For those of us with oily skin, finding the right moisturizer is a lot like Goldilocks’s search for the right bed: there’s a lot of testing before we discover the formula that fits us the best. It might be tempting to give up on your search and forgo moisturizer altogether—after all, oily skin needs to be dried out, right? Not so much. On the contrary, when your skin is too dry, it may overproduce oil to compensate, which only makes matters worse. What you actually need is the right moisturizer that strikes the perfect balance of hydration and nourishment but isn’t too thick and greasy. Especially with the colder weather, those of us with oily skin need to find something that will help combat the dryness without causing clogged pores or an even shinier T-zone, which is why we turn to mattifying moisturizers.
Unlike heavy creams, mattifying moisturizers are lightweight, don’t cause breakouts, and won’t make it look like we poured grease all over our faces. They also control excess oil production and simultaneously hydrate as they cut down on shine. We’ve tried a lot of products to get you the ten moisturizers we believe have hit that sweet spot and provide all the aforementioned benefits. Click through to see which mattifying moisturizers are the best for oily skin.
If you have oily skin, you likely deal with blackheads more often than you’d like to. Caused by a buildup of oil and dead skin cells in your pores that have oxidized, those annoying little blackheads are no match for this moisturizer. Formulated with grape seed polyphenols meant to prevent oxidization and rosewater meant to keep your oil production under control.
No fluff—this stripped-down formula gets straight to the point with two main ingredients: mattifying powder to keep oil at bay and sodium hyaluronate to pull hydration into the skin.1 And at just $16 a tube, you can afford to touch up throughout the day, though you won’t even need to.
The star ingredient in this moisturizer is Japanese green tea, which contributes to a matte complexion by controlling your skin’s production of sebum (an oily substance).2 It also contains burdock root meant to soak up any excess oil and sodium hyaluronate for optimal hydration without the shine.
When your skin barrier is compromised, moisture is able to escape and bacteria is able to enter through tiny cracks and wreak havoc (read: cause breakouts and irritation). This formula promises to keep your barrier healthy and hydrated with ceramide 3 and salicornia herbacea. It also targets excess oil and shine with ingredients like lecithin and zinc PCA meant for an overall matte finish.
Made with loquat leaf cells, this sunscreen not only provides SPF protection but also promises to balance the skin’s natural oil levels to give it hydration without making it look shiny with the product’s matte finish. Plus, the formula adapts to your skin tone to give you tinted coverage.
Yes, spending $300 on a moisturizer is a huge ask. But if you have really oily skin, you won’t be wasting a cent here. This mattifying moisturizer goes on super lightweight and uses a lime tree extract meant to protect against environmental aggressors for smooth, hydrated skin. It has a really nice matte finish to control any excess oil too.
Willowherb, a flower found in Canada, helps brighten dullness and soothes skin.3 As the main ingredient in this moisturizer, it will leave you with a more radiant and hydrated complexion without adding more oil to your face.
Using clay from Umbria, Italy, this mattifying moisturizer promises to help reduce sebum production and takes out impurities from pores. It is also meant to calm any flare-ups while locking in moisture.
According to the brand, this mattifying moisturizer contains Sebulyse technology, which is a formula made specifically to mattify excess oil and reduce the appearance of large pores. It also promises to refine the skin’s texture and provide moisture.
Just because it’s the most wallet-friendly item on this list doesn’t mean it’s the least effective. It contains aloe vera, which calms the skin and soothes out any dryness and irritation,4 and bamboo extract meant to control the shiniest parts of your face from making you look too greasy.