Acne-Prone Skin Lotions & Moisturizers Oily Skin

The Best Non Comedogenic Moisturizers for Your Face (Acne-Prone Skin)

The Best Non Comedogenic Moisturizer for Your Face (Acne-Prone Skin) – If you have acne prone skin, you’re probably very hesitant to use moisturizers because you don’t want to put anything on your skin that can cause or worsen your breakouts.

And this much is true—moisturizers can be greasy and loaded with potentially irritating ingredients that can trigger acne.

If you have acne-prone skin, the key is to use the right kind of products.

They should be hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic. This means that the product is less likely to clog pores or irritate the skin (Remember, irritated skin almost always equal acne).

This applies not only to your moisturizers but all your basic skincare products.

For for those with oily skin, in particular, your skincare products should be lightweight so they’re easily absorbed by the skin. Products with thin, gel-like, or water-based consistencies are less likely to clog pores or worsen breakouts.

The right moistuizer, when used consistently, can contribute immensely to improve symptoms of acne. It is one of the key components in the acclaimed acne programs such as Acne No More by Mike Walden and The Regimen.

How Often Should You Moisturize?

You should moisturize twice a day after cleansing in the morning and evening.

You can have only one you can use for morning and night, or have two with different ingredients:

  • Daytime / AM Moisturizers – can contain sunscreen protection of at least SPF 30, or a stand-alone that you can pair with a non-comedogenic sunscreen
  • Nighttime / PM Moisturizers – can contain antioxidants and vitamins like vitamin C, E, CO-Q10

Whichever you prefer, you should choose a moisturizer that works best to address your needs.

Video: What does non-comedogenic mean? – Ask the Derm with Dr. Stephen Schleicher | DermDox Dermatology Centers, PC

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This website is for informational purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Recommendations are based on our research, results, a comprehensive analysis of the products' formulation, claims, and value for money. We make an effort to be as objective as possible and give advice in good faith; however, our reviews are 100% honest and therefore may still contain conjectures and opinions based on our personal experiences.

It’s important to know that as with any product (especially cosmetics), what may be perfect for you may not be right for the next person. So as much as we want to guarantee that these will be everyone’s next holy grail, results can still be affected by individual factors like your current skin condition, the environment you’re in, use of the product, reaction to your other skincare, and so on. For best results, make sure to choose products that are suited for your skin type and skin issues.

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Editor’s Choice: The Best Non Comedogenic Moisturizers for Your Face (Acne-Prone Skin)

These are our dermatologist-approved choices for the best non comedogenic moisturizers based on formulation, ingredients, value for money, and consumer reviews.

Make sure to choose a product that is best suited for your skin type and skin issues.

Non-comodogenic, hypoallergenic, paraben-free, preservative-free, fragrance-free, coloring agent-free.

These are a few of the many reasons Avène have stood the test of time. The French occult brand has remained one of the most recommended products for acne-prone skin by dermatologists worldwide.

There are many underlying causes of acne and even more that can aggravate it–fragrance, preservatives, and other irritants. Avène is free of all that and only contain ingredients that double down on hydration and re-balancing the skin.

This Emulsion, in particular, is lightweight and fast-absorbing; two crucial properties you need in a product if you have oily skin. It’s also great to use under foundation and doesn’t slide any of your makeup off (which can be the case with some emulsions). Moisturizers that leaves that tacky, sort of sticky feeling even after absorption can be a nightmare!

When you’re on acne medication, one of the usual side-effects is irritated skin with red and dry patches. It’s essential to have a moisturizer that will not only hydrate but also soothe any irritations and help recover your compromised lipid barrier. This is the key to bouncing back to healthy, clear skin.

If you have dry or dehydrated skin, you can get a slightly richer version of this with the Eau Thermale Avène Skin Recovery Cream. I had a bout of dermatitis a while back (complete with angry, scaly red patches!) and found the Recovery Cream much more soothing than the Emulsion.

The only one downside to this is the packaging. I always find myself squeezing out too much product at once. (Is it a trick to make us use more?! 😮 ) In any case, you’ll need to be careful and temper the pressure when handling the tube. Hopefully, they can come with a pump in future versions!

Best for: Acne-prone Skin (especially if you’re on acne medication), Sensitive Skin (Rosacea, Eczema, Dermatitis, etc.), Under makeup

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If you’re like me and have very oily skin that has starts to demolish makeup as soon as you walk out the door, this one’s for you.

La Roche-Posay’s Effaclar Mat is light and fast absorbing. It doesn’t leave any residue behind and mattifies the skin flawlessly, which is crucial for controlling shine.

If you have acne-scarring or large pores as well, having a product that can sponge up oil on its own is a godsend. A matte complexion absorbs light and minimizes any flaws in the skin. If you can do this without having to cake layer after layer of foundation on, you achieve a more natural look and have a smooth, immaculate base to work on.

Extra tip: For large pores, use in tandem with a primer for a flawless finish.

This line, in particular, is formulated with Lipo-Hydroxy Acid (LHA), which are micro exfoliants that have the same core functions of the more common hydroxy acids but with the addition of it being antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory as well. It helps to visibly tighten pores and refine skin texture the longer you use it. It has antioxidants Vitamin E and C as well for an all around rejuvenating effect.

On the downside, that same feature makes this product unsuitable for those with sensitive skin. While this particular hydroxy acid is gentle in comparison to other acids, it can still be irritating to hypersensitive skin.

If you have irritated skin at the moment, it’s best to re-balance your skin first with something like the Eu Thermale Avene (shown above) before diving into this one.

