5 Best Hydrating Natural Face Moisturizers in 2022

October 8, 2020 (updated November 7, 2022)

Keeping the skin on your face hydrated is SO important. Hydration = life! If you’re looking for your new holy grail face moisturizer from the best ethical beauty brands, you’ve come to the right place. These natural face moisturizers will keep your skin ultra-hydrated, flake-free and so soft. Whether you’re looking for a luxury face cream or a more budget-friendly choice, we have you covered!

lisa holds alpyn beauty triple c face cream

By: Lisa Fennessy

IN THIS POST:

If you know anything about me, you know I love my face oils. I will talk until I’m blue in the face about Laurel’s Sun Serum, Maya Chia’s The Straight A and True Botanicals Pure Radiance Oil but no matter what the oil, there is something all oils have lacking in common: HYDRATION.

RELATED: The best natural body lotion for all skin types.


Face oils v. moisturizers

Here’s the thing: oil and water do not mix. I learned this lesson the first time I tried to make salad dressing. And, it’s the same with skincare.

To make an oil + water formula, it has to be what’s called “emulsified” (forcing the oil and water to mix). This in turn creates a lotion or a cream. And because of this, creams and lotions can be extremely hydrating for our skin in ways that oils can’t.

The Mayo Clinic recommends using moisturizers because “dry skin shrivels plump skin cells, which can lead to premature fine lines and wrinkles. And although moisturizers can’t prevent wrinkles, they may temporarily mask tiny lines and creases.”

But not all face moisturizers are created equal. I grabbed this list of what a moisturizer should do from this NIH paper and I also added a few of my own requirements too.

RELATED: The best nontoxic tinted SPF and the best nontoxic un-tinted face SPF.


a sample of osmia organics purely simple face cream swatch

An ideal moisturizer should…

  • Reduce and prevent water loss, often referred to as TEWL or transepidermal water loss.
  • Restore lipid barrier and enhance the skin’s moisturizing retention mechanisms.
  • Be ethically produced.
  • Be nontoxic/natural.
  • Absorb immediately providing beneficial hydration.
  • Accommodate your budget.

Above all, I really want my face cream to deliver and retain MOISTURE. So, after years of testing, I’m detailing out my current faves that do just that. I’ve broken down these recs into 4 different categories (best lightweight, best medium weight, best serious and best drugstore find) listing just ONE top pick in each. This was so hard but I’m here for it.

I also wanted to include both luxury picks for those of us who enjoy investing in skincare and more budget friendly picks for all of us who want the shoes, the bag, the makeup and the skincare too.


Best natural face moisturizers

Let’s start with a bit of a caveat: there is no one cream that the TNK team uses on its own. Each of us always adds a a serum underneath or maybe a nourishing oil under or over a cream for maximum results. We love playing around to find that perfect combo. That said, here are my top picks (with consensus from the team!) on the best natural face moisturizers to add to your routine.


Best lightweight natural face moisturizer


Best medium weight natural face moisturizer


Best SERIOUS natural face moisturizer


Best budget natural face moisturizers

Because, let’s be honest, sometimes you need something right here, right now—and sometimes you need to grab something at your local Target. Both these picks are more accessible and easy to find.

More face moisturizing favorites!


FAQS

What’s the best face moisturizer for dry skin?

Prima’s Afterglow Vegan Collagen Cream is wicked hydrating. It contains pure, whole plant hemp extract to work synergistically with a blend of hyaluronic acid, vegan collagen and Ayurvedic adaptogens for hydrated, restored skin.

What’s the best face moisturizer for dry sensitive skin?

Osmia’s Purely Simple Face Cream is great pick for sensitive, reactive, normal skin and perioral dermatitis. One look at the hundreds of reviews and you will be sold!


Xo, lisa

P.S. Don’t miss The Best Foundation and 5 Organic Masks That Deliver Instant Results!

By Lisa Fennessy

Lisa is the founder of The New Knew. Passionate about clean beauty, organic eats and nontoxic lifestyle, Lisa writes to create awareness. Conscious consumerism and informed decisions will impact the marketplace, our health and THE WORLD!

30 Comments

  1. Reply

    Glenda

    Curious… would you recommend the OO Cream over Leahlani Bless Balm??? Mid-40’s, dry, sensitive skin… Thanks for ALL the info!

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Hi Glenda! You could totally do that! Sounds divine! xo

  2. Reply

    Lisa

    Gosh Glenda! They are honestly both so good. I say start with Jane and if you like it, you’ve found a winner without spending $200! xo

  3. Reply

    Manojnatha Shekhar

    The list of various natural face creams that you have shared through this article will be helpful for us to get one for ourselves through the information that you have provided. Thank you for listing it together and sharing it with us.

