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Body lotions

Lotion is an important component of any personal care routine, with men and women of all ages often finding themselves needing a little extra moisture on their skin to stay comfortable and prevent unsightly dry patches. The body lotions in this section address a number of different preferences and concerns, allowing you to find the ideal lotion for your needs.

Factors to consider when selecting body lotions

As you shop for lotions, it’s important to pay attention to certain factors that set different product options apart from each other. Consider your personal preferences and needs in each of these categories to find the best lotion available.

Scent: It’s often hard to know exactly what a lotion smells like prior to trying it, so shopping for scented lotion online requires paying careful attention to information such as product names and descriptions, ingredient lists and even the images and texts on the lotion bottle or jar. Scented lotions often have images of flowers or other botanical ingredients on their packaging, but the presence of those images isn't a guarantee of the presence of a specific scent. Double-checking the ingredients list for items containing the words “scent” or “perfume” can be helpful. Those who are sensitive to smells or have an allergic reaction to perfumes may want to opt for unscented lotions, and there are many options of this type to consider in this category. Again, double-checking the ingredients list is a good idea to ensure the lotion doesn't include any scented ingredients. Checking for the words “unscented” or “perfume-free” in descriptions can also be helpful.

Formula: Body moisturizers come in many formulations, including ointments, lotions and creams. Ointments tend to have more of a thick, pasty or gel-like texture, while lotions are thinner and more liquidy. Creams are usually somewhere between the two, coming in a thicker texture than lotions, but lighter and more spreadable than ointments. In addition to these differences, the products in this section can come in formulations designed for quick absorption or to leave a non-greasy feel, which you may prefer if you don't like the feel of moisturizer on your skin.

Dispenser type: The lotions in this section may come in bottles with a pump top, bottles with a squeeze top or jars with a screw-on top. Some lotions might come in tubes, but this is rare. Typically, thicker formulations such as cream or ointment come in tubs or jars and must be scooped out of the container. Lotions tend to come in pump-top or squeeze-top bottles because they're runnier and easier to squirt through these openings.

Size: This section includes a wide variety of product sizes, ranging from small tubes or bottles in roughly 3-ounce travel sizes to family-size bottles with a dozen or more ounces of product. If you're looking to try a new lotion for the first time, you may want to focus on smaller bottles to avoid purchasing too large a quantity of something you won’t actually end up using. Travel-size bottles can be useful for this purpose and for meeting the TSA-mandated 3.4-ounce maximum size for carry-on liquids. If you want to find a large quantity of your favorite product to stock up on, look for value sizes or packs. Value packs may come with two or more identical containers of lotion.

Ingredients: Moisturizing lotions typically include ingredients such as water, scents and stabilizing agents, but different manufacturers may incorporate specific oils or vitamins known to soothe and moisturize skin. Some ingredients, such as aloe vera, shea butter or argan oil, may be included in the product name, but you should read the product description text to check whether your chosen lotion includes the preferred moisturizing ingredients that you find to be particularly effective.

Special skin concerns: Some shoppers look for body lotions that address specific skin concerns beyond mild dryness alone. Many brands in this section offer intensive moisturizing treatments designed to repair and soothe extremely dry skin, which often manifests with uncomfortable symptoms such as cracking or flaking. Some lotions get even more specific to address dry skin concerns for people with medical issues such as diabetes. The lotions and other moisturizers in this section don't contain any prescription ingredients, even if they’re designed to address a specific medical issue, making them safe for use without doctor oversight.