The 8 best oil-free moisturisers for lightweight hydration

Perfect for oily and acne-prone skin types

Content Producer / February 04 2024

Navigating the vast landscape of skin care products can often be overwhelming, particularly when searching for the perfect moisturiser. For those keen on maintaining a healthy complexion while avoiding oil-based products, the quest becomes even more specific. Oil-free moisturisers are a staple in many skin care routines, offering hydration without the heaviness or pore-clogging properties often associated with their oil-containing counterparts. These products are especially beneficial for those with oily, acne-prone, or sensitive skin types.

Nowadays, the variety of oil-free moisturisers available caters to a diverse range of skin care needs and preferences. From gels that feel light as a feather to rich creams that provide deep hydration without the greasiness, there's something for everyone. 

2024’s top 3 oil-free moisturisers

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hyaluronic Acid Water Gel, $15.74, Amazon Australia
No7 Hydraluminous Water Surge Gel Oil-Free, $29.99, Priceline
Kiehl's Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream, $62, MECCA

No7 Hydraluminous Water Surge Gel Oil-Free

Notable for its lightweight gel formulation, the Hydraluminous Water Surge Gel is designed to provide intense hydration without leaving a greasy residue. It's ideal for individuals with oily or combination skin. The key ingredient, hyaluronic acid, ensures your skin retains moisture throughout the day.

Key features:
- Antioxidants vitamin C, mulberry and vitamin E
- 50mL size
- Cruelty-free

Available at:
- $29.99 from Priceline

Go-To Skincare Very Lightweight Moisturiser

True to its name, this moisturiser offers a very lightweight and non-greasy feel. Ideal for daily use, it keeps the skin hydrated without clogging pores. It's enriched with antioxidants and skin-loving ingredients, making it a great choice for sensitive skin.

Key features:
- Cruelty-free
- Refillable
- 50mL size

Available at:
- $55 from Go-To
- $55 from MECCA
- $67.18 from REVOLVE

Cinch Sleep + Glow Overnight Skin Booster

Cinch's innovative overnight skin booster works wonders while you sleep. The 5-in-1 formula focuses on hydration, rejuvenation, and skin repair. It's a great choice for those who want a fuss-free skin care routine that delivers results by morning. 

Key features:
- Wash-off overnight mask
- Shimmery colouring
- Features hyaluronic acid, paw paw and pineapple enzymes
- 80mL size
- Cruelty-free

Available at:
- $39.95 from Adore Beauty
- $39.95 from Cinch
- $39.95 from Look Fantastic
- $39.95 from Oz Hair & Beauty
- $39.95 from a-beauty
- $39.95 from Amazon Australia

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hyaluronic Acid Water Gel

Neutrogena’s Hydro Boost series is renowned for its deep hydration capabilities. The oil-free water gel contains hyaluronic acid, a powerful hydrator that absorbs quickly into the skin. It’s suitable for all skin types, particularly those looking for a moisture boost without the greasy feel.

Key features:
- 1 per cent natural moisturising factor (ingredients to mimic skin’s natural hydration) complex
- Features hyaluronic acid, amino acids and electrolytes
- 50g size
- Refillable

Available at:
- $15.74 from Amazon Australia
- $17.49 (50 per cent off) from Chemist Warehouse
- $24.50 (30 per cent off) from Coles
- $34.99 from Priceline

Kiehl's Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream

The iconic Ultra-Facial Cream is formulated in an oil-free version! Ideal for normal to oil skin types, the non-greasy texture ensures your skin feels comfortable and hydrated throughout the day.

Key features:
- Glacier glycoprotein to promote moisture retention
- 50mL size

Available at:
- $62 from MECCA
- $63 from Woolworths
- $66 from Kiehls

Synergie Skin HydroGel

Synergie Skin's HydroGel is another excellent oil-free option, particularly for those who prefer vegan and cruelty-free products. The lightweight formula provides hydration and soothes the skin, making it ideal for post-procedure care or sensitive skin types.

Key features:
- Cruelty-free
- pH 5.5 - 6.5
- Barosma betulina leaf extract to target sebum production

Available at:
- $120 from Synergie Skin 

Cosmedix brings an advanced formula that combines moisturising and anti-ageing benefits. The Skin Thirst cream is enriched with hyaluronic acid and other beneficial ingredients to nourish and hydrate the skin, while also addressing fine lines and wrinkles.

Key features:
- Hyaluronic acid and lecithin to hydrate
- Witch hazel to balance sebum
- 60mL size
- Cruelty-free

Available at:
- $56 from Activeskin
- $59.50 from Skinmart
- $70 from Adore Beauty

Dermalogica Active Moist

Dermalogica's Active Moist can be considered the bread and butter of moisturisers. It's formulated to provide effective hydration without an oily residue, making it a superb choice for those with combination skin. The lightweight formula also helps improve skin texture and tone.

Key features:
- Cruelty-free
- 50mL size (also available in 100mL)
- Prebiotic moisture complex to nourish skin barrier

Available at:
- $54.02 from Skinmart
- $64.35 from Adore Beauty
- $73 from MECCA
- $73 from Dermalogica

How do I know if a moisturiser is oil free?

If a moisturiser doesn’t specifically state its oil-free status, check the ingredients list and look out for ingredients such as lanolin or nut and plant oils.

Related articles:
The 16 best moisturisers in Australia for any skin care routine
9 hydrating face masks to get skin glistening
8 dry skin tips that skin care experts swear by

Main image credit: @haileybieber

Olga is BEAUTYcrew's Content Producer. When she's not writing about beauty, she's probably watching endless TikTok videos about the topic. Her extra one per cent of brain space is reserved for her two poodles. She can be easily bribed with a good blush or lip tint (take notes, please).