Light as air yet full of skincare benefits? Cloud creams are fast-becoming a category to watch. Here’s why

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In terms of beauty trends, there’s one on the horizon that could spell good things for winter skin and it goes by the name of cloud creams.

We know, we know, what’s next? Storm serums, mildew masks, torpedo toners? Often when these buzzwords crop up, many prove to be more a case of style over substance. However, when Sephora reportedly can’t keep enough stock of the stuff, it’s probably one that requires further investigation. With Peter Thomas Roth’s Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream heralded a bestseller, it’s a category that looks likely to gain momentum. Here’s what you need to know about the trending topic.

What is a cloud cream?

Their catchy title actually describes the appeal of these souped up moisturisers pretty well. Just like clouds, most that fall under the moniker are designed to help the skin attract and hold onto moisture. However unlike their fluffier namesake, their contents are a notch above your run-of-the-mill bucket of rainwater. And a lot more expensive too. Commonly containing ingredients such as hyaluronic acid  and other hydrating goodies to plump up, smooth and soften, they’re also characterised by their airy, lightweight textures and formulas that are often soothing in nature. Many are also interestingly fragrance-free, to give them a wider appeal than a lot of the richer and heavier creams on the market. It’s important to highlight though that the use of the term isn’t consistent across the board. It also appears in the names of other products with properties such as dark spot correction (as seen in Dior’s Diorsnow Brightening Refining Moist Cloud Creme). However, this is more the exception to the rising trend and so in the interests of clarity, we’re going to focus on its more widely used interpretation as a lightweight moisture booster here - something that more brands are increasingly growing wise to.

Who are they for?

Dry to very dry skin types will benefit most from them - especially as we head into winter. Due to their ‘cloud-like’ textures that don’t weigh skin down, they’re more refreshing than rich, and dull and fatigued complexions suffering from the dehydrating effects of central heating and environment are likely to reap both short and long-term benefits due to their more hard-working formulas.

Where can you buy one?

Still a relatively new category in the skincare market, there are a handful of brands that are leading the way in terms of formulation. A word of caution though - they ain’t cheap! However, to ensure that your money’s spent wisely, here are our favourites.

Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream, £42 for 48ml

Containing a high concentration of hyaluronic acid (HA), it’s easy to see why this is a Sephora bestseller. HA’s naturally made by our bodies, but our supplies of it fall as we get older and so a topical solution acts as a useful way to top up our stores. The HA offering of this pick is particularly noteworthy as it comprises of three different molecular sizes to provide a greater likelihood that it can penetrate the skin more deeply. Furthermore, its noteworthy inclusion of ceramides helps strengthen the skin barrier to prevent moisture loss too.

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Skyn Iceland Pure Cloud Cream, £41 for 50g

Containing skin soothing peptides, anti-irritant oat extract, HA and anti-inflammatory ingredients to help de-stress city dwelling complexions, this hydrating and fluffy-textured pick helps skin suffering the effects of daily wear and tear get its bounce back.

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Perricone MD H2 Elemental Energy Hydrating Cloud Cream, £69 for 50ml

Containing red microalgae which was chosen for its smoothing and protective benefits and humectants to aid attraction and retention of moisture, this gel-like daily cream also intriguingly contains an ‘H2 Energy Complex.’ With oxygen in products  already popular (even Kate Middleton’s a fan), hydrogen hopes to rise above it as our skin infusion of choice due to its incredibly small molecular size and ability to deeply penetrate the surface layers of the skin. Working in conjunction with its moisturising counterparts to re-energise, skin certainly feels refreshed and more awake after use. It too is also fragrance-free.

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Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Serum, £52 for 30ml

For something a little more intensive, this cloud serum’s a more potent option. Containing a 75% hyaluronic acid complex, silk proteins to leave skin supple and a mineral complex of zinc, copper, manganese, iron and silicon, it makes for a refreshing pre-moisturiser tipple.

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