When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.
Lips can’t produce oil and moisturize themselves, making them more prone to dryness.
A lip mask will add moisture into your lips while creating a protective layer to keep it locked in.
We selected the eight best hydrating lip masks you can buy, below.
Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky
Just like the right skincare routine can have your face glowing, lips need attention too, especially when they dry out and get chapped. That’s where a lip mask comes in. The point of most lip masks is to hydrate your lips and seal in moisture. Some do one more than the other, but we prefer those that have a healthy balance or lean toward hydrating. After all, what’s the point of locking in moisture if there’s nothing to lock in?
Ingredients to look out for.
Unlike the rest of your face, waxes and oils are great for your lips. After all, your lips don’t have any pores to clog. In general, there are three categories of ingredients to look for.
We picked eight of the best lip masks, which are each crafted to deliver long-lasting hydration, not just a quick fix.
These are the best lip masks of 2021
Bite Beauty Agave+ Nighttime Lip Therapy
Agave+ Nighttime Lip Therapy (small)
This lip mask comes in a frosted glass pot with a matte cover. The mask is rich and feels deeply hydrating while lasting several hours. It’s made with a mix of waxes and oils like castor seed, safflower seed, and sunflower oil. It’s also made with agave and pomegranate extracts for an antioxidant kick. It feels silky and buttery on your lips at the same time.
Bonus: it comes with a perfectly-sized spatula that fits into the inside of the lid and helps you avoid sticking fingers into the pot.
Sara Happ The Dream Slip
The Dream Slip (small)
Sara Happ’s lip mask has an exciting ingredient list. The first ingredient is hydrating and healing: jojoba oil. The next four are thick, moisture-trapping ingredients like beeswax and white mineral oil. Past the ingredients, my experience with this product was amazing.To my surprise (and despite my tendency to toss and turn), this mask actually lasted overnight.
K-beauty brand innisfree makes a sleeping lip mask that packs an antioxidant punch with the scent of a fresh cup of green tea. It feels very hydrating on the lips and lays on a thick layer, similar to Vaseline. The mask has a slight dark greenish tint on your lips, which may look funny if you’re around other people, or unseen if you actually wear this to bed.
Tatcha The Kissu Lip Mask
The Kissu Lip Mask (small)
Tatcha’s gooey Kissu Lip Mask comes with a luxe-looking, mini gold spatula and smells fruity. The jelly treatment is made with a mix of hydrating and protective ingredients. Some of its main hydrators include squalane and camellia oil as well as soothing ingredients like peach extract.
Most masks on this list have a 12-month shelf life, but the label on this one suggests it only lasts six months before expiring. Fortunately, the pot of product isn’t that big… which means you also have to decide if this is worth the value
ILIA Lip Wrap Hydrating Mask
Lip Wrap Hydrating Mask (small)
ILIA’s hydrating mask is made with a standard set of hydrating ingredients like mango butter and moisture-trapping waxes. But ILIA uses some standout ingredients in their lip mask like salicornia, which is derived from a succulent, and papaya enzymes that gently exfoliate lip skin to allow the formula to hydrate deeper. Its consistency is waxy but slightly more liquid than Vaseline.
The Sephora Collection Lip Sleeping Mask is the ultimate budget and value option of the list. Plus, it feels and works great. Sephora’s thick and gooey lip mask is made with hydrating oils like shea butter and sunflower seed oil. And it has waxy ingredients to keep that moisture locked in. All the boxes, checked!
Milk Makeup Melatonin Overnight Lip Mask
Melatonin Overnight Lip Mask (small)
Milk’s silky Melatonin Overnight Lip Mask is infused with hydrating oils and butters as well as protective-layer-producing waxes. Although it’s not high on the ingredient list, Milk’s lip mask uniquely uses topical melatonin, which may have skin-repairing effects. This mask also recruits moisture-grabbing hyaluronic acid and a berry blend for antioxidants. Made with over 10 different extracts from fruit, flowers, and more, Milk’s lip mask smells like shea butter with a hint of lemon.
Kiehl’s Since 1851 Buttermask Intense Repair Lip Treatment
Buttermask Intense Repair Lip Treatment (small)
Kiehl’s Buttermask Intense Repair Lip Treatment is a hydrating paste of butters, waxes, and oils. This means it’ll hydrate while locking in moisture. Ingredients include hydrating superstars like coconut and castor oil and moisture-locking agents like beeswax. When you apply the smooth Buttermask treatment, it smells like shea butter and feels like it’s immediately getting to work.
As well as being renowned for their incredible hydrating properties, sheet masks treat different skin concerns, from soothing sensitive skin to brightening dull complexions. Some are great for a pre-night-out boost, while others work better if you wear them before you go to bed, so the serum can soak in and you can wake up with glowing skin. Many experts are now using sheet masks as part of their daily skincare routine.
With the incredible number of sheet masks on the market, working out which one is right for you can be a minefield. As well as researching thousands of reviews from beauty experts and buyers, we’ve tried and tested all sorts of sheet masks to come up with our top picks.
