YOU know you've found one of the best face creams when your skin feels velvety soft, wrapped in a moisturising layer of hydration.
Honestly, the best facial moisturisers are a must-have for anyone's daily skincare routine, whether you're a beauty mogul or a quick-wash-and-out-the-door kinda woman.
Of course, one person's favourite face cream can be someone else's worst nightmare…
It all depends on your skin type, for example, dry complexions need thicker formulas with ingredients like Hyaluronic Acid and dimethicone, whereas if your face is quite oily you'll want to opt for oil-free, water-based and non-comedogenic ointments.
The main purpose of a face cream is to keep your face hydrated and give yourself a fresh base for applying makeup, although there are lots of creams which promise even more.
From anti-ageing gems to brightening best-sellers, we've reviewed some of the most popular, best face creams to shop now. Time for a face off.
1. Kiehls Ultra Facial Cream
- Kiehls Ultra Facial Cream, £26 from FeelUnique – buy here
Kiehls have a star-studded following, from Chrissy Teigen to Kendall Jenner, so it's no surprise that their Ultra Facial Cream is a popular go-to for many beauty lovers.
Mixing a combination of olive-derived Squalane and Gycloprotein extracted from micro-organisms in sea glaciers, it's a 24 hour-lasting tool for hyper-hydration.
After opening up the convenient little pot of 50 ml – you can buy 125ml for £47.50 – we noticed that there's no scent at all as a natural lotion that's ideal for sensitive skin types.
On first impression, we loved the ridiculously soft texture; the lightweight, soft-to-touch texture is enough to sell itself to anyone before even applying.
You should be aware that our skin is quite dry and sensitive, so quite often moisturiser isn't enough and we have to add in Hyaluronic Acid to get deeper into our pores. But Kiehls Ultra Facial Cream felt like enough on its own.
Despite not appearing heavy duty, it gives you quite a deep moisturise that lasts all day, although by the next morning we were in desperate need of it once more.
2. L'Oréal Paris Revitalift Filler [+ Hyaluronic Acid] Eye Cream
- L'Oréal Paris Revitalift Filler [+ Hyaluronic Acid] Eye Cream For Face 30ml, £19.99 from LookFantastic – buy here
L'Oréal Paris have created a formula that apparently reduces the fine lines on your face, plumping and hydrating your skin to look youthful as ever.
Blended with Hyaluronic Acid, the Revitalift Filler Eye Cream for Face can be applied all the way down to your neck, and apparently in a matter of weeks, you can already see the lifting effects.
We sampled it to see if it's worth paying almost 20 quid for.
One pump is enough to cover your face, so although the tube is only 30ml, we can see it lasting a while (well, long enough to see if there are actually any results).
The cream feels fresh as there's no fragrance and it's not too thick, moisturising our dry skin perfectly without leaving it greasy at all.
Within a week of use, our skin definitely felt more hydrated and even firmer, having used it religiously both day and night.
The results were so minor that we're not sure if we were imagining them, but apparently the best results arrive in around eight weeks when your under eye, forehead, crow's feet, glabellar and nasolabial are all smoothed out. Let's hope we have that to look forward to.
3. Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Face Cream
- Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Face Cream, £13 from Cult Beauty – buy here
Fresh is known for incorporating unique, natural ingredients into their products, from soy and sake to sugar – their Rose Deep Hydration Face Cream has become a cult favourite.
For just £13 you get 15ml of Fresh's blend of rose water, rose flower oil, angelica leaf extract and vitamin E, promising to nourish and moisturise your face.
We tested out the 50ml tub which comes in a sturdy rose-tinted glass pot, one which definitely doubles as a decoration in the bathroom.
Opinion upon first opening? It smells like a fresh rose garden, giving you a wonderful start to the day or calming scent to wind down wearing in the evening.
It's not thick at all but a small amount goes a long way and leaves your skin feeling gently refreshed and reinvigorated.
We recommend massaging it into your neck after your face for a rose scent that'll follow you throughout the day.
4. Harborist Environmental Moisture Light
- Environmental Moisture Light, £45 from Harborist – buy here
One of the more expensive finds on our list, Harborist's Environmental Moisture Light had a lot to live up to, priced at £45 for 50ml.
Perfect for normal to combination skin, this vegan face cream combines lots of natural ingredients like raspberry, aloe, leaf extract, radish root ferment and coconut.
For that reason, we were expecting it to smell fruity but it's unscented, smelling more like e45 cream than other fragranced moisturisers.
Using a pea-sized amount as recommended, we massaged it into our face and our sensitive, dry skin felt immediately nourished.
It might be a small bottle, but the lightweight texture sure packs a hydrating punch which soaks right into your pores creating an amazing base for primer and foundation.
Compared to other fancier-looking or smelling formulas on the market, this feels like a no-nonsense gift to your skin.
5. CeraVe Facial Moisturising Lotion No SPF 52ml
- CeraVe Facial Moisturising Lotion No SPF 52ml, £13 from LookFantastic – buy here
Skincare brand CeraVe develops all of their products with dermatologists – the Facial Moisturising Lotion is a no-nonsense, natural cream acting as a glass of water for your skin.
At £13, this cream of naturally-occurring ceramides and Hyaluronic Acid says it will offer 24 hour hydration for your face, soothing sensitivity and leaving your complexion feeling calm.
We received the 52ml tube in the post, surprised at how small and compact it is, with the pump only letting out a little squirt each time.