  4. Reply

    Lisa

    Oh bummer. I wonder if you would like The Fix? That does not have aloe in it 😉 Lisa

  5. Reply

    Maris

    Hi! What creams do you recommend for a very dry skin that is safe to use during pregnancy and do not contain any e-oils or castor oil? If they are available in Europe, without oversea shipping from US ect, is a plus!

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Hi Maris! Have you checked out Votary? You will LOVE their Super Seed Cream! xo, Lisa

  6. Reply

    Kelly Liddell

    Hi Lisa! Just found your blog and I am hooked. Would you recommend the Jane scrivener 5 a day program for a 22 year old? I am looking for clean products for my daughter. Thanks for any help you can give me.

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Hi Kelly! Totally! I think she would love it! Let me know what she thinks! xo, Lisa

  7. Reply

    Amy

    Out of all the listed moisturizers, which would be best for combination skin? Thanks for the great list!

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Amy! I would give the Triple C Bounce Cream a try! Let me know what you think! xo, Lisa

  8. Reply

    Debbie

    Which, if any of these creams would you recommend for aging skin, I’m 67, with lines/wrinkles? My skin was oily when I was younger, but now seems dry and dull.
    Thanks

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Debbie! I would recommend either Triple Bounce Cream OR Maya Chia’s new ARC. The ARC came out just after I revised this post and it’s really beautiful. Specifically designed for maturing skin with a focus on repairing it! So good. xo, Lisa

  9. Reply

    Sally

    Hi! Quick question: I love the sound of the Triple C bounce cream for my morning moisturizer (I’m using the True Botanicals overnight mask in the evening); however, I already use a vitamin serum before I moisturize in the morning. Would it be a waste to use the bounce cream in combination with that serum / should I pick something else from above?

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Sally! Great question. In my opinion it’s not too much to layer vitamin c’s. It will probably make them more effective. Also, interestingly enough there are several different types of vitamin C. Some are better at brightening while others are better at treating hyperpigmentation. So since you are layering different brands, the chance of this happening is higher. In general, vitamin c is great for the day time while vitamin a is better for night so that’s the only change I would recommend. xo, L

  10. Reply

    Mary

    Hi, I’d like to know how you feel about Mad Hippie and The Ordinary products. I tried both of their cleansing oils which seem nice! Thanks!

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Mary! As far as ingredients go, the Mad Hippie line looks great and The Ordinary is touch and go. Some of their products I would use and some I wouldn’t. As far as efficacy, I haven’t tried either long term to be able to comment. Hope this helps! xo

  11. Reply

    Laurie

    Hi!
    I’m 56 and have under eye wrinkles and laugh line wrinkles. I’ve previously found that natural products didn’t do much for me but I would prefer to use natural. What would you recommend. Need a good eye cream too.
    Thank you.

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Laurie! Check out this post that we just freshly published! I think you are going to love it! xo, Lisa

  12. Reply

    Linda

    What oil do I need to go with a moisturizer at age 73

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Linda! Thanks for reading! I would recommend checking out this post which guides you on how to create a skincare routine for your specific skincare needs (including recs!) Hope this helps! xo, Lisa

  13. Reply

    Carolyne

    I am 52 just starting to concentrate on skin care. My skin lately is dryish listless with no glow. I cleanse and tone with Nivea and moisturize with clarins. No big change, what should I use? I am a Kenyan and black.

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Carolyne! You have to try the Alpyn Beauty Triple Bounce Cream listed here. DEW CENTRAL!!!! And be sure to lmk what you think when it changes your life. xo, Lisa

  14. Reply

    Jonita

    True! Hydrating the skin is a challenge too. I use hyaluronic acid from refresh skin science.

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Glad you found something that works for you Jonita! xo, Lisa

  15. Reply

    Lisa

    Can you recommend products for post skin cancer surgery on face? Healing and non irritating.

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Hi Lisa! I hope you are recovering okay. Check out this line. It’s specifically made for that. xo, Lisa

  16. Reply

    Lisa Loomer

    Well, Lisa, I see this after buying every Elta Md and Alastin product known to man. I have never used anything vaguely “commercial”. I use Tru Botanicals and Suntegrity etc. But have been so freaked out by this surgery repair–on the tip of my nose no less–that I have been listening to, of all people, dermatologists, surgeons, and plastic surgeons…all of whom prescribe what they are introduced to via the drug industry…which is generally the last thing in the world I trust.

    So, if CV was developed for post skin cancer, I’ll definitely buy everything, thank you. And since so many people do have skin cancer…this is information you might share on the site?

    1. Reply

      Lisa Fennessy

      Thanks for the feedback Lisa! We love getting it. And PLEASE PLEASE let us know how CV works for you. xo, Lisa

  17. Reply

    Brooke

    Hi! I’m 52. I love the texture of Prima The Afterglow. Could you speak about the dimethicone ingredient? I thought we didn’t want that ingredient in a product. Concerned about it in general but also bc of acne prone skin. I want to use this product bc of the consistency and amazing ingredients. But wanted your thoughts.

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