Farmacy’s Coconut Gel Sheet Mask is loaded with nourishing ingredients like coconut water, hyaluronic acid, and cucumber extract. Hyaluronic acid can hold 1,000 times its weight in water, so it delivers some serious hydration. Paired with calming cucumber extract and moisturizing, refreshing coconut water, this mask works for any skin type. Just slap the Coconut Gel Sheet Mask on for 15 minutes — that’s all you need for the mask to work its magic. Take it off to reveal more supple, smooth, calm skin.
Patchology’s mask is your secret weapon for defeating dry skin because it features ingredients like hyaluronic acid for hydration, and vitamin B5 and betaine to improve elasticity and smooth skin. Traditionally, sheet masks take up to 20 minutes to work, but the Patchology Hydrate Flashmasque accelerates delivery of the ingredients to the skin with its unique material, so you see results in just five minutes.
This speedy skin saver is perfect for a last-minute touch-up before you put on your makeup or before you go to bed. It is the ideal quick fix for winter when your skin needs some extra hydration or on a long flight (as long as you don’t mind scaring the flight attendants).
The White Marble Bright Hydrogel Mask from renowned skincare brand Erno Laszlo is designed to instantly brighten skin and reduce the appearance of dark spots and aging. The serum is made up of allotonin to plump up the skin, essential oils including peony and chamomile to moisturize, and sunflower seed oil to protect against wrinkles.
We’re obsessed with Erno Laszlo’s range of sheet masks, and this one is awesome. Each sheet mask comes in two pieces of gel-like material. It felt a bit slippery and strange, but it was easy to apply. I liked that it didn’t slip off my face so I could walk around while the mask did its work.
White Marble Bright Hydrogel Mask (small)
Dr. Jart+ Dermamask Water Jet Vital Hydra Solution Mask
Our favorite water-based face mask for sensitive skin comes from the legendary Korean Brand Dr Jart+. The mask is packed with hydrating ingredients like algae extract, aquaxyl, xylitol, and oligo-hyaluronic acid to moisturize sensitive skin without irritation. The mask is designed to calm redness and cool irritated skin, making it a godsend for people with sensitive skin. It works just as well for those with oily, dry, or combination skin.
The SK-II Pitera Facial Treatment Mask is an all-in-one sheet mask that does everything you need for a glowing, gorgeous complexion. The sheet is soaked with SK-II’s signature serum Pitera. Discovered in a sake brewery back in the ’70s, this liquid is packed with naturally-derived vitamins, amino acids, and minerals. It is designed to refine texture and address uneven skin tone, dryness, large pores, and oiliness. SK-II suggests you use a mask once or twice a week or before a special event.
The SK-II Pitera Facial Treatment Mask lived up to the hype in our testing. It made my skin look more radiant instantly, and my skin felt tighter and softer. The mask fit well and stayed put, although it felt a bit slimy. Granted, most face masks feel a bit slimy because it’s the slime that fixes your skin.
Tatcha’s gel-like face mask is packed with powerful anti-aging products including red algae and hyaluronic acid, as well as green tea and rice to target dryness, dullness, and loss of firmness. It is derived from coconut and is more effective than paper masks.
Tatcha claims it can increase the skin’s total moisture by 200% in 15 minutes. While we can’t verify that claim, we can say that it left our skin feeling great. It’s a bit fiddly, as you have to remove one of the layers to put it on, but it fit well.
Luminous Deep Hydration Lifting Mask (small)
Leaders AC Clear Treatment Mask
The AC Clear Treatment Mask from Korean company Leaders Insolution balances skin and provides relief for irritated, stressed, and sensitive skin that’s prone to breakouts and inflammation. This hypoallergenic 100% cotton sheet mask is packed with maple water, hyaluronic acid, and snail secretions to calm skin and reduce redness. It’s gentle enough to be used daily and the more often you use it, the better the results.
AC Clear Treatment Mask (small)
Tonymoly I’m Real Avocado Sheet Mask
Established in Seoul more than 10 years ago, Tonymoly pioneered the Korean sheet mask beauty trend that has spread across the world. The innovative brand is now a household name in the US. There are 14 different masks in the Tonymoly I’m Real Sheet Mask collection to address every possible skin concern and we’ve tried them all. Our favorite is the I’m Real Avocado Sheet Mask.
Ideal for dull, dry, and stressed-out skin, this highly moisturizing sheet mask is soaked with nutrient-rich avocado essence. The paper sheet has a pleasant smell but feels quite delicate. After leaving it on for 20 minutes in our testing, our skin definitely felt softer and looked fresher.
I’m Real Avocado Sheet Mask (small)
St. Ives Nourish and Soothe Oatmeal Mask
Just like the oatmeal baths of your childhood, St. Ives’ Nourish and Soothe Oatmeal Mask soothes whatever is ailing your face. Sunburn? Pop this on. Windburn? You got it. That’s all thanks to the oatmeal extract. It works to calm any type of skin issue while leaving your face feeling refreshed and clean.
