Skincare can seem confusing to some but simple to others. Either way, facial moisturisers generally appear to be easy enough - you lather it on and hope it’s doing its job to hydrate your skin. Check out our top recommendations to get your hands on some of that good stuff!

Top 14 Moisturiser Recommendations

1. Sothys Softening Emulsion
Best anti-pollution moisturiser
Buy from RM181.00
Buy from Sothys

Pollution from the air, water and environment can damage your skin cells, causing blemishes, dehydration and other skin condition. Strengthen your skin's barrier with Sothys' Softening Emulsion that keeps your skin hydrated and gives it the anti-pollution effects. The lightweight fluid that's perfect for sensitive skin will give you a matte appearance, making it suitable for oily skin.

Promising review: This is an excellent moisturiser. I use it under my makeup and it leaves my skin feeling very, very soft, while also hydrating it.” - Monica

More: Top 11 Skincare Products to Reinvigorate Your Dull Skin

2. The Body Shop Tea Tree Mattifying Lotion
Best with matte finish - suitable for acne prone skin
Buy from RM61.79

Lightweight, oil-free, anti-bacterial and free from harsh chemicals or animal testing, The Body Shop Tea Tree Mattifying Lotion is the perfect moisturiser for oily and acne prone skin types! It is infused with tea tree oil, lemon tea tree and tamanu oil to fight blemishes, blackheads and control oil.

Promising review: I have been using it for 3 weeks and I love it! It doesn't make my face oily. My skin became soft and smooth . It shrank my pimples too!” - Kiushie

More: Say Goodbye to Acne with these Top 10 Korean Skincare Brands

3. Estee Lauder Crescent White Full Cycle Brightening Moisture Creme
Best brightening moisturiser - suitable for dry skin
Buy from RM330.00

Dry skin, dullness, dark spots? This moisturiser from Estee Lauder can fix that! It’s formulated with protective botanical ingredients to boost your skin’s radiance while providing rich hydration. It works to fade and prevent dark spots, provide intense hydration and bring life back to your skin.

Promising review: I love it! I have dry skin so I have problem in finding a suitable moisturiser. This product is the best moisturiser I've ever used. It has an immediate effect on my skin. It also lightened my dark spots.” - Nuha

More: Keep Your Skin Hydrated with These 10 Face Moisturizers for Dry Skin

4. Philosophy Renewed Hope In A Jar Overnight Moisturiser
Best paraben-free moisturiser - suitable for ageing skin
Buy from RM174.00

For more lifted and firmer skin, Philosophy's Renewed Hope In A Jar aids in boosting the skin’s moisture levels to leave it feeling replenished, hydrated, soft and supple. It’s also enriched with a triple blend of AHA to smoothen the skin to reduce the appearance of fine lines and dull-looking skin.

Promising review: “Recommended for dry and combination skin. Cream is very thick texture with nice relaxing fragrance. After use, you can feel your skin looks more moisturised and fresh." - Wansiri P.

More: Be Forever Young with These 11 Anti-Aging Skin Care Products

5. HADA LABO Super Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Water Gel
Best gel moisturiser - suitable for combination skin and oily T-zone
Buy from RM57.66

The Super Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Water Gel is a lightweight and hydrating gel moisturiser that provides hydration to the skin without the greasy feel. It’s formulated with 4 different types of hyaluronic acid which boosts and locks the skin’s hydration level at the same time!

Promising review: The watery-feel gel texture is so soothing, cooling and refreshing. The product absorbs quite fast and leaves a matte finish. Not sticky at all. Skin feels hydrated and supple after using.” - Cheryl

More: 9 Perfect Face Moisturizer Picks For Your Combination Skin

6. Garnier Light Complete Day Cream SPF 19
Best cheap moisturiser for glowing skin and to even skin tone
Buy from RM11.93

Say goodbye to dull skin! Garnier Light Complete Day Cream is an affordable brightening face cream for those looking to achieve glowy and evenly toned skin. Infused with lemon essence, vitamin C and herbal extracts, this moisturizer will help fade dark spots and dullness while gently exfoliating to reveal brighter skin!

