Best Body Creams

Updated December 2019
Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
Bottom Line
Pros
Cons
Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

19 Models Considered
7 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
31 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best body creams

Last Updated December 2019

Whether you’re sweating in the heat of summer or warding off a winter chill, body cream should be a part of your beauty routine. Body cream keeps skin moisturized and hydrated, creating a barrier that locks water into the skin and keeps dryness out. But with so many body creams on the market, the options can be dizzying.

Before you start adding body cream to your shopping cart, consider the following: is your skin oily or prone to dryness? Is your skin sensitive? Do you suffer from psoriasis or eczema? These factors will determine the active ingredients you should be looking for on the label. Also consider the cream’s scent, consistency, and whether it is free of parabens, which may pose health concerns.

At BestReviews, we’re pleased to offer you this comprehensive guide on body creams. Read on to make the most informed decision possible, and feel free to check out the products we’re endorsing.

While people with sensitive skin should avoid fragranced body creams, others can embrace it. Aromatherapy has been proven to help with pain management, stress and anxiety relief, and sleep.

Key considerations

The four main ingredients

Body creams are typically made from four main ingredients: oil, water, emulsifier, and preservative. Oil can be a literal oil, like coconut or jojoba. It can also refer to butters, such as shea butter and cocoa butter. Water, naturally, is the hydrating agent. Emulsifiers bind the oil and water together as a homogenous mixture. For body lotions and day creams, emulsifiers tend to be water-in-oil, meaning they keep oil packed into water. Common emulsifiers for body creams include glyceryl stearate, glyceryl oleate, and lecithin.

A mix of water, oil and emulsifiers can create a potent playground for bacterial growth —  all the more reason preservatives are necessary to prevent mold and bacteria. Preservatives may be human-made, such as parabens, or natural antimicrobials like tea tree oil.

Skin sensitivity

Those with sensitive skin will want to look for a hypoallergenic cream. These are fragrance-free and non-greasy, as heavier creams can irritate the skin. At the same time, they should contain added moisturizing properties. If you suffer from dry skin, this is particularly important. Oats, for example, are a commonly added ingredient for dry skin. They soak up excess body oil while exfoliating the skin.

Smells great, works even better

This cruelty-free and paraben-free body butter will give your skin a natural, subtle glow. A small amount lingers on your skin without being oily or uncomfortable. There’s an unscented option available as well as several scented options, such as sweet citrus, red rooibos, and vanilla apricot.

Skin type

The kind of skin you have can be a dealbreaker or dealmaker, as far as body creams go. If your skin is oily or acne-prone, seek out a lighter cream. A cream with hyaluronic acid will add extra moisture without clogging pores.

Got dry skin? Look for a cream with heavier moisturizers like shea butter or lanolin. Oatmeal is another ingredient that calms inflammation from dry skin. A lotion with lactic acid can remove rough patches caused by conditions like eczema and keratosis pilaris. If your skin is extremely dry and sensitive, however, lactic acid may be too harsh. We recommend testing a patch of skin first.

Sulfate-free and paraben-free

Some consumers try to avoid parabens in beauty products. Parabens are a common preservative in body creams, lotions, sunscreens, and even makeup. But because parabens mimic estrogen, some studies have linked it to breast cancer. Other studies conclude that the effects are too weak to be traced as a cancer cause. Regardless, parabens have entered the dialogue around beauty products and safety.

Sulfates, meanwhile, are common in toothpaste and soap. They’re an ultra-effective cleaning agent. The problem is, they can cause dryness and irritation to the skin and eyes.

The good news is, it’s becoming easier to find sulfate-free and paraben-free body creams. Simply look for those phrases on a label or scan the ingredient list.

DID YOU KNOW?

Even if your skin is perfectly fine now, you can still benefit from a good moisturizer. If you’re not accustomed to using body cream, start with something light.

