5 Hydrating Face Creams for Dry Winter Skin

crop ethnic woman applying cream on face against mirror
Photo by Sora Shimazaki.

5 Hydrating Face Creams for Dry Winter Skin

I’ve had dry skin for as long as I could remember. Dry skin can simply be diagnosed by seeing how your skin feels after cleansing your face. If it feels tight, uncomfortable and in some cases painful, you have dry skin. Growing up in the 2000s there wasn’t a lot of information surrounding skincare and the right products to use aside from the incessant promotion of drugstore products for teens, which to be frank are trash. The typical on the shelf “moisturizers” in stores like Target and CVS never quite did the trick to provide relief, especially in the winter months. It wasn’t until college when I began to make progress by really researching hydrating products, which led me to Sephora. That’s where I stumbled across a few brands that were life-changing.

If you’re seriously struggling with dry skin the five products listed below will help you! These are pricier than your typical skincare aisle in the drugstore, but I’ve learned as many people have – you get what you pay for. It’s been years since I’ve felt the hopelessness of not knowing how to treat my skin with what it needs. Due to a consistent skincare routine and always, always moisturizing my skin is now “normal.” I know what it’s like to need answers and I hope this provides some for you.

Dr. Roebuck’s NO WORRIES Hydrating Face Moisturizer, $45 

5 Hydrating Face Creams for Dry Winter Skin

I stumbled across this goody in a Sephora Favorites box I bought many years ago. I love these boxes because I get to try many different brands I wouldn’t normally purchase, and for the most part, all the products hit! To me, this cream is the epitome of luxury. It’s light and silky, but deeply penetrating leaving your skin supple and soft. The ingredients include hyaluronic acid, vitamin E and macadamia oil which are all amazing for the skin, especially dehydrated skin. The packaging allows you to pump out the product, keeping it safe from the air, dirty fingers and contamination.

Cons: I don’t think there is enough product in the bottle given the price. Also, there isn’t an easy way to get into the bottle once the product stops pumping. Bottom line: Amazing, but due to the packaging you may be forced to throw away the product you can’t reach.

fresh Rose & Hyaluronic Acid Deep Hydration Moisturizer, $15 – $72

5 Hydrating Face Creams for Dry Winter Skin

You really can’t go wrong with the “fresh” brand. They are tried and true when it comes to skincare. This cult-favorite moisturizer is lightweight and contains rosewater, rose flower oil, angelica leaf extract, and vitamin E to quench and soothe dry skin. This product comes in three sizes: value, standard and mini.

Cons: I don’t love the smell and sometimes after applying my face will feel a little itchy. Bottom line: The itch is just for a minute and shouldn’t deter you from purchasing since that’s my personal experience. This is a great product to seek if you’re getting your feet wet with high-end moisturizers. The mini size is only $15 for 0.5 oz.

OLEHENRIKSEN C-Rush™ Brightening Gel Crème, $46

5 Hydrating Face Creams for Dry Winter Skin

One of the things that people with dry skin have to worry about is aging prematurely. When you have chronically dry skin or a severe lack of moisture you will inevitably begin to crack [i.e. fine lines, wrinkles]. Just think of an extremely dry landscape where you see cracks in the ground — it’s the same idea. What I love about this crème is it’s gel-based and super hydrating but it also addresses other needs like dullness, fine lines and wrinkles. This product is so refreshing and it honestly feels as if you’re rubbing a fresh orange slice on your face…very exhilarating. I literally scrape the bottom of the jar to get every last drop.

Cons: While this product is very hydrating, it is a gel-based crème and may not be that effective for people dealing with extremely dry skin. Bottom line: A great all-around hydrating product that addresses a multitude of needs.

Drunk Elephant Protini™ Polypeptide Moisturizer, $22 – $68

If you live in an extremely cold climate with harsh elements and your skin is suffering this is worth the try. This isn’t the easiest moisturizer to understand with all the skincare verbiage DE uses, but if you’re in need for a surge of moisture this is sure to work. I would suggest using this only when you know you’ll be in a cold environment for prolonged periods like outdoor activities or commuting on public transportation. If you use this product unnecessarily like when you’re not in a cold climate you will immediately start sweating! Your face may start to sweat and get sticky…not a good feeling.

Cons: It has a watery texture and it doesn’t feel as comforting on the skin as other top moisturizers. Bottom line: If you need SERIOUS moisture this is for you. It is expensive, but a good product to invest in for days when you really need it. There are also two sizes: standard and mini.

Caudalie Vinosource SOS Intense Hydration Moisturizer, $24 – $42

5 Hydrating Face Creams for Dry Winter Skin

I love the Caudalie brand. You can just feel the quality ingredients when you’re applying the products. It’s a satisfaction that makes this brand second to none. They use grapes in almost all of their products: grape water, grape seeds — and the natural scent is marvelous. Last year, I was home A LOT, due to the coronavirus pandemic and that lead to me slacking on my skincare routine as apathy towards everything began to set in. A few months ago, I realized my skin was dull and needed a moisture boost so I went to Sephora and picked up Caudalie’s Vinosource SOS Intense Hydration. I had never tried this specific product, but I knew I couldn’t go wrong with this brand. I love this cream…it is intense so I don’t use it every day, but like the brand says it is the ultimate moisturizer to save your skin.

Cons: It’s intense. Using it in a warm climate, even on a 60-degree day may leave your face sweaty, sticky and possibly itchy. Bottom line: If you’re looking for intense moisture this is worth every penny.

S-Note: If you’re not ready to make the financial plunge, any Sephora store or beauty retailer/counter will likely give you a sample.


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