1. Expert reviews

Top 7 Best Day Cream of 2021

Katarina Stenskytt

Updated May 13, 2021

Are you looking for the perfect day cream? We tested creams that really moisturise, and as our best in test we’ve chosen Eucerin AtoControl Face Cream – a day cream that moisturises whilst also protecting and soothing the skin.

Top 7 Best Day Cream of 2021

How we did the test

In our tests, day creams were used daily for at least a month by people who are used to, and interested in, day creams and skincare products in general. The products were used according to the instructions on the packaging. The creams were used as part of the tester's morning routine. Our tester first cleaned their face, then applied the day cream shortly before any make-up.

The test was based on the following parameters

  • Use: Does the day cream feel comfortable on the face? Is it absorbed quickly?

  • Scent & packaging: Is the packaging user-friendly and hygienic? Is there a lot of unnecessary packaging? Is the scent irritating?

  • Result: Does the product deliver what it promises? Does the skin get irritated? How does the skin feel before and immediately after the day cream has been used? How does the skin feel after regular use?

The evaluation was based on the total overall experience of the day cream. This was then weighed against the price of the product and a score allocated.

1. Eucerin AtoControl Face Cream – BEST BUDGET DAY CREAM

A day cream for dry and sensitive skin, with lots of moisture

Format: Tube Quantity: 50 ml Skin type: Dry and sensitive Price class: Budget

Eucerin AtoControl Face Care Cream 50ml

Sometimes you find a real gem on the pharmacy shelf. Eucerin is one such brand, whose products deliver almost exclusively good results. And Eucerin AtoControl Face Cream is certainly no exception.

This is a face cream that’s mainly aimed at people with dry and sensitive skin that easily gets irritated. Finding a day cream that feels comfortable on the skin, when you have that sort of skin, can feel difficult. It’s almost an Aha moment when you discover this budget-friendly saviour.

Eucerin-Ato-Control-Face-Cream

This is a face cream that’s designed to suit even users with atopic dermatitis. Atopic dermatitis, or eczema as it’s often called, is a chronic skin disease where the main symptoms are dry and irritated skin that becomes flaky. It’s inflammatory but not contagious. When Eucerin AtoControl Face Cream is applied, it immediately feels soothing on the skin. The cream contains, among other things, Licochalcone A, an antioxidant extracted from Chinese liquorice root with anti-inflammatory properties, as well as ceramides. These work together to strengthen the skin's natural barriers.

The cream is of course fragrance-free and the skin immediately feels moisturised and much smoother than before application. Eucerin AtoControl Face Cream is quickly absorbed and works really well before applying make-up. This is a day cream that will neither hurt your purse nor irritate your sensitive skin – two big thumbs up from our testers.

Soothingmoisturisinggood price

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Beiersdorf Eucerin Auto Control Face Cream

£10.00
Medino Logotype

Eucerin Dry Skin Ato Control Care Face Cream 50ml

£10.49
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Eucerin Atocontrol Face Care Cream 50ml

£10.50

2. Sunday Riley ICE Ceramide Moisturising Cream

The ideal face cream for anyone with dry skin

Format: Jar Quantity: 50 g Skin type: Dry Price class: Premium

Sunday Riley ICE Ceramide Moisturizing Cream 50g

Does your skin long for a real moisturising cream with a scent reminiscent of ice cream? If so, then Sunday Riley ICE Ceramide Moisturising Cream may well be the right moisturiser for you.

This is a rich cream that takes gentle care of itchy and tight skin on your face. If your skin is dry all year round, Sunday Riley ICE Ceramide Moisturising Cream could be your ideal permanent companion. If your skin is only dry during the winter, this is a must-have winter friend.

The cream is solid but still absorbed quickly and it leaves your skin deliciously soft with a mild scent of vanilla. This is also a pretty expensive cream, which makes you grateful that it works as well as it does. A jar lasts a really long time.

Yes, we did say jar. But it’s OK because for once the little tools that come with it, so you don’t have to put your fingers in the jar, are actually really big. Instead of a small, feather-light spoon, you get a spatula with some weight to it. The spatula actually feels a little luxurious.

As the name suggests, Sunday Riley ICE Ceramide Moisturising Cream contains ceramides, which are an effective ingredient in strengthening the skin's natural barriers.