Features

Scent

People with sensitive skin often seek fragrance-free body creams to avoid irritation or breakouts. What’s more, some people just don’t care for scented beauty products. Either way, it’s pretty difficult to find a cream with no scent whatsoever. However, creams marketed as fragrance-free either have a very subtle scent or one that fades quickly.

Consistency

Body butter, as the name implies, has a consistency close to butter. These products are made from essential butters and oils. Body cream is a happy medium between body lotion and body butter. Because both are fairly thick, body cream and body butter come in jars. Body butter is great for those with ultra-dry skin.

The main difference between lotion and cream is the ratio of oil to water. Because lotions contain more water, they’re more liquid in consistency.

Body cream prices

Like all beauty products, body creams vary in price. Depending on the quality of ingredients, the quantity, and the manufacturer, you can expect to pay anywhere from $10 to $100 for body cream.

Inexpensive: The $10 to $30 price range is common for drugstore brands. Some of these creams may lack pure essential oils or butters, but they may include other hydrating elements. Ingredients like oats and coconut oil are common in this price range.

Mid-range: The $30 to $55 price range is where you’ll begin to encounter some luxury brands. Most luxurious body creams at this point will be packaged in small quantities — think 3 ounces or less. You can also find large quantities of common drugstore brands here  think 15 ounces and more.

Expensive: If you truly want to invest in the best skin care products around, prepare to shell out some bucks. Creams that cost $55 to $100 are prominent in stores that specialize in beauty products. Luxury makeup brands often carry body creams. These may include hyaluronic acid or alpha hydroxy acid (AHA).

EXPERT TIP

Those with dry skin should avoid soap with sodium laureth sulfate, a drying agent common in lots of body washes.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • For added protection, look for a body cream that contains SPF.
  • Want your lotion to work more effectively? Get rid of dead skin cells. Try exfoliating in the shower once or twice a week.
  • Don’t dry your skin completely before putting on body cream. You want a little water on your skin, so the lotion has some moisture to lock in.

All-purpose smooth

Whether you need it for your feet, hands, or entire body, Origins literally has you covered with this soothing ginger-scented cream. Though the price isn’t low, most buyers are more than happy to pay for the luxury. Try using this cream after a nice warm bath and body scrub.

Other products we considered

Looking for more body cream options? We recommend CLINIQUE’s Deep Comfort Body Butter. This silky cream absorbs into the skin easily and works great for naturally rough spots such as the knees, elbows, and heels. Many see results in a matter of weeks. And the cream, despite being ultra-moisturizing, isn’t greasy and won’t stick to clothes. CLINIQUE’s formula is scentless and ideal for dry skin, which makes it a solid choice for eczema sufferers. You’ll want to stock up on this formula for the cold winter months.

We also like LANCER’s The Method: Body Cream. This antiaging cream includes glycolic acid, marula oil, kigeliaextract, and other ingredients to keep the skin supple and combat aging effects. It doesn’t take much to yield results, either. LANCER’s formula was created by a former skin clinician, and it does have a mildly medicinal scent, but it will fade. It’s effective for those with keratosis pilaris or otherwise bumpy skin. Note that the high glycolic acid content can increase skin sensitivity, so it’s best to keep out of the sun while wearing it, or only apply it at night.

It’s a good idea to keep a separate body cream just for shaving, which tends to dry the skin.

FAQ

Q. Can body cream be used on the face?
A.
You might get away with this if you’re using a mild, hypoallergenic body cream. However, it should be noted that the skin on the face and body have different needs; skin on the face is thin and more prone to wrinkles and acne. Skin on the body is exposed to harsher conditions. Therefore, we recommend you use a separate cream for your face.

Q. When is the best time to apply body cream?
A.
The best time to apply body cream is immediately after a shower or bath. This way, the cream creates a barrier that traps the water left on your skin.

The team that worked on this review
  • Ciera
    Ciera
    Digital Content Producer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Senior Editor
  • Ola
    Ola
    Writer

BestReviews wants to be better. Please take our 3-minute survey,
and give us feedback about your visit today.

Take Survey