If buttery-soft skin is what you’re after, a good body lotion will do the trick.
Whether it’s in your arsenal for your post-shower pampering routine (which we highly recommend), an essential after a long day in the sun or the display piece that simply doesn’t leave your nightstand, some of the best body lotions are unmatched.
As one of the best products for dry skin, a quality body lotion will provide soothing relief for itchy, patchy and dull skin.
Luckily, we consulted three dermatologists to pull the best body lotions for dry skin, including recommended formulas for eczema and sensitive skin.Why is body lotion important to use on your skin?
“It’s imperative that moisturizers like lotions are applied to the face and body daily,” Lian Mack, MD, a board-certified dermatologist, told the Post. “Using lotions helps to hydrate the skin by locking in moisture and protecting the skin barrier.”
Not to mention, when the skin is dry and dehydrated, it’s more likely to develop inflammatory conditions like eczema, she noted.What’s the difference between a body lotion and a body serum?
“Body serums tend to contain lighter, water-based (almost gel-like) vehicles with smaller, active molecules that can easily penetrate the skin,” Dr. Mack adds. “Lotions, on the other hand, are designed to hydrate the skin and contain larger molecules that sit on top of the skin and don’t easily penetrate.”Should body lotion only be used in the winter?
“It’s important to keep skin hydrated all year long though in winter, because of the decrease in humidity, skin tends to get dry more quickly,” Kavita Mariwalla, MD, a double board-certified dermatologist, told the Post.
Plus, Dr. Mack recommends creams during the winter and lotions during the summer, as the former are thicker than lotions. When and how should body lotions be applied?
Kenneth Mark, MD, a cosmetic dermatology expert, advises “applying any moisturizer immediately after the shower while the skin is still somewhat moist” is ideal.
“Upon exiting the shower, pat yourself dry with a towel and then moisturize,” Dr. Lian Mack, MD adds. “This will lock in the moisture from the shower and more effectively hydrate the skin.”
Click to find the top body lotions our experts recommend, categorized by type:Best body lotion overallBest body lotions for dry skinBest anti-aging body lotionsBest firming body lotionsBest drugstore body lotionsBest smelling body lotionsBest body lotions for sensitive skinBest body lotions for eczemaBest body lotion overall1. CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion, $17.78AmazonAmazon
“I love that this product is fragrance-free and contains hyaluronic acid, ceramides and humectants for locking moisture into the skin,” Dr. Mack said. “It’s also an extremely affordable option for most of my patients, retailing at about $18.”
Not only is CeraVe one of the top dermatologist-recommended brands, but it’s also one we swear by, especially for its Foaming Facial Cleanser.Best body lotions for dry skin
The best ingredients for dry skin, per our experts: “Ammonium lactate (lactic acid) is a humectant meaning it actually increases the moisture content of the skin,” Dr. Mark said. “An alpha hydroxy acid is also an exfoliator meaning it will smooth the rough texture of the skin.”1. Augustinus Bader The Body Cream with TFC8 Moisturizer, $180SephoraSephora
For a soothing splurge, there’s no other than Augustinus Bader.
“This formulation contains Shea butter, Vitamins A and E and Brazilian candela oils,” Dr. Mack said. “The shea butter hydrates and protects the skin barrier reducing wrinkling of the skin.”
“Vitamin A repairs the skin by driving collagen, while Vitamin E protects the skin against free radicals,” Dr. Mack said. “The Brazilian candela oil helps to firm the skin and reduces the appearance of fine lines and creepiness.”dua. Sarna Sensitive Anti-Itch Lotion, $9.99 (originally $10.99)Amazon
“This is an oldie, but a goodie,” Dr. Mack suggests. “For people suffering from itchiness, Sarna helps to alleviate the sensation of itch with its active ingredient pramoxine hydrochloride.”
Plus, this formulation is free from steroids, parabens and fragrances. 3. Necessaire The Body Lotion with Niacinamide, $25SephoraSephora
Simply put, Dr. Mack classifies Necessaire as a “great body care merk” that “truly identifies with self-care.” Namely, this body lotion is “a multi-vitamin moisturizer for the skin,” she adds.