And since it’s in an easy-to-use sheet, you can get all of the benefits without the mess. This is actually a great mask to pop on after you’ve applied a more detoxifying mask. It will calm things down while sealing in the good-for-you ingredients of the first.
Nourish and Soothe Oatmeal Mask (small)
Leaders Cosmetics 7 Wonders Amazonian Acai Anti Pollution Mask
If you live in a city, it’s not just the sun you have to worry about every time you step outside. Free radicals brought on by pollution can wreak havoc on your skin, leading to a dull complexion. But a skincare regimen rich in antioxidants is perfect for combating these issues. And Leaders Cosmetics 7 Wonders Amazonian Acai Anti Pollution Mask should be a regular part of any antioxidant-rich regimen.
This little mask is chock-full of good-for-you ingredients that help fight free radicals. Vitamins C, B, and E are the powerhouses of this mask, while acai berries come in for the assist. All these ingredients work to wick away the negative effects of pollution.
7 Wonders Amazonian Acai Anti Pollution Mask (small)
Check out our other great skincare guides
If you buy through our links, we may earn money from affiliate partners. Learn more.
We know that wearing sunscreen is crucial, but we often forget to apply it to our lips.
A good lip balm with SPF will block harmful UV rays while moisturizing your lips.
We consulted two dermatologists and gathered our nine lip sunscreen mainstays.
You’ve probably heard numerous times from your doctor, dermatologist, or favorite beauty YouTuber that wearing sunscreen every single day is a must. And they’re definitely right. But one part of your body that can sometimes get overlooked when it comes to SPF is your lips, which need protection just as much as the rest of your body.
A great way to deliver SPF to your lips on a daily basis is with SPF. But not all of these tubes are created equal. So we turned to Dr. Elizabeth K. Hale, a board-certified dermatologist and senior vice president of The Skin Cancer Foundation, and Dr. Marie Hayag, board-certified dermatologist and founder of 5th Avenue Aesthetics who advised us on working lip balms with SPF into our daily routines. You can read on to learn more from our experts and hear about our team’s nine tried-and-true lip balms with SPF.
Here are the best lip balms with SPF you can buy:
Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky
Vanicream Lip Protectant Sunscreen SPF 30
Lip Protectant/Sunscreen SPF 30 (small)
I’ve tried a few lip balms with SPF, but this one from Vanicream is my preferred pick. On top of a simple formula, the consistency is nice and creamy. It also lacks any sort of strong sunscreen smell or taste, which is a dealbreaker for me. However, without a mirror at hand, it’s hard to know if you’ve rubbed in all of the white cream and sometimes it takes a bit of lip-smacking to reduce the tint. — Katie Decker-Jacoby, style & beauty reviews fellow
This lip balm contains both titanium oxide and zinc oxide for effective protection against damaging UV radiation. Additionally, it is water-resistant, free of fragrances, flavoring, and dyes, making it a great option for people with sensitive skin. — Dr. Marie Hayag, board-certified dermatologist and founder of 5th Avenue Aesthetics
Aquaphor Lip Protectant and Sunscreen Ointment
Lip Protectant and Sunscreen Ointment (small)
I bought this lip sunscreen ointment because I’m never without Aquaphor’s ultra-nourishing Lip Repair. The two products have similar ingredient lists and consistencies. And though I’m not a huge fan of the sunscreen smell and taste, they’re minimal and do not override the efficacy of this balm. The formula specifically caters to those with sensitive skin, and I find this to be true, as well. — Katie Decker-Jacoby, style & beauty reviews fellow
Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Lip Balm
Cocoa Butter Formula Lip Balm (small)
As someone who is sensitive to the sun and prone for my fair skin to burn, I’m especially cautious with the products I’m using. That being said, I use SPF just about everywhere, even in the colder winter months. I absolutely swear by Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Lip Balm. It has SPF 15 and also prevents my lips from being chapped. It applies buttery smooth, as its name suggests, and smells divine. — Victoria Giardina, Buying Guides Fellow
Kiehl’s Since 1851 Butterstick Lip Treatment SPF 30
Butterstick Lip Treatment SPF 30 (small)
I have a tube of this in the clear/untinted shade in every hiking backpack I own. It’s moisturizing without feeling sticky and goopy, and the balm doesn’t melt — even during multi-hour-long hikes in the sun. The SPF 30 is strong enough to keep my lips from burning, and the clear shade I use most often comes in handy when I need to reapply sunscreen on the bridge of my nose or the tops of my ears. The metal tube feels more substantial and luxurious than other balms, and the cap screws onto the tube so there’s no chance you’ll lose it at the bottom of your bag. It does, however, contain octocrylene so it’s not reef-safe and I don’t use this when I’m around the beach. — Jada Wong, senior editor
Supergoop! PLAY Lip Balm SPF 30 with Acai
PLAY Lip Balm SPF 30 with Acai (small)
The tube and formula remind me of old-school Vaseline, but much more protective and way less goopy. The SPF 30 is great for protecting my lips and the formula includes shea butter for lots of moisture. It doesn’t contain any oxybenzone, octinoxate, or octocrylene that would be harmful to coral reefs, so I always use this when I’m around the beach. — Jada Wong, senior editor
If you’re looking for a quality plant-based sunscreen lip balm, this one from Coola offers broad-spectrum protection, instant moisture, vitamins, and antioxidants. Plus, it’s water-resistant for 80 minutes and should be reapplied every two hours. Dr. Hayag says, “This is a good balm that provides broad-spectrum protection against UV rays while also providing hydration to the lips through ingredients like jojoba and avocado oil.”
