Last Updated: May 1, 2023 @ 4:08 pm.

What is the best face oil? We asked our reader for their favorites, then we interviewed three board-certified dermatologists. Next we tried out several brands with our expert staff. What is the best oil for night time use? For folks who prefer a vegan-friendly option? Here are the ones we like are best.

FYI: We've been reviewing and rating products for the home and families since 1994. We don't take money or freebies from the brands we review. Our work is 100% reader-supported!

Finding the Best Face Oil: Our Tests & Tips

Let’s talk face oil.

If you want to moisturize your skin, you have two basic choices: oils that have retinol (also called retinoid-ester). And those that don’t (these tend to be touted as more natural or vegan-friendly.

So what is retinol?

A type of vitamin A, retinol is used to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by stimulating collagen production in the skin. Given its potency, however, you should be careful in using any face oil with retinol—be sure to follow directions. And use sunscreen as it can make your skin more sun sensitive.

Board-certified dermatologists we interviewed for this article cautioned that overusing retinol products can cause sensitivity or irritation. Of course, we also asked them for recommendations for oils they found most effective.

To test face oil, we first put the oil in unlabeled bottles that look much like this:

That way our testers aren’t influenced by brand names or fancy packages. 

After trying out several brands for more than two weeks, here are the ones we think are best:

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Best For Overnight Use

Tried & true brand
Love the results with this retinoid-ester oil, which has notes of chamomile. Great for sensitive skin, although not every tester liked the smell of this "unscented" oil.
$55.00 ($110.00 / Fl Oz)

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Best Vegan-Friendly

Good for face and body
Yes, this is a blend of oils including cold-pressed olive oil—and we like how well it moisturized. Soft skin without feeling too oily.
$14.99 ($3.75 / Fl Oz)

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Best Cocoa Butter

Great for sensitive skin
This tried and true brand is a reader favorite and we agree: it went right to work on dry skin. Good bang for the buck compared to other pricey oils.
$9.27 ($9.27 / Fl Oz)

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Best Multi-Purpose

Wonderful scent
We like how well this oil worked as both a moisturizer and cleanser/exfoliator. A little goes a long way.
$40.00 ($23.67 / Ounce)

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About the Authors

Denise & Alan Fields are consumer advocates and best-selling authors. The Fields have authored 12 books with three million copies in print, including the best-selling guide to baby gear, Baby Bargains.

The Fields have been featured and quoted in the New York TimesWall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times.

As consumer products experts, the Fields have been guests on the NBC Today Show, Good Morning America and ABC’s 20/20.

How We Pick Products To Recommend

We often turn to our readers (3 million strong!) to find products to recommend. We ask our parent readers for their favorites and consider their real-world experiences in our recommendations.

When we test a product, we always purchase it with our own monies. We do not take free samples, as we believe that compromises our independence.

We also fact check manufacturer information with our own measurements. If a maker claims a product weighs X pounds, we will weigh it to make sure. If the battery life is supposed to be six hours, we will see how it stands up in the real world.

In some cases, we will do interviews with experts in the field to get additional feedback on products.

To get hands-on time with products, we regularly meet one-on-one with gear companies and even tour manufacturing facilities. (When we do this, we pay our own travel expenses).

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do extensive research, evaluating products with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability.

We make our living from affiliate commissions, but we always recommend what we think are the best bets for our readers (not the ones that are the most expensive). We are always looking for products that offer the best bang for the buck.

Our independence is a key reason why we have been doing this so long. As we mentioned above, when we purchase a product for hands-on testing, we do so with our own money.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100% reader-supported!

Baby Bargains: Your Baby Registry Cheat Sheet is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to and its related sites. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.