In order to best diminish hormonal acne, you need a targeted routine that addresses the effects that hormone fluctuations have on your complexion. This often involves topical solutions, and in some occasions oral medications prescribed by a medical professional. While a moisturizer in itself won’t banish hormonal acne, it is an absolutely essential tool for maintaining healthy skin and counteracting any negative effects caused by aggressive acne treatments.
Below, you’ll find a comprehensive list of the best moisturizers for hormonal acne. These products were specifically chosen because of their acneic skin-friendly formulas and effective ingredients. Each can work alongside your current acne-fighting products in order to help you achieve a clear and comfortable complexion.
How I Reviewed Each Moisturizer
When looking into moisturizers suitable for skin prone to hormonal acne, I had some criteria in mind. First, it was essential that I find formulas that would support the skin barrier and counteract dryness or irritation caused by acne treatments. It was also important to pick moisturizers that were able to provide ample hydration without clogging pores and further contributing to breakouts.
All of the moisturizers you’ll find recommended below have either been tested by me or a member of the GoodGlow team. I also referred to consumer reviews to get a better look at how each product works for a larger group of people.
The Best Moisturizer For Hormonal Acne
|Clearstem – HYDRAGLOW Stem Cell Moisturizer
|On a Budget
|CeraVe – PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion
|For Hormonal Acne with Dry Skin
|Avène – Cleanance HYDRA Soothing Cream
|For Hormonal Acne with Oily Skin
|First Aid Beauty – Ultra Repair Oil-Control Moisturizer
|For Hydrating Skin
|CLEARSTEM – Hydraberry Moisture Mask
|Retinol Moisturizer for Hormonal Acne
|Murad – Retinol Youth Renewal Night Cream
|Salicylic Acid Moisturizer for Hormonal Acne
|Origins – Clear Improvement Pore Clearing Moisturizer
|Moisturizer with SPF for Hormonal Acne
|RoC – Multi Correxion Even Tone + Lift Daily Moisturizer With Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30
|For Sensitive Skin
|Vanicream – Daily Facial Moisturizer
CLEARSTEM – HYDRAGLOW Stem Cell Moisturizer
With Bakuchiol (a natural alternative to retinol), plant stem cells, and olive squalane.
Effective Plant Stem Cells
Bakuchiol in your moisturizer is your secret weapon for collagen production as it trains your skin to look younger while you sleep.
No hormone disruptors, no toxins, cruelty free, gluten free, vegan, and silicon free
Zero pore-cloggers and zero toxins
The Clearstem HYDRAGLOW Stem Cell Moisturizer is my clear winner for the best moisturizer for hormonal acne. It’s made specifically with acne-prone skin in mind, so you can be confident that it won’t contribute to breakouts.
Part of the reason why I love this formula for acneic skin is that it’s made with bakuchiol. This natural retinol alternative not only provides anti-aging benefits, but also helps improve uneven skin tone (which means it’s great for post-breakout marks) and fight blemishes. Bakuchiol is gentler on the skin compared to retinol, and isn’t known to cause irritation or dryness.
Additionally, this moisturizer is crafted with stem cells that promote skin cell turnover to further improve tone and texture while softening fine lines and wrinkles. The powerful formula is also made with squalane, a lightweight yet super hydrating natural ingredient that doesn’t clog pores. Additional ingredients further strengthen and support the barrier while moisturizing the skin, including hyaluronic acid, aloe leaf extract, and hemp seed oil (an oil that is particularly suitable for acne-prone skin, since it has a comedogenic rating of 0).
Beyond the great ingredients, I especially appreciate the texture of this Clearstem moisturizer. This formula is creamy yet lightweight, and doesn’t sit on the skin or leave a greasy finish. It’s vegan and cruelty-free, and made without toxins, gluten, or silicone.
Clearstem Skincare HYDRAGLOW Stem Cell Moisturizer Pros:
- Suitable for all skin types and made without pore-clogging ingredients.
- Gentle and natural ingredients fight signs of aging while improving texture and tone.
- Vegan, cruelty-free, and gluten-free.
