Most of us are proactive when it comes to the skin on our faces. After all, a regular skincare routine of cleansing, toning, and moisturizing is a no-brainer for maintaining a healthy, hydrated, and nourished complexion. But what about the skin below our chin?
About Body Skin
Skin is the body’s largest organ, and contrary to our skincare habits does not stop at our neck. A little extra attention to your body goes a long way in not only improving its appearance but also its health and the way you feel in it.
The skin on our body has fewer oil glands than the skin on our face, so it tends to dry out quicker. Add to this the upcoming colder, drier weather—plus more exposure to arid indoor heating—and skin becomes dehydrated, rough, tight, and even cracked.
These issues are easily remedied with regular use of a good moisturizing body wash, followed by a hydrating lotion.
About Body Wash
A good hydrating body wash will add an extra layer of moisture to the skin before you even get out of the shower. This is an especially important step as hot water can strip the skin of its natural moisture.
Avoid using harsh soaps or scrubbing too hard, as this will disrupt the skin’s protective and moisture-sealing outer layer. Instead, look for gentle, non-soap-based cleansers with hydrating benefits like plant butters, oils, lipids, and fatty acids. Also keep an eye out for occlusive ingredients that lock in moisture, such as shea butter, squalane, and most oils.
You’ll also want to consider your skin type as you search for your ideal body wash. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, you may not want an ultra-hydrating formula, but you also don’t want something too harsh that will strip your skin of essential moisture.
Some of our favorite formulas include:
This Conditioning Body Wash nourishes the skin while helping maintain the lipid barrier. Inspired by the essential oils diffused in Turkish baths, the silky, gentle formula awakens the senses with aromatic French Rosemary, Chinese Eucalyptus, Tea Tree, and lemon oils.
Pro-vitamin B5, sandalwood, lavender, and clary sage also smooth and condition the skin while reducing dryness, dehydration, and dullness. It is suitable for all skin types.
This Nourishing Care Body Wash is a budget-friendly option that gently cleanses without drying to reveal healthy, radiant-looking skin. The nourishing serum is enriched with a unique blend of plant-derived oils, essential skin lipids, and vitamins that work together to nourish and hydrate the skin. Glycerin and almond oil also help to balance the absorption of moisture and water loss while improving the skin’s tone.
The creamy lather of this wash can also be used for shaving as it leaves the skin feeling soft and smooth all day. It is best for normal to dry skin.
The Hesperides Grapefruit Bath & Shower Gel gently cleanses, nourishes, and revitalizes the skin with an invigorating foaming gel. Shea butter hydrates and nourishes the skin while vitamins C and E help protect it.
This light, moisturizing formula is enriched with citrus fruit extracts and has a clean grapefruit scent. It leaves skin feeling fresh, clean, and soft.
Sol de Janeiro
The trendy Sol de Janeiro does it again with its Brazilian 4 Play Moisturizing Shower Cream Gel. This deeply hydrating cleanser leaves the skin feeling soft and silky as Cupuacu butter locks in moisture and helps support skin elasticity, coconut oil softens, conditions, and moisturizes, and antioxidant-rich acai oil protects against environmental aggressors.
The irresistible scent of this wash includes notes of pistachio, vanilla, and salted caramel for a decadently indulgent bath or shower. This cream-gel formula is also sustainably sourced, vegan-friendly, and cruelty, paraben, and gluten-free to boot.
This Almond Cleansing & Soothing Shower Oil transforms into a cleansing milk when mixed with water. It envelops skin in an almond-and-vanilla-scented frothy foam for a truly pampering experience.
Sweet almond oil hydrates, softens, and nourishes all skin types. This cleanser can even be poured directly into the tub for a softening soak, or used as the perfect silky base to shave the body. It is also clean, vegan, and sustainably sourced.
Olay’s Ultra Moisture Shea Butter Body Wash is an affordable choice to cleanse, moisturize, and indulge the skin, leaving it touchably smooth and soft. Formulated with a vitamin B3 complex that hydrates and plumps surface skin cells while locking in natural moisture, get all-day moisture and nourished skin with continued use.
Each bottle of this body wash contains the equivalent of a full jar of moisturizer. It is also best for normal to dry skin types.
