CeraVe Moisturising Cream review: The acne-friendly ultra-hydrator

Unless you’ve been living under a rock (a really, really, really big one), you’ve probably already heard of the CeraVe Moisturising Cream. It’s a real holy grail in the skincare world, which means, as a skincare lover, I should’ve tried it years ago.

The thing is (and I probably sound like a broken record at this point), any moisturiser that’s described as ‘creamy’ or ‘rich’ or ‘nourishing’ scares me. Yep, I have moisturiser fear (yes, weird, I know). But I’m super duper acne-prone; and it’s this kind of moisturiser that has the potential to make my skin go from clear to ‘oh, hello, 265 spots’ overnight.

But, having got on surprisingly well with the CeraVe Moisturising Lotion – the Moisturising Cream’s younger, lighter sister – I decided it was worth a shot. After all, as a tretinoin, benzoyl peroxide and glycolic acid user, my acne-prone skin is still prone to the odd dry patch.

CeraVe Moisturising Cream review

CeraVe Moisturising Cream review

With that said, it’s *finally* time for me to review the CeraVe Moisturising Cream. And let me tell you… I was surprised, in a good way. This wasn’t anywhere near as shiny, sticky and rich as I feared it’d be. Let’s jump straight into the deets…

Product: CeraVe Moisturising Cream. I purchased the 177ml tube, but it’s also available in a 350 or 454g tub.

Claims: According to CeraVe

Price: Around £10 for the 177ml tube or £13-15 for the (larger) tubs. The 450g tub is, by far, the best value for money.

The texture & consistency

The texture of the CeraVe Moisturising Cream is pretty damn thick. It reminds me of the Cetaphil Rich Night Cream in that it’s really sturdy – if you squeeze some onto your hand, it won’t run or drip around – it’s just a thick ol’ white blob. 

Despite being thick, it rubs into the skin easily enough. I do find that, if I use too much on my face, it can get a little clumpy and pill slightly, so that’s something to be aware of. If you use a small amount, it sinks in easily and behaves well under makeup too!

CeraVe Moisturising Cream swatch

The results

This does what it says on the tin (or should I say tube?). It’s a super nourishing moisturiser and makes my skin feel soft, smooth and ultra-hydrated. Winner.

I (wrongly) assumed that the CeraVe Moisturising Cream would leave my skin feeling sticky or overly oily, but it’s actually neither of those things. Once it sinks in, it actually has a barely there feel to it, with a very, very slight tackiness.

I don’t use this as an everyday moisturiser, purely because my skin doesn’t need a cream this thick on a daily basis. I do, however, use it around my eyes, the sides of my nose and around my mouth – the areas most prone to dry, flakey skin – on top of my everyday moisturiser. This has really helped me prevent pesky dry patches from overdoing it on the actives.

I’ve used this as an all-over night crean on occasion, when my skin’s been in need of a real hydration boost. It works well, without clogging my skin – a winner for acne-prone guys and gals like myself!

The best thing about this cream is that it really is multi-use. It’s a good one for your face if you’re on the drier side, but it’s also amazing as a body, foot or hand cream for people of all skin types. I tend to use this on my knees, under my arms and on my foot before fake tanning and it really nips dry, coarse skin in the bud – more effectively than most other creams I’ve tried.

Recently, I’ve had really dry hands, which has been the only negative side-effect of lifting heavy weights at the gym (hello, calluses). I’ve got into the habit of using this cream last thing before I go to bed and I’ve noticed a huge improvement.

The scent

The CeraVe Moisturising Cream is fragrance-free (yay!) and the scent is really neutral. Like, you can barely smell it, honestly.

I saw a random review saying that it smelt like fish. I have no idea how they even reached that conclusion, as it literally smells like nothingness. Anyway, moving on…

Alice Lang reviews CeraVe Moisturising Cream

The packaging

I decided to go for the smaller, 177ml tube, purely as I wanted to test it out before buying the bigger tubs. Having said that, the tubes are probably way more hygienic. As an acne-prone gal, I’ve never been keen on using creams that I’ve dipped my fingers into a million times.