Promising review: I love the texture. It feels so light and helps to brighten my skin. Will definitely repurchase.” - Izzaty

More: Even Out Your Skin Tone with These 8 Tinted Moisturizers

7. Kiehl’s Centella Recovery Skin Salve
Best moisturiser without alcohol - suitable for sensitive skin
Buy from RM252.86
Buy from Lazada MY

Sensitive and irritated skin? Kiehl’s Centella Recovery Skin Salve is a potent moisturiser for dehydrated and sensitive skin types. It contains skin-soothing ingredients such as aloe, honey and centella extract that work together as an effective antibacterial and wound healing trio.

Promising review: “I bought this for my sensitive acne-prone skin a little over 6 weeks ago and I absolutely love it! It's the perfect nighttime moisturiser and absorbs quickly into the skin. It didn't irritate my skin at all!” - Holly

More: 10 Korean Skincare Products to Hydrate Dry and Sensitive Skin

8. L’Oreal Paris Men Expert Hydra Energetic Multi Action 8 Moisturiser
Best non-greasy moisturiser for men on a budget
Buy from RM34.55

This anti-fatigue moisturiser is designed for men on the go! Formulated with caffeine and vitamin C, it moisturizes, energizes and fortifies the skin to reveal a more supple and radiant face. It's also an effective aftershave treatment as it can help soothe razor burns.

Promising review: “When worked in, (this moisturiser) disappears and leaves soft, smooth, moisturised skin. It is excellent in removing baggy eyes, smile lines and forehead wrinkles.” - Retired Sparky 176

More: Groom Yourself Right with the Best Men’s Face Washes Under RM30

9. Innisfree Jeju Sparkling Mineral Oil-Free Gel Cream
Best Korean oil-free face moisturiser - suitable for oily skin
Buy from RM125.00

Looking for a non-greasy gel moisturiser? The Innisfree Jeju Sparkling Mineral Oil-Free Gel Cream could be just what you need! It’s infused with 79.5% sparkling mineral water from Jeju mountains that’s packed with minerals and nutrients. It also contains a natural sebum-absorbing ingredient derived from Ceylon moss to keep your skin matte and fresh.

Promising review: “I've had (this gel cream) for about a month and it's doing a pretty good job. It keeps my skin moisturised and bouncy without being too much. Keeps oil away for a decent amount of time.” - Kimm L

More: Say Goodbye to Oily Skin with These 8 Moisturizers

10. Dermalogica Barrier Repair
Best unscented moisturiser to reduce redness – not tested on animals
Buy from RM220.00
Buy from Dermalogica

The Dermalogica Barrier Repair is here to rescue your irritated skin and soothe redness. With key ingredients such as the unique UltraCalming Complex, botanical oils like evening primrose and borage seed oil, and vitamin C and E, this moisturiser repairs the skin’s lipid barrier and creates a protective shield against harsh environmental stress.

Promising review: “Waterless, so hydrating, feels like velvet on my skin. Gets rid of dry patches (and) takes away the redness I get on my cheeks too. Almost feels like a primer. Really lightweight.” - Peggy

More: 8 Fragrance-free Skincare Products You Should Give Thought To

11. St. Ives Timeless Skin Facial Moisturiser
Best anti-ageing moisturiser with collagen
Buy from RM65.00

Collagen is what gives our skin the elasticity and bounciness. The St. Ives Timeless Skin Facial Moisturiser is infused with collagen, elastin and safflower oil to moisturise and lift the skin. This face cream is rich and hydrating while being non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic, making it suitable for all skin types.

Promising review: Most anti-aging products (usually) have a heavy, oil-based texture as mature dry skin needs a heavy dose of hydration to look youthful. But (this moisturiser) hardly needs any massage, gets absorbed in the skin and feels absolutely weightless on the skin.” - Juthika

More: Be Forever Young with These 11 Anti-Aging Skin Care Products

12. Watsons Water 360 Intensive Moisturising Facial Cream
Best drugstore moisturiser - suitable for normal skin
Buy from RM65.90

If your skin has been feeling parched lately, try out this facial cream from Watsons! With hydrating ingredients such as Alpine glacier water, Canadian sea mud water and French Allevard hot spring water, your skin will feel nourished and hydrated instantly!