The Do Son Shower Oil is a three-in-one product that cleanses, softens, and intensely scents, all at the same time. This shower oil starts transparent, but transforms into a soft, foamy emulsion upon contact with water.
Apricot seed oil softens the skin while tuberose locks in moisture. The relaxing aroma helps soothe and warm the respiratory system for a truly luxurious sensorial experience.
The Lipikar Wash AP+ Body & Face Wash is a comforting gel foam that leaves skin clean, soft, and instantly soothed while providing 24 hours of hydration. This wash supports the skin’s microbiome and barrier while replenishing essential lipids.
Dermatologist-tested, soap-free, non-comedogenic, paraben-free, and fragrance-free, this formula is best for dry and sensitive skin types.
This Raw Shea Butter Body Wash gently cleanses and deeply moisturizes dry, rough skin. The high concentration of vitamin A combats skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, wrinkles, blemishes, and skin allergies while a healing blend of anti-aging extracts like frankincense and myrrh soothe and revitalize dull-looking skin.
This body wash is suitable for all skin types. With organic shea butter, it is also very effective at reducing ashiness in darker skin tones.
The Cote d’Azur Replenishing Body Wash is a pearlescent cleanser that nourishes and restores moisture loss in the skin. A blend of sweet almond, meadowfoam, and starflower oils rejuvenate the skin while preventing dryness as rice oil locks in hydration and carrot root extract brightens and improves the skin’s tone.
The light scent of this wash features notes of rose, jasmine, and peony that soften into amber and musk. This vegan formula is also made without phthalates or silicones.
This Coconut Water Ultra Fresh Hydrating Body Wash is another wallet-friendly option that cleanses while providing hydration. It leaves the skin feeling clean, fresh, and moisturized thanks to the Moisture Balance Technology in its rich lather that keeps skin nourished, soft, and silky.
Formulated to wash away bacteria and rinse clean without leaving a filmy residue, this body wash’s light scent of tropical coconut is refreshing without being overbearing.
This Citrus Body Cleanser is an excellent choice for acne-prone skin without the worry of overdrying. AHAs help break down pore-clogging oil and dead skin cells while brightening any uneven tone.
Fruit enzymes gently exfoliate the skin while linden flower extract helps keep it smooth and silky. Suitable for all skin types, this cruelty-free, vegan, and gluten-free cleanser helps the skin maintain essential moisture.
About Body Lotions
The main purpose of a good body lotion is simple: Moisturize the skin.
They may come in different formulations and consistencies—such as thin lotions for the warmer summer months and thicker creams for the colder, drier winter months—but body lotions overall tend to be thicker than face lotions, so they can infuse as much moisture into the skin as possible.
Some lotions are also more hydrating than others, with ingredients like nourishing plant oils, earth-derived butters, and humectants (hyaluronic acid and glycerin). Some are even specifically formulated to fight skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, severe dryness, or loss of elasticity, while other use SPF to protect against sun damage.
When choosing a hydrating body lotion, you’ll want to consider the ingredients, consistency, scent, and, of course, your skin type.
Here are some body lotion recommendations for various budgets and skin types to help get you through the harsh winter months:
This Smoothing Body Lotion is light in texture and ultra-moisturizing to smooth and soften the skin, ensuring all-day hydration and suppleness. Infused with natural antioxidant-rich superfoods kale and turmeric, this lotion helps protect against premature signs of aging.
A signature blend of Dead Sea minerals also leaves the skin refreshed, smooth, and hydrated. This vegan formula is also alcohol, paraben, and GMO-free.
A cult favorite, this Moisturizing Cream hydrates the skin while restoring its natural barrier with hyaluronic acid and three essential ceramides that lock in moisture.
This rich, non-greasy formula absorbs quickly and features patented MVE Delivery Technology that continually releases moisturizing ingredients for 24 hours of hydration. It is both non-comedogenic and fragrance-free as well.
The Gypsy Water Body Lotion has a soft and silky consistency that hydrates the skin while releasing a captivating fragrance. Like its perfume counterpart (and the entire fragrance line), this lotion’s keynotes include pine needles, sandalwood, amber, and fresh citrus.
This vegan formula has a rich, luxurious texture made up of 7% shea butter. It is a lightweight emollient that envelops skin in a satin-like protective veil that soothes, softens, and smooths.
