CeraVe Moisturizing Cream
body,  CeraVe,  moisturize

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

the claim

The CeraVe Moisturizing Cream claims it will provide long lasting skin hydration which won’t clog pores, irritate sensitive skin or feel greasy.
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

the science

Just like all CeraVe products, this moisturizing cream contains Ceramides (three essential ones in this case – Ceramide 3, Ceramide 6-II and Ceramide 1) which help to restore and maintain the skin’s natural protective barrier. As we age, naturally occurring ceramides in our cells become less effective at achieving hydrated and supple skin and keeping wrinkles at bay. This cream aims to reinforce this supply and in doing so, fortify the skin’s natural barrier and thus increase hydration in an attempt to leave it looking more smooth and youthful. Furthermore, ceramides have proven effective at fighting symptoms of eczema, hence the cream’s endorsement by the US National Eczema Association.

CeraVe also has a patented MultiVesicular Emulsion (MVE) delivery technology which is designed to provide layers of moisture over time. In doing so it is said to leave skin nourished long after application.
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream
Ceteareth-20, Cetearyl Alcohol and Cetyl Alcohol are natural fatty acids derived from coconut oil and have the opposite effect of regular alcohols which are drying. They are included for their emollient and emulsifier properties. Similarly, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride is a coconut and glycerin derivative, high in fatty acids which also enhances emollient and replenishing properties of the cream. It is able to resist moisture loss by providing a lightweight, non-greasy barrier of lubrication.

Hyaluronic Acid is naturally present in our bodies. It is able to hold up to 1000 times its own weight in water. It reinforces the moisture barrier to make skin softer and retain hydration. Glycerin and Dimethicone assist in the prevention of moisture loss. Together, these hydrators can deliver a powerful hit of moisturization.

Remaining ingredients are included for their abilities to emulsify, bind, thicken, preserve and adjust pH levels.

the ingredients

Purified Water, Glycerin, Ceteareth-20 and Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Ceramide 3, Ceramide 6-II, Ceramide 1, Hyaluronic Acid, Cholesterol, Petrolatum, Dimethicone, Potassium Phosphate, Dipotassium Phosphate, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Phytosphingosine, Carbomer and Xanthan Gum
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream Ingredients
Update: The May 2019 Australian release of this product has a different formulation to the one reviewed here, in July 2017. INCI as follows:
Aqua/Water, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-20, Petrolatum, Dimethicone, Phenoxyethanol, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Potassium Phosphate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Disodium Edta, Dipotassium Phosphate, Ceramide Np, Ceramide Ap, Phytosphingosine, Cholesterol, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol, Ceramide Eop. (Code F.I.L. D213768/1)


the packaging

The cream comes in a huge plastic screw top container. There is no spatula included and a large opening raises risk of degradation. Having said that, I went through a whole jar, using my fingers each time and experienced no problem with the product spoiling in any way. Furthermore, CeraVe offers a choice, selling the product with the screw top lid (as presented here) and also an alternative with a pump action dispenser for those concerned about contamination.
CeraVe Product Packaging

the analysis

Most of the ingredients in this cream are considered safe and effective. However, CeraVe regularly uses synthetic parabens to assure product preservation. This is the only red flag raised by the CosDNA report. For similar reasons, the EWG Skin Deep Cosmetic Database rates it a fair hazard with a score of 4/10, propylparaben, the only concern.

Parabens are a regular and more recently, controversial inclusion in skincare and cosmetic products (used regularly for the last seventy years to prevent bacteria, fungus and microbes from forming). Although inconclusive research is available to prove that they have any detrimental affect on our health, sufficient doubt is raised by science to question their presence in skincare.

Update: CeraVe has recently introduced this product to Australia. The version sold here is paraben free. This formulation is not relevant in Australia as of May 2019.
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream CosDNA Analysis

the application

Apply with fingers to face and body as required.
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream texture

the scent

There is pleasantly no scent associated with this cream.

the cost

The jar is huge (16oz or 453g) and sells for approximately AUD$20.00 and a few dollars more for the optional pump dispenser.

the availability

Unfortunately it is not stocked in Australia and must be purchased online. The most economical and reliable site that stocks it which I know of is iHerb. They offer a first order discount and shipping is free and quick for orders over around AUD$50.00.

Update: As of May 2019, CeraVe is available in Australia through Chemist Warehouse.
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

the expiry

There is no icon on the packaging indicating expiration date. I have seen it stipulated up to 4 years in advance on some internet marketplaces so it is probably safe to assume it lasts up to several years.

the performance

The CeraVe Moisturizing Cream is very well priced and will last a long time since a little goes such a long way. You only need the smallest amount and it spreads so easily and absorbs immediately into the skin. The packaging is very basic. A huge opening encourages you to slop your fingers in to apply, inviting risk of contamination. There is an alternative package available for a few extra dollars (AUD$25.00) that includes a pump action dispenser if you’re particularly worried about bacteria. Personally, I have had no issues and will continue to use this one in this manner. The huge volume encourages me to use this as both face and body moisturiser.

