14 Best Fall Face Moisturizers To Keep Your Skin Hydrated All Season
Fall is finally here, bringing with it over-the-knee boots, chic outerwear, and apparently, a lot of yellow. But your closet shouldn’t have all the fun — your bathroom cabinet deserves an upgrade, too. Specifically, now’s the time to get your summer skincare arsenal ready for the cooler days to come, and that means finding the best fall face moisturizer that'll keep your skin plump is key.
Opting for a thicker, more hydrating moisturizer in the cooler months is the skincare equivalent of bundling up in a cozy sweater: The right formula should create a barrier between your skin and the weather, protecting you from the elements and locking in moisture (which tends to evaporate more easily when the temperature drops). And just like finding the perfect cozy sweater that speaks to your personal style, it takes some shopping around to find the right fall moisturizer for your skin.
TZR spoke with some of top dermatologists and aestheticians to get the scoop on the best moisturizers for the new season, and they pointed to five must-have ingredients to add to your skincare routine: peptides, antioxidants, ceramides, oils, and, as always, SPF.
Ahead, learn all about the cutting-edge ingredients to look for in your next moisturizer, straight from the experts — and shop the most exciting skincare launches of the season.
The key skincare ingredient of the season? Peptides. Peptides are the building blocks of protein, and protein is essential for skin health (for example, collagen is a protein).
“I'd recommend seeking out treatments with peptides,” Dr. Jennifer Vickers of Sanova Dermatology tells The Zoe Report. “These ingredients can help prevent and repair damage caused by sun, pollution, and even the light emitted from our phones, tablets, and computers.”
Anti-Aging Repair Moisturizer
This new moisturizer from Dr. Loretta combines antioxidant power with firming peptides to “replenish moisture loss caused by climate conditions.”
Detox Night Cream
On a chilly night, reach for Grown Alchemist Detox Night Cream. It’s pumped full of peptides and omega fatty acids to satisfy thirsty skin in just eight hours.
Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream
Youth to the People
The star ingredients in Youth to the People’s buzzy new Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream are the adaptogenic herbs and mushrooms. But look a little deeper and you’ll find pentapeptide — a peptide made up of five amino acids to calm reactive skin and slow the signs of aging.
Cool air strips the skin of moisture and impairs its barrier, leaving it vulnerable to environmental damage. Antioxidants — a family of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes including Vitamin E and green tea — can help the skin prevent and repair damage from environmental stressors like sun exposure and pollution.
“There are always fads, but I’m personally excited about natural alternatives to traditional skincare creams,” Dr. Neil Sadick of Sadick Dermatology tells The Zoe Report. “NeoStrata and SkinCeuticals both have new-generation formulations with newly identified antioxidants that are clinically effective and over-the-counter."
Dr. Sadick recommends SkinCeuticals Daily Moisture, made with antioxidant vitamin E and algae extract to naturally hydrate normal to oily skin.
Bio.digital Perfection Moisturizer
Exo Skin Simple
Besides being packed with antioxidants, Exo Skin Simple’s Bio.digital Perfection Moisturizer features cutting-edge exosome technology to “dramatically quench, firm, soften and soothe your skin in just one easy step,” according to the brand.
Ultra Moisturizing Face Cream
This Dr. Sadick favorite exfoliates the skin with gentle AHAs as it protects and hydrates with natural antioxidants, like vitamin E.
Age Perfect Hydra Nutrition Honey Night Balm
Made with antioxidant-infused manuka honey, this new overnight moisturizer from L’Oreal is ideal for dry or aging skin.
“People with dry skin need to take extra precautions with their skincare routine,” Dr. Sadick tells us, suggesting ceramide-rich formulas.
Ceramides are fatty oils that naturally occur in our skin and make up the skin’s protective barrier — and since the fall weather can slowly chip away at that protective barrier, it’s important to replenish it via your moisturizer.
Squalane + Omega Repair Cream
The latest release from plant-based brand Biossance includes ceramides that “mimic and support skin’s natural moisture barrier." After water, hydrating squalane and glycerin are the top-billed ingredients.
PlantGenius Melt Moisturizer
Alpyn Beauty’s ceramide-packed Melt Moisturizer also features a form of retinol to fill fine lines and prevent wrinkles.
Lazy Day All-In-One Moisture Pad
Peach and Lily
The name says it all: these Lazy Day Moisture Pads are made for those who want all the ceramide protection with none of the effort. When you're too tired for a full 10-step skincare routine, just reach for one of these and you’ll still wake up glowing.
“As temperatures are dipping, its best to switch from water- to oil-based formulations for moisturizing,” says Dr. Sadick, explaining that an oil-based moisturizer will lock in extra hydration, especially for those with dry skin.
Aesthetician Hayley Wood of Therapeutic Skin Coach agrees, but maintains that oils are even encouraged for oily or acne-prone skin. Just look for a formula that’s rich in omega 6 fatty acids “to help balance excess oil production,” like Pai Geranium and Thistle Rebalancing Day Cream.
Geranium & Thistle Rebalancing Day Cream
“Anti-inflammatory ingredients such as geranium and lavender are essential in treating acne-prone skin,” says Wood, nodding at their anti-microbial benefits.
Vinopure Natural Oil Control Moisturizer
While it may seem counterintuitive to control oil with more oil, that’s exactly what Claudalie Vinopure Natural Oil Control Moisturizer does. Its blend of spearmint, geranium, lemongrass, lavender, rosemary, and lemon balm oils pairs with salicylic acid to minimize pores and heal acne.
This just-launched moisturizer from Aavrani, a brand inspired by Indian beauty traditions, is intensely hydrating yet surprisingly lightweight. It features rosehip seed oil, which naturally boasts vitamin C and omega-3 fatty acids.
Just because summer’s over doesn’t mean you’re safe from the sun. “Even though it is not as hot and there are more gray days, sun protection is still very necessary to prevent signs of aging and lower the risk of skin cancer," Dr. Vickers tells us. She recommends using a moisturizer with SPF 30+ on the daily, no matter what.
Pro-Collagen Marine Cream SPF 30
Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream has sun protection (and antioxidant ginkgo biloba) built right in.
Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30
“In addition to your face, don’t neglect your neck, ears, and hands: three areas which consistently receive sun exposure, regardless of the season," dermatologist Dr. Evan Rieder in a press release.