Non-comedogenic moisturizers are especially useful for those who struggle with acne, blackheads, and clogged pores. This skincare must-have doesn't contain pore-clogging ingredients and is also touted as lightweight, gentle, and fast-absorbing.
To help you get the best non-comedogenic moisturizer, we've created a buying guide and a list of the top picks available. We also have some helpful comments and tips from dermatologist Dr. Maria Elinor Grace "Meg" Sison. Read on to get an idea of which formula works best for your skin!
Dr. Sison is a board-certified dermatologist who practices in the Philippines and sees both medical and cosmetic dermatological cases on skin, hair, and nails.
Our recommendation articles are carefully researched and crafted by the mybest Philippines team of writers and editors. To stay true to our company’s mission and vision to help users’ selection process easier, we also collaborate with experts from various fields to ensure that our content stays factual and useful.
The expert oversees the Buying Guide only, and does not determine the products and services featured.
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Compared to other skincare items, moisturizers stay longer on the surface of your skin. Non-comedogenic moisturizers are the ideal option for everyday use. They have gentle ingredients that will not cause comedones. These refer to flesh-colored spots caused by pore blockage and are typically found on the forehead and chin.
If you have acne-prone skin, you might also want to check out this kind of moisturizer for a safer choice. It won't target and clear acne, but it'll avoid dirt and oil blockages that result in breakouts. However, also take note that everyone has a particular skin type and might react differently to a product's formula.
Non-comedogenic moisturizers are recommended for everyone not only because we live in a hot, humid climate but also because they are less likely to block our pores and lead to the formation of closed comedones (whiteheads).
Non-comedogenic moisturizers are less likely to aggravate acne because moisturizers with rich and thick formulas can make the skin more greasy and affect a patient's compliance with his/her skincare regimen.
The typical advice you'll hear from skincare enthusiasts is that a light moisturizer is suitable for daytime because you'll get exposed to different environmental aggressors. Meanwhile, a heavier moisturizer is best for nighttime so that the product can better seal in the moisture overnight. However, you should also consider which texture is more compatible with your skin type.
Having oily skin is accompanied by that pesky greasy feeling, which is why you need to carefully inspect the product to avoid clogged pores. Oil-free and non-comedogenic moisturizers are a particularly great pick for oily skin, as these retain your skin's essential moisture minus the malagkit feeling. Opt for a water-based facial moisturizer that feels lightweight on the skin.
Lightweight moisturizers in lotion or emulsion format, as well as gel moisturizers, are recommended for those with oily skin. Moisturizers that do not contain pore-clogging ingredients such as isopropyl myristate, isopropyl palmitate, and coconut oil (although not all forms of coconut extract are acnegenic) should be chosen for those with oily skin.
Having dry and dull skin has multitudes of causes such as cold climate, frequent showers, and fragrances. This is the effect if your skin lacks oil production. Can’t decide between lotions or creams? Creams are your best option when it comes to dry skin. These products have a thicker texture and are typically oil-based.
Also opt for moisturizers that are infused with emollients, which help repair the skin barrier, as well as humectants for drawing and sealing in the moisture into the skin. These will keep your skin hydrated to improve rough and flaky skin.
For those with dry skin, look for moisturizers in cream format with more emollients and occlusives that can prevent moisture from escaping the skin's outermost layer. The occlusive coating also provides an emollient effect, helps increase penetration of previously applied ingredients, and decreases transepidermal water loss.
Look for ingredients like ceramides, squalane, cholesterol, fatty acids, paraffin, dimethicone, soybean oil, grapeseed oil, propylene glycol, lanolin, and beeswax.
If your skin reacts to the usual drugstore skincare products, it’s most likely you have sensitive skin. Opt for a hypoallergenic and fragrance-free moisturizer to avoid drying and redness that can irritate your skin.
Also, steer clear of products with sulfates, alcohol, and acids such as salicylic, lactic, and glycolic acids that can disturb the skin barrier. Instead, you can consider soothing ingredients such as aloe vera, hyaluronic acid, and colloidal oatmeal.