Colorescience Lip Shine SPF 35
Lip Shine SPF 35 (small)
For days where you want more color and luster, this lip gloss checks off those boxes — plus, it has broad-spectrum SPF 35 sun protection. You can reapply every two hours, but every 40 minutes if you’re swimming or sweating a lot. According to Dr. Hayag, “This is a great gloss that contains zinc oxide and Vitamin E to aid in photoprotection. It also contains hyaluronic acid, helping the lips stay well moisturized. Additionally, it has peptides that give the lips a more plump appearance.” The shade selection includes rose, pink, champagne, coral, and clear.
CoTZ Lip Balm Tinted Mineral Sunscreen SPF 45
Lip Balm Tinted Mineral Sunscreen SPF 45 (small)
With a zesty kiwi-lime-ginger tang, this product is ever so slightly tinted to avoid that white cast other sunscreens oftentimes leave behind. It’s also cruelty-free, reef-friendly, and free of chemical sunscreens, oil, lanolin, and gluten. Dr. Hayag says, “This contains zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, and iron oxide to cover UVA/UVB rays and blue light. It is moisturizing, yet water-resistant and has antioxidant protection.”
MDSolarSciences Hydrating Sheer Lip Balm SPF 30
Hydrating Sheer Lip Balm SPF 30 (small)
This tinted lip balm has a gentle, cruelty-free, and reef-safe formula that does all of that, but of course fends off ultraviolet rays, too. The broad-spectrum SPF 30 sheer tinted balm comes in red, pink, and nude. According to Dr. Hayag, “It also has multiple ingredients in it to help keep your lips moisturized, like avocado oil and olive butter. The balm also contains shea butter, which is rich in antioxidants and soothes and softens the lips.”
What is SPF and what SPF should I wear on my lips?
SPF stands for sun protection factor, which is the measure of how well a certain formula will protect you from the sun’s rays. “For example, if you use an SPF 30 product properly, it would take you 30 times longer to burn than if you used no sunscreen,” Dr. Hale explains. The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends SPF 15 for daily wear and SPF 30 for prolonged outdoor activity.
What’s the difference between UVA and UVB rays?
There’s ultraviolet A (UVA), which is connected with skin aging, and ultraviolet B (UVB), which is linked to burning. Instead of worrying about whether your lip balm protects against UVA or UVB rays, Dr. Hale says to pick broad-spectrum sunscreen products, as they shield your skin from both rays.
What can sun damage do to your lips?
The skin on your lips is thinner and missing a layer that the rest of your body uses for UV protection, so it’s more susceptible to burning. Too much sun exposure without any protective lip balm can lead to dryness and flakiness, and even skin cancer. Dr. Hale says, “About 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun.”
Are there certain ingredients I should look out for?
According to Dr. Hale, there are two groups of UV-blocking ingredients: physical and chemical. The former are ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, while the latter includes components like avobenzone and octisalate. “Look for products with antioxidants like vitamin E and vitamin C,” Dr. Hayag says. “They neutralize and boost protection from free radicals produced by UV radiation and visible light.”
As for ingredients to avoid, Dr. Hayag explains that products with menthol — the thing that gives cough drops and pain relief creams its cooling effect — can irritate the lips. You should also stay away from phenol and fragrance for the same reason.
When should I wear it and how often should I apply?
Our experts urge you to wear lip balm with SPF both outdoors and indoors, as the sun can penetrate through glass windows. And they suggest reapplying every two hours, but more frequently if you’re eating, drinking, or swimming.
What should I do if my lips get sunburnt?
Dr. Hale recommends the following steps: move into a shady spot, stay hydrated, take Advil or Motrin to reduce inflammation, and apply a water-based, moisturizing lip product. For the very last step, she advises steering clear of petroleum and oil-based balms that could possibly aggravate the burn.
Tight, red, itchy, rough – these are all descriptors of dry skin. And while dry skin on its own is tough, peeling or flaking can also appear, especially during the transition from the summer season to fall and winter, no matter your skin type.
If you notice your skin experiencing dryness, you likely also notice that not all facial moisturizers can get the job done in curing it. The most important things to keep in mind when buying a moisturizer are the ingredients and consistencies of the lotion itself. We spoke with Dr. Kavita Mariwalla, board-certified dermatologist of Mariwalla Dermatology, and Dr. Corey L. Hartman, board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin Wellness Dermatology, to break down these details, and help guide us toward the best moisturizer for dry skin.
