CeraVe Moisturizing Cream vs Lotion – What’s the Difference?

If you are trying to decide between the Cerave Moisturizing Cream vs Lotion, this post is a complete comparison between the two. It looks at the difference in texture, ingredients, price and skin feel, and helps you choose the best one for your skin.

cerave moisturizing cream vs lotion

CeraVe is a skincare brand recommended by dermatologists for dry skin conditions. They are known for their unique formula which contains three essential ceramides that the skin needs to be healthy.

CeraVe is popular among people suffering from eczema (atopic dermatitis), since all CeraVe products help to protect the skin’s barrier, soothe inflammation and retain moisture. They have won more seals of approval from the National Eczema Association than any other skincare brand.

I spent several months testing out both the CeraVe Moisturising Cream and CeraVe Moisturising Lotion to find out the difference between the two. This post contains a detailed breakdown of the difference in ingredients, photographs showing the difference in texture, and my experience on using the products.

This post is a comparison between CeraVe Moisturizing Cream vs Lotion

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream vs Lotion

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my link, at no extra cost to you. Please read full disclosure here.

CeraVe Lotion Vs Cream – Comparison Table

Before we look at each of these products in more detail, the comparison table below shows a brief overview of the two. Both products can be used as either a facial moisturizer or body lotion, and both are suitable for dry and sensitive skin types.

Title
CeraVe Moisturising Cream
CeraVe Moisturising Lotion
Preview
CeraVe Moisturising Cream | 454 g/16 oz | Daily Face, Body & Hand Moisturiser for Instant &...
CeraVe Moisturising Lotion | 236ml/8oz | Daily Face & Body Moisturiser for Dry to Very Dry Skin
Skin Type
Dry to Very Dry
Dry to Very Dry
Texture
Rich formula
Lightweight formula
Oil Free
Unique Ingredients
Cetyl Alcohol, Petrolatum
Cetearyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 20, Polyglyceryl-3, Diisostearate
Prime Benefits
Price
£12.00
£7.12
More Information
Title
CeraVe Moisturising Cream
Preview
CeraVe Moisturising Cream | 454 g/16 oz | Daily Face, Body & Hand Moisturiser for Instant &...
Skin Type
Dry to Very Dry
Texture
Rich formula
Oil Free
Unique Ingredients
Cetyl Alcohol, Petrolatum
Prime Benefits
Price
£12.00
More Information
Title
CeraVe Moisturising Lotion
Preview
CeraVe Moisturising Lotion | 236ml/8oz | Daily Face & Body Moisturiser for Dry to Very Dry Skin
Skin Type
Dry to Very Dry
Texture
Lightweight formula
Oil Free
Unique Ingredients
Cetearyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 20, Polyglyceryl-3, Diisostearate
Prime Benefits
Price
£7.12
More Information

Last update on 2021-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream vs LotionSimilarities

Both Cerave Moisturizer and Lotion help to provide the skin with 24 hour hydration whilst strengthening the protective skin barrier. They are both suitable for dry and eczema prone skin and being hypoallergenic and fragrance free, they won’t cause allergic reactions.

When it comes to ingredients both products contain ceramides and hyaluronic acid which help to retain moisture and and deeply hydrate the skin.

The products can be used either as a face or body moisturizer, and both are suitable to use as a night cream. They also both absorb quickly into the skin and don’t leave any greasy residue.


CeraVe Moisturizing Cream vs LotionDifferences

After testing both products thoroughly I found there were five main differences between the two.

1. CeraVe Cream has a Richer Formula

The CeraVe Moisturizing Cream has a much richer consistency compared to the CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion. This thicker texture is obtained from a slight difference in formula.

We can see from a closer look at the ingredients that the cream contains cetyl alcohol which is a type of fatty alcohol that’s normally used as a thickening agent in skin creams.

By comparison the lotion contains cetearyl alcohol instead. Cetearyl alcohol is a mixture of fatty acids and is used to give skin lotions more texture. The CeraVe lotion also contains polysorbate-20 and polyclyceryl-3 diisostearate which also effect the consistency of the product.