Those with sensitive skin should look for moisturizers that are fragrance-free with short ingredients list to minimize the chances of skin irritation. Soothing anti-inflammatory ingredients such as argan oil, chamomile, niacinamide, colloidal oatmeal, feverfew, licorice extract, green tea, and chamomile can also provide benefits for those with sensitive skin.
When it comes to selecting a skincare product, it's always beneficial to check the list of ingredients. This will help you to get more familiar with the ingredients that are hiyang to your skin type. At the same time, it allows you to watch out for pore-clogging ingredients that can cause acne and other skin woes.
Dubbed a powerful humectant, hyaluronic acid soaks into the skin and ties water to your skin cells, intending to revitalize every skin layer. This ingredient is commonly found in moisturizers due to its impressive hydrating power. Additionally, it guards your lipid barrier, making it a beneficial choice for sensitive, acne-prone, and mature skin to fight the signs of aging.
On the other hand, glycerin is a famous humectant that retains your skin moisture, alleviates dryness, and leaves your skin soft and healthy. This enhances the skin’s overall health and allows the penetration of ingredients into the other layers of the skin.
Humectants are ingredients with high water absorption capabilities that are able to attract water from the atmosphere. They rapidly draw water into the skin, causing a slight swelling of the skin's outermost layer that gives the perception of smoother skin with fewer wrinkles. Examples are glycerin, sorbitol, hyaluronic acid, urea, propylene glycol, alpha hydroxy acids, and sugars.
Hyaluronic acid is a glycosaminoglycan found in the extracellular matrix and is thought to give the skin its volume and plumpness. Aged skin, which is less plump than youthful skin, is characterized by decreased levels of hyaluronic acid. Studies have been conflicting about the penetration of hyaluronic into the skin on topical application, but the size of the molecule plays an important role.
Moisturizers nowadays are formulated with ingredients that tackle multiple concerns. If you’re on the quest for a hydrating and pimple-fighting product, take into consideration a cica-infused moisturizer. Cica, also known as Centella Asiatica, helps in speeding up the healing process while improving your skin's hydration.
Meanwhile, tea tree oil is another excellent choice when dealing with acne. This popular ingredient is packed with anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that ease redness and inflammation as well as reduce acne scars. According to studies, tea tree oil works wonders on acne, just like benzoyl peroxide.
Centella Asiatica has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties, which makes it a great addition to skincare products. In vitro studies showed the benefit of Centella Asiatica for acne, but more human clinical trials are still needed to prove its claim of treating acne.
Tea tree oil is known to have antimicrobial properties, and an in vitro study showed that it has capabilities as an antimicrobial agent against Cutibacterium acnes bacteria. Further studies are still needed to confirm its activity and that of its components in isolates of the microorganism from patients with acne vulgaris.
In case the product's label does not indicate whether it is non-comedogenic or not, steer clear of products with ingredients that stimulate oil production inside your pores. These include SD or denatured alcohol, menthol, camphor, peppermint, eucalyptus, lemon, grapefruit, and lime.
If you’re the type of person who loves to inspect the ingredients list before buying a product, also consider reading an ingredients dictionary to get a better understanding of the ingredients, their functions, and how they will benefit or harm your skin.
Simple alcohols like denatured alcohol, SD alcohol, ethanol, and isopropyl alcohol are added to skincare products as a solvent, penetration enhancer, preservative, and to lighten the product's texture. They may cause skin irritation and dryness when used in high concentrations. Menthol, camphor, peppermint, and eucalyptus are added for their cooling effects, but these can also make the skin irritated as well, so it's best to avoid them.
Lemon, grapefruit, and lime are citrus fruits that can cause skin irritation, especially for those with sensitive skin. Caution is advised in using them because, at high concentrations, they can cause blistering when the skin is exposed to sunlight, a condition called phytophotodermatitis.
