Dry skin is irritating, uncomfortable, as well as hassle to control. A high quality, effective moisturizer will save the day, and your skin.
There are many fantastic moisturizers for dry skin on the market with modest price tags. In this article, we will explore the key features to consider when buying a moisturizer for dry skin, as well as provide you with our list of the top ten best cheap moisturizers for dry skin in 2020.
- Features to Consider in Cheap Moisturisers for Dry Skin
- The 10 Best Cheap Moisturisers for Dry Skin 2020
- 1. L’oreal Hydra-Renewal Continuous Moisture Cream
- 2. Amara Organics Hyaluronic Acid Serum for Skin with Vitamin C & E
- 3. CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion
- 4. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hyaluronic Acid Face moisturizer Gel-Cream
- 5. Cetaphil Moisturising Cream for Very Dry, Sensitive Skin
- 6. Curel Ultra Healing Intensive Lotion
- 7. Jergens Ultra Healing Extra Dry Skin Moisturizer
- 8. Eucerin Daily Protection Face Lotion SPF 30
- 9. Aveeno Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturiser for Sensitive Skin with SPF 15
- 10. St. Ives Renewing Collagen and Elastin moisturizer
- Guide to Buying the Best Cheap Moisturisers for Dry Skin
- Dry skin: Why does it occur?
- But why?
- Other tips to remember are:
- Moisturisers: why are they so crucial?
- A rundown of what skin moisturizer does for your dry skin:
- How to assess your skin:
- Key ingredients: what to look for on the ingredients list
- Day Cream vs. Night Cream
- Day Creams:
- Night or Day/Night Creams:
- Don’t forget about your SPF
- Moisturizers from our top ten list which contain SPF sun protection:
Features to Consider in Cheap Moisturisers for Dry Skin
You’ve come to the right place for a comprehensive guide to the best cheap moisturizers for dry skin in 2020. Before we get into the product reviews, here’s a quick guide to choosing a moisturizer for dry skin:
Purpose of the Cream
When you start to shop for skin moisturizers take a look at the brand and product description. It will specify which skin type it is best suited for. Choose one that specifies “dry” or “very dry” skin. Dry skin moisturizers are formulated with a thicker consistency, deliver more emollient, and are richer in content. The purpose of dry skin moisturizers is different from skin moisturizers that combat oily skin.
SPF (For Day Creams)
When choosing a day cream, SPF is essential. The only exception to the rule is if you have a hard-and-fast habit of adding sunscreen to your daily skincare routine. However, it is a rule that not every person has a tendency to follow. It is especially true if your skin is sensitive to strong sunscreens.
As a result, consider a skin moisturizer that multitasks and is capable of doubling as a sunscreen. When choosing a day cream look for one with an SPF of at least 15. The higher the SPF the better.
Sun protection is crucial to keeping your skin healthy and moist. When dry skin gets damaged by the sun, the dryness is exaggerated and even more uncomfortable as any remaining moisture has been sucked away. Plus, SPF helps to keep you looking young and fresh, with fewer lines, wrinkles, discoloration, and dark spots.
Fragrance-Free Formula (for sensitive skin)
If you have sensitive skin fragrances and scents are bad news. Look for a moisturizer which specifies “fragrance-free” on the packaging. You want as few unnecessary ingredients as possible. It allows the nourishing, hydrating ingredients to work their magic.
Rich, Thick Consistency (for night creams)
For dry skin: a thick, rich consistency is going to prove the most beneficial, especially during the night when your skin naturally loses moisture. Thick, emollient creams are effective to gently massage into your skin before bed. It adds a layer of moisture and nourishment that your skin can absorb as you sleep.
Oil-Free Formula (for dry skin which tends to clog)
An oil-free formula is especially important for people with dry and oily skin. It is possible to experience both even when your skin is dry, rough, and flaky. The skin can still produce an oily and shiny presentation that is prone to clog your pores. If your skin matches this description, then look for a moisturizer with “oil-free” or “non-comedogenic” on the label.
For extra dry patches of skin which don’t fall prey to oiliness, you can add a spot-treatment layer of serum or oil to treat the dryness. There are numerous ways to approach dry and oily skin. The important thing to remember is oily skin needs moisture too. If you deprive the skin of moisture, your glands can actually go into overdrive and produce even more oil.
