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If you’re a beauty enthusiast, chances are you would’ve developed your own list of holy grails over the years of trial and error. Sure, you may still be tempted to try all the new formulas that you see on social media but you also have a group of must-haves that you know you can count on to restore your skin when needed.

Most of you would’ve probably seen the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion around too – in fact, this lotion was launched in Singapore by the crowd-pleasing Japanese brand more than a decade ago. It is also such a popular product in Japan, it has sold 100 million bottles to date just in the country alone.

For those with parched skin, the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion is akin to a gift of hydration that you give to your skin to effectively quench its thirst. And to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the iconic lotion, Hada Labo recently upgraded its formula to better meet our skin needs today.

To put its hydrating abilities to the test, we invited 20 readers to try the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion for two weeks. Spoiler alert: The average verdict was a 4.4-star rating out of 5!

Read on to find out more about the iconic Japanese lotion and have a look at the in-depth reviews. And stay tuned till the end to find out how you can get a free sample! 

About Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Product Product Edited

Photo by Daily Vanity

The lotion, which is well-loved for its formulation of four different molecular sizes of hyaluronic acid (HA), has recently levelled up to provide skin with an even higher level of moisture. To offer deeper hydration, the pH-balanced formula is enriched with two new ingredients: amino acid and ceramide.

Amino acid, which penetrates quickly into skin tissue, gives skin a fresh lustrous appearance almost instantly upon application. Meanwhile, ceramide is a type of phospholipid that plays a key role in maintaining water balance within cell membranes. Its strong ability to bind water molecules means that it can help optimise skin’s moisture levels by forming a network structure in the cuticles.

The best part? The upgraded Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion is free of any nasty ingredients such as alcohol, colourant, mineral oils, and now, even parabens, so it’s great for all skin types – even sensitive skin.

Using the lotion is really simple, too: simply pour it out in one hand and press your palms together to warm up the product a little. Then, pat it gently on your skin, morning and night, right after your cleansing or toning step.

The reformulated Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion retails for S$22.90 at Watsons and Guardian.

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion review: 20 readers give their honest opinions

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion
4.4

Summary

All reviewers were thoroughly impressed with the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion’s silky, lightweight formula that felt next to nothing on their skin.

Most reviewers loved how quickly the reformulated lotion absorbed into their skin without leaving a sticky or greasy residue, and all of them said it did a good job at locking in moisture for round-the-clock hydration.

All reviewers also appreciated that the lotion is a generally fuss-free product with minimal to no scent, making it ideal for sensitive skin users as well as those who prefer no fragrance in their skincare products.

Some of them also noticed that their skin sported a dewy glow after using the newly improved formula. Most reviewers said they would continue using the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion, and even recommend to friends and family.

Joleen, 19

Skin type: Oily, acne-prone
Skin concerns: Dull, textured skin with visible pores and blackheads

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Joleen

I’ve never tried any skincare lotion before so I wasn’t sure what to expect with the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion. To my pleasant surprise, the scentless formula absorbed really quickly and made my skin feel supple and hydrated. My skin felt hydrated after using the lotion but not heavy or greasy.

After using it for two days, I noticed that my face didn’t feel as dry or rough as before. In fact, I feel that it’s even helped tone down my skin’s sebum production, which is pretty impressive!

The lotion delivered what it promised, which was to lock in moisture within my skin. I really like that its lightweight formula helped my skin stay hydrated throughout the day without much oiliness. After using it for 14 days, I even saw visible acne reduction on my skin which is amazing.

Shannon, 22

Skin type: Dry, sensitive, acne-prone
Skin concerns: Dull, dehydrated, textured skin with visible pores and blackheads

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Shannon

The previous lotion I used was lightweight in texture and pretty effective in calming skin redness and irritation, but it wasn’t the most hydrating formula in my opinion. I’d also wanted something that could help keep my acne under control, so I needed a product that could do that while giving my skin lasting hydration.

When I first reached for the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion, it looked very unassuming in the simple translucent bottle packaging. Upon using the odourless formula for the first time, my skin felt refreshed instantly.

I like how the texture merely feels like a slightly weighted version of water, and I have the option to apply a couple of layers when I feel my skin is in need of extra hydration.

Personally, I find that it checks most of the boxes when it comes to what I want in a toner-slash-essence. While I don’t think it’s the best at controlling sebum and acne for me, it is very easy to incorporate the Hydrating Lotion into my existing skincare routine as it absorbs very quickly and does not interfere with the application of all my other products!

Clarisse, 22

Skin type: Combination-oily
Skin concerns: Dull, textured skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Clarisse

I love the silky, watery texture of this lightweight lotion. It absorbed within seconds and left no sticky residue on my skin. In fact, it felt really refreshing from the first application. My skin felt instantly hydrated and even looked like it had a glow to it, but not in a greasy manner.