Best for: Combination to Oily skin, Acne-prone skin, Acne-scarring or Large pores, Daytime moisturizer

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Step 3 of’s regimen. This product is made to counteract the extreme dryness that the benzoyl peroxide cream causes, so this formulation is guaranteed to provide intense hydration. It’s a lightweight non-comedogenic lotion that absorbs quickly and eliminates any flakiness or dry skin.

Highly recommended if you’re currently undergoing any skin treatments or in post-procedure (lasers, etc.).

Best for: All skin types, Acne-prone, Sensitive skin

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Made with organic and all natural ingredients like aloe vera and organic oils. These botanical extracts are anti-inflammatory and provide intense moisturization. But more important than what they put in is what they don’t put in–chemical synthetic preservatives and petrochemicals which is something that some products use to increase shelf life but can be harmful for the body in the long run.

Best for: Normal to Dry Skin, If you’re looking for natural and organic products

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Like Cetaphil, CeraVe is one of the gentlest and most effective drugstore moisturizers. Their body moisturizers are reportedly some of the best formulated in the market and their facial line is not so far removed. It contains a generous amount of niacinamide, or vitamin B3 and nicotinic acid, which is a potent ingredient to help stimulate microstimulation in the dermis and prevent skin from losing water content.

There are two kinds of this non comedogenic lotion you can use: AM – which has SPF 30, and PM – which has antioxidants that focuses on skin repair.

Best for: Normal to Dry Skin, Sensitive Skin, Rosacea

AM: Day Moisturizer – Check for discounts & other customer reviews on Amazon

PM: Night Moisturizer – Check for discounts & other customer reviews on Amazon

One of my personal drugstore favorites. This formulation provides light hydration while leaving a matte finish—perfect for acne-prone and oily skin. It doesn’t irritate the skin (it’s Cetaphil!) and best of all, it provides sunscreen protection which makes it the perfect day moisturizer.

Best for: Oily and Acne-prone skin

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Eltamd UV Clear SPF 46

A light and silky moisturizer with an impressive blend of SPF 46 and UVA/UVB protection with several skincare superstars:

  • 9% transparent micronized zinc oxide: Natural mineral compound that works as a sunscreen agent by reflecting and scattering UVA and UVB rays
  • High purity Niacinamide (vitamin B3): Anti-inflammatory that reduces redness and minimizes the appearance of dry or damaged skin and restores suppleness
  • Sodium hyaluronate (Hyaluronic Acid): Humectant that attracts and retains moisture, improving skin feel and restores suppleness
  • Tocopheryl acetate (vitamin E): Antioxidant that reduces free radicals to help diminish the visible signs of aging

This oil-free formulation also helps calm and protect skin types prone to breakouts, rosacea and pigmentation. It leaves no residue and can be worn alone or under makeup.

Fragrance-free, oil-free, paraben-free, sensitivity-free, and noncomedogenic.

Best for: Acne-prone, Rosacea, Hyperpigmentation

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A cult classic and one that you’ll find in most clinics in Europe.

It provides the ultra hydration needed for dry and flaky skin, especially if its caused by acne or acne medication.

This is one of those products prescribed by dermatologists when they want to increase the strength of prescription medications like retinoids or benzoyl peroxide. With this, you can intensify on the hydration instead of holding back on the strength needed to deal with your skin issues.

The ingredients are naturally derived from avocado, shea butter, and mango butter. (This might raise a few alarms if you’re concerned about the oils, but you should know that these comedogenic ratings are relative to its formulation, eg. olive oil on its own has a comedogenic rating of 2, but goes down when diluted to 25%. These products have been formulated properly so you can reap its benefits without any of its drawbacks. It’s also been labeled in the EU, the highest and most rigorous of cosmetic standards, as non-comedogenic.)

Non-irritating, Non-sensitizing, Hypoallergenic, Non-comedogenic.

Best for: Acne-prone skin (especially if you’re on high-strength acne medication), All skin types especially dry and dehydrated skin

Check for discounts & other customer reviews on Amazon


Nakhla, T. (2011). The Skin Commandments: 10 Rules to Healthy, Beautiful Skin. St. Louis, Missouri: Reedy Press.

Draelos, Z. (2010). Cosmetic Dermatology: Products and Procedures. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell Pub.

Saint-Léger, D., Lévêque, J. and Verschoore, M. (2007). The use of hydroxy acids on the skin: characteristics of C8-lipohydroxy acid. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 6(1), pp.59-65. (2016). Niacinamide. (2016). Zinc Oxide Cream – Uses, Side Effects, Interactions –

Leena Chularojanamontri, K. (2014). Moisturizers for Acne: What are their Constituents?. The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology. (2009). Comparatively Speaking: Humectants vs. Emollients vs. Occlusive Agents.

LifeCell Skin Care Products. (2014). What Does Hypoallergenic Skin Care Really Mean?.


The Best Non Comedogenic Moisturizers for Your Face (Acne-Prone Skin) Overall rating: ★★★★★ 4.9 based on 10 reviews
5 1

Elta MD is incredibly underrated. Their moisturizers can compete with name brands in performance and without the price tag. I've been using it for years now and it's still making it into these best-of lists!

Pricey but worth it

5 5 1
Great selection. They're a bit above board in terms of pricing but you really get what you pay for with Avene and La Roche-Posay. Cosmetics regulation is highest in Europe, plus they've banned animal testing altogether over there so it's also ethically formulated. Five stars all around.

absolute must for oily skin!

5 5 1
I've had oily skin all my life and I've been avoiding moisturizers like a plague because the ones I've used ALWAYS broke me out. If I'd known about the non-comedogenic stuff, I would have started using them a long time ago!
Cerave all the way. It's cheap, effective, and gentle enough for sensitive skin.
I’m in love with the Avene moisturizer. Its very light and glides on the skin like silk.
Absolutely love Obagi. They’ve been my holy grail for almost a decade.

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