7 Highly Effective Zero Waste Face Moisturizers That Provide Hydration for All Skin Types

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Thank your skin for all you put it through with these insanely hydrating zero waste face moisturizers. Good for the planet, good for your skin, and no plastic at all. 

Your face tells the world your story. Laugh lines, wrinkles, freckles, and acne scars are the details of your story. It helps you express yourself and also helps you hide yourself. And your face goes through a lot! 

What your skin needs can vary based on the season, the weather, stress levels, the water, the time of day, even your period cycle — if you have one of those. And with all these factors your skin doesn’t always get the love it deserves.

The loudest companies will tell you to use (their) most potent ingredients which strip all the natural oils off your face, then sell you another product to help you relieve the dry skin that weirdly showed up around the same time you started using their product. 

It’s exhausting!

Taking care of your skin doesn’t have to be difficult. It can take some trial and error learning what your skin needs and when it needs it but once you find it …. *chefs kiss* it’ll be worth it.

Read on to learn about taking care of your face with our favorite zero waste face moisturizers.

Why Do I Need A Face Moisturizer 

The purpose of a face moisturizer is to rehydrate the skin and put moisture back into it. Your skin naturally holds water, but not hydrating enough, using harsh products, and other things can make your skin look and feel dryer and lose elasticity. 

Dehydrated skin leads to flaking, sagging skin, wrinkles, and premature aging. 

Using a face moisturizer shields your skin by acting as a protective barrier. It also keeps water molecules from escaping from the skin's surface which keeps your skin hydrated.

When Should I Apply My Zero Waste Face Moisturizer

So here’s the tricky part — all of those beauty products you’re being told you absolutely need to buy and those very expensive serums you purchased need to be applied in a certain order, otherwise it can reduce the effectiveness. 

The process varies a bit from morning to night but after cleansing, you want to apply your products lightest to heaviest

Wash your face morning AND night to make sure you’re starting with a fresh palette. This gives the products the best chance of adsorbing into your skin. If you wear makeup use a makeup remover. If you have extremely dry skin and washing 2X per day exacerbates your dryness, at least splash some water or find a hydrating cleanser. 

This article from Byrdie goes more in-depth on the proper skincare order.

Illustration by Grace Kim from Byrdie Skincare Routine Order

Do I Really Need A Zero Waste Face Moisturizer

Ya do.

It doesn’t matter your gender, race, age, everyone should be using a face moisturizer. There are so many wonderful brands that are using ingredients and packaging that are friendly on the planet and your skin that not only should everyone be using a moisturizer but everyone could be using a zero waste face moisturizer

Adding a zero waste face moisturizer full of natural, hydrating ingredients is one thing your skin will thank you for. Especially 20 years down the road.  


The type of skin you have will help determine what kind of moisturizer you should be using. 

  • Those with dry skin should look out for a heavier moisturizer that’s more oil-based.
  • People with sensitive skin will benefit from a moisturizer that uses calming ingredients such as aloe vera, oatmeal, hyaluronic acid, and beeswax if you can.
  • Those with oily, normal, and combo skin should look for water-based, light formulas.

Our Favorite Zero Waste Face Moisturizers

Plaine Products — Zero Waste Face Moisturizer

Metal reusable 2oz container of face moisturizer from plain products with metal screw top lid.

Plaine Products has created a line of refillable products that contribute nothing to the landfill. This zero waste face moisturizer is vegan, cruelty-free, sulfate-free, and palm oil free. This skin-softening moisturizer can also help reduce texture, fine lines and wrinkles. After using, send your empties back to the company to be washed, sanitized, and reused.

UpCircle Beauty — Vegan Face Moisturizer

Open jar of upcircle face moisturizer.

Winner of "Best Moisturizer" in the Natural Health Beauty Awards 2021, this fast-absorbing moisturizer is perfect for day or night daily use. And it’s plastic free! This cream is rich in Vitamin E and made from discarded Argan shells, a natural by-product of the Argan oil industry, plus Aloe Vera, Shea Butter, and Blood Orange. It’s 100% vegan and comes in a glass jar with a metal lid that can be upcycled or recycled.

Yay for Earth — Yay For Earth Lotion

Sensitive Skin Face Lotion from Yay for Earth jar

Sensitive skin people, rejoice! This oil-based moisturizer is perfect for day or night, or both! Made with only 4 ingredients, it’s soothing and calming for sensitive skin and hydrating for all skin types. Olive Oil, Shea Butter, and Beeswax from a local beekeeper, combine with Pomegranate Seed Oil to deliver a moisturizer that provides the ultimate hydration. It comes in a metal travel tin or glass jar with a metal lid that can be upcycled or recycled. 

Ophelie’s Lotion — Ophelie’s Organic Face & Body Lotion

Glass jar of Ophelie's Lotion with metal lid.

Ophelie’s Lotion is made with three fair trade, organic, cruelty-free ingredients of Shea Butter, Olive Oil, Unfiltered Beeswax, and Essential Oils and is suitable for your face or body. While not vegan, the beeswax comes from a local farm practicing sustainable beekeeping. Jars are glass and lids are metal but if you cannot find a way to upcycle the jars, there is a take-back program. 

Fat & the Moon — All Cream

Glass jar of Fat and the Moon All Cream with Metal lid

All Cream is not too heavy, not too light but the perfect blend of moisturizing ingredients that can be used on the face or body. Made with only 6 natural ingredients, a little bit of this cream goes a long way. Ingredients are: Sunflower Oil, Aloe Vera, Shea Butter, Rosewater, Beeswax, Elderberry Extract. All Cream comes in a glass container with a metal lid that can be upcycled or recycled. 

Dewyer Skincare — Frankincense Face Cream

Glass 2oz jar of Dewy-er Face Cream with Frankincense and Safflower

Great for all skin types this anti-aging moisturizer is made with Frankincense oil known for its healing and corrective benefits. Using a dime sized amount 2X a day can help with discoloration, evening out skin tone, reversing signs of aging, and reducing the appearance of wrinkles. Shipped in a glass container that can be upcycled or recycled.

Dew Mighty — Bloom Jelly Serum

Glass 2oz jar of Dewy-er Face Cream with Frankincense and Safflower

Both a serum and a moisturizer this is the ultimate in zero waste products. This solid bar comes in a reusable tin container meant to last a lifetime. To use the bar, rub it on your face for as much coverage as needed. It provides the long lasting moisture of a face moisturizer but all the effectiveness of a serum at the same time! Shipped in veggie coat paper that can be recycled or composted. 

When looking for a zero waste face moisturizer, look for natural ingredients — that are sustainably sourced of course, that contain ingredients beneficial to your skin type. It may take your skin some time to adjust and it may take some time figuring out what your skin needs. Once you find the one, or few, that work for you, your skin will rejoice. Now go forth and moisturize! 

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1 comment

  • Olivia ManuelOct 04, 2022

    I would like to check out your zero waste face moisturizers my face had brown sun patches dark lumpy shadows under eyes So I need some kind of moisturizer. oil based creams no good makes skin more darker need moisturizer to lighten skin not to darken it more .

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