Hyaluronic acid is an important skincare ingredient for people with dry skin. Hyaluronic acid helps the skin hold onto moisture and even helps to fight the damaging effects of UV rays. It is also a popular anti-aging ingredient as it often goes hand-in-hand with dry skin treatments. People generally experience drier skin as they age.
The 10 Best Cheap Moisturisers for Dry Skin 2020
Here are our choices for the top ten moisturizers for dry skin. Our reviews cover the features and performance of each product. We also quickly list out the pros and cons. It will help you decide which product is the best pick for you and your skin.
NOTE: Some of these moisturizers are for the body, some are for the face, and some are great for both face and body. We have also included a couple of serums as they are a vital skincare step for extremely dry, dehydrated skin.
- Vitamin B5 for supporting dry skin and adding moisture.
- Sold in a jar to control how much you use on a daily basis.
- It is specifically created for dry and/or sensitive skin.
The cream performs well thanks to the lightweight yet hydrating formula. Some people prefer to use it as a morning moisturizer to layer beneath SPF and makeup. During nights the product can transition to layer with serums or eye creams. Regardless of the intended use the L’oreal Hydra-Renewal Continuous Moisture Cream will not cause makeup to break down or create an overly shiny look because of its light texture.
- Organic, cruelty-free, fragrance-free, vegan formula.
- Mess-free pump bottle with cap for easy application.
- Anti-aging ingredients included in formula.
- Serum formula for layering with creams and moisturizers.
- Designed to lock moisture into the skin and create a hydrating barrier (thanks to the hyaluronic acid).
The product can get smoothed onto your skin after cleaning and before you add skin moisturizer because it is a serum as opposed to cream or lotion. The serum adds an extra layer of hydration to dry, exposed skin. Hyaluronic acid creates a barrier of moisture and draws hydration into the skin, keeping it plump and comfy all day. Unfortunately, signs of aging such as wrinkles, dullness, and fine lines are often exaggerated for people with dry skin as the plumpness and elasticity are reduced by the lack of hydration and moisture. As a result, the addition of vitamin C & E in the product serves as a protective barrier against aging. The serum performs beautifully in the day and night.
- The formula contains three types of ceramides as well as hyaluronic acid.
- Lightweight formula that works well day or night.
- Oil free, and non-comedogenic product.
- Skin moisturizer is very lightweight and non-irritating for sensitive skin.
The CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion is created by leading dermatologists. The lightweight formula hydrates the skin day and night. It helps to restore the protective skin barrier often lost due to dry skin. The formula contains three essential ceramides (1, 3, 6-11). It also has the highly desirable hyaluronic acid in its blend. Its ideal user is defined as someone with normal to moderate dry skin. It may not do enough for those with extremely dry or dehydrated skin.
- Jar-style design makes it easy to use.
- A gel-cream formula for hydration without oiliness.
- Designed for layering with SPF creams and makeup.
The product absorbs into the skin easily without leaving a greasy or oil residue because of the gel-like texture. It is ideal for people with dry skin who also experience oiliness and breakouts. The gel-cream formula is cooling and smooth to apply to the skin. It also works well under makeup. Use during day or night.
- The jar is a great method for getting the right amount of cream each time.
- Fragrance-free formula that is gentle on sensitive skin.
- Designed to lock moisture into the skin and prevent moisture loss.
- Suitable for the body and face (if your skin is extremely dry on the face).
While some people find the cream a little too rich to use on the face, others with very dry, dehydrated and rough skin find it ideal. It sinks into the skin after a short amount of time, leaving a moisturizing barrier to lock hydration into the skin. It works well for layering if being applied with makeup during the day. You can also layer the Cetaphil Moisturising Cream with oils and serums at night. We love the fragrance-free, sensitive formula which won’t irritate the most delicate of skin types.
$10 f/9 ounce package (also sold in other sizes)
- Comes in a handy, easy to use pump bottle.
- Contains ceramide complex to help retain moisture.
- Contains oatmeal extracts to calm dry, flaky, irritated skin.
- The moisturizer is suitable for the body and face.
- Clinically proven to restore moisture to very dry skin.
