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What is Lotion?

Diane Goettel
By
Updated May 21, 2024
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Lotion is a skin care product that is used to soothe dry skin and is sometimes formulated with ingredients that are intended to offer added benefits to the skin. A lotion might help to correct uneven tone in the skin or help to balance combination skin, which is skin that has some oily patches and some dry patches. Body lotion is a product that can be used from the neck down to the toes. There are, however, also emollients that are meant to be used specifically on the face. As such, face lotion is often more delicate than formulas for skin on the rest of the body.

Face lotion also is sometimes formulated to address skin issues specific to the face or most commonly targeted on the facial skin. There are some lotions that are meant to help manage acne on the face. There are also many emollients for the face that are made with ingredients that help to reverse or fight the signs of aging such as fine lines, wrinkles, and various forms of sun damage. Lotions for the face often vary in thickness or viscosity, depending on whether they are meant to be worn during the day or at night. Day moisturizers and lotions are almost always lighter and less viscous than night lotions.

Lotions for the body might be used to address the kinds of skin issues that crop up on the legs, arms, back, belly, and so on. A lotion may include ingredients that are meant to help fade and heal stretch marks that may be the result of rapid growth, pregnancy, or weight fluctuation. Like face lotion, body lotion often includes sun block as a way to prevent sun damage to the skin. Many people who are serious about protecting their skin from sun damage wear body and face lotions with sun block on a daily basis.

There are dozens of lotion formulas on the market. Some are formulated for a specific fragrance. Others are made with all-natural ingredients. Still others are developed as part of an entire skin-care system that may include skin cleanser and toner. There are also formulas that are very specific in terms of the body parts that they are intended for such as the feet, knees and elbows, hands, and eye area — all areas that have specific needs.

BeautyAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Diane Goettel
By Diane Goettel
"Diane Goettel has a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MA in English from Brooklyn College. Diane lives in Mount Vernon, New York with her husband, Noah. They are the proud parents of a Doberman Pinscher named Spoon. Specialties: book editing, book marketing, book publishing, freelance writing, magazine publishing, magazine writing, copywriting,"
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Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel
"Diane Goettel has a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MA in English from Brooklyn College. Diane lives in Mount...
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