in , , ,

15 Best Moisturizers for Oily Acne-Prone Skin

What is acne?

Woman with oily skin and acne in need of a moisturizer

Acne vulgaris, commonly known as acne, is a skin condition where the hair follicles of the face, chest and even the back are affected. It is not caused by bacteria, although bacteria play a significant role in its development. Although it affects mostly teenagers during their puberty, some women develop acne during their mid- to late-20s. It is essential that you choose one of the best moisturizers for acne prone skin.

Acne appears on the skin as:

  • Tender red bumps, also known as pimples or zits
  • Cysts or deep pimples, boils
  • Occluded pores, also called comedones, blackheads or whiteheads
  • Pustules which are bumps with pus

There are thousands of acne products on the market that aim at treating acne, but in severe cases of acne, one should see a doctor or dermatologist for the right treatment.

How do moisturizers work for acne-prone skin?

Moisturizer for oily acne prone skin

Problems like skin dehydration, acne, dry and oily skin are difficult situations that seem to be endless and impossible to manage. But when you understand these skin problems and learn the right products to use, you can implement excellent skincare routines and experience improved results.

The main purpose of skin moisturizers is to boost your natural skin barrier. Regular use of the best moisturizers can reduce the occurrence of dry, scaly, rough, itchy skin and other minor skin irritations. Moisturizers come in many shapes and forms.

There four main types of moisturizers: occlusives, humectants, emollients, and ceramides. Each type works differently on your skin, providing special and unique benefits. It is useful to know how each type works with the skin so that you will be able to decide which one will be good for your specific skin needs, especially for acne-prone skin. Generally, the right moisturizer helps neutralize the oil and water in your skin. This helps prevent blemishes and breakouts, relieves irritation that you might be experiencing, reduces the appearance of wrinkles, and shields your skin from damage.

How do we find the best moisturizers for oily, acne prone skin?

Although many think that moisturizer is not good for oily skin, this is a mistake. Moisturizer helps reduce visible oil and shine. Without the help of this product, your skin can become dehydrated, and it will produce more oil. However, this does not mean that all moisturizers will work for you. You can learn how to find the best moisturizers for your skin type.

non-comedogenic moisturizer being used
image credit: Vine Vera

Learn to read labels.

If you have an oily or acne prone skin, select a moisturizer that is non-comedogenic (or non-acnegenic) and oil-free. Non-comedogenic products are less likely to clog your pores and cause breakouts. Oil-free products do not contain extra oils that can create a heavy or greasy feel on the skin. Take note that creams are usually heavy compared to moisturizing lotions. So, if you want a lighter feel, choose a moisturizer.

Check for exfoliating components.

Most moisturizers have retinol, salicylic acid, alpha hydroxy acids, or other exfoliating components. These famous ingredients may assist in improving acne, especially if it is mild or comedonal acne. However, if you are applying topical acne medication, moisturizers containing these ingredients may irritate your skin and increase the occurrence of flaking and peeling. It is better to get a moisturizer without exfoliating components unless your dermatologist or doctor recommends it.

Get hypo-allergenic, fragrance-free products.

Fragrance can irritate skin, especially for sensitive or acne prone skin. If you have extremely dry, peeling skin due to acne medications, moisturizers with fragrance may even sting or burn. Take note that ‘unscented” is not the same as “fragrance-free.” The best moisturizers for sensitive skin are fragrance-free.

Choose products with SPF.

Most of the moisturizers these days have SPF, which protects you from the harmful effects of the sun. Applying sunscreen every day may shield you from premature aging and skin cancer. This component is especially important when you are using acne products that can cause photosensitivity or boost your sensitivity to the sun. Common acne medications that increase photosensitivity are those that contain (but are not limited to) benzoyl peroxide, Retin-A, and Accutane.

Best thing to do? See your dermatologist.

Do not hesitate to ask for professional advice for the best moisturizers that can treat your acne- prone skin.

Always remember to focus on results, not the price.

Consequently, you do not have to buy costly products to get the best results for your acne prone or oily skin. If you are loving your high-priced moisturizer and getting the best results, enjoy it. However, an affordable product can still provide the benefits that more expensive ones can give you.

