If you caught it, pun unfortunately intended! ;)
Just a while ago, Sara (Icyabstract) mentioned that she was breaking out from her current moisturizer, the Kawaii Tokyo Brighten-Up Gel. Since reading her post, I've been wanting to do a post on excellent moisturizers that I've tried and love.
Most of you already have an ideal moisturizer and if it works for you, stick with it! However, the following products work so well for me that I just had to share them with you. :)
Firstly, for pretty much most people, I'd recommend the Hydrating Light Moisturizer by Simple. I've been using this for ages and it's performed marvellously! Having normal skin myself, my skin can really go both ways - Either dry, flaky and dehydrated, or greasy and an absolute oil-slick. With this product, it's light enough to keep my skin oil-free in Singapore's humidity and soaring temperatures, yet adequate for all but the frostiest months when I'm back in Japan. Best of all, I like that it hydrates and moisturizes (yes they do mean different things).
I also like that the consistency is neither thick nor runny and the moisturizer absorbs very quickly. I definitely won't say immediately, but the product shouldn't leave any traces of stickiness nor greasiness after you rub it in and wait a few seconds. It's also great that this moisturizer leaves the skin perfectly smooth and ready for makeup. For sensitive skins, this will probably work well for you as it is hypoallergenic and completely fragrance-free, like the rest of the Simple line. :)
On the other hand, it moisturizes just so, which is perfect for my normal skin but I can definitely see individuals with either very dry or very oily skin disliking this. Overall though, with a price of just around S$14.00, this product is definitely something I'd repurchase over and over (as I already have)! :D
Now, if you suspect that your sebaceous glands are producing more oil than even a regular oily-skinned person, I suggest you try out Clinique's Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel. This stuff's pretty expensive, at S$59.00 to S$89.00 a pop (depending on which size you get) but still well worth the price. It's a very solid (not literally) daily moisturizer that works very well and can be used in the day and/or the night. I used this product as a teenager and loved it to bits! I still have a bottle of this atop my counter that I use on the hottest of afternoons or for days my skin swings towards oily.
True to the Clinique brand, this product's advertised to suit even those with sensitive skin. Watch out though! They've another product called the Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion that is packaged and looks exactly the same! However, the latter is far too oily for me and even some slightly dry-skinned ladies I know.
For a cheaper fix however, you might want to try Mentholatum Acne's Medicated Oil Control Moisturizer. This works similar to Clinique's offering and is good for its price, but definitely mediocre compare to Clinique. Think of it like a budget Clinique, but at least what you pay is slightly less than what you get! The thing about this is that it has a slightly powdery finish due to the oil-control powder suspended in the formula, though foundation goes on quite well nonetheless. There's nothing much to complain nor rave about here; this is just a solid drugstore moisturizer that'll do good on oily skins, but just doesn't cut it for me in terms of moisturizing and hydrating my normal skin. It retails for S$8.90, I think.
Any oiler however, and you might have to use the Hazeline Snow Moisturizing Cream. I've tried this after reading rave reviews on it here on Onsugar, but I find that, unless you have pretty oily skin, this probably won't work well for you. However, if you've combination skin and a really oily T-zone, apply this product there might be just the trick to mattify the area! The other complaint I have about this product is how you'll almost definitely need a primer if you're going to layer makeup over it. If not, you might end up with seriously unflattering flakes. :( On the bright side, at less than S$3.00, this stuff is cheaper than day old chips!
On the dry end of the spectrum, I'd say that layering the Garnier Aqua Defence Essence and Moisturizing Cream (in that order) would be a great idea. Otherwise, using one or the other with a normal moisturizer like the one from Simple mentioned above also works very well. I've already done a review of the Essence here, so I shan't go into that again. The Moisturizing Cream works splendidly too, leaving no trace of stickiness nor greasiness and does well to hydrate the skin while moisturizing commensurately. I love how both products leave my skin plump, fresh and velvety smooth!
Unfortunately, as mentioned in the review that I've linked to, these products are fragranced and may thus be unsuitable for sensitive skins. Otherwise though, this is another drugstore gem that I will definitely repurchase and I know that Chantana (Everbluec) already has! :D
For those who find that the Gobi is located on their faces though, try the Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion. I've mentioned this in an above paragraph and I must reiterate that this product should be reserved for very dry-skinned individuals. The formula does feel too oily for most ladies to take, especially in our tropical climate. Just be careful not too slather this stuff on, or you'll be greasy before noon if the formula even manages to absorb! Otherwise, the lotion has all the great qualities of its gel counterpart and is well worth looking into if you find that normal moisturizers are inadequate. This retails for the same price as the gel, as listed above.<p>
Finally, if you practice the Japanese 5-Step skincare routine as I do, you'd know that there's a double-moisturizing step to tie with the double-cleansing one. Basically, we use a moisturizing lotion before our creams. Anyway, if you're in need of an extra boost for your moisturizer and/or hydrator, do look into Hada Labo's Super Hyaluronic Moisturizing Lotion. This product, while still relatively obscure in Singapore, practically has a cult following in Japan. Although it takes a lot of patting (not rubbing, mind you) to get it to absorb (and even then it might be a bit sticky or heavy), the results are undeniably amazing.
All my friends, family and acquaintances who have tried this in Japan swear by the product; men and women alike. It performs remarkably at both moisturizing and hydrating the skin, regardless of the season or temperature. As with the Simple moisturizer, most people should be able to use this, unless you have either very dry or very oily skin. I will always, always stock up on these when I'm back in Japan.
Hold your horses though; Hada Labo is not available in Singapore at the moment. However, I only brought it up because I've heard that the Guardian in Malaysia has been importing and distributing it since last year. Furthermore, I've recently stumbled across Ateliergal's post where she mentions that she was gifted with a bottle of the good stuff. Is it wrong to assume that we can expect to see this brand hit our shores soon? ;)
I hope this has been a comprehensive and helpful post for anyone looking out for a moisturizer. :)
Stay beautiful! :D