While the Curel Ultra Healing Intensive Lotion is not strictly marketed as a face product, it is gentle enough to use on that portion of your body. The formula is suitable for faces that are extremely dry, rough, flaky, and uncomfortable. Customers have attested to how great the moisturizer is for the face as well as the body. It doesn’t contain fragrance, which is a huge plus for dry, sensitive skin. In terms of oiliness or grease, it performs really well. The Curel Ultra Healing Intensive Lotion will hydrate the skin without leaving a layer of shine. It makes it great for layering beneath makeup during the day and using with oils and serums at night.
- Pump bottle for mess-free usage and storage.
- Designed for extra hydration deep into the layers of the skin.
- Fragranced moisturizer that some people love, some people hate.
- Contains vitamins for nourishing and healing dry, tired skin.
- Designed for the body, however, some claim it works well on the face too.
We recommend the skin moisturizer for the body, as it does contain fragrance which isn’t the best ingredient for the face. The formula is rich and moisturizes, yet light and absorbent enough to avoid leaving greasy or oily residue. A blend of vitamins penetrates deep into the layers of the skin to hydrate and moisturize dry skin so it turns from dull to luminous. It is ideal for legs and arms to make them absolutely glow. If you intend to use for the face make sure you first do a patch test. The product does have fragrance and is potentially unsuitable for very sensitive facial skin.
- Mess-free pump bottle with cap for easy use.
- The product serves double duty as sunscreen with SPF 30 protection.
- Tested for sensitive skin to deliver reliable results.
- Designed for daytime use.
The cream performs really well for dry skin during the day. It’s not extremely rich or thick, so it works best for people with moderately dry skin. The Eucerin Daily Protection Face Lotion absorbs quickly without leaving a greasy layer. Then it locks moisture into the facial skin all day long. The lotion is also ideal for layers below makeup because it also includes sun protection.
$8 p/ bottle
- Mess-free pump bottle for easy use.
- Sensitive-friendly formula works well on all skin types.
- Calms redness and irritated skin as well as hydrating dry patches.
- Protects the skin from UV damage with SPF 15.
The moisturizer is technically designed for sensitive skin yet also works well for dry skin that is cracked, irritated, or uncomfortable. Many people experience sore, irritated skin during times of extreme dryness. The Aveeno Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturizer will hydrate the skin while calming down redness and making your skin feel more comfortable. It is light enough due to the non-greasy formula, so you can layer it with richer products such as oils and serums during the day. The SPF 15 adds a protective layer to prevent your dryness from being exacerbated by sun exposure.
- Jar-style container with a screw-top lid for no-spill storage.
- Collagen and elastin for anti-aging properties as well as hydration.
- Safflower seed oil for reducing roughness and adding a youthful glow.
- Designed for hydration without greasy or oily residue.
The facial cream is light yet hydrating. It makes it ideal for oily skin. The moisturizer absorbs and sinks into the skin after applying. As a result, it leaves the skin soft and comfortable without shininess or excess oil. Therefore, the formula compliments makeup with a soft, smooth canvas that doesn’t create oil which can corrode and smudge makeup. The product is gentle enough to use day or night, but do remember to layer an SPF over the top for daytime use. It is excellent for skin which is dry and prone to oiliness as well.
Guide to Buying the Best Cheap Moisturisers for Dry Skin
Now that we’ve explored our collection of the ten best cheap moisturizers for dry skin, let’s dive deeper into the topic of dry skin.
Dry skin: Why does it occur?
You know you’ve got dry skin when the surface of your skin looks dull, textured, flaky, ashy, or rough. It can feel tight, itchy, and uncomfortable. If you wear makeup then you’re familiar with how some products such as foundation, concealer, and highlight can sit on top of dryness, exaggerating the rough appearance.
There are many reasons why you are experiencing dry skin. It is sometimes genetic or it is due to circumstances such as your environment or products you are using.
Here’s a list of possible causes:
- Genetics: Dry skin can get passed down from your parents.
- Health Conditions: Thyroid conditions can affect the skin and cause dryness.
- Seasonal: Dry skin is more common during extreme temperatures during the extremely cold or hot months.
- Hormonal: Dry skin is known to get worse during hormonal phases.
- Air Conditioning or Heating: Home control temperatures can strip skin of moisture.
- Products: There are certain creams, body washes, cosmetics, or sprays that rob the skin of moisture or irritate it to point of dry, scaly texture.
There is a good chance you are naturally prone to dry skin for not one, but a variety of factors. If you have dry skin over oily skin you will always have to deal with the dilemma. However, you can vastly improve dry skin by using a good moisturizer.