The cream is glossy and white in appearance. It retains plenty of slip for easy application. Absorption is so quick and thorough, making it very satisfying to use, particularly to the whole body. It’s very practical after a shower as you can get dressed promptly without having to wait long for dry down.
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream
It definitely leaves skin non-greasy and non-oily as claimed with an immediate feeling of moisturisation. The finish pleasantly lacks any residue, tackiness or stickiness. I apply it to dry areas on my face (along the jaw line) and body as described. Skin feels soft and hydrated well into the next day. I have used an entire tub over the last several months with great results and have another in reserve.

Regarding the eczema claim, as I don’t suffer this condition but my daughter does, I gave her the cream to use over a few weeks to see if it made any difference. Her eczema is concentrated primarily behind her knees. After applying this cream multiple times a day to the affected areas, unfortunately, this product did nothing to reduce the condition although it did offer her temporary relief. Given its certification by the US National Eczema Association I have no doubt that it probably works for some but sadly, not in our case.

Update: The recent release (May 2019) of this cream in Australia is also certified by Eczema Association Australia.

the conclusion

This product is made from a solid collection of ingredients, is well priced and offers excellent value, hydration and moisturisation, gentle enough to use all over the body and face. Purely as a moisturizing cream, I would totally recommend it. As an eczema treatment, it fell a little short in our case, however, given the research and positive consumer feedback, it may work for others. I enjoyed this cream sufficiently to buy another tub and am happily working my way through it. I don’t intend being without this product in the future!
CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

the summary

Pros Cons
Moisturizing formula Packaging lacks a little elegance
Generous volume
Non greasy, non sticky, fast absorption
Suitable for all skin types particularly dry
No colour or fragrance


the references

CeraVe wesbite
Parabens: What Are They? And Are They Really That Bad?, Readers Digest Best Health Magazine
The Secret to a Perfect Complexion, Style Caster
Ceteareth-20 The Truth In Aging
caprylic/capric triglyceride Paula’s Choice Skincare
Behentrimonium Methosulfate Chemical of the Day


the disclaimer

Please read in context with my disclaimer.



  • Monika Marko

    Dear Denise,

    First off, I absolutely LOVE your reviews and I have found many of the products you recommend are fantastic and really work as well as you say (I also happen to have combination skin and I am almost 40 so I relate well).

    I really like CeraVe and I use it regularly for myself and my 8 yr old son, exactly for some of the reasons you mentioned; it not oily, it doesn’t leave that lotion feel as it drys quickly and your skin feels safe and hydrated (I use it on my feet too and I get the same effect). My son who HATES (I am using the capital letters because he feels that strongly about it; I had to try many different ones until he finally accepted this one).

    Two things I want highlight:
    1. I support your claim that this cream doesn’t do much for eczema skin. I get it on my hands (on the palms) and just like your daughter I get no relief from this. I have to use goldbond for eczema in order to control the flare ups
    2. My back and my chest breakout when using CeraVe continuously (not sure if you have had this experience). I do find that if I alternate between CeraVe and Aveno, it occurs less often. I suspect that it has to do with the combination between my body shampoo and the cream or lotion (e.g. I use CeraVe cream but Aveno lotion)

    That being said, I wanted to ask if you have any recommendation for a body cream vs. a body lotion (or both) and maybe something that address the breakout and aging? I feel like aging might contribute to this.

    I thank you so much and again, please, please keep up the awesome work you are doing. I am always recommending your reviews to my friends and family (and occasionally to random acquaintances who compliment my skin:-)

    • denise

      Hi Monika

      Thanks so much for your lovely message, it means a lot to me to hear your feedback.

      So, firstly, the only cosmetic cream product that I have found to be able to calm eczema (not heal it but calm it and help stop itching), is the Egyptian Magic balm. It’s very dense and rich so I wouldn’t use it on the face unless your skin is so dry it soaks it in. It doesn’t absorb as well as the CeraVe moisturising cream either, leaving an oily layer for quite a long time, so if you get it, I would recommend you only apply it as a spot treatment for eczema. (It’s also good for cracked heels and dry elbows.)

      For the body, I actually use natural bar soaps that have no added chemicals or fillers. (I love them so much, I now make my own cold processed soap. It’s much cheaper and you can customise the oils you want for your skin type). I find the high concentration of natural oils not only effectively cleanse my skin but also keep it moisturised to a point where I actually don’t NEED to moisturise after a shower. I dry off and my skin feels soft and smooth. So, I’m relying on the cleansing to do most of the work at keeping my body skin supple, not my cream/lotion. The CeraVe moisturising lotion is a good lightweight body moisturiser that absorbs fast too if you want something less dense. I also really like the PKY Moisture Lotion for the same reason. I don’t experiment a lot with body creams as many are fragranced which is something I try to avoid.

      Hope this helps! Thanks again for your support.

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