Desert Essence Daily Essential Moisturizer

Desert Essence Daily Essential Moisturizer
Daily Essential MoisturizerDaily Essential Moisturizer


120 reviews

70% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.1

Price: $

Package Quality: 3.1

Price: $

Not tested on animals


Water, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glyceryl Stearate (Vegetable Derived), Stearic Acid (Vegetable Derived), Cetyl Palmitate (Plant Derived),Jojoba Seed Oil, Safflower Seed Oil, Cetyl Alcohol (Vegetable Derived), Propanediol (Corn Derived), Sesame Seed Oil, Glycerin (Plant Derived), Gluconolactone, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Benzoate, Geranium Maculatum Oil (Plant Derived)

Where to Buy

Start your review

Age: 19-24

Skin: Normal, Medium, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Finally I have found a good face cream for my dry skin, that still works under makeup. I'm not sure why I was so hesitant about adding jojoba oil into my skincare routine, since I hear so many good things about it but this has it and I am so glad I decided to try it. It has made my skin so soft and over all better looking. It's perfect for at night or in the morning and it keeps my skin hydrated all day, even under makeup. It is not greasy and it absorbs nicely into your skin without disappearing completely IYKWIM. It doesn't mess up my makeup at all, I moisturize with this right before applying makeup and it's not a problem. I've been using this religiously for about a week and no break outs either. The jar doesn't state it but it's scent-free, and personally I like the jar since I can scoop out every last bit which means your money's worth. I got this for about $6 at Stop & Shop and it's better than a lot of higher end creams I have tried.

on 3/3/2010 4:09:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brown, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

First of all, I used to have acne during my teen years and for the past 3 years, my skin has changed from oily to combination skin where mostly it's just my nose that gets oily. So, the stuff I relied on before were mostly from the BodyShop. Personally, I tend to like to use natural/organic products more since in the past, many acne products have made my skin more sensitive.
So, I have been using this moisturizer for 3 months now and it has become an essential part of my daily skin care rountine. I first wanted to buy the Jojoba Oil from Desert Essence but then I came across this moisturizer. The price here is $.9.98 CAD before tax. I thought the price was pretty good so I decided to give it a try. After I went home, I Googled the ingredients and they turned out to be quite natural. Now, I use this with my Aloe Vera toner from Bodyshop every day and night.

- personally, I like the ingredients b/c it has sesame
& jojoba oil which are good sources of vitamin C &
E for the skin
- light & natural smell
- very creamy & light texture
- good price, very affordable
- pretty moisturizing for my skin
it only feels a bit oily when u just applied it, but after
my skin completely absorbs it my skin feels smooth
- good overall cream for my neck, hands, & face

the only bad thing I can think of is that it contains Methylparaben, which is served as a preservative for this moisturizer. However, any skin care product would contain a preservative and according to my research, it's suppose to be non-toxic & non-irritating. However, there has been cases reported where people felt allergic to it. So, perhaps those who had a reaction to it might have been the Methylparaben.

In the end, I will be purchasing this product again and will look into Desert Essence's products

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

on 2/17/2010 7:58:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Warm

Hair: Brown, Straight, Coarse

Eyes: Brown

I bought this moisturizer on sale at Bartell's for ~$3.50 USD (I believe normal retail is $6?), attracted by the price and the seemingly quite natural ingredients. I have very sensitive skin and avoid moisturizers with -cones, petrolatum, fragrance, and high alcohol contents, so this seemed like a great option.

I started using this very cautiously because of the mixed reviews on MUA: first on my hands, then neck. I never got to face trials, because after ~1 month of use, I am starting to get irritation/mild contact dermatitis. I am not sure what the culprit is, but suspect either Safflower oil or Geranium essential oil - especially the latter. Essential oils have a highly variable irritation profile.

Even without the irritation though, I was not a huge fan of this moisturizer, aside from the price. For one thing, it was not very moisturizing, and seemed to leave a sticky, waxy film on my skin. The jar-style packaging also leaves me pretty leery: while you can certainly use a spatula for infection prevention, the jar has a huge opening = large surface area exposed to air each time opened = more oxidation and faster rancidity, especially given the high oil content of this face cream.

It's a huge pity this didn't work given the attractive price and natural formulation. Even after a month, I have a ton left, so I am going to try and use this on less sensitive body parts (legs, etc), and hope for the best against continued dermatitis.

