The Best Moisturisers Under $40 That Actually Work

Holy grail finds

Whether your approach to skincare is minimalist or maximalist, there’s no product in your regimen as important as a moisturiser.

The humble moisturiser sits on your skin’s mantle for hours each day and often multi-tasks as an SPF, anti-ageing, hydrating and make-up priming product all in one. Moisturisers are formulated to strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier against environmental aggressors like the sun or cold temperatures, which is why they’re so important. It’s like giving your skin a shield before you step outside. Some moisturisers can also provide additional benefits like an SPF, antioxidant protection. 

If you’re looking for the right moisturiser for your skin type, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve tested dozens of products and curated a guide to the best-selling affordable options. In no particular order, here are the best moisturisers under $40 that actually work. 


Nivea Q10 Plus Anti-Wrinkle Day Cream SPF30 ($21.99; at

This anti-ageing day cream is designed to visibly reduce wrinkles and prevent new ones for a more youthful complexion thanks. Formulated with skin-loving ingredients that help increase the natural Q10 and creatine levels in skin to fight wrinkles from within.

One enthusiastic Beauty Crew review crew member wrote: “I love the creamy texture, it brings my skin to life leaving a non-greasy healthy glow. Most importantly, it has UVA protection and SPF 30 which is fantastic as it protects skin from sun damage and helps prevent the start of wrinkles.”


Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturiser ($39; at

This cult-worthing moisturiser is perfect for sensitive skin types thanks to its ultra-nourishing ingredient list.  Infused into the formula is Squalane and Glycerin which work together to replenish skin with hydration by absorbing moisture from the air and improving skins ability to retain it. 

According to a review on Adore Beauty: “Such an easy moisturiser for everyday use, not too heavy. Leaves the skin hydrated and more importantly – it stays hydrated.”

Lano lips

Lanolips Face Base Vitamin E Day Cream ($26; at

Formulated to deeply replenish and restore moisture for a velvety-soft finish and all-day hydration. Perfect to be worn under make-up, it glides on creamy then has a unique grippy feel thanks to their famous lanolin that is combined with vitamin E and soothing oatmeal. “Super creamy and extra moisturising and it does become “grippy” which is perfect for liquid foundation,” one skincare-lover wrote on Mecca’s website.


Olay Total Effects 7 in 1 Day Cream ($32.99; at

Reach for this multi-tasking moisturiser when you’re seeking a moisturiser that fights wrinkles and pigmentation yet still feel lightweight enough to layer under make-up. Plus, it’s enriched with skin-loving ingredients and leaves my skin feeling smooth and hydrated.

I have always been a bit of a beauty snob – I was using a $100-day cream before jumping onto the Olay Total Effects, which just happened to come my way as a gift with purchase. I wasn’t expecting much. More precisely, I didn’t know what to expect as I don’t have a lot of experience with Olay. It turns out that Olay Total Effects has quickly become one of my favourites,” one beauty addict wrote in a review on Beauty Crew.


Weleda Skin Food ($24; at

Victoria Beckham doesn’t shy away from spending a not-so-small fortune on beauty products. Given her penchant for expensive skincare, we believe Beckham all the more when she sings the praises of this cheap-as-chips beauty buy: if it’s up to her exacting standards, it must be something special.

“What I love about it is that it’s not particularly expensive and you can find it anywhere,” she tells Into The Gloss. “The formula is so thick and buttery.”

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