Skincare Review: CeraVe Moisturising Lotion

Skincare Review: CeraVe Moisturising Lotion

Here’s a very effective and affordable face treat for you, if you’re after something light, hydrating and sensibly formulated. Suitable for sensitive, itchy or very dry skin (as well as skin with no particular complaints), CeraVe’s Moisturising Lotion comes in a whopping great big pump-action bottle (236ml) which, I’ll admit, does make it look more like a body lotion than a face moisturiser, but I can tell you that this is as brilliant for thirsty faces as it is for scaly shins. (Actually, there’s a much richer cream version that works better on scaly shins, but more of that later.)

CeraVe is a hugely popular American skincare brand, widely recommended by dermatologists and frequently topping the bestselling beauty charts. Their formulations contain a blend of lipids and ceramides to repair and strengthen the skin’s barrier, which I imagine is what makes the range of creams and lotions so popular with people who have very dry or compromised skin – in the US CeraVe has more products approved by the National Eczema Association than any other brand.

But enough reading from the “About” section on their website (ha!) and onwards to my testing results; I had been using this on Angelica’s eczema around her elbow and knee creases. It wasn’t actually the CeraVe cream that was prescribed (Boots didn’t have the right one and then I had to go back in a week and then I didn’t and then I lost the bit of paper), but I had the lotion in my stash already and it made a nice – less greasy – alternative to the Epaderm ointment, which felt like smearing on lard. Her proper, active treatment cream (Elidel, in case you’re wondering) is nice and lightweight but it’s also more of a maintenance cream, so I use it when she gets flare-ups. The rest of the time it’s all about keeping the skin moisturised, so I use a variety of things (and I’m always open to suggestions!) but the lardy Epaderm is a pain to put on and Angelica hates it. (“Not the greasy cream Mummy!”)

Skincare Review: CeraVe Moisturising Lotion

Anyway, to cut a long story short, I took the CeraVe Moisturising Lotion on holiday with us for her skin but then also ended up using it for my face because I’d only bought a tiny tube of face cream with me, for some insane reason, and needed something to follow my retinol treatment with. I thought at first that the Moisturising Lotion wouldn’t cut it, in terms of being rich enough, but despite its light, fresh-feeling texture, it actually really packs a punch. If you have incredibly dry, rough skin and want a heavy cream with a comforting sort of residue then this is not for you (the cream from the same range is, that’s here*) but if you want moisture without the grease then it’s wonderful.

A fragrance-free, non-fussy formulation, it sits brilliantly beneath makeup, feels immensely soothing after you’ve been in the sun and is a good neutral sort of choice if you want something simple to follow your acid toning pads or retinol cream or whatever active thing you’ve applied before bedtime.

Yes, it feels sort of weird using a face cream that looks and feels like a body lotion, but if this was repackaged (and many times the price) then it would be not dissimilar in experience to using something like Toleriane Fluid from La Roche-Posay (here*), though that has far fewer ingredients and is more soothing, if that’s what you’re after…

So, a gargantuan amount of lightweight face cream (sounds more appealing than face lotion, don’t you think?) for under a tenner. Did I mention that this is only nine pounds? It goes straight onto my (constantly updated) list of best budget buys. Which I haven’t published for a while, so I will try and get onto that…

In the meanwhile, you can find CeraVe Moisturising Lotion at here* – the cleanser, here* is also really rather great. Non-stripping, easy to rinse off, does a thorough job.

Ingredients list for the lotion: Aqua/Water, Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Phenoxyethanol, Polysorbate 20, Ceteareth-20, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Polyglyceryl-3 Diisostearate, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Ethylhexyglycerin, Potassium Phosphate, Disodium Edtae, Dipostassium Phosphate, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Phytosphingosine, Cholesterol, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Sodium Hylauronate, Tocopherol, Ceramide EOP.

© 2018 A Model Recommends®: all opinions are my own and any sponsored or paid posts will always be clearly marked as an AD in the title. I accept press samples and receive product and services to review as part of my job. *Outbound links are affiliate links, which means that I receive a very small percentage of any sale made. This does not affect my content in any way and does not cost you anything, but you are most welcome to Google the products on a new page if you prefer. Please see here for full "about" section and disclaimer. A Model Recommends and Ruth Crilly are registered trademarks.



  1. May 5, 2018 / 4:05 pm

    I reale always mistook it for a bod lotion whenever I saw it.

