Cream, Balm, or Oil: Which Moisturizer is Right for You?
If you’ve ever wondered the difference between a cream, oil, or balm, you’re not alone. While they all appear to do the same thing—add moisture and nourish your skin—they each provide different benefits and a different experience.
So why is proper moisturization crucial? Research shows that moisturizers can help fight signs of aging. They help balance skin, which in turn can prevent potential issues like clogged pores, acne, dryness, redness, and more. Moisturizing also protects your skin from the elements, sun exposure, and pollution that can wreak havoc on your skin.
It’s important to select clean moisturizers, because they come without many of the emulsifiers, preservatives, fragrance, and texture-improving chemicals that are in many conventional beauty products. Therefore, you’re left with a higher concentration of active ingredients that deliver results and actually make a difference to your skin.
Facial oils typically consist of essential fatty acids, vitamins, and antioxidants with important skin benefits. They mimic the natural sebum production in our skin, which helps balance our own oil production. So, if you have combination/oily skin, we usually recommend trying out a facial oil.
At Follain, we sell both single-origin oils and products that combine a variety of oils. Though their main goal is to provide intense hydration, these oils can also help target specific skin concerns, making them great to pair with or on top of your serum. Oils are also great when worn before or mixed in with your favorite moisturizing cream or balm. This works for all skin types as long as the individual products are perfectly matched to your unique skin.
Pro tip: Apply oils on damp skin for increased absorption!
Creams are typically a combination of oil and water-based ingredients and are designed to hydrate and protect the skin. They are designed to be a more occlusive layer that seals in your previous skincare steps, to help you get the most out of them, while also protecting your skin from external environmental aggressors. For maximum benefit, you can layer a cream on top of your favorite facial oil, or mix a few drops of the oil directly into your cream before applying it to your skin. You can apply creams to damp or dry skin.
Balms are solidified oils that melt into liquid when they come into contact with your skin. Unlike creams, balms do not contain water. They absorb best when applied to damp skin, and typically, you need only about half a pea’s worth of balm to moisturize your entire face. Similar to creams, they provide an occlusive, nourishing protective layer to your skin and seal in your skincare for optimal results. Balms are especially beneficial for anyone with dry skin, or those in cold/dry climates. Oils layer beautifully with balms, too, but keep in mind that you typically don’t need a cream and balm in the same routine.
So, Which Moisturizer is Right for You?
No matter your skin type and concerns, there is a moisturizer (or combo of moisturizers) for you. Your perfect match comes down to skin type, concerns and goals, personal preference, and season or climate. If you need help finding the right product for your unique skin, take our moisturizer quiz or come chat with us in person at a Follain store.
Devan Jesmer, Dallas Store Educator | February 26, 2019