Based on our research, here are the best moisturizers for oily, acne-prone skin:

1. Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Daily Moisturizer

Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Face Moisturizer

The Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Daily Moisturizer is an oil-free luscious cream that leaves your skin smooth and lustrous. It is great under makeup as it allows your foundation to flow smoothly and flawlessly over your face. Since this moisturizer is not-comedogenic, it will not clog your pores that can cause breakouts. It has salicylic acid for even oilier skin tone.


  • SPF 15 that helps protect your skin from sun damage
  • Big bottle with a high price
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Amazon’s one of the best seller acne products


  • The container is large to use up if you discover you do not want it

Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Daily Moisturizer buy button

2. Renewal Safflower Oil

Renewalize Safflower Oil

Renewal Safflower Oil is a genuine linoleic non-comedogenic moisturizer. Containing about 70% linoleic acid, this moisturizer provides a large amount of vitamin E to your skin. This product is usually chosen by individuals with oily and acne prone skin because it keeps the balance of natural oil in the body. Fit for all types of skin, Safflower Oil can also be applied as a daily facial moisturizer or as a makeup remover.



  • Contained in a glass bottle, so special care should be taken to prevent the product from getting broken.

Renewalize Safflower Oil Buy Button

3. CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion

CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion

CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion provides 24-hours of skin hydration. It has hyaluronic acid that assists your skin in using the natural moisture. Fragrance-free and also free from any element that clogs the pores, it keeps your skin moisturized compared to other moisturizers.


  • Keeps your skin hydrated and oil-free.
  • Free of added oils, fragrance, and petroleum components.


  • Does not remove wrinkles from the skin.

CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion Buy Button

4. Exposed Skin Care Moisture Complex

Exposed Skin Care Moisture Complex

Exposed skin care products have stood the test of time in providing beneficial results, especially for those with acne prone skin. This oil-free moisture complex product is part of their Expanded Acne Treatment Kit. It contains natural components that ensure your skin receives proper moisture without irritation, such as pumpkin seed to relieve irritation, green tea extract to rebalance your skin, and caffeine to remove redness.

Exposed Skin Care Moisture Complex is fit for individuals with oily, combination, dry and, to some extent, sensitive skin types.


  • Locks in moisture to your skin without the greasy feel and look.
  • Keeps your skin moisturized during the dry and winter seasons.
  • Makes your skin soft and smooth.
  • If this product is used with the Expanded Acne Treatment Kit, it ensures clearer and smoother skin within 30 days. Get a full refund if it does not!


  • In very rare cases, the product causes a slight stinging for those with sensitive skin.
  • You may find it difficult to wear makeup over it.
  • It does not perform well if not used with the Exposed Expanded Acne Treatment Kit.

Exposed Skin Care Moisture Complex Buy Button

5. Era Organics Complete Face Moisturizer Cream

Era Organics Complete Face Moisturizer Cream

Era Organics Complete Face Moisturizer Cream contains organic aloe vera, Manuka Honey, MSM, coconut oil blue-green algae, shea butter, cocoa butter, olive oils, and hemp seed oil. It also infused with vitamins A, B, C, E. This product is non-greasy which means it does not leave a residue to help heal and smoothen damaged skin. It is without parabens, alcohol, and fragrances and uses all-natural ingredients good for oily skin and dry skin.


  • All natural ingredients
  • Fit for sensitive skin
  • Effective in dry climates


  • May cause itching and burning sensations
  • Has unappealing product smell
  • expensive

Era Organics Complete Face Moisturizer Cream

6. Christina Moss Naturals Organic Facial Moisturizer

Christina Moss Naturals Organic Facial MoisturizerThis Naturals Organic Facial Moisturizer from Christina Moss is known for its safe and effective handmade formulation for acne prone skin. It contains aloe vera juice, grape oil, apricot oil, and avocado oil. While shielding your skin from aging and dryness, it is also fit for all skin types.


  • It does not have any harsh chemical elements.
  • Concentrated solution; only a small drop is needed to lather it up.
  • A light moisturizer that absorbs quickly into the skin; it does not make your skin oily or greasy.
  • All ingredients are guaranteed organic, and therefore, it works with sensitive skin without causing any allergic reactions.


