Skin Care

Best Non-Comedogenic Moisturizers for Acne-Prone Skin



by Lydia


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Moisturizing is an essential skincare step done after cleansing and before applying SPF for daily sun protection. Applying a moisturizer helps you seal hydration and moisture present in your skin for a healthy, smooth, and balanced skin tone. Unfortunately, however basic this step may seem, your moisturizer of choice could clog your pores resulting in breakouts, whiteheads, blackheads and even hyperpigmentation if you have oily skin.

People with oily skin, sensitive skin, and generally acne-prone skin often struggle to find the right moisturizers that won't worsen the situation. In addition, some ingredients found in moisturizers, such as lanolins, acids, butter, alcohols, and various oils, are comedogenic. This means that these ingredients cause clogged pores, which result in acne.

Moisturizers with ingredients such as benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, glycerin, hyaluronic acid, ceramides, sulfur, and mineral oil are non-comedogenic. This means that the best non-comedogenic moisturizers do not block your oily skin pores therefore not likely to cause an acne flare-up.

It sounds counterintuitive to use a moisturizer on oily skin types since your skin is not dry, to begin with. However, skipping this step does more damage than good to your skin. Choosing the best non-comedogenic moisturizers involves looking at the ingredients list for oil-free formulas. We have narrowed down your options by listing dermatologist-recommended oil-free moisturizers that work great for acne-prone skin types below.

What Is A Non-Comedogenic Moisturizer?

A non-comedogenic moisturizer is a face cream or a lightweight moisturizer with an oil-free formula and ingredients that leave your breakout-prone, oily skin hydrated. In addition, some non-comedogenic moisturizers contain sunscreen, antioxidants, and other ingredients that add a protective skin barrier.

People with oily skin, dry skin, normal, or combination skin are prone to acne, depending on other factors like hormonal imbalances, genetics, or environmental factors. Non-comedogenic moisturizers are beneficial to all skin types, specifically for sensitive, oily skin types and breakout-prone skin.

The non-greasy formula allows essential ingredients to penetrate your skin for smooth, radiant, and glowy results. Unfortunately, using a comedogenic moisturizer on these skin types creates a skin barrier that clogs your pores, worsening your skin concerns.

Below are our fave non-comedogenic moisturizers for healthy, glowy skin.

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 Best Non-Comedogenic Moisturizers


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Best Non-Comedogenic Moisturizers- Reviews

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Neutrogena is a well-known dermatologist-recommended brand with products that are whole and nourishing to your skin. Imagine being so thirsty then taking a refreshing glass of cold water to quench your thirst. That is the power of the Neutrogena Hydro Boost water gel.

The Hydro-Boost contains hyaluronic acid that helps to hydrate your skin. The face moisturizer has a gel-like consistency that applies better than a cream and absorbs fast into your oily skin. Hyaluronic acid is so powerful that it leaves your skin looking smooth and feeling supple.

This hydrating water-gel by Neutrogena attracts moisture and locks it in to provide long-lasting hydration. The non-comedogenic moisturizer formula is oil-free and does not contain any alcohol. This ensures that your pores don't clog. In addition, if you have dry, acne-prone skin, this water gel provides up to 48 hours of hydration.


  • Oil-free moisturizer
  • Contains hyaluronic acid for additional hydration
  • Works well with all skin types
  • You can use it on the whole body
  • Dye-free
  • Inexpensive
  • Offers relief from skin irritation
  • Provides up to 48 hours of hydration


  • Does not offer sun protection
  • Contains fragrance that can be irritating to your skin

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CeraVe is yet another skincare brand with an impressive ingredients list and also excellent reviews. Their daily moisturizing lotion is suitable for dry, normal, sensitive and oily skin. In addition, the moisturizing lotion is light and non-greasy. It absorbs fast, leaving your skin feeling hydrated and smooth.

The CeraVe daily facial moisturizing lotion contains hyaluronic acid. This is a staple ingredient that helps to add and retain moisture to your skin. Additionally, hyaluronic acid reduces the appearance of aging and wrinkles, so you should consider adding products with this ingredient to your routine.

Another exciting thing about this CeraVe moisturizer is that it contains essential ceramides. Ceramides compromise 50% of the lipids in the skin barrier. So supplementing your routine with this ingredient helps protect your skin's natural barrier, which is essential in keeping things like dust and other first from penetrating your skin.


  • Contains ceramides 1,3,6-11Protects the skin's barrier
  • Oil-free formula
  • Contains essential hyaluronic acid
  • Provides up to 24 hours of hydration
  • Suitable for people with eczema
  • Doubles up as a body and hand lotion
  • Dermatologically tested


  • Should not be used on children
  • Some customers complained of a fishy smell, so be sure to buy directly from the CeraVe store

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Third, on our non-comedogenic moisturizer list is another CeraVe moisturizer. Again, it is clear how great their products are made with the user in mind to protect you from frustrating acne flare-ups. The CeraVe AM facial moisturizing lotion has a lightweight formula quickly absorbed on the skin's surface throughout the day.

This oil-free moisturizer contains active ingredients such as zinc oxide and octinoxate that help with soothing irritations and acne and treating hyperpigmentation. Inactive ingredients present in the moisturizer include niacinamide that helps control the release of excess oil and hyaluronic acid for skin hydration. In addition, there are essential ceramides 1, 3, 6-11 for moisture retention and xanthan gum, among other essential ingredients.

The CeraVe AM lotion moisturizer contains SPF 30. Sun protection is essential to fight hyperpigmentation, reduce signs of aging and most importantly, prevent the effects of sunburn. In addition, the non-greasy formula makes it easy to layer this skin moisturizer with a serum or an eye cream.