Click to jump to the best face moisturizers for dry skin that you can buy:
The best face moisturizers for dry, sensitive skin
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream
Moisturizing Cream (small)
This cream has a thick consistency, so you’ll never have that tight, still-dry feeling. But it’s non-comedogenic, so it doesn’t clog pores or leave you feeling greasy, either. It’s free of fragrance and other common irritants, which is why it’s a great choice for sensitive skin types. — Kyle Kerchaert, senior video producer, beauty and style
Once I reached my mid-30s, it felt like all the moisture had been sucked from my skin. The CeraVe Moisturizing Cream was the only thing that calmed and hydrated my face. And though I was originally worried that it would be too thick, it absorbs quickly and leaves your skin feeling soft, not greasy. — Jamie Feller, account executive
I grew up with severe eczema on my face, and this moisturizer was the only thing that was gentle enough to be used on my sensitive skin. While it may seem too thick at first, it absorbs very quickly, leaving your face soft and dewy. — Grace Wade, associate health reference editor
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream
Ultra Repair Cream (small)
I have recommended First Aid Beauty’s Ultra Repair Cream time and time again because it’s just that good. It’s unscented and has a creamy consistency. I apply it every night to my face and neck, and it has never led to breakouts on my sensitive skin. — Victoria Giardina, buying guides fellow
Vanicream Moisturizing Lotion
Moisturizing Lotion (small)
The Vanicream Moisturizing Lotion is ideal for dry, sensitive skin. It contains no fragrance, dye, formaldehyde, or lanolin. It contains both humectants and emollients to provide a mix of hydration and moisturization. — Dr. Corey L. Hartman, board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin Wellness Dermatology
I have dry, sensitive skin as well as rosacea, and this has been my year-round lifesaver. It’s a gel-cream so I initially had my doubts, but whenever I even think of trying another moisturizer, I come back to this. This product is paraben-free, fragrance-free, and oil-free, and also has hyaluronic acid and aloe water. — Magenta Ranero, senior chart editor, Insider Intelligence
The best face moisturizers for dry, acne-prone skin
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel-Cream with Hyaluronic Acid for Extra-Dry Skin
Hydro Boost Gel-Cream with Hyaluronic Acid for Extra-Dry Skin (small)
My skin feels soft, hydrated, and supple when I use this gel cream, especially during the cold winter months. I appreciate that it’s non-comedogenic, so it won’t clog my pores, as I have acne-prone skin. It’s also fragrance-free. This moisturizer contains humectants such as hyaluronic acid and glycerin, along with emollients like olive extract — all of which help to pack quite the punch in the best and most hydrating way possible. — Katie Decker-Jacoby, style & beauty reviews fellow
Hada Labo Skin Plumping Gel Cream
Skin Plumping Gel Cream (small)
I discovered this moisturizer on a desperate Reddit search for an oil-free formula that wouldn’t irritate the seborrheic dermatitis that sometimes pops up on my face. This gel formula is gentle and non-irritating, and it feels like a glass of water for your skin. It also cleared up the minimal flaking I was experiencing from my AHA serums. It does leave a bit of a dewy finish, so I prefer it at night or with some extra setting powder under makeup. — Kyle Kerchaert, senior video producer, beauty and style
C’est Moi Gentle Moisture Lotion
Gentle Moisture Lotion (small)
C’est Moi is better known for their colorful makeup, but I picked up this moisturizer on its website on a whim and have loved it. My skin gets very dry in the winter, and so I’m always on the lookout for products that deliver a lot of moisture for a budget price. This one isn’t greasy or oily at all, and I was shocked at how moisturizing even a small amount of product felt. — Allison Jiang, story production fellow
Lotus Moon Vitamin B Hydrating Gel
Vitamin B Hydrating Gel (small)
I have dry, sensitive, and acne-prone skin and this plant-based moisturizer is a champion at hydration. It has a gel formula, so it’s lightweight, absorbent, and doesn’t make me sweat on hot days. It also smells lovely and helps keep my breakouts at bay. — Stephanie Hallett, senior personal finance editor
The best face moisturizers for dry, mature skin
SkinCeuticals A.G.E. Interrupter
A.G.E. Interrupter (small)
The A.G.E. Interrupter is an advanced wrinkle treatment that combats the visible signs of aging caused by glycation, which is a major factor of the natural aging process. — Dr. Kavita Mariwalla, board-certified dermatologist of Mariwalla Dermatology
SkinCeuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2
Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 (small)
The Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2 contains free fatty acids to replace cellular lipids and nourish dry skin. This is a crowd favorite for those with extremely dry skin that is worth the splurge. — Dr. Corey L. Hartman, board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin Wellness Dermatology
fresh Lotus Youth Preserve Dream Night Cream
Lotus Youth Preserve Dream Night Cream (small)
