The best moisturiser for dry skin to fix flakiness fast

  • Marie Claire is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.
  • Find your new dry skin saviour with our picks of the best moisturiser for dry skin

    Dry skin is the worst. Flaky bits appear out of nowhere, it can feel tight and, if it’s really, really dry and senstive, it can be painful and sore. Keeping it moisturised is important, as is using the best moisturiser for dry skin. Any old cream just won’t cut it.

    These differ vastly from the best moisturisers for oily skin. They’re developed with ingredients like hyaluronic acid (which can hold 1,000 times its weight in water), fortifying hydrators and soothing ingredients.

    These clever formulas can also attract moisture from the environment, drawing it deep into your dermis, as well as defending your skin’s protective barrier against environmental aggressors such as pollution, which then helps to lock in moisture. ‘Choose a good quality light moisturiser that soaks in readily, rather than just sitting on the surface of the skin,’ advises Dr Ross Perry, cosmetic doctor and managing director of Cosmedics Skin Clinics.

    ‘Try a rich emollient cream as this will soften and smooth out any flakiness on a dry face whilst adding in that much-needed moisture boost,’ adds consultant dermatologist Dr Anjali Mahto. ‘If in any doubt, speak to a dermatologist, GP or sales assistant to find the perfect moisturiser to suit your individual needs. There is no one size fits all when it comes to skincare.’

    But there’s more to keeping your skin hydrated than simply applying moisturiser. One of the common causes of dry patches is dead cells adhering to your skin, so invest in the best face cleanser that contains gentle exfoliating ingredients to break down the bonds holding those dead skin cells together. Follow this with the best toner, which boosts hydration and your moisturiser will then sink in to your skin better and be as effective as it possibly can.

    Finish off with one of the best foundations for dry skin and your complexion will stay healthy and glowing throughout the day. Scroll through for our round-up of the best moisturiser for dry skin to find one that suits your skin, budget and lifestyle…

    Best moisturiser for dry skin on the face

    Skinceuticals Emollience, £70 | Lookfantastic

    Skinceuticals Emollience - best moisturiser for dry skin

    If you have dry skin, its natural protection is weak and vulnerable, which makes it super fragile. Nothing is more gentle and more hydrating on skin than this cream by Skinceuticals. It’s water-based and rich in valuable lipids, natural extracts and essentials oils that cocoon the skin in softness.

    Buy now

    Best moisturiser for dry sensitive skin

    CeraVe Moisturising Cream, £6.75 | Lookfantastic

    best moisturiser for dry skin sensitive CeraVe Moisturising Cream

    CeraVe might not have the sexiest packaging, but boy does the dry skin cream inside make up for that. This purse-friendly cream is rich and nourishing, but not greasy at all. It uses this clever thing called MVE Delivery Technology that releases the much-needed ingredients throughout the day, exactly when you need them. It’s also a great, gentle cream for dry or itchy skin conditions like eczema, as it supports a compromised skin barrier.

    Buy now

    Best moisturiser for dry skin on body

    Ameliorate Transforming Body Lotion, from £9 | Cult Beauty

    best moisturiser for dry skin ameliorate

    Containing their specially formed LaH6 hydration complex and alpha-hydroxy acids, this exfoliating lotion is a great buy if you’re looking for all-round smoother skin or to minimise the appearance of keratosis pilaris. It’s one of the most popular body moisturisers out there – and with good reason!

    Buy now

    See more of our creams for dry skin below. Dry and sore skin, be gone.

    Reading now

    Popular beauty stories