This is a legacy post that I’ve given a facelift thanks to a reader inquiry. The product is still popular and sought-after, so I thought a refresh and revisit would be relevant and useful. Opinions are the same, but is formatted and edited for easier reading and flow.
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream
I started using this product during the summer of 2013; I can’t recall my previous moisturizer. Needing a change, I picked CeraVe Moisturizing Cream on the recommendation of some skincare junkie acquaintances. I heard that it was good for all skin types despite being listed for normal to dry skin and that my skin would be singing its praises in no time.
First off, I hate tubs and pots for skincare. They simply aren’t hygienic. I’m not a germophobe, but I decided to pick up some popsicle sticks to remove product from the tub to apply so as not to contaminate the supply with bacteria from my hands. Upon opening it, you find a thick, white cream – it does not jiggle or move in the tub; the viscosity is such that even flipping it upside-down, uncapped, for about fifteen seconds the product did not budge or try to escape.
The amount needed to moisturize your whole face seemed negligible as compared to the tub as a whole, and it seems that it will last a long time if only used on your face.
At first, day and night, I dipped a new popsicle stick (the wider craft sticks) about a half-inch into the cream, removed, then applied it to my face. My cheeks are the driest part of my face, so I focused more product there and spread the rest elsewhere. My skin felt fantastic; no longer taut, and after a few days it did not seem as dull either.
While CeraVe Moisturzing Cream is not scented with additional fragrance, it does have a light, clean scent. That scent was not discernible after application.
After a week it became evident that this was too heavy for both day and night use. During the day, my skin was shiny and not cute. After that, I cut back to only using it at night after washing my face before bed. While that helped, my skin still grew shiny by midday. The cream felt great and was not causing breakouts, but my skin was too shiny to be passed off as, “dewy.” Also, this product lacks sunscreen which I found disappointing considering the ultra-thick consistency. I eventually left this behind and moved onto argan oil.
So CeraVe says it has some awesome MVE Delivery Technology – this really stands for MultiVesicular Emulsion. After researching, I found that CeraVe holds no such patent for this snake oil. This article from Chemical Novelty (site defunct; link is to archive.org’s capture of it) has lot to say on the matter if you’re up to digesting a lot of science.
Putting it very simply, CeraVe Moisturizing Cream is made up of itty-bitty concentric spheres (so, spheres inside spheres; sphere-ception) of water and oil that work in a sort of time-release fashion. It also says it contains ceramides (lipids – aka fats) and hyaluronic acid (or, according to someYouTubers, “hydraulic acid,” sigh.) The ceramides help fill in the skin’s natural barrier and hyaluronic acid helps with moisturization itself. This product also contains silicones which soften and help keep the moisture in place (on your skin).
The Bottom Line
Verdict? Not impressed. Though a lot of people are happy with this product as a moisturizer, I will not repurchase. It isn’t that the product is bad, but it does not deliver well enough especially considering its lofty claims.
Some people have encountered issues with breakouts with this product. I did not experience breakouts but if you tend to have difficulty with lipid-rich skincare, you should definitely skip this one. I ended up using my tub up as a manicure and pedicure cream – which it was great for! The occlusive nature of CeraVe Moisturizing Cream is great for finishing a pedicure and keeping the skin soft.
This cream will likely perform well for you if you have truly dry skin, especially in the wintertime. Ultimately, there are better products than this out there. Unfortunately, this $15-18 16oz tub of CeraVe Moisturizing Cream is an over-hyped tub of quasi-scientific buzz-words and dreams.