“Formulated with ingredients rich in Niacinamide (a favorite of mine), Vitamin C, Vitamin E and Omega 6 and 9, it’s a great option for those trying to strengthen, moisturize and nourish their skin,” Dr. Mack said.4. Tatcha Indigo Soothing Body Butter, $48TatchaTatcha
Who wouldn’t want to apply a rich body butter derived from Japanese indigo and therapeutic ingredients to their skin?
“Japanese indigo is actually a legendary botanical praised for its ability to soothe irritation, hydrate and support the skin’s natural healing abilities,” Dr. Mack explained. “It’s recommended for individuals struggling with sensitive, dry and irritated skin types, including eczema.”Best anti-aging body lotions
The best ingredients for mature skin, per our experts: Retinoic acid, peptides and antioxidants including vitamins C and E, as well as astaxanthin, hyaluronic acid and green tea, per Dr. Mark.1. Perricone MD Cold Plasma Plus+ Fragile Skin Therapy, $49Perricone MDPerricone MD
“This formulation contains retinol, hyaluronic acid and peptides to help renew and rebuild the skin,” Dr. Mack said. “The retinol helps to improve collagen production, ultimately improving the appearance and elasticity of the skin.”
Not to mention, Perricone MD recommends applying this lotion to shins and other fragile areas, too, and is well-known for giving the appearance of stronger skin on your arms.dua. AmLactin Daily Moisturizing Body Lotion, $12.97 (originally $15.99)AmazonAmazon
“AmLactin Daily Lotion has ingredients in it that improve the function of aquaporin channels in the skin, making the skin barrier healthier along the way,” Dr. Mariwalla explains. “Not only will this smooth skin but it makes the appearance look less crepy and more firm.”
According to Dr. Mark, AmLactin is at the top of the totem pole for “exfoliation” and “hydration.” Specifically, this formula is superb for containing lactic acid, a humectant, which is ideal for locking in moisture on dry, rough skin.Best firming body lotions
“‘Firming’ is typically used to imply ‘collagen forming,”” Dr. Mark explained. “A lotion in and of itself does not do that so it would require the right ingredients.”1. Revision Skincare Bodifirm, $260DermstoreDermstore
“One of the key ingredients is caffeine, a well-known antioxidant which protects the skin from free radicals,” Dr. Mack shared. “Moreover, the formulation contains a patent-pending iFirm technology which is a proprietary blend of peptides, antioxidants, botanical extracts that promote collagen and elastin production.”
Though “firming” can be misleading in the beauty industry, this lotion is a powerful blend of ingredients that’ll help you feel tighter than many day-to-day lotions on the market.dua. Aveeno Positively Ageless Anti-Aging Firming Body Lotion, $25.99AmazonAmazon
“This cream is loaded with amino acids and a shiitake complex to support collagen and elastin production for firmer skin,” Dr. Mariwalla said.
For continued soothing, you can apply Aveeno’s formula at all points of the day as it’s a nonabrasive and reliable formula for the masses.tiga. First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hydra-Firm Night Cream, $42First Aid BeautyFirst Aid Beauty
As one of our favorite beauty brands, First Aid Beauty takes the cake on healthful, luscious-feeling ingredients that we always resort to when we need something we know won’t break us out. And, our expert feels similarly.
“This cream has niacinamide which improves skin tone and improves texture and sodium hyaluronate which can reduce fine lines,” Dr. Mariwalla said. “I like this for the arms and chest area in particular.”Best drugstore body lotions1. Aquaphor Ointment Body Spray, $20.09AmazonAmazon
“The amazing action of this emollient meets the ease of application of a spray,” Dr. Mariwalla said. “It’s wonderful for kids and adults on the run — especially for the legs and back.” And, if you’re looking for a spray, this formula is formulated without harsh chemicals.2. Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Lotion, $8.89 (originally $15.18)AmazonAmazon
“As far as your no-nonsense moisturizer for skin goes, this one is my favorite with a combination of soothing oat and glycerin to hydrate and nourish,” Dr. Mariwalla shared.