omega 3 and 6), ceramides and some antioxydants. But lacking water, they do not provide actual hydration.
What I like to do most is to mix a few drops of facial oil (pure rose hip oil) to my moisturizing cream at night. I wake up with a glowing and visibly nourished skin. Works great on irritated skin from over exfoliation.
You can opt for pure carrier oils (jojoba oil, rose hip oil, …) or buy a blend of different oils from an actual skincare company.