In 14 days, my skin felt softer and I appreciate that it doesn’t clog my pores at all. Compared to the previous lotion I used, I’d say that the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion helped reduce my skin blemishes visibly and I can even use it on its own without reinforcing my skincare routine with any other moisturisers – that’s how hydrating it is for me.

Sher Ting, 24

Skin type: Normal, sensitive
Skin concerns: Dehydrated skin with uneven skin tone and blackheads

I was thoroughly impressed by how lightweight the lotion felt! The fragrance is also as pleasantly minimal as the clean, simple packaging, and I really appreciate that.

After using it for the first time, my skin felt smoother, more supple, and hydrated post-cleansing. The lotion was also easily absorbed by my skin, and I could even tell my skin looked more glowy after usage!

After using the lotion for 14 consecutive days, my skin texture is smoother and more refined. It’s even helped my makeup stay on longer throughout the day with regular application.

This product has worked very well for my mildly sensitive skin, and I’m definitely repurchasing this so that I can continue using it as a core product in my routine.

Siaw Min, 24

Skin type: Combination-oily, sensitive
Skin concerns: Textured skin with visible pores and blackheads

I’ve never used any lotions prior to this one by Hada Labo, and I’m pleasantly surprised at how much I love the lightweight, water-like texture of this product. It absorbed really quickly and left no residue on my skin at all.

In fact, I barely felt it on my skin – all I could feel was a refreshing after-feel upon application. My skin felt instantly hydrated and smoother after using it for the first time. When I looked at my skin in the mirror, I could tell my skin brightness has improved as well.

I particularly like how it makes my skin feel hydrated without looking like a greaseball. After using it for two weeks, my skin texture has taken a turn for the better too – it is smoother and much more refined compared to before. While it locks in moisture like a hydrating sheet mask, I find that the lotion doesn’t clog my pores which is a huge plus.

Richelle, 23

Skin type: Dry
Skin concerns: Dehydrated, textured skin with uneven skin tone and blackheads

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Texture Closeup Edited

Photo by Daily Vanity

The lotion had such a lightweight, pleasant texture that I wanted to continue using the product after I used it for the first time. However, it did very little to allay my skin’s severe dryness which I believe was caused by the ultra-drying acne treatments I was using prior to trialling the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion.

That said, I did not experience any irritation at all when using the lotion. I am definitely planning to continue using the product – with the acne treatments out of the equation, of course – to see if it can better impart its hydrating abilities to my dry skin.

Ariel, 22

Skin type: Combination-dry
Skin concerns: Dull, textured skin with uneven skin tone

What I really love about the lightweight lotion is that it is free of fragrances and has a watery texture to it which feels next to nothing once it’s absorbed into the skin. Immediately after using it for the first time, my skin felt fresher and more hydrated – I even noticed that it made me look more “awake” when I used it in the morning.

Not only did it work really well for my skin type without causing any irritation, but it also doesn’t clog my pores even though it’s capable of sealing in moisture like a hydrating sheet mask.

All in all, I feel that Hada Labo’s Hydrating Lotion is a product that won’t go wrong in the humid Singapore climate as it is light and versatile enough to suit all skin types.

Lee Xian, 23

Skin type: Oily, acne-prone
Skin concerns: Textured skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

I was slightly worried at first when I saw that the lotion is meant for dry and normal skin on the product packaging. My worries were quickly put to rest after I used the silky, lightweight formula for the first time – it absorbed really easily and didn’t feel heavy on my skin at all.

For me, the texture felt slightly tacky upon application but the tackiness quickly dissipated after a short while. There’s even a cooling effect on my skin after applying the lotion.

While I feel it left my skin feeling a little oilier than usual, it was still within a manageable range given that it made my skin feel softer and more supple after two weeks. I also appreciate that I didn’t experience any irritation from the product at all even though it’s not formulated for my skin type.

I find that it’s very easy to apply and a little bit goes a long way with the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion. I often poured out too much and would use the excess on my neck as well.

Overall, I had a pleasant experience trying the product and did not have much trouble incorporating it into my existing skincare routine.

Clarrie, 22

Skin type: Combination-oily
Skin concerns: Dehydrated, textured skin with blackheads

Although I felt the lotion left a little stickiness on my skin, I didn’t mind it at all as its hydrating formula felt really good on my parched skin. My skin felt instantly hydrated and even had a lasting dewy glow after using it for the first time.

After using the lotion for two weeks, my skin felt softer and more supple. There’s even a positive change in my skin texture too – it was smoother and more refined after using the formula regularly.

I like how this product locks in moisture like a hydrating sheet mask but doesn’t leave my skin feeling greasy at all. I especially enjoy using it at night because I get to wake up to softer skin that doesn’t feel dry the next morning!

Jacqueline, 24

Skin type: Combination-oily, sensitive
Skin concerns: Dehydrated skin with visible pores

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Product Flatlay Edited

Photo by Daily Vanity

Some of the lotions that I have tried in the past leave a sticky feel after application, but not this Hada Labo one. This ultra-light, fragrance-free lotion not only has a watery texture that absorbs quickly, but it also left my skin feeling refreshed and hydrated after the first use.

