There's nothing I obsess over quite like skincare. My bathroom is stocked with enough creams, serums and potions to last six lifetimes. I pour over the SkincareAddiction subreddit like it's the Sunday edition of the New York Times and have been known to interrogate notably dewy strangers about their routines. So as devastated as I was to realize I've suddenly developed facial eczema that flares up every time I get my period, I was equally energized to find a solution for the red, flaky mask it left behind.

Was I prepared to drop an irresponsible amount of money to fix it? No doubt. Did I have to? Not even close.

At the suggestion of Reddit strangers, I headed to the drugstore to pick up Vanicream Daily Facial Moisturizer. An alleged $14.99 miracle in a tube that promised penetrating moisture without stressing my skin out even more. And friends, not only did it deliver, it's become my Holy Grail moisturizer, eczema flare-ups or not.

The first time I used it, this gel-like gift from the goddesses sunk right in and improved the situation almost completely. The flaky patches which didn't seem to hydrate no matter what I slathered on them calmed overnight. Within a few days, my skin was not only healed, it looked better than ever. It was more plump, my makeup wasn't creasing and it had just the right amount of luster without looking like an oil slick. Even my partner noticed the difference. (The same guy who accidentally made "garlic" bread with frozen ginger cubes instead of the garlic ones as intended.)

The reason? What's in it and what's not. It's super light and not at all greasy thanks to barrier nourishing hyaluronic acid and ceramides, two ingredients which I swear by completely. (Hyaluronic acid to help increase skin moisture and ceramides to help protect it from the loss of moisture–hello, Vermont winter. 🥴) And without fragrance or essential oils which can irritate even the most resilient skin, it heals without making matters worse. (It's also pregnancy-safe, so go ahead a slather with reckless abandon if pregnancy has your eczema aflame.)

For the longest time I believed that super hydrating moisturizers had to be thick and gloppy to get in there and get to work. But then I'd end up with dry skin and zits, which is as gorgeous as it sounds.

In the past few years, I've tried countless moisturizers, hoping to find one that made my skin happy in all the ways. From the uber luxe La Mer (which frankly smells like old lady and did nothing impressive) to lightweight mid-range formulas like Tatcha Water Cream (still a fave), I feel confident saying Vanicream outshines every single one of them.

So whether you've got eczema or just looking for a universally awesome moisturizer that won't dent your wallet, Vanicream Daily Facial Moisturizer won't disappoint. Promise.