  • Contains a licorice fragrance, which lasts for just a few minutes.
  • May irritate some parts of the skin.
  • Shelf life is short, so if you want to keep it for several months or years, well, look for something else.

Christina Moss Naturals Organic Facial Moisturizer Buy Button

7. Aveeno Clear Complexion Moisturizer

Aveeno Clear Complexion MoisturizerThe Aveeno Clear Complexion Moisturizer contains salicylic acid, which fights against acne and provides a glow to your skin. Recommended by most dermatologists, this is one of the best moisturizers for individuals with oily skin. It helps clear blemishes by making the skin radiant.


  • Attacks acne and dryness, making your skin brighter.
  • Shields your skin from dullness and aging effects.
  • Fit for acne prone skin.
  • Does not have any oily ingredients.
  • One of the best moisturizers for oily skin.


  • Not fit for all types of skin

Aveeno Clear Complexion Moisturizer Buy Button

8. Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Control Moisturizer

Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Control Moisturizer

This non-comedogenic moisturizer is considered one of the best moisturizers on the market today. A special combination of ingredients helps hydrate your skin, while also removing any acne-causing bacteria. It also ensures that your pores stay clean. The main ingredient is salicylic acid. This product is designed for all skin types, except for the very dry and sensitive skin types.


  • Helps fight and prevent acne; fit for those with acne prone skin.
  • Hydrates your skin; just a single application of this moisturizer will keep your skin hydrated for the whole day.
  • The salicylic acid content will not excessively dry out your skin.


  • Fit only for those with acne prone skin.
  • If you have allergies to salicylic acid, we suggest looking for another acne product.

Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Control Moisturizer Buy Button

9. Glytone Acne Treatment Gel

Glytone Acne treatment gel

This product is specially formulated as an oil-free lotion for acne prone skin. Although it is for all types of skin, the presence of salicylic acid may irritate those with very sensitive skin. Therefore, if you had used products with salicylic acid before and suffered from skin irritation, this lotion may not be the right acne product for you. Salicylic acid helps remove dead skin cells and excess oil buildup.



  • Works with acne prone skin types only.
  • Salicylic acid does not work well for everybody.

Glytone Acne Treatment Gel Buy Button

10. Era Organics Tea Tree Oil Face Cream

Tea Tree Oil Face Cream

Tea tree oil has been known to treat acne and effective in treating other skin problems like blackheads, redness, cystic acne, and blemishes. It guarantees clearer and smoother skin without causing dryness, irritation, or redness. This cream is formulated to hydrate, nourish and soothe dry, combination or oily skin which means that this product is for everyone.

It blends natural, organic, and potent ingredients that help nourish and balance your skin, like goldenseal, St John’s wort, pomegranate seed oil, burdock root, dandelion root, zinc, and salicylic acid. This formulation of natural and organic components fit those with oily skin, acne, dry skin, breakouts, blemishes, rosacea, and even combination skin. The product is non-comedogenic, non-toxic, paraben-free and gentle to the skin.


  • Prevents blackheads, cystic acne, blemishes, and redness.
  • Hydrates your skin.
  • Non-greasy.
  • Non-comedogenic, without paraben, toxins, or hormone disruptors.
  • They are not tested on animals.


  • May clog skin pores and result in some breakouts.
  • Does not have SPF.

Tea Tree Oil Face Cream Buy Button

11. Dermalogica Active Moist Moisturizer

Dermalogica Active Moist

This moisturizer from Dermalogica is great for individuals with dry skin. It contains lemon, cucumber, and burdock to hydrate the skin and prevent clogged pores. It also enhances your skin moisture level and texture. The product is formulated for all skin types.


  • A natural moisturizer that is also easy to apply.
  • Improves and enhances hydration, while absorbing deeply for best results.
  • Additional astringents keep pores tight and prevent clogging.


  • If you are presently suffering from acne, this moisturizer may not be sufficient to remove it. You will need other acne products to help remove your acne problem, but it can keep any future acne issues at bay.

Dermalogica Active Moist Moisturizer Buy Button

12. Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisturizer

Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture

This oil-free moisturizer from Neutrogena is formulated especially for the most sensitive skin. Water-based, hypoallergenic and lightweight, it helps hydrate your skin without making it feel greasy or oily. This moisturizer also regulates any excess oil for a healthy glow. Though it is more expensive than most, the results are remarkable.