Age: 25-29

Skin: Oily, Medium, Cool

Hair: Brunette, Curly, Medium

Eyes: Brown

This comes in a jar and is very creamy and thick. I only need a small scoopful for my face and it doesn't break me out. Has a nice, light scent that isn't over the top. Does make my face a bit red initially, but overall my face feels soft and moisturized. This isn't greasy and sometimes feels mattifying. I have super oily skin so it doesn't bother me. I use this at night, and in the morning my skin looks pretty good which is why I would continue to use it. Not sure if this would be my HG, but I like that this is a natural product and is decently priced.

on 11/10/2009 5:39:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Dry, Olive, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I've concluded after searching the entire Internet that there is no purely natural facial moisturizer except a few that unfortunately have (comedogenic) coconut oil. I guess the only option is to use pure non-comedogenic oils like avocado oil. I was using a very plain coconut oil moisturizer that caused tons of zits, so I did some research - turns out coconut is clogging. Probably everyone on the planet already knew that but me! So I read that jojoba oil is not clogging, and neither is aloe vera. I found this product and ran to WF to get it. Now it is true that it is not very moisturizing at all, so I added some unrefined avocado oil and some pure aloe vera (Aubrey's) and now it's awesome. My skin actually says "aaahhh" when I put it on. So for those who didn't have an adverse reaction to it for some reason, try adding an oil that you like, and some aloe vera, and it becomes a very nice moisturizer.

4 of 5 people found this helpful.

Age: 36-43

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Cool

Hair: Red, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Green

[Review updated 06/2010.] Lovely cream at a lovely price. Joins my other long-term favourites: A-Derma Skin Cream, Avène Tolérance extrème and TriXéra Balm.

I was sniffing around for possible replacements for my regular moisturiser. Found this, partly thanks to the MUA Top Picks for my age-group. It's minimal (the sensitive Gingerrama likes minimal), cheap (ditto), and fairly easy to find (greener shops and even some standard ones).

This is a plain facial moisturising cream. Mainly safflower, jojoba, and sesame oils; plus aloe vera. Little scent from the rose geranium: a very faint whiff of pleasant creaminess, then nothing.

Application: echoing the advice of others below, apply to damp skin (using Avène water spray here). Easy to apply - sinks in nicely.

In evenings, I'm mixing in a little oil too: one drop of the current blend that doubles up as cleansing oil and in-shower body oil. Some combination and permutation of sunflower, safflower, sweet almond, and jojoba oils. Have also used rice bran and grapeseed (too light and drying). Sometimes mineral oil too, though trying to get off it for environmental reasons. I've found all these oils to be very good on fragile, irritable skin that's prone to dry bits and oily bits if unbalanced; plus good on the nose, preferring unscented oils due to sneezy tendencies.

In the mornings, one it's on and in, followed by sunscreen. Which applies just fine (a silicone-based coated micro zinc oxide one; minimal again...).

The Daily Essential is deceptively light: retains moisture well overnight, no dryness or tugging the next morning. The overall effect is most satisfying: feels comfortable a.k.a. normalised, no dry or oily patches, no irritated bits, matte-dry to the touch (as opposed to damp-greasy), but smooth, sleek, plump and well-fed ... Recommended!

Only issue (update, end 09/2009): jar suffered disaster in freak iron-related accident. Yes, plastic melts. I'm sure others don't need such warnings ... [UPDATE: 03/2010] Used again, less successful in cooler drier weather; usually fine, but sometimes irritates. Still keeping this for warmer weather, as it's a great combination of moisturising and mattifying.

Costs CAD8.00-10.00 for a 120 ml plastic jar. A couple of lippies off on the packaging, but nothing that can't be solved by decanting it into a wide-necked flip-top tube. Cruelty-free.

UPDATE (06/2010): This being reformulated, but fear not, only in a minor way (see further down). Not yet seen in the shops; thanks to candigirl72 for the information. Changes: no paraben preservatives, addition of propanediol, stearic acid, gluconolactone sodium hydroxide, sodium benzoate (preservative). NB the current Desert Essence cream is very very like Derma E's classic Vitamin E 12,000 IU Deep Moisturizing Crème (see further below for ing.), one of their original products some decades ago. The Derma E's around USD 12.50 / CAD15.00 for 113 g.