The bottle is easy to use and, so far, the product comes out with no problems at all. However, due to the thickness of the product, I suspect that it’s gonna be a little hard to get the very last 20ml or so out of the tube. In that sense, the tubs are probably more practical.

And, just an FYI – in terms of value for money, you’re much better off buying the larger (454g) tub, over the tube. You get way more grams of product per £.

CeraVe uses plastic to package this cream, along with most of their other products. It’s unclear whether this is easily recyclable, but my guess is no. I’d like to see CeraVe up their game on the sustainability front. It’d make me way more likely to repurchase.

The price

I’d call the CeraVe Moisturising Cream a mid-range product. At around a tenner a tube, it’s certainly not cheap. But, for the moisturising power you get, I’d still say it’s good value for money. You can expect to pay around:

Make sure to shop around, as CeraVe is likely to be on offer in at least one shop/store. My go-to places include:

Good for, bad for…

In my opinion, the CeraVe Moisturising Cream is a great option for anyone looking for a thick, multi-use, deeply moisturising cream that’s gentle and non-pore-clogging.

Although rich, it doesn’t leave much of a dewy glow to the skin – it actually gives more of a ‘barely there’ feel once absorbed. For that reason, if you’ve got dry skin and enjoy creams that leave a slight oiliness to the skin, this might not be enough for you.

I’ve seen lots of rave reviews from people with sensitive or eczema-prone skin, claiming that this cream nipped any problem areas in the bud and helped to prevent them from reoccurring.

If you’ve got oily skin but are still looking for something deeply moisturising, I’d recommend the CeraVe Moisturising Lotion instead. It’s still extremely hydrating, but much lighter than this cream.

Is the CeraVe Moisturising Cream good for acne?

I’m hella acne prone (read my acne story) – and, for me, the CeraVe Moisturising Cream didn’t clog my skin or cause an increase in breakouts. It does claim to be non-comedogenic (won’t clog your pores), so that makes sense.

On the other hand, I’ve read a few reviews from other acne-prone guys and gals that claim this cream, and other CeraVe products, made them break out. My view? Everyone’s different, which is why patch testing is the way to go.

If you’re concerned, apply the CeraVe Moisturising Cream to a specific, small area of your face for atleast a couple of weeks. See if you notice an increase in acne in that area. If not, you should be good to go!

CeraVe Moisturising Cream ingredients

Aqua/Water, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-20, Petrolatum, Dimethicone, Phenoxyethanol, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Potassium Phosphate, Ethylhexyglycerin, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Disodium Edta, Dipostassium Phosphate, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Phytoshingosine, Cholesterol, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol, Ceramide EOP.

Stand-out ingredients

  • Glycerin: A natural moisturiser that protects against irritation and helps to restore the skin’s natural barrier.
  • Ceramide NP, AP & EOP: Ceramides are waxy lipids that can be found naturally in the outer layer of the skin. They play a major role in a healthy skin barrier and keeping the skin hydrated.
  • Phytosphingosine: A lipid that has antimicrobial properties and has even been shown to work against acne-causing bacteria.
  • Cholesterol: A lipid that, like ceramides, plays a vital role in a healthy skin barrier. It’s also an emollient, which means it helps to trap moisture.
  • Sodium Hyaluronate: A form of hyaluronic acid, which helps the skin to hold onto water.
  • Tocopherol: The fancy name for vitamin E, an antioxidant that protects the skin cells against free radicals.

CeraVe Moisturising Cream review: The acne-friendly ultra-hydrator

I’m so glad I’ve finally got around to reviewing the CeraVe Moisturising Cream and can totally see why it’s a cult product within the skincare community.

It’s rich and nourishing, but absorbs quickly and without oiliness. Plus, it’s got loads of super-soothing, ultra-hydrating – think ceramides, hyaluronic acid and vitamin E – at a fairly affordable price tag.

If you haven’t tried it yet, it’s totally worth a try. If you’re not sure, start with the small tube, like I did – it’s the cheapest way to get started. Ready to go all in? Go for the 454g tub – it’s huge and the best value for money you’ll find.

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