Sunday Riley ICE Ceramide Moisturising Cream is a really pleasant cream for restoring the moisture balance in your skin. It work bests if your skin is in the normal to dry range. If you have oily skin, this isn’t really the cream for you.

Moisturises incredibly wellsmells nice
Expensivejar

3. Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance

Effective moisturising day cream for severely dehydrated skin

Format: Tube Quantity: 50 ml Skin type: Dry to very dry skin Price class: Premium

Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance 100ml

Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance is a face cream for dry to very dry skin. Dermalogica is a brand that always feels safe to use. Their products always maintain the same high quality and never seem to irritate the skin.

Although this cream is aimed at the driest skin, it’s not hard to apply. The cream is absorbed really quickly and your skin will immediately feel less dry. Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance leaves no sticky film on your skin, which makes it easy to immediately follow up with any make-up.

The format is a practical and impact-resistant tube. Dermalogica have a very neutral packaging design overall, and that applies to this day cream too. It’s so neutral that it won’t scare away anyone who dislikes flashy packaging. The scent is as discreet as the packaging, something that people with dry skin will be grateful for.

The only real downside to Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance is the price. As effective as it is, you just can’t avoid thinking your wallet is suffering when you buy it. But if you have dry and sensitive skin that’s also sensitive to perfume, it may be money very well spent.

Mildgives lots of moisturequickly absorbed
Expensive

4. Lancome Génifique Youth Activating Cream

Luxurious day cream that tackles signs of ageing

Format: Jar Quantity: 50 ml Skin type: Anti-ageing Price class: Premium

Lancôme Génifique Night Cream 50ml

Lancome Génifique Youth Activating Cream is a day cream that is primarily aimed at people with early signs of ageing.

This is a smooth and incredibly easily absorbed cream that makes the skin feel great. But what do we mean by great, exactly? Well, soft, calm and not tight from dryness or suffering from any outbreaks.

Lancome Génifique Youth Activating Cream has a very light formula that’s absorbed by the skin in an instant. The scent is mild and not remotely overpowering. There’s actually a fine line between adding a scent to a face cream, and that scent being too much. With this cream they’ve succeeded in creating an elegant but discreet scent, which adds a feeling of luxury without being irritating.

However, although it matches the elegant scent well, the jar isn’t really the most practical thing in terms of format. Admittedly, it comes with a small spatula, but spatulas almost always get lost in the bathroom cabinet. In the end, you just have to use your fingers to get cream out of the jar, which isn’t optimal from a hygiene perspective. It also makes it easy to use too much product, and given the price that’s not something you want to be doing.

But the format and price are the only disadvantages of Lancome Génifique Youth Activating Cream, which is otherwise a pure joy to use. The skin feels healthy, fantastically smooth and has a nice glow.

Great resultmild fragrance
Not great packagingexpensive

5. Björk & Berries Face Forest Extract Rich Cream

Organic, luxurious day cream that feels fresh on the skin

Format: Glass bottle with pump Quantity: 50 ml Skin type: Dry/Normal Price class: Medium

Björk & Berries Forest Extract Rich Cream 50ml

In a luxurious, frosted glass bottle with a pump, this rich but simultaneously light day cream comes from Björk & Berries.

Björk & Berries is a Swedish brand with a distinct organic character. Björk (or birch, in English), which is part of the brand name, is a recurring ingredient in many of their products in various forms. It’s also in Björk & Berries Face Forest Extract Rich Cream.

The cream is fairly thick in consistency. Fortunately, this doesn’t make it difficult to massage into the skin. Instead, it’s absorbed quickly and the result is wonderfully soft skin that feels moisturised and calm.

It’s worth mentioning the packaging a bit more. This is made of frosted glass and feels luxuriously heavy in your hand, while also brightening up any bathroom shelf. But you need to be careful not to drop it onto a tiled bathroom floor.

Absorbed easilymoisturisingfresh scent
Delicate bottle

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6. Lixirskin Universal Emulsion

Multifunctional day cream in stylish and attractive packaging

Format: Tube Quantity: 50 ml Skin type: Dry/Normal Price class: Medium

Lixirskin Universal Emulsion 50ml

Lixirskin says we don’t need different creams for day and night, and from a budget point of view, this statement is kind of appealing. So Lixirskin Universal Emulsion is intended to be used both during the daytime and at night. However, we actually find that a slightly richer cream would be preferable for the night.