2009 INGREDIENTS (from jar - NB slightly different from the ingredients listed on Desert Essence's website and at top of this MUA product page): Purified Water, Glyceryl Stearate, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Oil, Cetyl Palmitate, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Glycerin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Cetyl Alcohol (from vegetable source), Methylparaben, Essential Oil of Geranium Maculatum.

2010 REVISED VERSION INGREDIENTS: Water (Aqua), Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glyceryl Stearate (Vegetable Derived), Stearic Acid (Vegetable Derived), Cetyl Palmitate (Plant Derived), Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Cetyl Alcohol (Vegetable Derived), Propanediol (Corn Derived), Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Glycerin (Plant Derived), Gluconolactone, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Benzoate, Geranium Maculatum Oil (Plant Derived)

COMPARISON: DERMA E VITAMIN E MOISTURIZING CRÈME: Water (Aqua), Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate SE, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract*, Glycerin, Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A), Panthenol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Allantoin, Glyceryl Stearate Citrate, Polysorbate 60, Cetearyl Glucoside, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Natural and Fragrant Oils.
continued >>

8 of 8 people found this helpful.

Age: Unknown

Skin: Acne-prone, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Blue

i bought this on a whim, and it is now my favourite moisturizer, it sinks in quickly so you can apply makeup within a minute or so which is handy.i have sensitive 19 year old skin which is classically acne prone but also very prone to dryness because of prescription creams etc. this works amazingly well to balance my skin, i use it twice a day and have noticed such a huge improvement, i became very lax with my skincare regimen for a while and have only recently gotten back on board, this cream in conjunction with olay sensitive foaming face wash and thayers rose petal and witch hazel toner with aloe has helped amazingly. i've also recently started honey masks (just pure honey, sometimes with the addition of sugar so it becomes a scrub when i rinse my face). i used to use weleda's almond cream, however it is difficult to come by in my area and much richer than this formulation, once i finally find it again i will use weleda around the eye area and for extra moisture as the desert essence is quite light- i really recommend this combination!! xxxxx

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

on 5/13/2009 9:04:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Dry, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Hazel

The formula reminds me of Clinique's Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion, but I had better luck with this. It may be because it's in a tub rather than a pump, so I apply as much as I need rather than what the pump tells me to use?
In any case, it has a slightly tacky/creamy texture, doesn't cause any negative skin reactions, is vegan/cruelty-free, and is very inexpensive. I don't know that I love it enough to call it a HG, but it has enough positive qualities that I'll happily keep using it.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

on 4/19/2009 12:26:00 AM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Warm

Hair: Brown, Other, Fine

Eyes: Brown

I REALLLYYYYY wanted this to work for me because of the great reviews; however, I find that this does not keep my face matte throughout the day. It feels and looks matte when it is first applied but I have to blot my face like two times throughout the day still. This seems to also cause breakouts. I have bunch of red spots all over my forehead especially because I was experimenting to see if this was the cause and it is! GOSHH! I'll probably use it for my hand or something but really doesn't seem that moisturizing at all. I have oily and acne prone skin. It is dirt cheap and I found it at Fortino's believe it or not. So if you're in Canada and you can't find it, go there! It was about $6-7. Well, I am glad it worked for other people but I am still on my search of a good moisturizer!

Age: 18 & Under

Skin: Combination, Olive, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Hazel

I bought this at Whole Foods for 7 dollars. It is a huge jar/tub that will last a long time, so for the price it is an unbelievable deal.
I have combination skin: oily on the nose, chin, and forehead; normal on the cheeks; normal-dry around my eyes. I swear that this moisturizer kept my oilies at bay ALL DAY. I put this on after I showered today at 11 am, and after a long day at the doctors and such, come 8 pm, I feel my face and think: why isn't my nose oily? Or my chin??

Great product!! Keep in mind that I had no makeup on today. However I did put makeup over it yesterday just to see how it would apply and it goes on super smooth (liquid foundation). The cream gives your skin a very matte finish, and its long-lasting too. Your skin feels smooth all day! And it really does cut down on the oil.

100% recommended to combination/oily skin types. I don't like how this is in a jar/tub, I prefer pump bottles and what not...but who cares, this cream is HG material.

EDIT: Was not good under makeup. After several hours of wear, my MU looked horrible with this moisturizer as my base. Nice moisturizer when you're not wearing any MU, I suppose.

2 of 3 people found this helpful.

Back to Top