Best moisturizing body wash

Cleansers

Moisturizing body wash can come in a variety of scents, unscented or fragrance-free.

BestReviews is reader-supported and may earn an affiliate commission. Details.

Which moisturizing body washes are best?

Combating dry skin in the winter months is no small feat — and hunting for the perfect products to maintain glowy, moisturized skin can be even harder. While lotions and serums are great for reviving dry skin, picking the right hydrating body wash is an easy way to incorporate daily moisturizing into your skin care routine.

If you’re looking for a daily moisturizing body wash at a reasonable price, CeraVe Body Wash for Dry Skin is the best choice. Its gentle foaming formula is perfect for dry, sensitive skin as it’s filled with restorative ceramides and hydrating hyaluronic acid. 

What to know before you buy a moisturizing body wash 

Cost

Products made from natural, hydrating ingredients can be a little pricier. However, there are still plenty of affordable, drug-store brand moisturizing body washes that will adequately hydrate your skin — all it takes is spending the extra few dollars. 

Skin type 

Whether you have dry skin already or you’re hoping to be proactive and keep dry skin at bay, knowing what skin type you have is important when choosing the best body wash for you. 

  • Dry skin: If you suffer from dry skin, avoid harsh detergents on your hunt for a moisturizing body wash. Ingredients like sodium lauroyl isethionate and shea butter will leave your skin feeling nourished and moisturized. 
  • Sensitive skin: For those who have sensitive skin, a body wash that’s free of artificial fragrances and dyes will help reduce irritation. A product with nutrient-rich ingredients such as sunflower seed oil, which contains vitamin E, can be calming for irritable skin.  
  • Acne-prone skin: Body washes with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide are helpful if you struggle with body acne. Ingredients like these help cleanse pores and neutralize harmful bacteria without stripping the skin of moisture. 

Scent

From earthy to fruity scents and everything in between, it’s most important to find a scent you love and that doesn’t contain added irritants. Fragrance-free body washes are a good choice for those who have ultra-dry or sensitive skin, as they don’t contain added artificial ingredients. Fragrance-free body wash should not be confused with unscented body wash, which can still carry a faint fragrance. 

What to look for in a quality moisturizing body wash 

Ingredients 

Just like food products, it’s important to know exactly what’s in your skin care products and always read the label. Opting for a body wash with more naturally derived ingredients, such as vitamins and minerals, will leave your skin feeling soft and supple rather than sticky with residue. Look out for creamy formulas, as they won’t leave your skin feeling stripped or tight. 

Certifications 

Choosing a body wash that doesn’t include harmful detergents and chemicals is the easiest way to ensure it’ll be enriching rather than detrimental to your skin. The moisturizing body wash you choose should be within U.S. cosmetics regulations, such as the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act, the Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015 and the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. 

Earth-friendly 

Avoiding body wash that contains parabens and microbeads helps reduce those toxins from ending up in our waters. Additionally, shop for cruelty-free body washes that are Environmental Working Group verified, a non-profit with the goal of providing information on what’s safe for you and the environment. This will ensure the product you choose won’t include ingredients that could harm you or the environment. 

How much you can expect to spend on a moisturizing body wash

Low-end body washes can be as cheap as $2, although a quality moisturizing body wash is most likely going to cost $7-$20.  

Moisturizing body wash FAQ

When should I use moisturizing body wash? 

A. It’s safe to use a moisturizing body wash on a daily basis. Whether you shower two times a day or a couple of times a week, you can always lather up with your moisturizing body wash. 

Is body wash better than bar soap? 

A. This question is totally up to personal preference. Some people gravitate toward body wash because bar soap has a history of leaving residue and being a bit harsher on the skin. However, a well-made bar of soap with natural ingredients can certainly be pleasant to use, and without the packaging, it’s an eco-friendly choice. Body wash can be gentler on the skin and is less messy because it’s typically packaged in a bottle. 

Can I wash my hair with body wash?

A. Generally, it’s recommended to only wash your hair with shampoo, as it’s created with different ingredients and specific pH levels. However, when you flip the question, it’s safe to use shampoo as a body wash if you find you’ve run out of body wash. This is because shampoo will most likely either contain sodium laureth sulfate or sodium lauryl sulfate, both of which are deemed safe by the Environmental Working Group.  

What are the best moisturizing body washes to buy?   

Top moisturizing body wash 

CeraVe Body Wash for Dry Skin

CeraVe Body Wash for Dry Skin

What you need to know: This liquid, foaming action body wash can be used on the whole body, and it cleanses and moisturizes without stripping your skin’s natural protective barrier. This product is accepted by the National Eczema Association.   

What you’ll love: This body wash doesn’t include anything that may inflame irritable skin. The formula is free of parabens, soaps, sulfates and fragrance. The creamy, foaming formula includes hyaluronic acid, which is a naturally occurring polysaccharide found in the body, as well as three essential ceramides to restore and maintain a protective barrier on the skin.  

What you should consider: This product is recommended for normal to dry skin.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Top moisturizing body wash for the money

OGX Hydrating Moisture + Shea Soft & Smooth Body Wash

OGX Hydrating Moisture + Shea Soft & Smooth Body Wash 

What you need to know: This cruelty-free body wash is made specifically for those with dry skin and is made without sulfates.  

What you’ll love: Inspired by nature, this hydrating body wash is made with a rich blend of shea butter, agave and coconut oil. The formula protects and cleanses dry skin, and it leaves your skin feeling soft and smelling lovely. 

What you should consider:  The bottle is smaller than some other body washes, and it comes in a coconut scent. 

Where to buy: Sold at Amazon

Worth checking out 

The Seaweed Bath Co. Body Wash

The Seaweed Bath Co. Body Wash

What you need to know: This is a 12-fluid ounce bottle of body wash, and the product is vegan and cruelty-free. 

What you’ll love: Hand-harvested bladderwrack seaweed, which contains over 65 vitamins and minerals, is a main ingredient. Neem oil is included to protect and moisturize the skin. Other cleansing and purifying ingredients include Hawaiian kukui oil, coconut oil and aloe vera.  

What you should consider: All skin types benefit from this unscented product. 

Where to buy: Sold at Amazon

 

Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.

Audrey Nakagawa writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.

Most Popular