Dermacontrol Oil Control Moisturizer SPF 30

by Cetaphil  Dermacontrol
$16.99 - 4 fl. oz.
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Skin Care > Moisturizers (Daytime and Nighttime) > Moisturizer with Sunscreen
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This fragrance-free daytime moisturizer with sunscreen is said to be a 3-in-1 option for oily skin because it hydrates, protects, and controls shine. It ends up doing two of the three decently well, though on balance the formula isn’t all that exciting. The blend of absorbent and film-forming agents in this moisturizer prevent it from being hydrating, though it does have a lightweight texture and absorbent, soft matte finish those with oily skin will appreciate. It protects with an in-part avobenzone sunscreen, so critical UVA (think anti-aging) protection is assured. That’s excellent because oily skin needs daily sun protection, too!

What this is missing, at least in meaningful amounts, are antioxidants and ingredients to reduce redness and calm acne-prone skin. Cetaphil included tiny amounts of vitamin E, a component of soothing licorice, anti-irritant allantoin, and zinc gluconate, but that’s about it and we’re concerned it’s too little to make much difference.

The zinc gluconate addition is interesting because of the research linking it to improving acne (at least when consumed orally) and for reducing inflammation by regulating the inflammatory process in skin that leads to acne (Sources: Archives of Dermatological Research, December 2011, pages 707–713; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, January 2011, pages 59–66; European Journal of Dermatology, May-June 2005, pages 152–155; and Dermatology, Volume 203, 2001, pages 135–140). Cetaphil’s Dermacontrol Oil Control Foam Wash contains this ingredient, too, but based on the research it is a better bet in a leave-on rather than a rinse-off product.

This potentially helpful option for oily, acne-prone skin is worth a try; we only wish it had a better range and greater amounts of the kind of ingredients all skin types need to look and act younger and healthier. To that end, Olay and Paula’s Choice have formulas for oily skin that are more well-rounded while still being lightweight and providing broad-spectrum sun protection.

New, lightweight moisturizer with SPF for acne-prone skin. Hydrate, protect and control shine with this 3-in-1 moisturizer. Cetaphil DERMACONTROL Oil Control Moisturizer SPF 30 is specifically formulated for acne-prone skin. Fortified with advanced zinc, ceramide and oleosome technologies, this moisturizer with SPF is clinically proven to manage oily skin. It provides broad spectrum sun protection and controls shine – without over-drying skin.

Active: Avobenzone (3%), Octisalate (5%), Octocrylene (7%) Other: Water, Isopropyl Lauroyl Sarcosinate, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Diisopropyl Sebacate, Silica, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Sucrose Tristearate, Dimethiconol, Pentylene Glycol, Polysorbate 61, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Panthenol, Triethanolamine, Allantoin, Carbomer, Potassium Sorabte, Zine Gluconate, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, Hydroxypalmitoyl Sphinganine

This familiar, widely distributed skin-care collection is manufactured by Galderma, the same company that markets the prescription products Differin and MetroGel.  Given the dermatology heritage of Galderma (the company's Web site mentions this consistently), it's surprising the Cetaphil line hasn't advanced beyond the basics. Yes, most of what's available is a safe bet for those with sensitive skin, but it's disappointing that their SPF-rated products utilize active ingredients that can be a problem for sensitive skin. A mineral-based sunscreen would be a welcome addition for a line that stresses its value for sensitive skin!

We'd have expected the company to keep pace with the latest research into what it takes to create a truly great moisturizer, but that hasn't occurred either, and it could be done while still keeping the products suitable for those with sensitive skin.

As for their original Gentle Skin Cleanser, it is no longer one we recommend. Why? Although we were a champion of this cleanser for years (back when hardly anyone knew about it and good water-soluble cleansers were scarce), the formula has become dated and just isn't worth strong consideration over several other cleansers at the drugstore.

For more information about Cetaphil, call (817) 961-5000 or visit

Member Comments

Summary of Member Comments

  1. How would you rate the results? (4 = Best)

    3 / 4 Good
  2. Was this product a good value? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
  3. Would you recommend this product? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
Page of 1
  1. Anonymous
    Reviewed on Tuesday, June 03, 2014
    • Results
      3 / 4
    • Value
      3 / 4
    • Recommend
      3 / 4
    clogs my pores
    • This product clogs my pores, but less so than other sunscreen moisturizers. I've been using it for about a year while I hunt for something better.

  2. Christine
    Reviewed on Wednesday, January 22, 2014
    • Results
      1 / 4
    • Value
      1 / 4
    • Recommend
      1 / 4
    • This moisturizer doesn't do what it claims. When you put it on, it has a tendency to pill/ball up. It feels heavy and thick on. As far as the oil control claims, this product did nothing to control my oil.The Dermacontrol Oil Control Moisturizer is a fail in my book.

  3. Sharon
    Reviewed on Monday, November 04, 2013
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    My favorite daily moisturizer
    • I've used this product for years; it's my favorite daily moisturizer for under makeup. I'm 63 with combination skin. Cetaphil Oil Control Moisturizer glides on my face and neck and soaks in quickly so I can apply my foundation in a minute or two. I can use it near my eyes and it doesn't burn like some moisturizers with sunscreen do. I LOVE finding good products at drugstore prices - this is one of them!

  4. Laurie
    Reviewed on Sunday, September 15, 2013
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      2 / 4
    • Value
      3 / 4
    Not Impressed from a 40 yr old w/oily acne prone skin
    • Took this on vacation to Miami hoping to keep the shine and acne at bay. I'm happy to report it caused no breakouts and also performed well at sun protection w/30 spf. However, for shine control it did not do cut it for me. I felt greasy from the moment I put it on. I will not purchase again. I'll use the rest on my chest and arms.

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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