How To Apply Moisturizer On Face: The Complete Guide For Men

Updated Date: by Reet Patel

As Dr. Joyce Imahiyerobo-Ip points out, “Most people are not aware of the importance of skin hydration”. (2019), which has serious consequences.

  • The weak outer layer of skin, resulting in premature aging
  • Visible signs of aging
  • Dull skin complexion
  • Skin suffers from acne
  • Skin turns red
  • Itching & Scratching becomes frequent

Humid temperature, cool weather, and sun-exposed skin are a few of the factors contributing to moisture loss and skin dryness.  The factors draw out water from the outer layer (stratum corneum) of your skin.  If you are looking for ways to improve your skin, you must know how to apply moisturizer on face.

Now this may raise a few questions:

  • How to use face moisturizer?
  • What kind of moisturizer should I use?
  • How often should I moisturize my face?
  • How much time should I spend applying moisturizer?
  • How long does it take before reapplying?
  • How much moisture should I apply at a time?

These are all questions that you might ask yourself during the moisturizing routine. Learning how to propperly apply moisturizer will not only make your skin look better but also help reduce wrinkles and age spots.

So keep reading the article and start pampering your skin.

Choose Moisturizer Matching Your Skin Type

how to use face moisturizer

This is the section wherein you will get to know which hydrating ingredients best suit your skin.

Moisturizer for Men with Oily Skin

Is your face often covered in shiny spots, or do you detect a greasy feel upon touching your face? These are tell-tale signs of excess natural oil production by your skin. This condition can increase your chances of encountering clogged pores and subsequent acne breakouts.

To shield your skin, use an oil-free, non-comedogenic & gentle face moisturizer. Look out for products with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide for managing acne. Remember, avoid ingredients like cocoa butter and coconut oil.

Moisturizer for Men with Sensitive Skin

Individuals who find their skin easily turns red, itchy, or irritated fall into the category of sensitive skin or delicate skin, requiring a specific care regimen. Firstly, everyone must avoid harsh chemicals. Additionally, performing a spot test becomes crucial before applying any new skin product. Aim for items labelled as without fragrance and hypoallergenic.

Moisturizer for Men with Dry Skin

Dry skin in men often leads to unpleasant itchiness and flaking. This irritation emerges when the skin’s protective barrier becomes coarse and tender. Under such conditions, it’s pivotal to opt for a thick, oil-based moisturizer that draws hydration into the skin. Look for components like lactic acid, ceramides, or urea.

For those suffering from extremely dry skin, elements like hyaluronic acid or glycerin become indispensable as they help in sealing moisture, ensuring the skin remains adequately hydrated.

Moisturizer for Men with Acne-prone Skin

For men dealing with acne-prone skin, it’s critical to avoid components notorious for blocking pores as these might lead to acne eruptions. Such components include petrolatum and coconut oil. Opt instead for hydration enriched with glycerin, hyaluronic acid, and salicylic acid.

Moisturizer for Men with Normal Skin

Men blessed with a normal skin type have the advantage, as their skin doesn’t excessively oil up nor dry out. Preserving the natural moisture balance becomes much simpler. A gentle, water-based facial moisturizer is all that’s needed to keep hydration levels optimal and the skin feeling fresh.

Moisturizer for Men with Combination Skin

Having a combined skin, which is a mixture of greasy and dry types, necessitates a balanced approach to addressing the concerns of both. You should seek hydration with ingredients like aloe and hyaluronic acid. Nevertheless, it is recommended to stay away from components like alpha-hydroxy-acids and retinoids.

Having explored suitable moisturizers to combat dryness, the next step involves learning the correct way to apply them.

How to Apply Moisturizer On Face? ( 9 Easy Steps)

how to apply moisturizer

The following are the easy steps to follow for How to Apply Moisturizer:

Patch Test Before Using Facial Moisturizers

One of the most important things to remember before using a facial moisturizer is to perform a patch test. This means applying a small amount of moisturizer to an inconspicuous area, such as the inside of your arm, and waiting 24 hours for a reaction. If you experience any redness, swelling, or irritation, discontinue use and consult a dermatologist.

Pick One Matching Your Skin Type

It is also a good idea to know the skin type before buying any moisturizer so that it suits your skin and can provide you with maximum benefits. We hope you might have got an idea from the previous section on which one best suits your skin.  How well an individual absorbs moisture depends on their unique body chemistry, which varies from person to person.

Wash Your Face with Lukewarm Water

Washing your face with lukewarm water and using a gentle face cleanser is the best way to achieve clean skin. And moisturizing immediately after washing will help in retaining the natural moisture of the skin. It also helps in getting rid of dead skin cells and dust that can clog pores.

Apply on Damp Skin

It is advisable to use a moisturizer on slightly damp skin. When you get out of the shower, pat yourself dry and then apply the moisturizer. This will help it to penetrate deep into your skin.

Use A Quarter Size Amount Per Application

The best way to use moisturizer is to use a quarter-sized amount per application. Too much can leave your skin feeling oily and weight down, while too little will not provide the hydration that you need. After cleansing and drying your face, rub the moisturizer in using upward circular motions until it’s fully absorbed.

Use Circular Motions with Your Fingertips

The Must-Know Steps Moisture closely resembles the food; if you do not eat, you slowly start deteriorating, similarly, if your skin remains moisture-less, it starts to show aging signs, flaky and dull skin.  Besides, there is a certain way to apply moisturizer, which is again equally important for adequate moisturization.

Apply Eye Creams As Well

If you are using an eye cream, apply it before the moisturizer. Gently dab it around the eyes using your ring finger. Make sure not to tug or pull the skin around the eyes as it is very thin and delicate.  Eye creams usually contain anti-aging ingredients that help reduce wrinkles and fine lines. They also nourish the skin under the eyes.