You only really need a small amount though, as the ultra-light, wet formula spreads easily around your skin, suggesting this small bottle will last a while as part of your daily routine.
CeraVe's Facial Moisturising Lotion has no scent, feeling gentle on our sensitive skin yet it definitely feels more like a light hydrating cream rather than one that would leave our skin deeply moisturised.
It's perfect for wearing with primer and make-up though as it's not greasy at all and absorbs really quickly. This one's probably our recommendation for daily use if your skin is sensitive to other creams.
6. Olay Regenerist Ultra Rich Day Face Cream
- Olay Regenerist Ultra Rich Day Face Cream, £17.49 from Boots – buy here
Featuring in Olay's Regenerist range, the Ultra Rich Day Face Cream apparently intensely hydrates your skin for 24 hours whilst also firming and reinvigorating your complexion.
The formula is a combination of Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide), Peptides and Shea Butter, made to be used as a day cream prior to applying makeup.
We found the Olay Regenerist Ultra Rich Day Face Cream's texture instantly surprising as it's butter-like, with a thickness that means you almost apply it like you would Vaseline.
Featuring a slightly fragranced smell, this moisturiser felt like the perfect base for make-up – one dab on each cheek and our forehead was enough to give a deep hydration with a smoothing finish.
As our skin is typically dry, we fell in love with the thickness of this Olay cream as it feels as though it gives you a deep moisturise without being greasy at all.
This is a must-have for our fellow dry and sensitive skin sufferers out there, we'll be getting more when it runs out that's for sure.
7. Cetaphil Daily Hydrating Moisturiser 88ml
- Cetaphil Daily Hydrating Moisturiser 88ml, £12.99 from Boots – buy here
Cetaphil is the dermatologist-reccomended skincare brand known for gentle, fragrance-free moisturisers and cleansers.
Boasting to be light and quick-absorbing, the Daily Hydrating Moisturiser sounds like a staple for everyone's day and night-routines at under £13.
Our review? First things first, the cream is extremely lightweight in an almost gel-like consistency which makes it really gentle to wear and you can definitely sense the Hyaluronic Acid on your skin.
Compared to others, it feels as though it simply complements your complexion rather than intensely hydrating or firming it, making it ideal for people with sensitive skin.
Although our skin is sensitive, it is also ridiculously dry, especially as when we tried this out when the weather was freezing in London. That's why the Certaphil Daily Hydrating Moisturiser isn't our favourite.
It's just too lightweight for a deep moisturise, although it does wear well underneath makeup so we think it's probably best for those with oily skin looking for something to complement the serums they already use.
8. NIVEA Q10 Energy Healthy Glow Face Day Cream
- NIVEA Q10 Energy Healthy Glow Face Day Cream, £6.25 from Amazon – buy here
Offering you a fresh face for less than £7, Nivea's Q10 Energy Healthy Glow Face Day Cream is an absolute steal.
The mix of vitamin C and E aim to rejuvenate tired-looking skin, whilst the SPF 15 looks after any sun damage too. What more could you want from a day cream?
We always start our first impressions with the scent, and Nivea's cream simply smells of summer, creating a wonderful fusion of citrus and sun cream.
Applying this straight after cleansing leaves you feeling refreshed as it's a deeply hydrating cream that's quite thick – a small amount goes a long way.
We love that it has SPF 15 as even on cloudy days in winter, SPF can help fight the impacts of anti-ageing.
In terms of brightening, it was a refreshing cream that left our skin feeling soft and revitalised. So yes, it works. Our only advice is that this might not be best for particularly oily skin.
9. La Roche-Posay Toleriane Sensitive Rich Moisturiser
- La Roche-Posay Toleriane Sensitive Rich Moisturiser, £16.50 from LookFantastic – buy here
With La Roche-Posay's Toleriane Sensitive Rich moisturiser, it's all given away in the name.
Combining glycerin, shea butter, vitamin B3 and La Roche-Posay Thermal Water, this is a face cream made for sensitive skin-types that need an extra rich moisturise, or just a little TLC.
When we received the 40ml tube, we were thinking that it won't even last the month but once you squirt a bit out, you realise it's a really thick formula which means you only want a small amount to avoid greasy-ness.
It. Smells. Amazing. The hints of shea butter sure seep through, with this face cream giving you a full coverage moisturise, one that is a little too much for someone with oily skin.
Luckily (kind of), our skin is dry so this worked wonders to deeply hydrate our face for a full day and we even woke up the next day with a smoother complexion.
At under £17, if you struggle with dry skin then this has got to be on your radar.
10. Florena Fermented Skincare 24H Hydrating Day Cream
- Florena Fermented Skincare 24H Hydrating Day Cream, £14.99 from Boots – buy here
The Florena Fermented Skincare 24H Hydrating Day Cream does what it says on the tin, leaving your skin moisturised all day long.
Blending fermented olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil, this is a vegan day cream that is also packaged from recycled plastic – we love any step towards greener living.
We'd never been introduced to Florena prior to trying out this cream, and the 50ml tub felt quite small but as it's quite a wet texture, a small amount gets you quite far.
The rose petal print on the box hints to the scent that lays inside, it smells floral but natural all at once, and gives you a firm, hydrated complexion.
Perhaps due to the olive oil, it's very slightly greasy, ensuring that your skin stays well moisturised throughout the day.
As we suffer with dry skin, we found this as a perfect light day cream to apply with hyaluronic acid serum. Plus, the packaging is really lightweight, ideal for taking with you everywhere you go.
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