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Restores the Skin’s Protective Barrier and Delivers Long-Lasting Hydration
Normal to Dry Skin
Glycerin, Ceramides 1, 3, and 6-II, Hyaluronic Acid
Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer
Hypoallergenic and Oil-Free Moisturizer That Soothes and Balances Sensitive Skin
Normal, Combination, Dry, Sensitive Skin
Provides 48-Hour Intense Hydration for Dry Skin
Dry, Very Dry, Sensitive Skin
Niacinamide (Vitamin B3), Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Glycerin
Clarifying Oil-Free Water Gel
A Water-Light Moisturizer That’s Best for Oily and Combination Skin
Normal, Combination, Oily, Sensitive Skin
Hyaluronic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Korean Red Pine Extract
Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream
Non-greasy, Hydrating Gel Moisturizer That Leaves a Cooling Effect
Normal to Oily Skin
Glacial Glycoprotein, Desert Plant Extract
Oil-Free Moisturizer with SPF15
Offers All-Day Moisture With Extra Sun Protection
All Skin Types
Dermoscience Hydration Facial Moisturizer
Contains Three Moisturizing Ingredients for Three Times the Hydrating Power
All Skin Types
Glycerin, Pro-vitamin B5, Aloe vera
Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA Moisturizer
Features Natural Moisturizing Factors for Immediate Hydration
All Skin Types
Sodium Hyaluronate, Arginine, Sodium PCA, PCA, Lactates, Lactic Acid, Minerals
Cica Gel Moisturizer
Formulated With Cica to Instantly Soothe Troubled Skin
Acne-Prone, Sensitive Skin
Cica, Glycerin, Tea Tree
Timeless Skin Collagen Elastin Moisturizer
Infused With Collagen and Elastin to Make Your Skin Feel Softer, Smoother, and Younger
All Skin Types
Safflower Seed Oil, Collagen, Elastin
Enriched with hyaluronic acid and glycerin, this non-comedogenic moisturizer targets dry skin problems and restores the skin's natural barrier without clogging pores. Another standout feature of this product is its seal of acceptance from the National Eczema Association, which affirms that it's gentle and non-irritating, even for those with skin allergies.
More than that, CeraVe's Moisturizing Cream provides 24-hour hydration—this is all thanks to its MVE technology, which continuously releases moisturizing ingredients to keep your skin nourished all day. It's also oil-free, fragrance-free, and hypoallergenic. Customers describe the consistency as smooth and creamy, saying it helps them with different skin concerns, too.
|Skin Type||Normal to Dry Skin|
|Key Ingredients||Glycerin, Ceramides 1, 3, and 6-II, Hyaluronic Acid|
Dry patches are no match for this oil-free and gentle moisturizer from La Roche-Posay. With just a few applications, you'll be impressed with the intense hydration it provides, thanks to Thermal Spring Water and glycerin in its formulation. It also includes ceramides to create a barrier and lock in moisture, plus it provides extra protection against environmental stressors.
This holy grail product is one of the most recommended moisturizers for sensitive skin. Aside from being non-comedogenic, it's hypoallergenic and has no artificial perfumes or harsh chemicals, lessening the risk of any adverse reactions. Although a bit pricey, it's a worthy investment for most skin types. Many customers vouch for it, too, rating it highly.
|Skin Type||Normal, Combination, Dry, Sensitive Skin|
|Key Ingredients||Ceramide, Niacinamide|
|Skin Type||Dry, Very Dry, Sensitive Skin|
|Key Ingredients||Niacinamide (Vitamin B3), Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Glycerin|
|Skin Type||Normal, Combination, Oily, Sensitive Skin|
|Key Ingredients||Hyaluronic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Korean Red Pine Extract|
Lightweight and refreshingーthese are two words that best describe Kiehl's Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream. It is a non-comedogenic moisturizer that brings 24-hour hydration to your skin minus the greasiness. You'll love its cooling effect, as it benefits the skin while leaving a fresh feeling.