Clearstem Skincare HYDRAGLOW Stem Cell Moisturizer Cons:
- On the pricier side.
The bakuchiol in Clearstem’s Hydraglow stem cell moisturizer is the perfect gentle alternative to retinol for those with sensitive skin. The bakuchiol helps increase cell turnover without clogging the pores or triggering unwanted skin reactions.Dr. Anna Chacon
Best On a Budget:
CeraVe – PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion
Contains ceramides and hyaluronic acid
To lock in moisture while supporting the skin’s barrier
Formulated with Niacinamide
Helps soothe and and retain skin’s moisture
Oil-free, non-comedogenic, and fragrance-free formula.
Suitable for normal to oily skin.
The CeraVe PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion is the perfect match for anyone looking for a quality moisturizer that is reasonably priced. This lightweight, oil-free, and non-comedogenic formula is the ideal match for acne-prone skin, as it gives skin that deals with hormonal breakouts the support it needs without clogging pores. While it’s a simpler formula compared to the Clearstem moisturizer mentioned above, I still suggest it for anyone looking for an effective, affordable option.
This CeraVe moisturizer is made with three essential ceramides. Ceramides create a protective barrier on the skin, and also lock in moisture to improve softness and comfort. Hyaluronic acid further works to improve the skin’s moisture levels for maximum health. I also love that this moisturizer contains niacinamide, a soothing ingredient that can also improve the appearance of uneven skin tone and refine the pores.
This formula is marketed as a nighttime moisturizer, but note that it’s lightweight and can be used day and night. Be sure to follow up with sunscreen during the day.
CeraVe PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion Pros:
- Lightweight, oil-free texture that doesn’t feel heavy on the skin.
- Made with effective, science-backed ingredients that calm and support the skin barrier.
CeraVe PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion Cons:
- Not cruelty-free.
Best for Hormonal Acne with Dry Skin:
Avène – Cleanance HYDRA Soothing Cream
Suitable for normal to dry skin.
Free of ingredients that clog pores.
The creamy formula works to give dry skin the hydration it needs.
Soothing and Comforting
Plant triglycerides, thermal water, and additional ingredients calm redness and irritation.
Finding a moisturizer that’s hydrating enough for dry skin but doesn’t contain pore-clogging ingredients isn’t the easiest feat, but the Avène Cleanance HYDRA Soothing Cream checks both boxes. This cream is specifically made with acneic skin in mind, making it an ideal choice for those with dry skin prone to hormonal breakouts.
This Avène moisturizing cream contains ingredients that calm the skin while reducing redness and irritation caused by breakouts or acne treatments. Plant triglycerides comfort and nourish the skin, while dextran sulfate reinforces the skin’s barrier so that it can better defend itself.
The formula also features glycoleol, which is packed with fatty acids that further support the skin barrier so that the complexion stays calm and comfortable, even when dealing with painful hormonal blemishes. Thermal spring water calms and softens the skin.
Avène Cleanance HYDRA Soothing Cream Pros:
- Soothing ingredients target symptoms of hormonal breakouts, including redness and irritation.
- Deeply moisturizing but not pore-clogging.
Avène Cleanance HYDRA Soothing Cream Cons:
- Not cruelty-free.
For Hormonal Acne with Oily Skin:
First Aid Beauty – Ultra Repair Oil-Control Moisturizer
Suitable for combination and oily skin.
This moisturizer is made with non-toxic ingredients, and is also fragrance-free.
Niacinamide and mineral powders balance oil production.
Calming and Hydrating
Oat extract and hyaluronic acid soothe the skin and lock in moisture.
Even if you have oily skin, a moisturizer is an absolute must for balancing hydration levels. In fact, skipping a moisturizer can make the skin even oilier, which will only exacerbate hormonal acne. For those with oily skin, I highly recommend the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Oil-Control Moisturizer.
This lightweight cream moisturizer is made with mineral powders that instantly mattify the skin to cut down on shine. At the same time, niacinamide controls sebum production, which is great for further reducing shine in the long term and for minimizing hormonal breakouts. It also soothes irritated skin and refines the pores.
