best gel moisturizers

10 Cooling Gel Moisturizers to Use In Warmer Weather

Let’s skincare and chill.
By Hana Hong
May 06, 2021

Love moisture but hate moisturizer? It's understandable, especially in humid summer months when greasy creams get added into an extra layer of sweat. If sticky hydration isn't your thing, don't forego the moisturizer altogether. Gel moisturizers will give you that needed boost of moisture without the slick aftermath. Because these formulas are water-based, they feel cooling to the touch and absorb in record time, making them ideal picks for your summer complexion. They're also great if you have oily or acne-prone skin since they're formulated without pore-clogging oils. 

Trying a ton of new formulas can be nerve-wracking, so we're here to help you out. From skin-strengthening probiotic picks to water creams made from water on Jeju Island, try our favorite editor-approved picks below.

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gel-moisturizer-Laneige Water Bank Hydro Gel

1 Laneige Water Bank Hydro Gel

$38, sephora.com

This cooling moisturizer feels like pure bliss applied in the morning. The green mineral water it's blended with contains lesser-known hydrating extracts from kale, watercress, and beet to drench your skin with hard-hitting antioxidants.

gel-moisturizer-Origins GinZing Oil- Free Energy Boosting Gel Moisturizer

2 Origins GinZing Oil- Free Energy Boosting Gel Moisturizer

$19, sephora.com

Wake up your tired complexion with a shot of this ginseng-infused moisturizer. Not only will it give your face the moisture kick it needs (hello glow), it also comes with a side of caffeine to help tighten your skin. 

gel-moisturizer-gel-moisturizer0Glamglow Waterburst Hydrated Glow Moisturizer

3 Marc Jacobs Youthquake Hydra-full Retexturizing Gel Crème Moisturizer

$41, sephora.com

This tub smells just like pineapples, which makes sense, considering that's exactly what it is: a gel loaded with powerful pineapple enzymes and encapsulated sodium hyaluronate to provide instant hydration. The formula feels as smooth as velvet on skin, so you don't have to sacrifice the luxuriousness of a cream just because it's a gel. 

gel-moisturizer-Glamglow Waterburst Hydrated Glow Moisturizer

4 Glamglow Waterburst Hydrated Glow Moisturizer

$52, sephora.com

Packed with no-joke hydrators like hyaluronic acid, plus antioxidants and other goodies, your parched skin is in for a real treat. Fun fact: The water in this water cream is sourced straight from the volcanic paradise of Jeju Island in the South Sea of Korea, which is famous for its crystal blue waters. 

gel-moisturizer-Ole Henriksen Wrinkle Blur Bakuchiol Eye Gel Crème

5 Ole Henriksen Wrinkle Blur Bakuchiol Eye Gel Crème

$49, sephora.com

Aging doesn't take a break, which means your anti-aging routine shouldn't either. This powerhouse eye cream blurs the look of fine lines while visibly firming the thin skin around your eyes over time.

gel-moisturizer-Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel

6 Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel

$26, ulta.com

Hyaluronic acid (can you sense a pattern here?) is once again the star ingredient in this oil-free, non-comedogenic drugstore winner. The cooling formula absorbs quickly like a gel, but has the long-lasting moisturizing power of a cream-an impressive skincare feat, especially at that price.

gel-moisturizer-Biossance Squalane + Probiotic Gel Moisturizer

7 Biossance Squalane + Probiotic Gel Moisturizer

$52, sephora.com

Got redness or irritation? This moisturizer has your back, I mean face. Probiotics help promote a healthy skin barrier while squalane oil mimics natural sebum to coddle dry skin back to health.

gel-moisturizer-Tata Harper Hyaluronic Gel Moisturizer

8 Tata Harper Hyaluronic Gel Moisturizer

$116, amazon.com

Looks like a serum, hydrates like a cream, and feels like nothing, this clean formula boasts 14 sources of hydration and 10 sources of antioxidants. Translation: You only need a pea-sized amount when applying, so while it's pricey, it'll last you a while.

gel-moisturizer-La Mer The Moisturizing Cool Gel Cream

9 La Mer The Moisturizing Cool Gel Cream

$190, sephora.com

If the name tag isn't luxury enough, the cooling-moisturizing sensation it provides definitely is. La Mer's gel formula uses the brand's same loved Miracle Broth, in addition to oil gel capsules, to leave behind a noticeable glow that lasts for hours-no highlighter needed.

gel-moisturizer-Belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb

10 Belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb

$38, sephora.com

A lot of the ingredients in this cream sound like something straight out of Game of Thrones, and will give you the skin of a royal to match. Case in point: lady's mantle, an apothecary herb that minimizes your pores, plus chickweed to reduce inflammation.