The Magical Drugstore Moisturizer

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Of all of the makeup and skincare goodies I use on a regular basis, the one thing I refuse to do without is my moisturizer. I talk about it all of the time. I have a loyalty to my moisturizer that is beyond words. It makes my skin glow, protects me from sun damage, and visibly improves my skin texture. It's my must-have.

I wondered if other women have a similar loyalty to their moisturizers, so I decided I would put the question out to our contributing writers and see what they thought about their face lotions. But, as is often the case, the story I thought I was working on wasn't the real story at all. I was expecting the our fabulous ladies to return with the names of all sorts of hip, trendy lotions only available in the poshest department stores and beauty emporiums. I was so wrong.

I found the real story when three writers who have radically different lives, and who have never even met one another, all gushed about the same drugstore brand facial moisturizer. Who would have thought.

"Well, the only thing I was blessed with is great skin which I think makes up for my hips!" laughs Jennifer, a nurse from Long Beach, California, who really does have gorgeously glowing skin. "I use Neutrogena Eye Makeup Remover -- introduced to me by my friend Michelle -- then I wash my face with regular Dove soap and follow that up with Olay Age Defying Daily Renewal Cream. My grandmother and great grandmother swore by it and they always looked young for their years. I would rely on genetics alone but I don't think that will make up for my partying ways. Other than that there is a lot to be said for drinking plenty of water."

Olay Age Defying Classic Daily Renewal Cream

→ Buy Olay Age Defying Daily Renewal Cream, $9.99, at

"I use Olay Complete All Day UV Moisture Lotion for normal skin, it has an SPF in it and it is mild," offers Tina, an attorney and outdoor enthusiast from San Diego, California. "It keeps my skin moisturized without making it oily. I like it also because it doesn't make my face break out. Most other brands that I have tried make me break out-- which keeping a moisturized face with pimples is not my objective! At night I use the Olay Night Cream. It is thicker and really rehydrates my face at night. It smells nice so it is also calming."

Olay Complete All Day UV Skin Shield Moisturizer Lotion SPF 15, Normal

→ Buy Olay Complete All Day UV Moisture Lotion for normal skin, $8.79 (was $10.99), at

"As far as moisturizer, I use Olay Complete Defense Daily SPF 30 Moisturizer. It's non-greasy and a pretty lightweight cream. It's also relatively inexpensive," says Pearl, a NYC-based urbanista who works in the glammy music industry. "That's for daily use before I put on any make up, but at night, I use the Oil Cleansing Method (OCM). I think I've mentioned this method briefly before. I use a mixture of almond oil, grapeseed oil, and tea tree oil. It's amazing! I just put it on my face before I go to bed and massage it in for 2 minutes, then I dip a washcloth in very warm water and essentially 'steam' my face. The oil penetrates into my pores and really moisturizes super well. I don't usually wash my face after that so the remaining oil will work it's magic at night. Voila, beautiful soft skin in the morning! A warning though, this is not for everyone, some skin can be sensitive to OCM."

Olay Complete Defense Daily UV Moisturizer SPF 30

→ Buy Olay Complete Defense Daily SPF 30 Moisturizer, $11.99 (was $14.99), at

Well, there you have it. Three different women, one magical drugstore moisturizer.

This post originally appeared in July 2007. It has since been updated.