– Regular moisturizing is an indispensable part of proper skincare, going hand-in-hand with cleansing. Moisturizers provide a barrier against water loss, hydrating the outer layer of skin and thereby rendering a variety of associated benefits: from softer, smoother skin to the masking of imperfections.
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As with any product you're entrusting your complexion to, it's no good to just reach for any old moisturizer on the shelf. Dermatologists advise you to match the skin care product to your specific epidermal type and condition. Oil-free moisturizers, such as you'll find on this page, are often suitable for those with normal (i.e., well-balanced) skin and are typically critical for anyone with a naturally oily complexion.
Greasy skin, distinguished by high levels of sebum production, is highly susceptible to breakouts of acne. The heavy natural oils fill up your skin pores instead of being shed, and may become concentrated with aggravating bacteria. The result, oftentimes, is inflamed, bumpy, pustule-pocked skin.
Those who suffer from particularly oily skin sometimes make the erroneous assumption that they don't need a moisturizer - that they're "covered," so to speak, in the hydration department. Yet even the greasiest skin benefits from moisturizing, especially when it's being regularly treated with other skincare products that may lead to localized drying. Some acne-fighting treatments, for example, may lead to irritation and peeling if follow-up moisturizing isn't part of the routine. Indeed, as the American Academy of Dermatology notes, consistent moisturizer use can bolster your skin's ability to handle potentially aggravating medications.
Oil-free, water-based moisturizers - often labeled "non-comedogenic" for their non-pore-clogging properties - can provide the hydrating, softening effect your skin deserves, leaving it smoother and more supple without a heavy, slick residue. Often these formulations are richly stocked with humectants, which are ingredients that hydrate the skin by attracting atmospheric moisture to its surface. (Remember, in many cases you may be able to use more robust, oil-based moisturizers on other parts of your body that are more reliably dry - such as hands or elbows - even as you're pursuing an oil-free emollient for a greasy complexion.)
The salving of a good moisturizer isn't just restricted to mere hydration. Many products are endowed with important nutrients while also conferring sunscreen protection, an important component given the dermatological harm excess exposure to sunlight can wreak.
Beyond shopping for your skin type - and for a specific condition, such as acne - keep in mind that it may take a bit of trial-and-error to settle upon an oil-free moisturizer that works best for you. That's only natural given the complicated, dynamic, and wholly individualized environment of your skin. As you try out different brands and styles, make note of ingredients so you can better gauge what's effective for your particular dermatological equation.
In general, use a moisturizer after cleansing - after just a light, drying pat-down - or shaving, which can strip away moisture and irritate skin.
Take some time to examine the oil-free moisturizers we offer at drugstore.com. For those with normal to oily skin, these can be crucial allies in the quest for the softest, smoothest, happiest complexion available. BACK TO TOP »