This is actually a night cream I use as a regular moisturizer in the winter when my skin is its driest for a big hydration boost. It works great under makeup, helping to impart a dewy look that I generally have trouble achieving due to my skin’s aforementioned dryness. It’s essentially an amped-up version of my other favorite Fresh moisturizer. — Ellen Hoffman, executive editor
Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizer
Water Drench Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizer (small)
This moisturizer is probably my most-recommended skincare product ever. I generally have really dry skin, but you’d never know it when I’m using this gel-like formula from Peter Thomas Roth. It makes my skin soft and plump, but never leaves behind a sticky residue. The best part about it, though, is that its effects last all day (and I’m not just regurgitating brand copy here — this is literally one of the only moisturizers I truly feel this way about). — Sally Kaplan, deputy editor
The best moisturizers for extremely dry skin
SkinFix Barrier+ Triple Lipid-Peptide Cream
Barrier+ Triple Lipid-Peptide Cream (small)
The Triple Lipid-Peptide Cream is a deeply hydrating face cream with active lipids, peptides, small particle hyaluronic acid and rich shea butter for brightening, firming, and plumping. — Dr. Kavita Mariwalla, board-certified dermatologist of Mariwalla Dermatology
Nourish Organic Lightweight Moisturizing Face Lotion
Lightweight Moisturizing Face Lotion (small)
The Lightweight Moisturizing Face Lotion contains argan oil to replenish moisture and rosewater to improve tone, hydration, and elasticity. Shea butter acts as a seal to lock in the moisture and repair the barrier. — Dr. Corey L. Hartman, board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin Wellness Dermatology
Aquaphor Healing Ointment
Healing Ointment (small)
My eczema reacts so badly around my eyes that even the best eye creams and the best moisturizers cannot bail me out. In times of distress, I smear just a small amount of Aquaphor onto my under eyes to restore moisture. I apply it as needed, but most typically before bedtime to lock in moisture and before I apply makeup so my eyelids can soak it up and prevent my concealer from looking cakey. — Jacqueline Saguin, style & beauty reviews fellow
Which ingredients should you look out for when buying moisturizer for dry skin?
To start, it’s helpful to know the three categories of moisturizing ingredients: occlusive, emollient, and humectant. An occlusive forms a barrier to retain moisture, an emollient traps water, and a humectant brings water to the top layer of the skin. Dr. Mariwalla and Dr. Hartman recommend ingredients that fall under these groups, including ones like ceramides, glycerin, hyaluronic acid, squalene, petrolatum, shea butter, and lactic acid.
On the flip side, there are of course ingredients that could further irritate your dry skin, such as fragrance, retinoids, glycolic acid, alcohol, sodium lauryl sulfate, and salicylic acid, according to both dermatologists.
What are the differences between creams, lotions, and gels?
The key differences are their ratios between water and oil. According to Dr. Hartman, creams are composed of half water and half oil, lotions contain mostly water and less oil, and gels are water-based and lack any trace of oil. This matters because, according to Dr. Mariwalla, thicker creams typically deliver more moisture than thinner lotions and watery gels. For example, extra dry skin might require a heavy cream, while dry, acne-prone skin might benefit from a lightweight, oil-free gel.
Is there anything else I can do for my skin before applying my moisturizer?
Face moisturizers alone likely won’t relieve your dry skin. Dr. Hartman recommends washing your face with a cream or oil-based cleanser and staying away from foamy ones. For good measure, Dr. Hartman adds, “Avoid hot water, use less soap or cleanser, and wash for shorter periods of time. Moisturizer works to strengthen the skin barrier and to trap in water, so apply the moisturizer immediately after washing.” After applying moisturizer in the morning, Dr. Mariwalla advises layering on sunscreen to block harmful UV rays, which is a step all skin types should take.
Rest assured, if you consistently experience dry skin, seeing your dermatologist is a good idea. Your dermatologist can help uncover the reason for your dry skin and if you perhaps need stronger prescription treatments.
Many of us neglect our skin from the neck down but moisturizing our limbs is equally as important – especially when you get out of the shower. As your skin dries, the water evaporates off the top layer, which can sap moisture from your epidermis. Smoothing on moisturizer keeps your skin feeling soft and hydrated instead of tight and itchy. This is doubly true for folks with skin ailments like eczema and psoriasis. Proper hydration can help you avoid painful flare-ups, making a body moisturizer a must-have in your beauty arsenal.
There are all sorts of body moisturizers out there – from balms to creams to lotions – and the one you choose depends on your skin type and preference. To save you time and effort finding the right one for you, we’ve rounded up the best ones, some with self-tanning properties and others boasting antioxidants for skin-boosting benefits. If you have a specific skin condition, however, it’s a good idea to check in with your dermatologist before starting any new project regimen, just to make there won’t be any adverse effects.
Kiehl’s Crème de Corps is our top body moisturizer overall because it gives you soft, smooth, and healthy-looking skin with immediate results.
