Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer SPF 15 Review

** This post was written by Fiona. She no longer blogs for Swatch And Learn. However, Mary still continues to blog and will be happy to reply to your comment. **

I believe looking great starts with the best skincare, not the best beauty products. This is why I wouldn’t mind paying more for products that actually work to make my skin healthy. Also why I’m constantly testing new moisturizers or lotions with built-in sunscreen.

The next product in this category that I tried is Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer SPF 15. It’s an OK product; it’s not great. So I’m still on the hunt for an awesome moisturizer with SPF. (Will I never find it?) See why this Kiehl’s product isn’t it for me.

Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer SPF 15 Pictures & Photos


Shown for Consistency

Finish on Skin

Claims: TRUSTED, but Product: BUSTED

Lightweight formulation
Easily absorbed

Key Notes

  • Name: Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer SPF 15
  • Amount: 125 ml
  • What I Paid: $42.50 (CAD)
  • Price Per Unit: $0.34/ml (CAD)
  • Related Product: Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer (without SPF)
  • Sizes Available: 2.5 fl. oz., 4.2 fl. oz., 8.4 fl. oz.
  • Ingredients: Octinoxte 7.5%, Octocrylene 3.0% Oxybenzone 3.0%, Water, Dicaprylyl Ether, Propylene Glycol, Glycerin, PE-100 Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate, Squalane, Phenoxyethanol, Sorbitan Oleate, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Methylparaben, Chlorphenesin, Beeswax, Disodium EDTA, Propylaparaben, Stearic Acid, Myristyle Alcohol, Sweet Almond Oil, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil
  • Where to Buy: Kiehl’s stores & online

The Review

I went on a rollercoaster ride of reactions with this Kiehl’s moisturizer. At first I was excited because the lady at the store was so helpful. And she told me that Kiehl’s uses the most natural ingredients possible, a definite plus for skincare, in my eyes.

Then I paid – pain (in my wallet, at least).

Good news – Kiehl’s Ultra Face Moisturizer SPF 15 has no added fragrance. Bad news – it’s not pleasant smelling. The lady said that the smell comes from the natural ingredients. But lady, natural or not, it smells. It’s only when you actually apply it to your skin that you realize how much this stuff really reeks. I don’t have a sensitive nose, but I can’t really stand the medicinal and paste-like scent.

Like La Roche Posay Hydraphase UV, this has a liquidy consistency to it, which I actually like. It goes on smoothly, and you don’t need a lot to cover the entire face. But unlike Hydraphase, this comes in a bottle with cap that you have to turn upside down to get the stuff out. And because it’s so runny, I’ve gotten moisturizer on my sink counter many times.

However, my next reaction: very optimistic. The Kiehl’s Ultra Moisturizer is fast absorbing and light – I don’t ever feel like I put on too much. Also, it dries quite matte – a definite bonus. I was so surprised at this.

But! My dry skin gets super oily and sticky by midday whenever it’s slightly humid. It’s like the moisturizer absorbs the natural oils that I produce during the day and forms an oily layer on top of the skin. It’s not a pleasant feeling at all. I’d leave the house feeling great about my skin. It’s protected, and it looks matte. But by midday, I’m feeling icky.


  • Packaging is recyclable
  • Easy to apply
  • Light
  • Fast absorbing
  • Natural ingredients

  • Stinks
  • Packaging is inconvenient
  • Makes skin oily & sticky when humid
  • Only one SPF level available

Final Verdict: 6.5/10

Does Kiehl’s Ultra Moisturizer, well, moisturize? It does, but not to the extent that my dry skin needs. For $42.50, there’s got to be something better out there that hydrates the skin without leaving it icky and sticky!

Had an entirely different experience? Leave a comment!


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