Dry & Oily? Here Are The Best Face Creams To Balance Your Skin
Here, the best organic, natural, and clean options.
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For much of my young twenties, the same thing has happened to me every day around 3 p.m.: I’d glance in the mirror, and my T-Zone was oil-slick and shiny. If I’m honest with you, I was far more concerned about the sprinkled breakouts on my chin and jawline, but the glare-inducing forehead and nose weren’t exactly confidence-inspiring. As I got older, and my skin got drier and drier, my oil- and acne- prone skin transformed into more of a combination complexion (with hints of sensitivities—lucky me). Often, I feel at a loss for where to turn for hydrators that keep my oil in check and the dry patches dewy.
"Combination skin is part oily, part dry," says board-certified dermatologist Jeanine Downie, M.D. "Typically, it's oily in the T-zone and drier on the cheeks." This one-two punch of terrains makes for a complicated choice of moisturizer. Ideally, you want something that will control the oil in the overproduced areas, hydrate flaky areas, and balance skin all over.
Well, we did the work for you. Here, the best organic, natural, and clean options.
Tula 24-7 Hydrating Day & Night Cream
This lightweight option slicks on, absorbs quickly, and doesn’t leave a greasy residue. The blend of barrier-supporting hydrators (like peptides and squalane) leaves skin feeling supple and dewy, and the biome-friendly biotic ingredients help balance your skin microbiome.
24-7 Hydrating Day & Night Cream, Tula ($52)
BeautyCounter Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion
This smart formula adapts to your skin throughout the day, amping up hydration when needed and laying low when your own oil production is doing the work. The blend is made of squalane, shea butter, plum oil, which is rich in omega fatty acids.
Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion, BeautyCounter ($49)
Savor Beauty Truffle Face Cream In Normal/Combination
This delightful organic brand blends together K-Beauty rituals with holistic, natural touches. Their cream comes in three varieties, each designed to cater to a different skin type. For those with combo skin, they blend together pumpkin seed oil, sage extract, and rice bran to hydrate, soothe, and tend to inflammation.
Truffle Face Cream In Normal/Combination, Savor Beauty ($74)
Burt’s Bees Truly Glowing Gel Cream
This 99% natural antioxidant-rich lotion helps brighten skin for the ultimate healthy glow. And the hybrid gel-cream texture makes it perfect for those with combo skin, as it’s equal parts breathable and cushioning.
Truly Glowing Gel Cream, Burt’s Bees ($17.99)
Tatcha The Water Cream
A face moisturizer with legions of devoted fans, this splashes onto your face in the most sensorially appealing way. (Seriously: Once you try this delightful texture, you’ll be hooked.) And thanks to the botanical blend, this can help minimize the look of pores all day long.
The Water Cream, Tatcha ($68)
Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Moisturizer
Sometimes, combination skin comes as the result of a compromised barrier—essentially your skin is attempting to overcompensate with oil-production what it’s missing in barrier support. To check this, reach for lipids like in this whipped cream. It contains phytosphingosine, multiple types of ceramides, and botanical oils.
Lala Retro Whipped Moisturizer With Ceramides, Drunk Elephant ($60)
Summer Fridays Cloud Dew Gel Cream Moisturizer
This provides continuous hydration by blending ceramides with three forms of hyaluronic acid. But it doesn’t stop there, the product is infused with a gentle pineapple enzyme that helps smooth texture and tone.
Cloud Dew Gel Cream Moisturizer, Summer Fridays ($42)
Kinship Supermello Hydrating Gel Cream Moisturizer
This option contains a host of ingredients that can help balance skin. There's coconut water and marshmallow root, which have antioxidants and anti-inflammatory benefits to help nourish skin. Additionally, it contains the humectant hyaluronic acid. And it’s rounded out with the brand’s signature probiotic complex.
Supermello Hydrating Gel Cream Moisturizer, Kinship ($24)
Osea Blemish Balance Balm
Does your specific brand of oily skin come with breakouts? You’re not alone—it’s very common to have acne in one area and bone dry patches in another. If so, reach for this effortlessly light hydrator that uses a combination of anti-inflammatory botanicals to help reactive skin calm down.
Blemish Balance Balm, Osea ($48)
Marla Rene Vitality Facial Cream
If your combo skin runs more dry than oily, this might be the cream for you. It’s decadent and luxe, but don’t worry: it’s still fast absorbing. The 90% plant-based formula uses argan oil (great for sensitive skin, too), carrot seed oil (to brighten up any dullness), and rosehip seed oil (to neutralize free radicals).
Vitality Facial Cream, Marla Rene ($38)
Ole Henriksen Counter Balance Mattifying Moisturizer
On the other hand, if your skin runs more oily than dry, you may consider opting for a moisturizer that helps mattify while it hydrates. This contains oat flour and sodium PCA to do so, while soothing skin with a blend of vitamins and the hydrating hyaluronic acid.
Counter Balance Mattifying Moisturizer, Ole Henriksen ($28)
YTTP Superfood Air-Whipped Moisture Cream
Who doesn’t love a mousse-like texture? Certainly, we can’t help but be obsessed with them. Texture aside, the formula also contains a basket of superfoods—with extracts from kale, spinach, green tea, alfalfa.
Superfood Air-Whipped Moisture Cream, YTTP ($48)
Pevonia Balancing Combination Skin Cream
A non-comedogenic lotion blended with aloe, safflower seed oil, vitamin E, cucumber extract, oh how the list goes on. It’s a thoughtful plant-based blend, as not only does it help ease an oily T-zone, but it can help repair and restore dry, damaged skin too.
Balancing Combination Skin Cream, Pevonia ($61)