Pros: Good for normal, dry, or sensitive skin; no added synthetic fragrance
Cons: Some may find it a bit greasy
Kiehl’s Crème de Corps is a lifesaver that targets dryness, dullness, and uneven skin texture, giving you brighter-looking skin. It nourishes, locks in moisture for hydration, and leaves your limbs feeling soft and smooth.
The rich body lotion is packed with a powerful blend of ingredients, including antioxidant-packed beta-carotene, skin-softening cocoa butter, and moisture-replenishing olive-derived squalane. The beta-carotene is also what gives the lotion its slightly orange tint.
In testing, I found Kiehl’s Crème de Corps had a whipped butter-like texture and a pleasant, subtle fragrance that stems from the ingredients. The body lotion absorbed quickly leaving it looking instantly smoother. However, despite claiming to be non-greasy, it did feel a little greasy on my skin, possibly due to the cocoa butter and oils like olive and avocado.
The best drugstore body moisturizer
Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion is an award-winning drugstore moisturizer that hydrates without leaving behind a greasy feeling — and without the big price tag too.
Pros: Affordable, fragrance-free, non-greasy, non-comedogenic, soothing oatmeal is good for eczema and itchy skin, great for all skin types including sensitive, oily, and dry skin
Cons: Left behind some residue on skin
Designed to absorb quickly and last 24 hours, this body moisturizer’s gentle formula promises to leave your skin feeling soft, smooth, and healthy-looking
Aveeno’s Daily Moisturizing Lotion works wonders for dry skin and is ideal for daily use. It contains natural ingredients like oatmeal to relieve dry, itchy skin, while emollients soften dry areas.
In testing, Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion was the perfect consistency — not too thick or too thin. It didn’t irritate my sensitive skin and made it look smooth, though it left a slight residue. I appreciate its pump dispenser (for extra convenience), and the fact its fragrance is subtle.
Cons: The scent can be a little strong, especially if you use a lot of product
Sol de Janeiro’s Brazilian Bum Bum Cream product smell like coconut trees and sandy beaches. Its consistency is super smooth and glides seamlessly over the skin. It’s especially great for dry areas and, though I focus the product on my upper thighs during the summertime, it’s still a go-to in colder months when I hop out of the shower.
It’s also fast-absorbing. In fact, your skin will feel instantly hydrated the second you swipe it on. Though the scent may be too strong for some, I only noticed an extra potent scent if I apply more product than average.
At $45, this body butter is a bit of a splurge. But if you want to cut costs a bit, the brand has a mini version for $20. — Victoria Giardina, buying guides fellow
Pros: Formulated with vitamins A, C, and E; fast-absorbing, paraben-free
Cons: May be greasy if much product is used
Necessaire’s Body Lotion is a top-tier product for including popular skin-care ingredients in its body-care products. This ensures the skin on your arms and legs is just as hydrated, healthy, and nourished as the skin on your face.
This minimalist tube is packed with vitamins A, C, and E, and omega fatty acids 3, 6, and 9 for an added, antioxidant-filled boost. There’s even niacinamide — an ingredient more commonly found in serums — to help soothe irritated skin and smooth out fine lines. The formula still manages to absorb quickly and doesn’t leave much greasy residue, though that depends on how much you pile on.
This multipurpose moisturizer is formulated with vitamin E, collagen, elastin, and ginseng to help hydrate, firm, tighten, and improve the elasticity of your skin. What’s more, its color-enhancing complex subtly yet gradually deepens your skin tone, so you don’t need to worry about looking like an Oompa Loompa.
It comes in two shades (fair to medium and medium to dark) and leaves behind uniform color with a streak-free finish. For best results, exfoliate first before applying all over your body, but do so sparingly on knees, elbows, and ankles. Wait a few minutes for the lotion to dry before dressing and be sure to wash your hands — unless you want them to be extra tan.
This is my go-to body moisturizer for parties, weddings, or whenever I want to take my fair skin a hue tanner. It does the job and always results in a smooth finish in less than a day. And, unlike many self-tanning products, the smell is bearable thanks to odor-reducing technology.
A good razor will smoothly and effectively remove unwanted hair without irritation.
We asked our Insider Reviews team for their go-to shavers to compile a master list of our top picks.
Shaving is a totally personal choice – one that not everyone decides to participate in. But if you’re someone who prefers to remove their body hair, there are several ways to achieve smooth legs, hair-free underarms, and a groomed bikini line. But the fastest, easiest, and least painful is generally shaving. That’s why we gathered up our top picks for women’s razors based on research and testing.
Whether you prefer a subscription-based razor so you’ll always have one on hand or need a specially-designed trimmer for sensitive areas, these are the ones that do the best job. They remove hair and stubble without irritation (also known as that dreaded razor burn), making shaving a self-care process rather than a chore.
For the full experience, you may also want to grab some great shaving cream and a good moisturizer once you’ve settled on the right razor for your needs.
Here are our top picks for the best women’s razors:
Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky
Billie Razor Starter Kit
If you’re always out of fresh razors, subscription-based startup Billie has high-quality razors at a budget-friendly price.