The moisturizer also features hyaluronic acid, which locks moisture into the skin. I also love the addition of oat extract, which nourishes while calming skin aggravated by breakouts or acne treatments.
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Oil-Control Moisturizer Pros:
- Mattifies oily skin while deeply hydrating.
- Fragrance-free, vegan, cruelty-free, and made with clean ingredients.
- Made to be safe for even the most sensitive skin.
First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Oil-Control Moisturizer Cons:
- On the pricier side.
Best for Hydrating:
CLEARSTEM – Hydraberry Moisture Mask
This creamy moisture mask from Clearstem was created to be safe for acne-prone and sensitive skin. It’s packed with hydrating and anti-inflammatory ingredients that soothe the skin and boost hydration levels for a comfortable and calm complexion.
Suitable for all skin types, including acne-prone and sensitive skin.
Vegan and cruelty-free formula is made without toxic ingredients.
Squalane, hemp seed oil, and additional ingredients deeply hydrate without clogging the pores.
Anti-inflammatory aloe vera and arnica flower calm redness, irritation, and general discomfort.
The unique Clearstem Skincare Hydraberry Moisture Mask is one of my top recommendations, as it is ideally created to meet the needs of hormonal acne-prone skin. It’s formulated to restore the skin barrier and calm the complexion, and also helps infuse the skin with hydration without clogging the pores. The formula is also made to be suitable for sensitive and acne-prone skin, making it an ideal choice for anyone who deals with hormonal breakouts.
Two of the key calming ingredients in this formula are aloe vera and arnica flower, both of which have anti-inflammatory properties. They both work to fight redness, irritation and general discomfort due to acne, and can minimize the appearance of current breakouts. These are joined by squalane, a lightweight and non-comedogenic ingredient that deeply hydrates the skin.
There are a few different ways you can use this product, all of which are great for calming and supporting hormonal breakout-prone skin. You can combine it with another moisturizer you like to amplify the hydrating and soothing effects, or apply it as the very last step of your evening routine to lock in moisture. Alternatively, you can use it as a quick mask when your skin needs extra support.
Clearstem Skincare Hydraberry Moisture Mask Pros:
- Calming and barrier-restoring formula is made to be safe for acne-prone and sensitive skin.
- Versatile mask that can be used in multiple ways.
- Clean formula that is vegan, cruelty-free, and made without toxins, silicones, or gluten.
Clearstem Skincare Hydraberry Moisture Mask Cons:
- On the pricier side.
Best Retinol Moisturizer for Hormonal Acne:
Murad – Retinol Youth Renewal Night Cream
Suitable for all skin types.
The formula is vegan and cruelty-free, and made without parabens, phthalates, or sulfates.
Retinol and dipeptide boost firmness and soften lines.
Retinol and niacinamide help minimize breakouts while also targeting post-acne marks.
Retinol is an excellent ingredient for hormonal acne-prone skin. It boosts cell turnover to unclog pores, and can also minimize the appearance of post-acne marks. Retinol creams are particularly good for those new to using this ingredient, as they tend to be gentler than retinol treatments or serums.
With this in mind, I highly recommend the Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Night Cream. As one reviewer prone to adult acne states, “This formula is gentle enough for my easily agitated skin but also strong enough to destroy my cystic acne.”
This cream uses a time-released retinol that not only improves uneven skin tone and minimizes blemishes, but also smooths fine lines and wrinkles. Niacinamide controls sebum, refines pores, and soothes the skin, while dipeptide firms the skin and promotes a more youthful appearance.
Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Night Cream Pros:
- Minimizes signs of aging while fighting breakouts and improving uneven skin tone.
- Made without parabens, sulfates, or phthalates.
- Cruelty-free and vegan.
Murad Retinol Youth Renewal Night Cream Cons:
Best Salicylic Acid Moisturizer for Hormonal Acne:
Origins – Clear Improvement Pore Clearing Moisturizer
Suitable for normal, combination, and oily skin.
This moisturizer is oil-free and made with non-greasy moisturizing ingredients.
Sodium hyaluronate and squalane boost moisture levels.
