Body Oil vs. Lotion: Which One is Better For YOU?

15 February, 2022 / words by Alicia Lartey

Image by @itsreallynana

Although it may be a little cliche to say, skin is the largest organ on our body. As skincare fanatics, we tend to focus on the skin on our faces, even though the majority of our skin covers the rest of our bodies. The skin on our body also requires care and treatment, but usually, the discussion is overlooked. So, let’s get into body care. The skin on our body is made up of the epidermis, dermis and hypodermis and the key to having the best body skin is through hydration which begins with ensuring you have a healthy skin barrier (epidermis).

The epidermis can be broken down further into 5 sub-layers but the one we will be focusing on is the stratum corneum which is the outermost layer of the skin. As we live our normal lives our skin can become damaged, dry, and dull from things like the environment and over-exfoliation. We can combat skin damage by making sure we keep hydrated and supple skin. As you may be aware, using hydrating serums, moisturisers and oils work wonders to hydrate our face, but the age-old question is how do we transfer this knowledge to our body?


We are all familiar with using lotions, creams, and oils to moisturise our skin and give that effortless healthy glow, but which is the most important? The truth is all of them are equally as important and provide a different function for the skin. Traditionally, lotions refer to a category of products that has a lightweight feel to them, whereas a cream often refers to products with a slightly richer texture. You cannot simply say that a lotion is more suitable for hydration than a cream, as it comes down to the ingredients within each product. Oil is always the last step in a body care routine, and this can be placed in the routine to help condition the skin or lock in all the moisture that has been previously applied (emollients and occlusives respectively).

When looking for great hydrating products for the body it is important to keep an eye out for a family of ingredients called humectants. These ingredients help to lock in hydration by attracting water to the skin’s upper layers. Some of my personal favourite humectants include Glycerin, Hyaluronic Acid, Sodium PCA and Allantoin which can be found in most moisturisers and lotions. I always recommend applying a lotion or body serum to damp skin to ensure the humectants have ample water to attract.


The Body Serum

Shop the serum ↗

One of my favourite products to help hydrate the skin is the Necessaire Fragrance-Free Body Serum which contains glycerin, ceramides [which help to support the skin barrier], niacinamide [great for calming the skin] and aloe vera [soothing and hydrating]. This serum is very handy to have on set as it provides an instant hit of moisture that helps to smooth the skin allowing light to reflect beautifully.


Atoderm Moisturizer

Shop the moisturiser ↗

When it comes to selecting a good moisturizer, I believe the choice is very personal. I tend to favor a moisturizer with a light fragrance to add to the overall decadence of my body care routine, but this is not everyone’s preference, so I like to keep a fragrance-free moisturizer on hand too. The Bioderma Atoderm Moisturiser is an excellent choice for even the most sensitive of skin types, containing glycerin, mineral oil [ideal for skin barrier support], niacinamide, and palmitic acid [a fatty acid which conditions the skin by acting as an emollient].

Sol De Janeiro

Bom Dia Bright Cream

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Alternatively, if you would like to step it up a notch, Sol De Janeiro has a unique offering in the form of their Bom Dia Bright Cream, that not only offers additional moisture but also helps to retexturize the skin with the inclusion of alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) and willow bark extract. I particularly love using this moisturiser on date nights as the light scent enhances my favourite perfume.


The Body Oil

Shop the oil ↗

The final step in my evening body care routine is an oil. I do not use an oil in the mornings and instead, finish my routine with a body sunscreen. My oil of choice would be the Necessaire Fragrance-Free Body Oil as it is easy to apply using the pipette and does not leave an unpleasant residue. The Necessaire Body Oil is filled with conditioning emollients that can fill in the gaps of an impaired skin barrier. The best way to apply any body oil is to warm it up in your hands first and massage it upwards into the skin.




Having a body care routine that is effective for your needs is always important, I urge everyone to patch test their products prior to use and consult a skin health professional if you are unsure. I want everyone to fall in love with their body care routine.


Alicia Lartey


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