Billie’s Razor Starter Kit is all about convenience, with the brand delivering a high-quality razor straight to your door as often as you need. With an easy-to-grip handle, flexible head, and more space between the blades than other razors, it makes shaving simple and ergonomic. The pastel and punchy hues coupled with a sleek design also can be a decor piece for a shower shelf, too. The razor also comes with a magnetic mount that sticks to your shower wall, so you never have to go hunting for your razor.
The downside of the subscription model is that you can’t purchase one at the drugstore in case of an emergency, so you’ll be left using another brand-new-to-you razor you may not like.
But that doesn’t mean you should discount this service. Insider Reviews strategic partnerships manager Elisabeth Chambry is a fan, saying that it immediately stood out to her because of the design, price, and effectiveness. “It consistently produces the smoothest shave I’ve ever experienced.” You can read our full review on the Billie Razor here.
The Starter Kit (small)
Gilette Venus Extra Smooth
The Gillette Venus Extra Smooth has five blades for a super-close shave, but the “moisture ribbon” can protect your skin from nicks, cuts, and razor burn.
The Gillette Venus Extra Smooth Women’s Razor provides a super-close shave, thanks to the razor’s pivoting head that glide over knees, ankles, and contours of underarms. Irritation isn’t a concern, thanks to its “moisture ribbon” — an extra slip to help prevent shaving mishaps and irritations. That said, the strim is thin, so it’s best to use shaving cream to prevent cuts.
Depending on how often you shave and the sensitivity of your skin, the disposable blades can last anywhere from three to 10 uses. The handle initially comes with two blade cartridges, but after that, you’ll need to buy more. The Venus Extra Smooth‘s handle fits comfortably in your hand, making it easier to reach those tricky spots on the backs of the ankles or under your arms.
I’ve been using this razor for years and always buy the product in bulk every time I go to Costco. They last long, work well with my sensitive skin, and never leave a trace of stubble. — Victoria Giardina, Buying Guides Fellow
Extra Smooth Green Women’s Razor (small)
Schick Intuition Sensitive Care Razor
The razor cartridge has four blades surrounded by a water-activated, soap-like shaving “gel.” It provides enough slip for a comfortable, close shave, but on the downside, the gel wears away within just a few uses, so you must replace the cartridge while the blades are still usable or use a separate shaving gel until the blades become dull enough to swap for a new cartridge.
Intuition Sensitive Care Razor for Women with Natural Aloe (small)
Schick Hydro Silk TrimStyle
Ideal for bikini lines, the battery-powered trimmer on the Schick Hydro Silk TrimStyle makes cleaning up your bikini line a breeze. We tested this razor in the shower on the bikini area for many months and never experienced a nick or cut — even without shaving cream.
The trimmer blade comes with a comb covering that’s adjustable to four different lengths. You can also remove it entirely for a closely-cropped trim. This isn’t the razor for you if you’re looking for an ultra-close shave. But for fast, irritation-free trimming and shaping, it’s an effective tool.
The gentle AAA-battery-powered vibration delicately and easily removes hair with one pass of the shaver. On the opposite side of the trimmer, you’ll find a traditional five-blade razor surrounded by a water-based hydrating serum that you can use on your legs, underarms, and even sensitive areas. This two-in-one trimmer proves you don’t need a separate razor to remove unwanted hair.
Hydro Silk TrimStyle (small)
Gillette Venus Snap
Despite its miniature size, the Gillette Venus Snap does just as good a job of removing hair as its full-size relatives.
The Gillette Venus Snap is small enough for travel, yet mighty enough to achieve smooth, bare skin. We’ve used the Venus Snap while traveling and really appreciated not only the carry-on-friendly size but also the convenient plastic carrying case. This razor is also refillable, so you can replace a dulled cartridge with the Venus Extra Smooth refills.
The razor’s head is a regular-sized Venus Extra Smooth blade, so you’ll get a super-close, long-lasting, and comfortable shave on your legs, underarms, and — if you’re careful — your bikini line as well.
It’s the diminutive handle that makes this razor so special. It’s miniature and well-designed for an easy grip, so you’ll have as much control as a full-size razor.
These teeny Schick Silk Touch Up razors are a godsend for those of us blessed with more peach fuzz than we really want. They’re also great for removing any hair on the chin, upper lip, and even patches of dry skin around the chin, nose, or mouth. Insider Reviews editor Maria Del Russo loves to use her Touch Ups around her eyebrows. She credits the angled blade with making it easy to maneuver around your arches without worrying about knicking off the wrong hair.
The razors have a protective guard that prevents cuts or irritation to the skin. The blade lasts a long time before going dull and the razor comes with a small plastic cover to protect it when not in use. One of the best features about the Schick Silk Touch Up razors is how it leaves the skin: Silky smooth for a polished, near-flawless look, serving as a wonderful base for foundation makeup.
Silk Touch-Up Multipurpose Exfoliating Dermaplaning Tool (small)
Check out our other hair removal guides