The Essentially Enriched Body Lotion is a budget-friendly solution to keeping skin hydrated this winter. Infused with Nivea’s Deep Moisture Serum and almond oil, this rich formula nourishes dry skin after just one application. It also seals in moisture for up to 48 hours for noticeably smoother skin.
This lotion reduces any rough texture and helps heal dry, cracked skin. Dermatologist-tested and approved, this formula is best for dry to very dry skin.
Kiehl’s Crème de Corps is a rich, non-greasy lotion that absorbs quickly for instant body hydration. Responsibly-sourced shea butter defends against dehydration and restores suppleness to dry skin, leaving it soft and smooth.
Cocoa butter also lubricates and softens the skin while squalane helps replenish its natural barrier. Paraben and fragrance-free, this formula is suitable for all skin types.
Sol de Janeiro
Another cult-favorite formula, Sol de Janeiro’s Brazilian Bum Bum Cream delivers hydration and essential fatty acids deep into the skin, leaving it silky soft. Acai oil helps prevent environmental damage to the skin while Brazil nut provides a healthy-looking glow.
This cream also uses Cupuacu butter to lock in moisture and help improve elasticity as caffeine-rich guarana extract smooths and tightens the skin. The pleasant pistachio, vanilla, and salted caramel scent enlivens the senses. This cruelty, paraben, and gluten-free formula is also vegan-friendly and sustainably sourced.
This Raw Shea Butter Body Lotion deeply hydrates and brightens the skin with certified all-natural organic ingredients.
Shea butter moisturizes and repairs the skin with vitamins and fatty acids while frankincense and myrrh extracts provide anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and anti-aging properties. Fortified with coconut oil to nourish and firm the skin, this lotion is excellent at reducing ashiness in darker skin tones. This lotion is also free from all animal testing, sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and mineral oil.
The Play Everyday Lotion SPF 50 is a hydrating and fast-absorbing formula that provides broad-spectrum SPF 50 protection against UVA, UVB, and IRA rays.
Formulated to prevent photoaging and dehydration, this sunscreen lotion uses sunflower extract rich in beta carotene to protect against external environmental elements while rosemary leaf extract provides a calming effect. Water and sweat resistant for 80 minutes, this clean, vegan, and cruelty-free formula is suitable for all skin types.
This Moisture-Rich Body Cream infuses dry skin with long-lasting moisture and essential nutrients. Non-greasy and luxurious, this ceramide-enhanced formula promotes a healthy skin barrier.
While hydrating and nourishing the skin with hyaluronic acid, plant-based lipids, and mango seed butter, niacinamide and enzymes help soothe and smooth dry skin. This body cream is vegan, non-comedogenic, paraben-free, and fragrance-free.
The Lipikar Balm AP+ Body Cream is a rich moisturizer made with shea butter, glycerin, and niacinamide to deeply hydrate and nourish the skin, keeping it soft all day. A lipid-replenishing balm particularly suited to very dry, sensitive, irritated, or itch-prone skin, this cream instantly smooths on contact for a supple texture.
This formula provides up to 48 hours of hydration. It is both fragrance and paraben free.
This Raw Shea Butter Body Lotion soothes and nourishes the skin with coconut oil, cocoa butter, and mango seed oil. Ultra-rich, unrefined African shea butter, vitamin E, and soy milk infuse the skin with supple hydration as shea butter provides fatty acids to help preserve a plump, youthful appearance.
Frankincense and myrrh work to revitalize dull-looking skin in this cruelty-free and wallet-friendly lotion. It is free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, paraffin, gluten, fragrances, and artificial colors.
Last, but certainly not least, this Skin Butta Drop Whipped Oil Body Cream is loaded with 25% rich butters, restorative tropical oils, and extracts that leave the skin with a healthy-looking sheen. A blend of seven conditioning essential oils melt into the skin to replenish moisture instantly and over time without ever being sticky.
Glycerin, a powerful humectant, helps seal in moisture while antioxidant-rich Barbados cherry improves the skin’s vibrancy. This body cream has a refreshing tropical fruit and floral scent while remaining suitable for all skin types. It is also clean, vegan, cruelty-free, gluten-free, and earth-conscious.
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