Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream is still the best-selling moisturizer on the market. It promises to hydrate and plump skin, and from what we’ve seen, it does exactly that. However, it comes at a premium price point that doesn’t work for all budgets. Luckily, we’ve found LOTS of other products that can get you the same benefits.
For our original review, click here
Before we dive in, let’s review what makes Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream so effective.
Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream
Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream is a hydrating moisturizer formulated with glycerin and squalane. The lightweight formula hydrates for 24 hours and works to strengthen the skin barrier for a healthy complexion.
- Glycerin: A humectant that attracts water to the skin, glycerin helps keep skin hydrated.
- Squalane: Kiehl’s uses olived-derived squalane in this moisturizer. Squalane is a non-greasy oil that is similar in structure to the skin’s natural sebum. It’s an effective emollient that can help lock in moisture. It’s lightweight and non-comedogenic, which means it won’t clog your pores.
Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream Dupes
When you want an effective moisturizer but don’t want to spend the money on Kiehl’s, consider one of these five budget-friendly dupes.
1. e.l.f. Holy Hydration Face Cream
e.l.f Holy Hydration Face Cream is e.l.f.’s best-selling moisturizing face cream that is formulated with glycerin and squalane, making it an excellent Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream dupe. Here are some of its many benefits:
- Brightens and evens out skin tone: This cream contains niacinamide, an ingredient that helps to improve the skin’s radiance and even out its tone.
- Instantly absorbs into skin: This cream is lightweight and non-greasy, so it absorbs quickly into the skin without leaving a greasy residue.
- Fragrance-free formula great for sensitive skin: This cream is fragrance-free, making it a good choice for people with sensitive skin.
- For all skin types: normal, combination, dry, oily, and sensitive: This cream is designed to be suitable for all skin types, including oily and sensitive skin.
Some readers do find that this product can pill under makeup. If the you are seeing small balls of the product forming on your skin, this moisturizer probably isn’t compatible with the makeup that you are wearing. You can always try using a different moisturizer or a different type of makeup!
2. The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA
The Ordinary continues to grow in popularity in the skincare community. They have effective products with simple ingredient lists, and they are very budget-friendly. One of their bestsellers is the Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA, and it is a great dupe for the Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream. Here are some of the key features:
- Replenishes lost moisture. This moisturizer contains a blend of amino acids, fatty acids, triglycerides, urea, ceramides, phospholipids, glycerin, saccharides, sodium PCA, and hyaluronic acid, which are all naturally occurring substances in the skin. These ingredients help to draw moisture into the skin and keep it hydrated.
- Improves skin barrier function. The skin barrier is a layer of skin cells that helps to protect the skin from environmental damage. The Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA helps to improve the skin barrier function by providing moisture and nutrients to the skin.
- Reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant that can draw moisture into the skin, helping to plump it up and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
- Is non-greasy and non-comedogenic. This moisturizer is lightweight and non-greasy, so it won’t clog pores. It is also suitable for all skin types, including oily and acne-prone skin.
- Is affordable and accessible. The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA is a very affordable moisturizer that is available at most drugstores and online retailers.
One of the main critiques of this moisturizer is that it takes a while to absorb into the skin. For this reason, it may be inconvenient to wear under makeup.
3. Paula’s Choice Moisture Boost Hydrating Treatment Cream
Paula’s Choice Moisture Boost Hydrating Treatment Cream is formulated for dry and very dry skin types. This Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream dupe contains squalane, just like Kiehl’s. It is fragrance free and safe for sensitive skin. It is recommended as the final step of your nighttime skin care routine. Here are some of the benefits:
- Replenishes and restores lost moisture. This cream contains hyaluronic acid, a humectant that draws moisture into the skin, and niacinamide, an ingredient that helps to improve the skin’s barrier function.
- Leaves skin feeling smooth and comfortable. The cream is non-greasy and non-comedogenic, so it won’t clog pores. It also contains plant oils and emollients that help to soften and soothe the skin.
- Protects the skin from environmental damage. The cream contains antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E, that help to protect the skin from free radicals, which can damage the skin and contribute to aging.
- Is suitable for dry and very dry skin. The cream is rich and moisturizing, making it a good choice for people with dry or very dry skin.
Because this cream is designed for dry skin, but it can be too heavy for people with oily or combination skin. If you find that this cream makes your skin feel greasy or clogged, you may want to try a different moisturizer that is more lightweight.
4. The Inkey List Peptide Cream
The Inkey List Peptide Cream is a lightweight moisturizer that is formulated with two peptides:
- Royal Epigen: This peptide is inspired by epigenetic science, which is the study of how genes are turned on and off. Royal Epigen helps to improve the skin’s natural collagen production and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
- Supporting hexapeptide: This peptide helps to hydrate the skin and strengthen its barrier function.
The Inkey List Peptide Cream also contains other ingredients that are beneficial for the skin, such as:
- Hyaluronic acid: Hyaluronic acid is a humectant that draws moisture into the skin, helping to keep it hydrated and plump.
- Shea butter: Shea butter is a natural emollient that helps to soften and soothe the skin.
- Squalane: Squalane is a natural oil that helps to hydrate and protect the skin.
This Kiehl’s dupe has a silky texture that is quickly absorbed by the skin and leaves it feeling hydrated and smooth. It can be used morning and night and is suitable for sensitive, normal, combination, and dry skin types. It is ideal for aging skin and wrinkles. It’s cruelty-free and vegan.
This cream is suitable for all skin types, but it is very lightweight so it may not work if you have dry skin. It also may take some time to see results and to determine if the two peptides are working for you.
5. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel is a good moisturizer for people with all skin types, especially oily or combination skin. It is lightweight, non-greasy, and non-comedogenic, and it absorbs quickly into the skin. It is also fragrance-free, making it a good choice for people with sensitive skin. The benefits include:
- Hydration: This gel-cream is formulated with hyaluronic acid, which is a humectant that draws moisture into the skin. This helps to keep the skin hydrated and plump.
- Lightweight: This gel-cream is lightweight and non-greasy, making it a good choice for people with oily or combination skin.
- Non-comedogenic: This gel-cream is non-comedogenic, which means it will not clog pores. This makes it a good choice for people with acne-prone skin.
- Absorbs quickly: This gel-cream absorbs quickly into the skin, leaving no greasy residue.
- Fragrance-free: This gel-cream is fragrance-free, making it a good choice for people with sensitive skin.
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel contains some ingredients that some people are allergic to, such as fragrance and dimethicone. If you think you might be allergic, you should patch test this gel on a small area of your skin before using it on your face.
Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream Dupes: Final Thoughts
Is Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream worth it?
Everyone’s skin is different, and what works for one person may not work for another. But if you’re looking to save some money or want to try an alternative to Kiehl’s, there are plenty of great Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream dupes on the market that can give you similar results.
So why spend so much money on a moisturizer when you can get the same results for less?
The Kiehl’s dupes listed above will give your skin moisture and hydration just like Kiehl’s, but at a fraction of the price.