This very slight difference in ingredients gives the two products different textures, but doesn’t change how they work on the skin. The photograph below shows the difference between the cream and lotion. You can see from the picture of the cream on the left, that it is much thicker than the more watery lotion on the right.

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream vs Lotion

2. CeraVe Lotion is Oil Free

Apart from the difference in texture, another main difference which is important to consider is the lotion is oil free whereas the cream is not. The CeraVe Moisturizing Cream contains petrolatum (also known as petroleum jelly) which is a mineral oil. The CeraVe Moisturising Lotion on the other hand has no oil in the ingredients list.

This may be an important factor to consider if you have acne-prone skin, or rosacea. Skin types that are prone to redness, blemishes or rosacea should opt for oil free products since they are less likely to block the pores and cause breakouts.

Whilst the CeraVe Moisturizing Cream doesn’t leave a greasy film on the skin, the petroleum jelly in the formula may make acne worse. If you are using the product as a body cream on skin that’s not usually prone to acne, this may be fine. It’s something to consider however if you wanted to use the cream on your face.

3. CeraVe Cream is More Protective in Winter

I found the CeraVe Moisturizing Cream to be more protective and hydrating in the winter months compared to the lotion. This may be because of the petroleum jelly in the formula.

Petroleum jelly (petrolatum) is able to prevent moisture loss in the skin by penetrating the top layers of the skin, and filling in the spaces between skin cells. It is also useful for forming a seal over any cracked or broken skin.

Since the CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion is the more lightweight option, it may be better for the hot summer months whereas the cream would be better for the cold winter.

4. CeraVe Lotion is More Convenient and Hygienic

This may be a small point, but since the CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion comes in a pump bottle, I found it slightly more convenient. I like to keep a moisturizer at the side of my bed and near the bathroom so I can grab some moisturiser quickly if my skin is feeling dry.

By coming in a handy pump bottle it was extremely convenient and easy to use. If you are using the product in the bathroom, you also don’t have to find somewhere to balance a lid!

Pump bottles are also more hygienic to use. If you are using creams that come in tubs, like the CeraVe Moisturizing Cream, you have to put your hand into the pot to get the cream. This means there is a possibility that you are introducing bacteria or dirt to the pot every time you take the lid off.

With a pump bottle however, the product is sealed inside the container and you only get out the amount of lotion you will use at one time. It’s a great option for keeping in a bathroom, or a guest room.

5. CeraVe Cream is Slightly More Expensive

If cost is an issue, I found the cream to be slightly more expensive than the lotion, however the cream is better value for money as you get more of it. If you look at the label you will see the cream contains twice the amount of product compared to the lotion.

I bought my products from Boots where the cream cost £12 for 16 oz, and the lotion cost £7.12 for 8 oz.


CeraVe Moisturizer review

CeraVe Moisturising Cream Review

CeraVe cream

I found the CeraVe Moisturizing Cream to be a good moisturizer for extremely dry skin. It strengthens the protective barrier on the skin and reduces fine lines and wrinkles caused by dehydration. It is the best option in my opinion for extremely dry skin, and has the slight edge over the lotion for cracked or chaffed skin.

The cream absorbed quickly and didn’t cause any skin irritation. I think it would be a good addition to any skincare routine for dryness, and makes a great combination with any CeraVe body wash.

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

Sale
CeraVe Moisturising Cream | 454 g/16 oz | Daily Face, Body & Hand Moisturiser for Instant &...
  • ESSENTIAL CERAMIDES: Contains 3 essential ceramides (1, 3, 6-II) to help protect the skin’s...
  • ALL DAY HYDRATION: Formulated with patented MVE Technology to release skin nourishing ingredients...
  • MOISTURE RETAINING INGREDIENTS: Formulated with hyaluronic acid to help retain skin's natural...
  • GENTLE ON SKIN: Fragrance-free and non-comedogenic
  • FAST ABSORBING: Hydrates Face, Body & Hands without leaving skin feeling greasy

Last update on 2021-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Full ingredient list: 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


CeraVe Moisturising Lotion Review

CeraVe Lotion

The CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion contains the same active ingredients as the cream, and works well at moisturizing the skin and enhancing the skin’s natural barrier. Since this product is oil free it would work well not only on dry skin, but also oily skin types, normal skin and combination skin.