Lixirskin Universal Emulsion is an easy-to-apply cream with a subtle scent of rose and ylang ylang, which also moisturises instantly. It provides SPF 10, which feels a bit on the low side, but is better than nothing at all.

This is a perfect product to use if you haven’t the patience for the 10-step Korean beauty routine that's become popular in recent years. Spending half an hour on skincare may be very pleasant, but most of us just don’t have that much time to spare. The kids need their breakfast or to be put to bed, you’ve got a TV series to watch, you’re in a rush to catch the train – you simply don’t always have the energy or time to think about a skincare routine that contains a dozen products.

Lixirskin's philosophy is as stripped down as the design of their packaging – a minimum number of products should give maximum results. So Lixirskin Universal Emulsion shouldn’t only replace a night cream, but also a serum. Of course it’s an individual thing to feel how well this cream does its job and whether you want to replace day cream, night cream and serum with just one product. But we found it worked really well as a combined day cream and serum.

The skin feels moisturised and supple. No itching, no tightness, just soft and happy skin. The hole in the tube should have been a little smaller, because it’s easy to squeeze out too much of the product. But beyond that, Lixirskin Universal Emulsion is a really nice day cream, which also looks great on the bathroom shelf.

Feels smooth on the skinworks well under make-up
Hole in tube a bit big

7. Pixi Rose Ceramide Cream

A cooling day cream with a discreet scent of rose

Format: Tube Quantity: 50 ml Skin type: Dry/Normal Price class: Medium

Pixi Rose Ceramide Cream 50ml

Pixi Rose Ceramide Cream is a day cream, which despite being really rich, still has the consistency of a hybrid between cream and gel. It’s light and cooling on the skin, with a slight scent of rose. Products that smell of rose can sometimes be too strong, but here the scent is actually rather mild with a herbal feel.

The tube is made of aluminium, which makes it easy to squeeze out even the last drops. However, this does mean that once you've finished the cream you need to remember to discard the tube in the metal recycling bin, while the lid is plastic.

Although the cream is relatively rich, the skin still absorbs it relatively quickly. As the name suggests, this is a product that contains ceramides. Ceramides occur completely naturally in the skin and act as its building blocks. As we age, the levels of ceramides in our skin decrease, which means that, as a barrier, the skin becomes weaker. This, in turn, can cause the skin to become dry, amongst other things.

Pixi Rose Ceramide Cream is something in between a cream and a gel, so it's easy to apply and quickly absorbed. However, that also means it doesn’t feel quite as moisturising as several of the other creams in the test. That doesn’t necessarily have to be negative, though. For the summer, or if you simply have skin that isn’t too dry, this makes a really nice alternative.

Attractive tubecooling texture
Could have moisturised better

All about day cream

Day cream is perhaps one of the first skincare products we ever come into contact with. It feels almost instinctive to moisturise your skin after cleansing and before applying make-up. During the cold months, many people would never imagine being without a good day cream. But even summer skin wants moisture. During the warmer months, it may be a good idea to opt for a lighter formula for your skin cream. In winter, when your skin tends to dry out more, it’s often a good idea to take advantage of the heavy artillery and look for richer creams.

Which day cream should I choose?

The primary purpose of a day cream is to protect the skin on the face from external stresses, while also adding moisture. It’s sensible to look out for a face cream that offers sun protection. If your day cream doesn’t contain sunscreen, you should supplement it with a product that protects the skin from the sun's rays. This applies regardless of whether it’s summer or winter.

What type of skin do you have?

To find the right day cream, it’s important to know what your skin type is. If you have dry skin that gets tight, it’s important to invest in a cream that will moisturise your skin. If you have oily skin, then you probably want a cream with less oil and should look instead for a product with a gel-like formula. If you want an anti-wrinkle cream, look for creams with anti-ageing in the name. For men, there are even special men's creams, but most day creams will suit regardless of whether you’re a woman or a man. Most of the differences are simply fragrance and packaging design.

Read the product descriptions

If you shop for a day cream online, make sure you read the product descriptions of the different creams. Then you increase your chance of finding a day cream that really suits you.

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