  2. Caroline
    May 5, 2018 / 4:07 pm

    My daughter has had similar skin problems and I tried all the various brands of specialty creams and lotions at the chemist. BY FAR, the most effective products we have found are by an Australian brand called MooGoo (cute little cow theme going on – all natural ingredients) and they are available in the UK and Ireland in some stores but also online. This stuff works better than anything else we have tried and I can highly recommend it. They have creams, shampoo, conditioner, body/face wash and sun care plus other goodies. Bonus – if your kid or pet licks/eats it, it is totally safe. (Gross, but safe.)

    • May 5, 2018 / 7:51 pm

      I’ll take a look at that one! She seems to react quite badly to a lot of “natural” lotions, which is strange because that’s all I used when she was younger.. must be one particular essential oil or ingredient.. x

      • Caroline
        May 5, 2018 / 8:04 pm

        The MooGoo website has all ingredients listed along with helpful info, for example, many of their products contain milk protein but they make others specifically without it, as it can irritate some eczema sufferers.

      • Liz
        May 6, 2018 / 9:48 pm

        Dermatologists are noticing a spike in skin irritation, due to essential oils. Essential oils can actually break down the skin’s barrier, citrus and mint oils are photo sensitive – one can get a nasty rash or sun burn if exposed to the sun while wearing them.
        Natural doesn’t necessarily mean harmless.

    • Claire L
      May 6, 2018 / 6:06 am

      I second Moo Goo, I use the Scalp Cream on my seborrhoeic dermatitis patches and it’s the best thing I’ve used for it. Far better than steroid cream which makes me worry about thinning the skin.

  3. Cait
    May 5, 2018 / 5:12 pm

    Would you recommend for oily skin?

    • May 5, 2018 / 7:50 pm

      Yes, it’s lovely and light. Though I think the Toleriane Fluid is also excellent for oily skin. x

  4. Marion
    May 5, 2018 / 6:43 pm

    Hi Ruth, my daughter also has slight eczema and I’ve used lots of different lotions….with little relief to her delicate skin unfortunately. There was a lot of hype, quite a while ago now, about Child’s Farm baby moisturiser, with so many mums giving their approval, that it in fact actually does help. And at a fraction of the cost of many other brands. Try it out, you won’t be disappointed.

    • May 5, 2018 / 7:49 pm

      She reacts to something in that and loads of the organic/natural creams! Which is annoying, as I love them… x

      • Claire L
        May 6, 2018 / 6:18 am

        Sometimes I react more to natural creams than to ‘chemical’ creams, they have more active ingredients and essential oils and fragrances. Limonene and linalool for example are used quite often in ‘natural’ products despite their allergenic potential for eczema sufferers.

  5. Eliza
    May 5, 2018 / 9:40 pm

    Oh cool, I can totally attest to this product being really effective. I’m in the US so Cerave is super easy to find. I’ve been using the Cerave PM Facial Moisturizer, which, if I’m not mistaken is exactly what you’ve mentioned…a repackage of this lotion you’re talking about (with a couple of small differences). I love to amp it up with some squalane oil, and maybe some niacinamide for kicks. As for other suggestions, I have severely dry/ dehydrated nose and forehead (so annoying) and I got desperate and put some hand cream on these areas…ShiKai Borage Therapy Dry Skin Lotion and it’s a revelation to dry skin! Even on the face. Borage oil is high in the omega 6 action, and my skin must need it b/c it’s really alleviated the dryness. Fragrance free, gel/cream weight – good stuff. Also for desperate times: Shea Moisture Sensitive Skin Body Lotion. A heavy hitter this one and works for my dry facial areas as well. Good luck. Random note: last night I dreamt I got to babysit Angelica! Wut? O-o Hope that’s not weird to hear! ha

  6. suzana
    May 5, 2018 / 9:48 pm

    How about emu oil for eczema? I presume you are healing her gut already…

  7. Debrah
    May 5, 2018 / 10:13 pm

    I’ve been using Cera Ve moisturizing cream for months in conjuction with my LA MER face cream ( my all-time favorite but MUCH more expensive moisturizer ) and loving it. To save money I use the Cera Ve as a daytime moisturizer and the LA MER as a night time cream . Looks heavy but goes on light and is quickly absorbed. …great under makeup all day. VERY happy and pleased with the results ….a great , very affordable alternative to much more expensive products.

  8. May 6, 2018 / 9:03 am

    Oh will try this! Another recommendation – I find Bioderma’s Atoderm range very good for my family’s dry rough / itchy / eczema prone skin – specifically the Intensive Baume – probably similar to this – it’s all about the biolipids!