Other tips to remember are:
- Try to take warm showers as opposed to hot ones as very hot showers can dry and irritate the skin.
- Include fatty acids from foods such as olive oil, avocado, oily fish, and nuts into your diet. They’re great for nourishing the skin from the inside out.
- Drink plenty of water. Water is good for everything, including dry skin.
- Use a combination of oils, serums, moisturizers, and hydrating sprays to keep on top of your dryness.
- Always do a patch test before buying and using new skin products. The patch test can avoid a negative reaction and money spent on an unusable product.
Moisturisers: why are they so crucial?
There are obvious reasons why you should use moisturizer on dry skin. In addition to adding much needed moisture the product also helps reduce dryness. You can also help your skin attract moisture and maintain a desirable presence when you add the ingredients that your skin desperately needs. Ingredients such as hyaluronic acid draw moisture to your skin, leaving it feeling fuller and more comfortable.
However, when you leave dry skin without moisturizer it can become tighter and less elastic, causing an unpleasant “pulling” sensation when you smile and talk. The moisturizer helps to relax and plump the skin so it can move more freely.
A rundown of what skin moisturizer does for your dry skin:
- Locks in moisture deep into the skin
- Attracts moisture to the skin
- Protects the skin from the elements such as sun and wind
- Hydrates and smoothes out dry patches
- Loosens and plumps tight, uncomfortable skin
- Prevents the skin from creating too much oil to make up for dryness
Moisturisers feed your skin with hydrating ingredients to keep dryness at bay
How to assess your skin:
There are different kinds of dry skin, and which one you have will determine the best moisturizer for your needs:
Dry AND sensitive skin…
Your skin is dry, flaky, textured, dull, tight, and uncomfortable. It is also prone to redness, painful rashes, breakouts, and burning sensations when exposed to certain products.
Tip: avoid products with added fragrance and look for “For Sensitive Skin” on the label. Cetaphil is a great brand for you.
Dry AND oily skin:
Your skin is dry, flaky, textured, dull, tight, and uncomfortable. It is also prone to oiliness and shininess around the nose, forehead, and chin. You may actually have dehydrated skin as opposed to dry skin (see, below).
Tip: Shop for products labeled “For Combination Skin”, “Non-Comedogenic”, and “Non-greasy”. You could also use a non-greasy moisturizer all over the face, then add a rich serum or oil only to the driest parts of the face. It is important that you avoid oil-prone areas with the serum. Moisturizers will lock all that hydration and moisture into your skin, there it belongs.
Dry or dehydrated skin? What’s the difference?
Dry skin is generally understood as lacking in oils, while dehydrated skin is thirsty for water.
Dehydrated skin is often a symptom of circumstances, such as lack of water consumption, air conditioning or heating, or too much sun exposure. It can also derive from too much alcohol, not enough sleep, and poor diet.
Dry skin comes down to what type of skin you have naturally and how your body works. It occurs when the oil glands don’t produce enough oil. Your body can change with age, seasons, and hormones.
In order to receive help with dehydrated skin you can up your water intake for starters. Also, make sure to get more sleep, protect yourself from the sun, and wear a hydrating moisturizer to combat drying environments at the home or place of employment. A good diet full of fresh fruits and veggies, regular exercise, and limited alcohol consumption also helps a ton!
For dry skin, it is a bit harder to reverse lifestyle changes. You can add certain foods to your diet such as fish, nuts, avocado, and flaxseed oils. These foods contain Omega fatty acids which help to soothe inflamed skin while increasing moisture. Fish oil capsules are also a good addition to your dry skin treatment routine.
A rich cream containing skin-friendly ingredients with oils will penetrate the skin and add much-needed moisture. You can also layer a moisturizer and oil to really help your skin. An oil such as rosehip or avocado layered underneath a rich cream or ointment also works well for some people dealing with dry skin.
For more information on dry skin versus dehydrated skin, check out this video:
Key ingredients: what to look for on the ingredients list
If you are new to buying skin moisturizers here are the ingredients you should browse that are soothing and rehydrating for dry skin:
Hyaluronic acid – Hyaluronic acid attracts moisture to the skin and locks it into place for hydration all day long. It can also help your skin create more collagen which plumps the skin and reduces fine lines.
From our top ten list: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hyaluronic Acid Face Moisturizer.