You could use this product on your entire body, or as a facial moisturizing lotion. I found this to be a nice lotion that absorbed well and didn’t leave me with itchy skin. If you are looking for lightweight skin care products that provide 24-hour hydration, this is a great option!

CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion
CeraVe Moisturising Lotion | 236ml/8oz | Daily Face & Body Moisturiser for Dry to Very Dry Skin
  • ESSENTIAL CERAMIDES: Contains 3 essential ceramides (1, 3, 6-II) to help protect the skin’s...
  • ALL DAY HYDRATION: Formulated with patented MVE Technology to release skin nourishing ingredients...
  • MOISTURE RETAINING INGREDIENTS: Formulated with hyaluronic acid to help retain skin's natural...
  • GENTLE ON SKIN: Fragrance-free and non-comedogenic
  • FAST ABSORBING: Hydrates without leaving skin feeling greasy and DEVELOPED WITH DERMATOLOGISTS

Last update on 2021-12-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Full ingredient list: Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Phenoxyethanol, Polysorbate 20, Ceteareth-20, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Polyglyceryl-3 Diisostearate, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Potassium Phosphate, Disodium Edta, Dipotassium Phosphate, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Phytosphingosine, Cholesterol, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol, Ceramide EOP.


Final Verdict

The CeraVe Moisturizing Cream is better for:

  • Use in the winter months
  • Cracked or broken skin
  • Skin that needs extra care or moisture

The CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion is better for

  • Use in the summer months
  • Acne prone skin
  • Rosacea
  • Moisturizing hands on the go

FAQs about CeraVe Moisturizing Cream and Lotion

What is the difference between CeraVe moisturizing cream and lotion?

The CeraVe Moisturizing Cream is much thicker than the lotion, which is more watery and easier to spread. The cream also contains petroleum jelly whereas the lotion is completely oil free. This makes the cream a better choice for dry skin, and the lotion the best choice for oily or acne prone skin. The cream is also more expensive than the lotion and comes in a tub. The lotion comes in a pump bottle, making it more convenient and hygienic.

Is it better to use moisturizing cream or lotion?

If you have oily or acne prone skin it’s best to opt for a more lightweight lotion that’s less likely to clog the pores. Some people also prefer to use lotions in the summer when they are more likely to sweat, and creams in the winter when their skin needs more protection.

Can I put CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion on my face?

Yes. The CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion can be used on both the body and face. It is their best moisturiser for all skin types since it hydrates dry skin whilst being non comedogenic and oil free.

What's the difference between a lotion and a cream?

Very generally lotions have much lighter formulas than creams which are heavier and thicker. Lotions usually have more water in them and lighter ingredients like aloe vera. Creams on the other hand contain more oils such as shea butter or petroleum jelly.

Is Cerave Moisturizing Lotion oil free?

Yes. CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion is completely oil free and non-comedogenic.

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This Post was all About the Cerave Moisturizing Cream vs Lotion

Thank you for reading my post about the CeraVe Moisturizing Cream vs Lotion. If you are looking for the best moisturizer for dry skin, both of these products are excellent. They help to retain your skin’s natural oils and strengthen the skin barrier. If you have tried either of these products please leave me a comment below and let me know your thoughts.

Olivia Herlihy RN

Olivia is a hair and skincare enthusiast with over 10 years experience working in healthcare and over 5 years as a Registered Nurse. She gained an online following after creating a natural haircare routine which completely transformed her hair. Olivia has since written an eBook on Ayurvedic hair care to help others use the same formula to improve their own hair.

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