Promising review: “Value for money, good quality and texture. (An) intensive moisturising cream.”- Y

More: Road to a Healthy Complexion with These 8 Awesome Drugstore Face Wash

13. The Body Shop Aloe Soothing Day Cream
Best vegan, natural and organic face moisturiser
Buy from RM61.79

If you’re looking for a soothing, gentle and natural moisturiser, this is it! The Body Shop’s Aloe Soothing Day Cream is 100% vegan, cruelty-free, made from natural and organic ingredients. It’s dermatologically tested and gentle enough for sensitive skin users too!

Promising review: Best moisturiser for sensitive skin. Literally calms your skin the second you put it on and has reduced my redness. Plus it never irritates and sinks right in!!” - Natasha

More: Treat Your Skin with these 16 Skincare Products for All Skin Types

14. Alpha-H Daily Essential Moisturiser SPF 50+
Best moisturiser with SPF that won’t clog pores
Buy from RM152.00

Lightweight and hydrating, the Alpha-H Daily Essential Moisturiser SPF 50+ is the ultimate moisturiser for hot and sunny days. It protects the skin from environmental stress, aggressors and harmful UV rays by forming a protective barrier. It has SPF 50 too!

Promising review:  “I am very picky with my moisturisers, because I don’t like the oily, tacky feeling of some. At the same time, I dislike feeling like I didn’t put anything on at all. This product strikes the perfect balance.” – Nisha

More: Put Your Skin First with these 7 Sunscreens for Sensitive Skin


Tips and tricks

As stated, moisturisers might seem simple enough. However, unbeknownst to us, it’s simple to apply them wrong, ultimately rendering them ineffective.

Hence, there’s no harm in learning how to apply moisturisers better; and this goes for those of us who are already applying them correctly as well. In fact, it’s surprising how a few small tweaks are all it takes to acquire bigger results. Check out these 8 tips/hacks to get the most out of your moisturising routine:

  • Use it at the right time

You’re gonna want to lock your moisturiser in as best as possible and the easiest way to do this is to apply your moisturiser when your skin is still moist. This is best achieved after showering or washing your face, when your skin is freshly moist after drying with a towel.

  • Apply it on your neck too

Moisturising is helpful to avoid premature ageing. Hence, don’t just stop at your face when applying facial moisturisers, extend it past your jawline to your neck too! However, bear in mind that while facial moisturisers can target wrinkles and dark spots in ways that body lotion can’t, it is alright to use facial moisturisers on your body but never in reverse as body lotions can irritate the face and clog pores.

  • Try one with SPF

We can never emphasise sun care enough. If you find yourself constantly in a rush in the mornings, opt for a moisturiser with broad spectrum SPF. This will help to prevent signs of premature aging such as dark spots and wrinkles - providing you not just with hydration, but protection too.

  • Mix facial oil with your moisturiser

In a hot and humid country like Malaysia, it’s easy for the environment to cause our skin to be dull and dry. Combat this by mixing facial oil with your moisturiser for a hydration boost. Trust us, your skin will thank you for it.

  • Mix an illuminator into your moisturiser

Breathe life into your skin by mixing a drop of illuminator into your moisturiser - a little goes a long way. The results? A nice glow and brighter complexion!

  • Apply in upward strokes

As you age, you’ll find that your skin starts to sag and get dragged downwards in ways that are not very appealing. If this is the case, apply your moisturiser in upward strokes. While it might not reverse the effects of aging, the technique increases circulation and helps your skin to absorb more product.

  • Layer it correctly

One of the easiest ways to ensure that you are getting the most out of your skincare routine is by making sure that you are layering your products correctly. With the exception of sunscreen which should always be applied last, start with products that have thinner consistency before moving to thicker ones.

  • Use a hydrating spray

Up your hydration by using a facial mist! These are extremely easy to take on-the-go with you. Apart from adding to your skin’s hydration, a quick spritz also goes miles to re-set your makeup - keeping you looking fresh all day.


Hydration is key!

While moisturisers are important to help protect your skin's natural oil content from dehydration, it is not enough to do the job. Remember that skin cells are made up of water and therefore, it is as important to hydrate by drinking enough water as it is to moisturise. 

Drinking water keeps your skin from turning dry, tight and flaky. In other words, it preserves your skin's resilience, consequently protecting it from wrinkles. So the next time you get lazy to carry your bottle of water out with you, just think about the billions of skin cells on your body that will thank you for properly hydrating!

More: Hydrate, Refresh & Set Your Makeup with these 11 Face Mists

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