Use Sunscreen Facial Moisturizer

Sunscreen is an integral part of skin care as it protects the skin from harmful UV-A & B rays that cause sun damage.  Besides, sun protection creams also speed up the aging process.  Therefore, if you remain in the sun for an extended period of time, then it is advisable to use SPF-packed moisturizing lotion.

Apply a Separate Facial Moisturizer During Night-Time

Ideally, you should use a separate facial cream during the nighttime. Night creams are usually heavier and more moisturizing than day creams. They also contain ingredients that help to repair the skin while you sleep. If your moisturizer is too light, it may not be enough to provide your skin with the hydration it needs overnight.

Now that you know how to apply moisturizer on face like a pro, let us also make you familiar with some common mistakes you should avoid while applying moisturizer on your face.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Applying Moisturizer

common mistakes while applying moisturizer

Not every time you get honey when extracting honeycomb, sometimes you might get stung by the honey bee.  It simply means you might have committed any mistake that shouldn’t be adapted into the practice.  Similarly, there are a few mistakes men commit when applying a facial moisturizer, which if not done could deliver fruitful results.

Applying Moisturizer on Unclean Face

If your face is not clean, the moisturizer will not be able to penetrate deep into the skin and provide the desired results.  The layer of face cream will blend with all the impurities settled on the face, which will neither let the moisturizers nourish your skin nor draw out the impurities.  The skin pores will be blocked, which will eventually lead to acne breakouts.

Using Alcohol-Based Face Washes

Most men with oily skin think using an alcohol-based cleanser can remove excess oil and deliver the desired results.  But the truth to be told, it actually does the opposite. Using alcohol-based cleansers removes too much natural oil than required, and the shortage then activates sebaceous glands to produce more.  It results in making your skin greasier than before.

Saying No to Moisturizer During Acne Breakouts

According to a study at the American Academy of Dermatology Association, if you have acne-prone skin, you must use moisturizers made for a particular skin type.  Most men with acne-prone skin apply moisturizer thinking it will not contribute to making the skin greasy or sticky.  

Using Not-So Skin-Friendly Ingredients

Raise your hands if you look at the ingredients label on any of your skincare products. Most of the time you neglect it, which is one of the committed mistakes.  That’s where you are compromising on your skin’s health.  For instance, having artificial fragrances in moisturizers can irritate your sensitive skin.  On the other hand, parabens in moisturizers can cause acne and pimples.

Oily Skin Men Saying No to Moisturizer

Moisturizers are not only made for dry, sensitive, and combination skin but also work amazingly well on oily skin.  And don’t worry, it won’t make your skin greasy or sticky,  instead, delivers a mattified look.  We have seen oily skin men staying away or hesitating to add a regular moisturizer to their grooming routine, which we don’t want you to repeat.

Being Harsh When Applying Moisturizer

Moisturizing is the task of being gentle and calm on the skin.  However, most men slather a thick cream and rub it roughly, which is a wrong practice.  It literally tugs and pulls your skin, resulting in wrinkles and fine lines.  Instead of being harsh on your skin, you can gently apply the cream in a circular motion and then use your ring finger to apply eye cream under your eyes.

Neglecting Neck When Applying Moisturizer

One of the mistakes men commit is considering face cream usage limited to only the face (you are not doing it, right?) and not applying it on their neck.  The below jawline area is equally important when it comes to moisturizing since it could ruin your entire facial appearance.   You will end up having a smooth face and a not-so-good-looking neck.


1. Can You Use Body Lotion On The Face?

This is a common question that people have, and the answer is yes – you can use body lotion on your face. However, it’s not always the best option, as body lotion tends to be thicker and greasier than moisturizers specifically designed for the face. If you’re going to use body lotion on your face, it’s important to make sure you use one that is specifically designed for the face.

2. How Much Moisturizer Should I Use?

The amount of moisturizer you need to use depends on the type of moisturizer you are using. Generally, a pea-sized amount is enough for the entire face. However, if your moisturizer is greasy, then you might need less. If your moisturizer is creamier or richer, then you might need more.

3. What Is The Best Way To Apply Face Moisturizer?

The best way to apply moisturizer is by using your fingertips. This ensures that the skin care product gets properly absorbed and works as intended. Also, avoid applying it all over your face or on certain areas like under-eye circles; instead, focus only on those parts of the skin which need hydration most such as dry areas around the mouth and eyes.

4. When Should I Apply Face Moisturizer?

The best time to put moisturizer on your face is when your skin is damp. If you have dehydrated skin, apply moisturizer while your skin is still wet. This will help seal in the moisture. If you’re using a cream or oil, apply it after toner. If you’re using a lotion or gel, wait five to ten minutes for them to soak into the skin before applying moisturizer.

5. Can I Leave Moisturizer Overnight?

While we are resting, our bodies continue to work hard, making overnight hydration essential for maintaining smooth, healthy skin. Eichten said, “Skin goes into repair mood while we sleep” and, added, “This is the prime time to dose it with Extra Nutrients.”


Moisturizer is an important part of any skincare routine, and it’s crucial to know how to apply it properly in order to reap its benefits. By following the steps listed above, you can ensure that your skin stays healthy and hydrated all day long. Have you tried any of these methods? Let us know in the comments below!

reet patel

Reet Patel

As a college student, I understand the value of a polished appearance. My dedication to a well-groomed beard signifies the importance I place on self-presentation and consistency in my personal and professional life. My commitment to a well-maintained beard reflects my broader attention to detail. Whether in my studies or my appearance, I strive for precision and quality.

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Published Date: Mar 31, 2024

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