Body Oil vs Lotion

Jenna Jolls

Skin is considered to be the largest organ in our body. That's why we have to keep it as healthy and well-nourished as we can. By providing it with enough moisture and hydration, we can prevent dry skin from occurring. According to, dry skin happens due to various factors like age, weather, and even medical history. Oftentimes dry skin is not as serious but in some cases, it becomes severe resulting in some serious complications.

The Importance of Choosing the Appropriate Moisturizing Product

If you want to avoid having dry skin, there are a lot of products that you can use to moisturize your skin. According to a study from the National Institute of Health, moisturizers play an important role in maintaining the skin's optimal health. Aside from providing hydration, moisturizers may also feature anti-inflammatory, anti-pruritic, and wound healing properties.

In this article, we'll explore body oil vs lotion, in terms of which is more effective as a skin moisturizer and how they differ from one another. While they both have the same purpose (to moisturize your skin.) You are likely familiar with body lotion or body cream since it is what most people primarily use as a skin moisturizer. But nowadays, body oils have also become significantly popular as more and more people are slowly switching to them as their go-to moisturizer. But which of those two is more effective in terms of providing moisture and hydration to your skin?

This article may help you decide which one to purchase and use. However, it is also important to understand that not all skin types are the same. What works for other people might not work for your skincare routine. That's why when choosing between body oil vs lotion, you should examine not only the cost and benefits but the ingredients as well.

Using Body Oil vs Lotion: What are the Benefits

Aside from the moisture and hydration that body oils vs lotion can provide, there are also other benefits that you can get from using it.

Benefits of Using Body Oil

  1. Absorbed by the skin quickly One of the major benefits of using body oil is that your skin can easily and quickly absorb it. It penetrates the skin's layers, thus, providing deep hydration without clogging the pores or leaving oil residues. The best time to apply body oil is after you take a bath or shower when your skin is still a little damp. It is also better if you exfoliate or remove other products from your skin like lotions or perfumes before applying body oil.
  2. Retains and seals skin moisture - By applying body oil, you are locking and sealing the moisture in your skin. Body oils, unlike lotion, don’t typically contain any water-based ingredients. Instead, it resembles the natural oil or lipids that our skin produces. Similar to lipids, the body oil, once applied, will help trap moisture keeping the skin hydrated throughout the day. Aside from that, it can also smoothen the skin by filling the gaps in our skin cells that are often caused by dryness. Most people with oily skin usually skip moisturizers because they think that they will increase their skin's oil production. However, body oils are encouraged especially for those with an oily skin type. Skin dryness and dehydration are usually the major cause of oily skin, so a facial oil may be just what you need if you struggle with acne. By providing enough oil to your skin, it will no longer produce an excessive amount of natural oils, preventing acne and breakouts from happening.
  3. Doesn’t feel greasy - For years, one of the most common misconceptions about oil-based products is that it is uncomfortable because it feels greasy. This is probably because the body oils that they are using are made from mineral oil. This kind of oil is commonly found in a lot of skincare products. Mineral oil comes from petroleum and unlike other plant-based oils, its molecular size is bigger. Thus, human skin cannot easily absorb it. Conversely, body oils, especially those with organic, natural ingredients, are absorbed quickly providing our skin excellent hydration. Just as long as you choose the right product with the right ingredient, you won't have to worry about that greasy feeling.  Speaking of ingredients, that leads us to the next point;
  4. Formulated to suit different skin conditions - The great thing about body oil is that its formula and ingredients may depend on your skin's needs. Each of the ingredients included in the oil blend has specific functions. For instance, you want a product that will suit your oily skin. In that case, choose one that contains argan oil or jojoba oil because they can balance our skin's natural sebum production. If you are suffering from skin inflammation or sunburns, body oils are also a great solution. A recent study proved that organic and plant-based oils can help relieve skin inflammation and repair the skin barrier. So if you want something that doesn't only moisturize but helps in repairing the skin's surface as well, consider giving body oils a try.
  5. Very economical - When applying body oil, a little amount goes a long way, and it will be enough to cover all your skin. Unlike body lotion, oil also has longer shelf lives. Hence, it will surely last you a long time without worrying about molds and bacteria growing.  You won't have to purchase again and again so you can save some money by switching to oils as your body moisturizer.

Benefits of Using Body Lotion

  1. Provides great skin rehydration- Every morning our skin is more prone to dryness because it loses its moisture and water content during nighttime. The best thing that you can do to restore and replace the humidity of the skin is by applying body lotion. Sometimes, even if you already applied moisturizers, your skin may still get chappy or dry due to climate, wind, and other factors. In some cases, people with sensitive skin tend to experience irritation and skin dryness regardless of the climate or weather as well. If you’re one of those who struggle with that skin issue, a high-quality body lotion is what you will need. Not only does it help in rehydrating your skin, but it also adds moisture making your skin appear suppler.
  2. More convenient to applyYou can apply lotions anytime and anywhere. You don’t need to put on any other moisturizers or dampen the skin before applying a lotion. Whenever you feel that your skin is already dry, you can put on lotion. Thus, it is very portable, and a convenient choice for everyone.
  3. Absorbed by the skin quickly - Similar to body oils, our skin can also absorb lotions quite easily. Generally, body lotions are formulated with oil and water. Since it is partly water-based and it has a lower viscosity, our skin can easily absorb it without the sticky and greasy feeling that some oils have. Lotions also contain absorption enhancer ingredients that enable them to penetrate the deeper layers of our skin.
  4. Helps in skin regeneration - Skin cells undergo regeneration to repair the damaged cells and adapt to environmental and bodily changes. Skin regeneration usually happens once every 27 days, but it usually releases dead skin every 28 hours.  Applying a body lotion before going to bed helps speed up skin regeneration releasing dead cells faster. It is also during nighttime when the pores in our skin open up. When you apply a body lotion, all the nutrients and beneficial ingredients of the product are fully absorbed. That is why when you apply good quality body lotion at night, you would feel the suppleness of your skin the next day.
  5. Provides long-term effects - Lotions usually reach the epidermis layers,  which is why the benefits and nutrients of body lotions tend to stay in for a long time which simultaneously improves our skin's condition. If you want a long-term moisturization, look for a product that contains hyaluronic acid and ceramides. These substances can improve the water-retaining abilities of your skin. Aside from that, choose products that have probiotic extracts if you want to achieve glowing and youthful skin. These can repair, moisturize, and balance your skin making it look and feel healthier.

Body Oil vs Lotion: Helpful Tips

Choosing the right moisturizer can be confusing especially now that there are a lot of products in the market to pick from. Each product has its benefits and downsides. In choosing a moisturizer that is perfect for you, here are some helpful tips:

  1. Consider your skin type or skin conditionYou should know what your skin needs so you can use appropriate products.
  2. Examine the product’s ingredient listIt is one of the most important things to do when choosing a moisturizer. The effects of products on your skin usually depend on their ingredients.
  3. Test the product before usingSome people have sensitive skin and using a new or different product may cause skin irritation. Before applying any product to your entire body, you can test the product first in the small area of your chest. If there is no allergic reaction after a couple of days, then you’re good to go.

The Verdict

Based on the benefits of body oil vs lotion stated above, we cannot say that one is better than the other - they both have significant benefits and that can help your skin.

At the end of the day, it all depends on your preference. You shouldn't use a product just because it's trendy or because it is effective for other people. Observe what your skin needs and if you ever find yourself in doubt, never be afraid to consult professionals and experts. That way you can avoid complications, and you are sure that the product will not be harmful.

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