  • Water-based formula, light on the skin, and absorbs easily.
  • It is recommended for skin types, including very sensitive skin.
  • Shields your skin from the harsh rays of the sun.
  • Remarkable results and one of the best moisturizers on the market.


  • Expensive moisturizer.
  • This product contains a strong fragrance.

Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisturizer Buy Button

13. Clean & Clear Dual Action Oil-Free Moisturizer

Clean & Clear Essentials Dual Action Facial Moisturizer

Clean & Clear Dual Action Oil-Free Moisturizer is a light cream that helps you manage your acne. Its main ingredient is salicylic acid, which is designed for dry skin.


  • Moisturizes your skin and ensures that your pores do not get clogged.
  • Helps prevent acne. (If you are not presently suffering from acne problems, avoid using this product.)


  • If you have an allergy to salicylic acid, this product will just make your acne worse.
  • Slightly expensive compared to other similar products.

Tip: To check if you are sensitive to salicylic acid, apply a small dab to your skin.

Clean & Clear Dual Action Oil-Free Moisturizer Buy Button

14. Proactiv+ Green Tea Acne Fighting Moisturizer

Proactiv Green Tea Moisturizer, 3 Ounce

Give your skin a daily dose of nature’s potent antioxidant that it deserves: green tea. This moisturizer comes in a lightweight serum formulated to help hydrate dry and irritated skin. Apply every day, or as needed, to relieve your skin from dryness. You can wear this product alone or under makeup. If you are going outside, wear a sunscreen SPF15 or even higher. If irritation or a rash occurs, discontinue using it.


  • A lightweight non-comedogenic moisturizer that is affordable.
  • Use as a daily moisturizer.
  • Helps soothe tired and irritated skin.
  • Does not clog pores.


  • Not recommended for individuals with extremely oily skin.
  • May not work with those who are presently not suffering from acne.

Proactiv+ Green Tea Acne Fighting Moisturizer Buy Button

15. Fresh Umbrian Clay Oil-Free Lotion

Fresh Umbrian Clay Oil-Free Lotion

This non-oily Fresh Umbrian Clay Oil-Free Lotion is a high-performance moisturizer for everyday use. Its main ingredient is Umbrian clay, which absorbs impurities and unclogs skin pores. It also helps relax and brighten your complexion, while also improving skin tone.

With a Meadowsweet extract that aids in regulating sebum production, this moisturizer minimizes shine and oil. Also packed with potent vitamin A, E, antioxidants, and green tea extract, it promotes cell renewal and shields the skin. It is fit for combination skin.


  • Active ingredients of this lotion help fight off free radicals, keeping skin damage to a minimum.
  • Controls excess production of sebum without drying the skin.


  • Some reports claim that the product caused redness and irritation on sensitive and dry skin.
  • Expensive.

Fresh Umbrian Clay Oil-Free Lotion Buy Button

A short review,

Moisturizing your skin is imperative to keep your skin clear, smooth, and radiantly healthy. It allows your skin to repair damaged cells and promote new skin cells. This is very important in treating acne-prone skin, or any skin problems.

The list above details what we believe to be the best moisturizers on the market for oily, acne prone skin. A sufficient understanding of the ingredients in your skin care routine will be helpful, basic and important.

For the best options, we recommend that you consult with your dermatologist.

Make sure to wash your face with one of the Recommended Facial Cleansers

Also, protect your skin with one of these Sunscreens for people that suffer from acne

Now It’s Your Turn

I hoped you enjoyed my 21 Best Moisturizers for Oily Acne-Prone Skin post.

Now I want to hear from you:

Which of these best moisturizers in this post are you most excited to try?

Are you going to use any of them? Or do you have a suggestion for something that has worked for you?

Let me know by leaving a quick comment.

What do you think?

Written by Maria

My passion is helping other people overcome the pain and embarrassment of acne. I have dealt with acne since my teenage years and know first-hand how hard it is to suffer from this condition.

Leave a Reply

GIPHY App Key not set. Please check settings

Woman Skin After Isotretinoin For Acne

Isotretinoin For Acne | Does It Work For Severe Acne?

Woman using acne body wash for bacne

Top Budget-Friendly Acne Body Washes