Weightless Oil-Free Moisturizer
Shani Darden’s Weightless Oil-Free Moisturizer is a simple, effective option for normal, combination, and oily skin.
Like most Shani Darden skin care products, this comes in an opaque plastic bottle with a pump dispenser. The packaging means that what’s inside is safe from exposure to air, which protects its antioxidant ingredients and keeps it hygienic (especially important considering this is a water-based formula).
The moisturizer is a lightweight lotion that smooths across skin with ease, absorbing quickly to a soft matte finish. Skin feels lightly hydrated and looks smoother, making this a good option for those with normal, combination, or oily skin that requires additional moisture.
The ingredient list includes silicones that provide hydration, along with skin-plumping sodium hyaluronate, and antioxidant red algae extract that helps skin retain moisture. It’s a solid lineup that avoids fragrance, which we always like to see.
In fact, the only drawback is that we wish this were backed up with some additional skin-beneficial ingredients, among them more vitamins, antioxidants, and skin-replenishing ingredients. Still, this has enough going for it and is well matched to its intended skin types.
- Lightweight lotion is suitable for normal, combination, and oily skin.
- Contains proven light hydrators and antioxidant ingredients.
- Packaged to protect its light- and air-sensitive ingredients.
- Fragrance free.
- Formula is not as robust as many of today’s best moisturizers.
I see so many clients with congestion and clogged pores due to using the wrong moisturizer. This oil-free, fast-absorbing moisturizer provides weightless hydration without clogging pores or causing breakouts. It provides a smooth, shine-free finish and keeps skin looking fresh, hydrated, and balanced.
Shani Darden Skin Care is the namesake brand of Shani Darden, an LA-based aesthetician to the stars who got her start working for one of Hollywood’s top dermatologists. As the story goes, Darden struggled with her skin during her teen years and says working with clients with severe skin issues – particularly acne - inspired her to create a line with those concerns in mind.
Starting with the brand’s flagship product, Retinol Reform, created in 2013, the Shani Darden line has expanded to include a cleanser, toner, moisturizer, and exfoliant - all catered to those with combination, oily, or acne-prone skin. As a result, the line features lightweight formulas with a focus on improving skin texture.
For the most part, the small lineup of products is good; we’re impressed with the packaging, which across the board features opaque, pump-style containers that protect beneficial ingredients from light and air. The two products featuring alpha hydroxy acids are formulated at optimal pH levels for exfoliation to occur and contain some good supporting ingredients to further improve skin health.
The drawbacks for this line are relatively minor, though still worth noting; fragrance is included in one product, and the cleanser contains a surfactant known to be drying to skin. Still, overall, while the price tag of these products attests to its Hollywood origins, this line is a solid option for those looking for promising options for combination to oily skin.
Check out our individual product reviews for more details, and visit shanidarden.com for more information on the brand.
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The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.