Oatmeal extract – Oatmeal is known for calming down red, itchy, irritated skin. If your dry skin is causing you to feel hot, uncomfortable, and itchy then a moisturizer with oatmeal extracts is a smart choice.
From our top ten list: Curel Ultra Healing Intensive Lotion.
Collagen and elastin – The two ingredients are large components of the skin. Collagen and elastin helps keep the skin strong, flexible, supple, plump, and elastic as opposed to dull, sagging, and loose. If you have dehydrated skin with exaggerated lines, dullness, and wrinkles – a moisturizer with collagen and elastin will help.
From our top ten list: St. Ives Renewing Collagen and Elastin Moisturizer.
Natural oils – Natural oils are ingredients such as coconut oil, avocado oil, safflower oil, rosehip oil, jojoba oil, and apricot kernel oil. The oils help add moisture to the skin which struggles to create enough oil on its own. The natural ingredients also nourish and feed the skin with vitamins and healing properties. It assists to brighten dull skin, smooth out rough texture, as well as relax tight, uncomfortable skin.
From our top ten list: St. Ives Renewing Collagen and Elastin Moisturizer.
It’s important to add skin-safe oils to your dry skin care routine to keep the skin moist, supple and comfortable. You can also eat oils such as avocado, olive, fish oil and flaxseed oil to treat dry skin from the inside out.
Day Cream vs. Night Cream
Do you need a day cream and night cream? It depends on personal preference. You could use a moisturizing day cream with SPF so you can skip the extra step of adding more sun protection. Then at night, use a rich cream without SPF. Or you can use the same cream for day and night yet add your own sunscreen during the morning routine.
Meanwhile, for dry and oily skin you could choose a medium-weight all-hours cream for morning and night. The solution works as long as you introduce a rich oil or serum at night. Additionally, you need SPF protection during daylight hours.
- Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 moisturizer + Treatment Duo with SPF 15.
- Aveeno Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturizer for Sensitive Skin with SPF 15.
- Eucerin Daily Protection Face Lotion SPF 30.
Night or Day/Night Creams:
- Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hyaluronic Acid Face moisturizer Gel-Cream contains hyaluronic acid.
- L’oreal Hydra-Renewal Continuous Moisture Cream for all purpose protection.
- Cetaphil Moisturising Cream for very dry, sensitive skin.
- Curel Ultra Healing Intensive Lotion for all purpose protection.
- Jergens Ultra Healing Extra Dry Skin Moisturizer for dry skin on the body, and not just the face.
Don’t forget about your SPF
The golden rule applies to absolutely everyone regardless of the skin type. Dry skin absolutely must get protected from harmful UV rays because sun damage can exaggerate the look and feel of dryness. Sun damage will only cause more flaky, dull, tight, and sore skin.
You don’t necessarily have to choose a moisturizer with SPF. In fact, many of the skin moisturizers on our top ten list do not contain SPF. However, you must layer your moisturizer with an SPF to ensure your skin is completely protected. There are many gel and spray-based sunscreens on the market which you can layer under or over your hydrating moisturizer. It will not impact the overall performance of your moisturizer.
Moisturizers from our top ten list which contain SPF sun protection:
- Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 moisturizer + Treatment Duo contains SPF 15
- Aveeno Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturiser for Sensitive Skin with SPF 15 contains SPF 15
- Eucerin Daily Protection Face Lotion SPF 30 contains SPF 30
Let us introduce you to some helpful videos with more information on how to deal with sensitive and dry skin:
What to do with dry skin:
Dry versus dehydrated skin:
There are so many affordable moisturizers out there to help soothe and hydrate dry skin. The only problem is knowing which one to choose! There are lots of factors to take into account, so here are some important points to consider in order to find the right moisturizer for your dry skin:
- Do you want a moisturizer for the day, night, or both?
- Do you want your moisturizer to double as an SPF cream for sun protection?
- Do you have sensitive skin prone to breakouts and/or rashes?
- Do you have very dry skin without oiliness?
- Do you have dry and oily skin?
- What kind of formula do you like: gel, cream, lotion?
- Do you prefer a jar or a pump bottle for its packaging?
Once you have answered these questions it will lead you to the best cheap moisturizer for dry skin. Often it takes some trial and error before finding the right skin moisturizer. Furthermore, most people that struggle with dry skin find that it’s not one product but a combination of skin care products that lead to the most desirable results.