  9. Alex
    May 6, 2018 / 9:33 am

    This stuff is amazing! I had some incredibly itchy patches of eczema on my body caused by a reaction to fabric conditioner, and nothing would budge it – including hydrocortisone from my GP. I bought this, and within a few days, it was almost cleared. Can’t rate it highly enough. I’ve never thought to put it on my face though…I’ll have to try that! Xx

  10. Vixxi
    May 6, 2018 / 9:42 am

    Hi x please look into your daughters intolerances x this will be causing her eczema x a simple hair strand for 20£ will help you immensely x creams only help topically x
    Hope this helps xx

  11. Kate
    May 6, 2018 / 10:16 am

    For eczema: Lush’s Dream Cream. For scaly shins: Ameliorate’s body lotion. Amazed by ameliorate, totally sorted my life long scaly shins. Lush Charity Pot also awesome but I think the Ameliorate just tipped it!

    • Charlotte
      May 14, 2018 / 1:37 pm

      Yes! Dream Cream and Ultra Bland from lush did the trick for us too!

  12. Jane
    May 6, 2018 / 1:06 pm

    Hi Ruth, I suffer from eczema and one of the most soothing things I have found is to have an oat bath. All you need are some cheap porridge oats and a fine gauge fishnet popsock/tights foot. Just put the oats into the sock, loosely the a knot around the top and swish it around in the water as you run a warm bath. The water will turn milky/cloudy as the oats release their particles. It is so soothing and 100% safe and natural. I usually follow this up with Aveeno moisturising creamy oil, which is a lightweight body lotion.

  13. Ali T
    May 6, 2018 / 2:57 pm

    Can I recommend the lotions from chucking goat? We’ve not done the full regime of kefir and lotion (how on earth would you get a toddler to drink kefir) but just the lotion has made a huge difference to my daughter’s dry skin patches.

  14. Hannah C
    May 6, 2018 / 6:00 pm

    I think CeraVe looks very promising. I’ve just started my husband on the SPF25 face cream but I’ve had a couple of sneaky pumps myself and the consistency is just lovely. The utilitarian/medicinal packaging was key in persuading him to swap for summer!

  15. Missmouse
    May 6, 2018 / 6:47 pm

    Thanks for review, although I notice it contains Dimethicone, which clogs my skin and results in terrible breakouts. I’ve never had a good experience of face products containing this. I don’t understand why CerVe even need to include it truth be told? I don’t mind silicones in my Frizzease but not in anything applied to my face.

  16. Joana Flores
    May 6, 2018 / 7:38 pm

    Hi Ruth,
    What would you recommend for acne scars?

  17. Liz
    May 6, 2018 / 9:50 pm

    I love the lotion, and also adore the CeraVe SA (Salicylic Acid) cleanser. It cleared up my menopausal acne along my chin without over drying or irritating, both contain ceramides and are fragrance-free . And can be purchased for a song at the pharmacy! A win-win!

  18. Kim Holland
    May 7, 2018 / 8:39 am

    Try epiderm lotion in the pump dispenser, it was a game changer for us. (I agree the balm it’s not nice). We know a consult dermatologist who recommended the lotion for my sons hands. He gets very sore, red, cracked scaly skin due to hand wash at school. We were told to use the epiderm to wash hands with and it’s completely amazing. It leaves a sort of barrier which helps protect when away from home. Plus my son hates putting any cream directly on to his skin so by washing with it he still benefits. His hands are now lovely and soft. I’ve started using it to wash my hands with and to moisturise hands with too and it’s fab. It’s very lightweight and definitely delivers results quickly and long term. I have used on my face and body. We love it. It’s a permanent staple in our house.

    • May 7, 2018 / 9:35 am

      Thank you – I will look for this today! x

  19. SomeGirlMel
    May 7, 2018 / 7:07 pm

    I think you would love Cerave PM Lotion, Ruth. It’s great on its own or layered with serum and SPF. It’s light, very moisturizing, and has a dry, non shiny finish.

  20. May 8, 2018 / 2:03 pm

    I tried using this cream a couple years ago and it broke me out BIG TIME. I guess it was just too heavy for my skin. Either that or there was something in the cream that didn’t react well with my skin.

  21. May 8, 2018 / 4:38 pm

    I am ALWAYS on the look out for new moisturisers and somehow have never heard of CeRave! I love the sound of the formula and as I have eczema I am always on the look out for things that will really help me out. I also love Egyptian Magic All Purpose cream, I don’t know if you’ve tried that?


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