Salicylic acid and bamboo charcoal unclog pores.
Salicylic acid is a highly effective, oil-soluble chemical exfoliant that works deep in the pores to unclog the debris and excess sebum (AKA oil) that’s responsible for multiple types of acne. Since hormonal acne is the result of an overproduction of oil, this exfoliant is one of the best ingredients for fighting hormonal breakouts.
The Origins Clear Improvement Pore Clearing Moisturizer is personally one of my favorite moisturizers. This multi-tasking formula combines a 1% concentration of salicylic acid with other ingredients to fight blemishes and adequately hydrate the skin.
In addition to salicylic acid, bamboo charcoal draws impurities out of the pores to further fight clogs. Witch hazel tones the skin and provides additional anti-acne benefits, while sodium hyaluronate and squalane hydrate.
Origins Clear Improvement Pore Clearing Moisturizer Pros:
- Banishes multiple forms of acne with the power of salicylic acid and bamboo charcoal.
- Made without oil, parabens, or phthalates.
Origins Clear Improvement Pore Clearing Moisturizer Cons:
- Not cruelty-free.
Best Moisturizer with SPF for Hormonal Acne:
RoC – Multi Correxion Even Tone + Lift Daily Moisturizer With Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30
Suitable for all skin types.
Clinically Proven Formula
The formula has been proven to improve tone and texture.
Hexyl-R complex diminishes uneven skin tone.
Protects the Skin
Chemical sunscreen filters protect the skin against harmful UVA and UVB rays.
Wearing sunscreen daily is crucial for a variety of reasons. However, for those with hormonal acne, it’s especially important for ensuring post-acne marks don’t darken and become even more difficult to fade. The RoC Multi Correxion Even Tone + Lift Daily Moisturizer With Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30 is a particularly excellent formula, because it not only protects the skin, but also improves uneven skin tone and texture.
The key ingredient is the company’s Hexyl-R complex, which helps with both uneven skin tone and aging concerns. It brightens the complexion while firming the skin for a more youthful glow. Glycerin and shea butter work to moisturize the skin, while a blend of sunscreen filters defend the complexion against harmful rays.
RoC Multi Correxion Daily Moisturizer Pros:
- Brightens skin tone while firming and lifting the skin.
- Protects against UVA and UVB rays.
- Dermatologist tested, hypoallergenic, and made without parabens
RoC Multi Correxion Daily Moisturizer Cons:
- Contains fragrance, which may be irritating to some.
Best for Sensitive Skin:
Vanicream – Daily Facial Moisturizer
Suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin.
The formula is vegan and not tested on animals.
Doesn’t Clog Pores
The moisturizer is completely non-comedogenic.
Supports Skin Barrier
Five ceramides fortify the skin barrier while sealing in moisture.
Those with sensitive skin can’t go wrong with the Vanicream Daily Facial Moisturizer. While it’s a very simple formula (especially compared to other recommendations on this list), it’s thoughtfully made with gentle, non-irritating ingredients that are ideal for easily irritated skin prone to hormonal acne.
What I particularly like about this formula is that it’s made with five key ceramides. These ceramides create a protective barrier to counteract irritation while also locking in moisture. Additionally, squalane, hyaluronic acid, and glycerin thoroughly hydrate and soften the skin. This non-comedogenic moisturizer is made without dyes, fragrances, or other common irritants.
Vanicream Daily Facial Moisturizer Pros:
- Nourishes the barrier while deeply hydrating the skin.
- Non-comedogenic and made without dyes, fragrances, parabens, gluten, or other potential irritants.
Vanicream Daily Facial Moisturizer Cons:
- Not made with acne-fighting ingredients.
Frequently Asked Questions
Look at the ingredients label if you frequently have acne breakouts and believe your moisturizer may be the cause. Moisturizers with comedogenic ingredients, like most oils, alcohols, and waxes, should be avoided in lieu of an oil-free moisturizer with natural, non-comedogenic ingredients.
Yes, salicylic acid can help clear hormonal acne breakouts by removing excess oil from the skin. However, salicylic acid can be overused and dry out the skin if you are not careful.