It is loaded with glacial glycoprotein, desert plant extract, and glycerin to maintain the skin's moisture barrier. Also, it blends easily and treats drier areas of the skin. In addition, it contains micronized amino acids to control sebum production, giving you a shine-free finish. This moisturizer is ideal for your daily skincare routines for supple skin throughout the day.
|Skin Type||Normal to Oily Skin|
|Key Ingredients||Glacial Glycoprotein, Desert Plant Extract|
Since UV rays contribute to skin aging, including a product with sun protection in your routine is essential. This moisturizer from Neutrogena not only replenishes skin moisture but also provides sun protection. It's formulated with SPF15 to help prevent the early signs of skin aging, but note that it's not meant to replace your regular sunscreen.
What's great about this moisturizer is that it's lightweight. It quickly gets absorbed by the skin and settles into a non-sticky and non-greasy finish, revealing a healthier and more radiant complexion. It's also an excellent pick for all skin types, as it is hypoallergenic, alcohol-free, and non-comedogenic. Reviewers say it has no fragrance, too!
|Skin Type||All Skin Types|
|Skin Type||All Skin Types|
|Key Ingredients||Glycerin, Pro-vitamin B5, Aloe vera|
This vegan and cruelty-free moisturizer from The Ordinary has a blend of potent ingredients to improve dry skin. It's packed with natural moisturizing factors like 11 amino acids, phospholipids, and alpha/beta/gamma fatty acids that instantly hydrate and support the skin's natural moisture barrier.
Users love how this non-greasy moisturizer helps treat flaky and itchy skin and how just a dime-sized amount can certainly go a long way. It's also free of parabens, oil, fragrance, and alcohol, so it's safe even for sensitive skin. No wonder this product is popular across a wide range of users!
|Skin Type||All Skin Types|
|Key Ingredients||Sodium Hyaluronate, Arginine, Sodium PCA, PCA, Lactates, Lactic Acid, Minerals|
Centella Asiatica, or Cica, is a popular ingredient in Korean skincare because of its strong skin-soothing properties. And you'll be glad to know this ingredient is present in this moisturizer, along with tea tree. As a result, this product helps calm down and repair troubled skin. It's optimal for those with acne-prone skin as it can soothe red and inflamed skin from breakouts.
This moisturizer comes in a gel texture that feels cool and refreshing on the skin. Many users also like that it has a consistency that easily gets absorbed and feels comfortable to wear under makeup. If you're looking for something to help you hydrate your skin to balance oil-water levels without being irritating, this is a good pick!
|Skin Type||Acne-Prone, Sensitive Skin|
|Key Ingredients||Cica, Glycerin, Tea Tree|
|Skin Type||All Skin Types|
|Key Ingredients||Safflower Seed Oil, Collagen, Elastin|
Choosing a new product to add to your skincare routine is never easy, especially when there are so many unanswered questions on your mind. To help you even just a little bit, we asked Dr. Meg Sison some of the most asked questions on the web. Here are her answers!
It actually depends on the individual using the product. The overall formulation of a product is very important because everyone will react differently. Some products can trigger comedone formation in certain individuals while others will not react at all.
Not necessarily. Oil-free means that the formula is lighter, but it does not mean that it is non-comedogenic. Non-comedogenic means that a product will not clog pores and will not lead to the formation of whiteheads or comedones.
The best way to avoid breakouts is to use gentle products that bring back your skin's best condition. Check out these links to know more about the best skincare products that will help you address your skin concerns. Happy shopping!
Author: B. Tan
Re-editor: R. Victoriano
Our buying guide was carefully researched and crafted by the mybest team of writers and editors, in collaboration with the expert featured in this article. We used the buying guide as a basis for choosing and ranking the product recommendations, and we looked at reviews and ratings from different E-commerce sites like Lazada, Shopee, and more.
No. 1: Cerave | Moisturizing Cream
No. 2: La Roche-Posay | Toleriane Double Repair Face Moisturizer
No. 3: Cetaphil | Moisturizing Cream
No. 4: Murad | Clarifying Oil-Free Water Gel
No. 5: Kiehl's | Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream
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When you purchase products mentioned in the article, part of the sales may be returned to mybest.
The descriptions of each product is referenced from the content available from the manufacturer, e-commerce sites etc.
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