  • Very lightweight
  • Suitable for all acne-prone skin
  • Oil-free moisturizer
  • Fragrance-free hence no irritation
  • Contains SPF 30
  • Paraben-free
  • Has niacinamide, ceramides and hyaluronic acid


  • Leaves a white cast
  • Some people complained of irritation and burning
  • Flaky consistency

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Vanicream moisturizing gel cream is yet another fantastic non-comedogenic moisturizer. If you suffer from eczema or have sensitive skin, this moisturizing cream is dermatologically tested to soothe your skin while providing moisture and hydration.

Vanicream hydrating gel cream is free of lanolin, parabens, formaldehyde and dyes. It is also fragrance-free to protect you from skin irritation that comes from added fragrances. In addition, this moisturizing cream is free from botanical extracts.

Not only is this gel cream suitable for daily facial use, but it also doubles up as a night cream. Its creamy formula is quickly absorbed during the day and works to repair your skin at night. In addition, you can use its moisturizer for smooth skin on your hands and whole body.


  • Formulated for sensitive and eczema-prone skin
  • You can use it as a day or night cream
  • Very hydrating for people with dry skin
  • Does not contain ingredients that clog pores like lanolin and formaldehyde
  • Fragrance-free
  • Does not contain parabens
  • Gluten-free


  • Not suitable for oily skin

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La Roche-Posay is a favorite dermatologically tested and approved brand that works great for oily skin and acne-prone skin. The Toleriane face moisturizer is part of their prebiotic thermal water range. In addition, thermal water contains antioxidants that reduce sunburn hence protects skin and calms inflammations from eczema or skin treatments like retinoids.

This La Roche-Posay moisturizer has an oil-free formula that helps to release excess oil by ensuring your pores are not clogged. In addition, this moisturizer contains niacinamide and ceramide -3, which are essential in adding moisture to your face and leaving your skin hydrated.

The Toleriane face moisturizer has double repair properties. This means that the oil-free moisturizer replenishes your skin with 48 hours of hydration. In addition, it restores your skin barrier to recovery 1 hour after application. 


  • Hydrates skin
  • Has thermal water benefits
  • Oil-free
  • Double action
  • Allergy tested
  • Fragrance and paraben-free
  • Great for sensitive skin
  • Contains niacinamide and ceramide-3


  • Some customers found that it left white application streaks after drying

How Do You Choose the Best Non-Comedogenic Moisturizer?

Although some products may work for your friends with different skin types, they will not be guaranteed to work for your oily skin type. This is because skin concerns vary with everyone depending on the root cause of your flare-ups. However, a few things are common for the best non-comedogenic moisturizers and worth looking into before purchasing.

1. Skin Type

Your skin type is the first consideration you ought to make when choosing a non-comedogenic moisturizer. For instance, for an oily skin type, a lightweight or gel moisturizer will be more suitable to ensure that your pores don't clog. Light moisturizers also aid in avoiding excess oil on your face, which is a goal for people with this skin type.

Oily skin and acne-prone skin types benefit more from moisturizers with ingredients such as niacinamide, salicylic acid, hyaluronic acid, retinol and vitamin C. However, it is important to note that moisturizers with too many acids could irritate your skin and further your issues.

On the other hand, for a dry skin type, a heavy creamy or ointment type non-comedogenic moisturizer will work best to introduce moisture and hydration to your skin. Other ingredients that should be present in your moisturizer include hyaluronic acid, glycerin, squalene and mineral oil.

For sensitive skin, opt for hypoallergenic and fragrance-free moisturizers with few ingredients. Fragrance causes irritation and even inflammations to your skin. In addition, a cream that is in between a lotion and ointment consistency will work best to hydrate normal skin.

2. Humectants

Humectants work by adding water or moisture to your skin and trapping it between your pores so that your skin stays hydrated. When using non-comedogenic moisturizers, the goal is to avoid clogging your pores while adding the necessary ingredients for your oily skin to deal with acne. Ingredients that help with hydration include glycerin and hyaluronic acid.

3. Exfoliating Acids

Moisturizing formulas that contain alpha-hydroxy acids(AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids(BHAs) are great if you have oily and acne-prone skin. This is because AHAs and BHAs exfoliate your skin, removing dead cells and further help to dissolve excess oil. In addition, these acids increase your cellular turnover and reduce anti-aging effects.

4. SPF

Applying sunscreens is an essential step in any skincare routine. This is done after applying your moisturizer. Sun protection is like an umbrella that protects all the work you have done on your skin. In addition, using SPF over 30 aids to prevent irritations and skin inflammations as a result of sunburns.

If you have active acne or hyperpigmentation, using sunscreen helps prevent black spots from forming on your acne scars due to melanin production. Some moisturizers have sunscreen while others don't. Ensure to protect your skin from the harmful sun effects to see progress in your acne treatment.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which moisturizers are non-comedogenic?

All the moisturizers that we have reviewed are non-comedogenic. In addition, they are free from oils and pore-clogging ingredients, making them a must-have for acne-prone skin.

2. Can a non-comedogenic moisturizer clog pores?

There are cases where oil-free moisturizers cause acne flare-ups. However, this depends on your skin type and other ingredients and products in your routine. If you find that a non-comedogenic moisturizer is causing breakouts and acne, stop using it immediately and look for improvement signs to confirm its effects.

3. What brands are non-comedogenic?

Non-comedogenic brands include Neutrogena, CeraVe, Vanicream and La Roche-Posay. However, be sure to confirm that the moisturizer is labeled as oil-free or non-comedogenic since these brands have products that also contain oil and pore-clogging ingredients.

4. What is the best non-comedogenic night cream?

The Neutrogena Hydro-Boost is an excellent gel moisturizer that can double up as a night cream. It contains essential hyaluronic acid to hydrate skin and retains moisture. In addition, its lightweight consistency makes it suitable for daytime and nighttime use.


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