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The best anti-aging moisturizer is the formula that hits the sweet spot between keeping your skin moist, your acne under control, and your arsenal of anti-aging ingredients compatible with the moisturizer itself. Moisturizer is an essential step in an anti-aging skincare regimen, as moisture is the key ingredient to keeping skin looking young and fresh.
A moisturizer’s job is to reduce the amount of water that evaporates off of the skin to minimize water loss by sealing in moisture, so it’s important to keep your skin hydrated from within by drinking plenty of water and eating a healthy diet. To find the perfect one for you, check out our picks for the top anti-aging moisturizers.
Best Overall: Sunday Riley C.E.O. C + E antiOXIDANT Protect + Repair
Vitamin C is a key ingredient in making an effective daytime moisturizer, and this formula from Sunday Riley uses it to fight signs of aging like free radical damage, fine lines, and hyperpigmentation. It also helps to calm the look of redness on the skin, and provides natural beta hydroxy acid for ongoing deep pore cleansing.
Featuring a powerful blend of lime pearl extract and exopolysaccharides, this moisturizer hydrates deeply to protect skin against pollution throughout the day and reveal brighter skin over time. Key ingredients include bisabolol (derived from chamomile) to help calm reactive skin, and tumeric to provide antioxidant support. It’s the perfect final layer to start your day.
Best Budget: Avène Skin Recovery Cream
Avène Skin Recovery Cream has everything you need from a ton-notch moisturizer—it's simple, creamy, gentle, and immediately relieves the tightness and dryness of dry skin. It’s not exactly a drugstore brand (although it would be if you lived in Paris) but it’s not packed with high impact ingredients that can cause negative reactions—it’s mostly enriched with thermal spring water, which provides healing effects to sensitive skin conditions like rosacea and eczema.
Amino acids found in serine ensure your skin stays soft and moisturized with a boost of radiance, and shea butter moisturizes and soothes dry, red and damaged skin. Toss one of these in your bag to get you through any tough skin day.
Best with SPF: Eminence Organic Skin Care Bright Skin Moisturizer SPF 30
This plant-based formula hydrates and protects the skin during sun exposure, while using natural hydroquinone alternative, a complex formulated with African potato and tara tree extract, to brighten and fade discoloration and boost collagen production. It uses powerful antioxidants like bearberry extract, GigaWhite, licorice root, and their signature BioComplex (a booster of antioxidants, Coenzyme Q10, and Alpha Lipoic Acid) to restore luminosity to your skin.
Best Drugstore: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Multivitamin Booster
Neutrogena saved your skin when you were a teen, and it’s back to rescue you as an adult, with a hyaluronic acid and multi-vitamin booster that delivers intense hydration to reenergize you skin.
The hyaluronic acid helps fortify the skin barrier to protect against reoccurring dryness, attracting ambient moisture to immediately quench skin. More of a serum or a gel than a full moisturizer, this formula can be worn alone or mixed and layered with other moisturizing formulas.
Best for Dry Skin: SkinCeuticals' Emollience
If you’re struggling with dryness and dehydration, aging skin, or other symptoms of environmental stress, this rich daily moisturizer was made for you. It nourishes and hydrates your skin and absorbs quickly and evenly. It uses a blend of algae extracts, grapeseed, rosehip and macadamia nut oils to restore and maintain skin hydration. An essential oil blend of lavender, rosemary, and peppermint oil help soothe and nourish. Mango seed butter rounds out the rehydrating power of these natural ingredients, which make it highly suitable for dry and sensitive skin.
Best for Night: Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream
If you haven’t heard of cloud cream, allow us to introduce you to the cutest term for super powerful moisturizers. The name comes from the way it helps skin retain water like a cloud holds vapor. This particular product has sold out regularly at Sephora since it was first introduced, thanks to its super-concentrated 30% hyaluronic acid content, which sucks atmospheric vapor out of the air around you and into your your skin to provide a continuous stream of intense hydration for up to 72 hours.
Ceramides help to lock in additional moisture while improving the skin’s barrier, and elderberry antioxidants treat symptoms of aging as you rehydrate. It’s oil-free, alcohol-free and fragrance-free, and it’s more than worth a try for severe dryness.
Best for Sensitive Skin: La Roche-Posay Toleriane Sensitive Fluide
The French skincare experts at La Roche-Posay say that this moisturizer is so gentle, it’s even suitable for babies—but we’d say keep it to yourself. It combines La Roche-Posay spring water, (which calms skin irritation) with hydrating ingredients like glycerin and vitamin B3 to hydrate, protect, and repair skin.
The super lightweight formula penetrates quickly and is fragrance-free, preservative-free, alcohol-free, and non-comedogenic. If you’re suffering from winter dryness, this is designed to reduce reactivity, allowing your skin’s barrier to heal and more moisture to be retained.
Best Serum: PCA Skin Hydrating Serum
Ideal for all skin types, this hydrating serum is designed to nourish and replenish dull skin and leave it looking healthy and refreshed. Sodium PCA and hyaluronic acid moisturize, condition and stimulate circulation, especially if you tap it into your skin as many beauty experts advise you do with serums.
Fructose boosts collagen production while wheat germ extract increases firmness. Aloe vera extract calms redness and inflammation for a glowing complexion. Reviewers loved using this throughout the day as a quick pick-me-up dose of moisture after running outside, doing a peeling mask, or skiing to help skin to heal. You can also pair it with a heavier moisturizer in the winter to double down on keeping your skin fully hydrated and safe from wrinkling and cracking.
Our writers spent 5 hours researching the most popular anti-aging moisturizers on the market. Before making their final recommendations, they considered 90 different moisturizers overall, screened options from 65 different brands and manufacturers, read over 50 user reviews (both positive and negative) and tested 3 of the moisturizers themselves. All of this research adds up to recommendations you can trust.