Having used it consistently, I can safely say that my skin definitely feels more hydrated and supple now compared to how it was before. In just three days, I even noticed a reduction in sebum production which is quite an unexpected bonus.

After five days, my skin felt softer, and my skin texture looked smoother and more refined. The essence didn’t clog my pores or cause any irritation too. I really love this product and will be making a full switch to Hada Labo’s Hydrating Lotion once I finish up my existing one. Its light consistency, affordable price, and easy absorption just check all the boxes for me.

Melissa, 28

Skin type: Oily
Skin concerns: Dull skin with visible pores and blackheads

When I first used the lotion after cleansing my skin, I noticed its pleasant, perfume-free formula. It glided on smoothly, absorbed really well, and left my skin feeling instantly refreshed, plumper, and more hydrated after.

I like how it left no unwanted residue on my skin, which is a huge plus point for me as the top two factors that I look out for when it comes to lotions are the lightweight texture and a non-greasy absorption.

I also appreciate that it helped my skin stay hydrated throughout the day and even refined my skin texture after regular use. Despite it being formulated for dry and normal skin, I didn’t experience any negative side effects from using the product.

After 14 days, my skin felt softer and more supple. I saw a decrease in sebum production after just one week of usage. Plus, my skin didn’t feel as dry in the mornings!

Personally, I find that it has worked better for me than other lotions I have used previously, which is why I’m going to repurchase the full-size bottle because I just love how it makes my skin feel – even makeup glides on better now thanks to the lotion.

Joanne, 35

Skin type: Combination-dry, sensitive
Skin concerns: Dull, dehydrated, textured skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Before After Joanne

Prior to trying the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion, I was using a brightening lotion which unfortunately delivered disappointing results as it didn’t do much to address my freckles or skin dullness.

Using the Japanese lotion for the first time after cleansing, I personally find that the lotion had a thick texture much like what you’d get from the excess liquid from a sheet mask. It left quite a sticky residue on my skin and I was initially worried that I might feel uncomfortable with the tackiness.

However, I must say it was very hydrating as advertised because I could tell that my skin felt softer and more hydrated instantly despite the stickiness. I persisted despite the mildly uncomfortable sensation after application and I’m glad I did because, after a few more trials, my skin started absorbing the lotion very quickly as if it’s lapping up all the hydrating goodness!

In 14 days, my skin felt more supple and even my skin texture has become smoother after using the product. Thanks to its ability to lock in moisture just like a hydrating sheet mask, my skin felt hydrated throughout the day and didn’t feel as dry in the mornings any longer.

Not only did this product work very well for my skin type, but it’s also worked better for me than other essences that I have used previously. I truly did not expect how much I would come to enjoy using it, and I’m pleasantly surprised that it’s even lent a certain brightening effect to my otherwise lacklustre skin.

Yee Chun, 27

Skin type: Combination-dry, sensitive
Skin concerns: Dull, dehydrated, textured skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

With the previous lotion that I was using, I was particularly dissatisfied with it because it just took too long to absorb when I use it in my routine. For some strange reason, I also feel that it wasn’t hydrating enough for me as my skin would feel tight when I’m not in an air-conditioned room.

With the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion, I like that the formula’s consistency was slightly viscous but still absorbed into my skin really swiftly. I also appreciate the slightly sticky residue that it left on my skin because I found that it made for a great makeup base – my makeup has never adhered better.

My parched skin felt hydrated, soothed, and refreshed immediately after using the lightweight lotion, and I find that the moisture lasted much longer than other essences I’ve tried previously. After two weeks, I noticed how my skin felt softer and more moisturised throughout the day but not in a way that made me appear like a greaseball.

Using the reformulated version helped me recall the time I tried the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion a few years back – both experiences, then and now, left a good impression in my book. This time, however, I’m taken aback at how moisturising the formula was with just a few drops applied on the skin – I reckon this must be due to the nano hyaluronic acid molecules as well as ceramide in the lotion.

I’ve actually tried a few years before and I remember I had a good experience with it – nothing negative stood out. It was the same this time, except I was pleasantly surprised at how moisturising such few drops could provide, which could be because of the nano hyaluronic acid and ceramide.  It’s almost like I gave my skin a drink of water!

An An, 33

Skin type: Combination-oily
Skin concerns: Dull, dehydrated, textured skin with uneven skin tone and visible pores

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review An An

The packaging is nice and simple. The silky, water-like lotion was just a dream to apply on my face and when I used it for the first time, my skin instantly felt softer, smoother, and more hydrated which was exactly what I was expecting the lotion to do.

While I tried using just my hands to apply the lotion, I still prefer using it with a cotton pad as I don’t have to worry about spillage that way. Even with a cotton pad, I didn’t feel like the formula was any less hydrating for my skin.

I really like how the product absorbed in seconds and left my skin feeling really refreshed after application. After 14 days, my skin doesn’t feel as thirsty anymore and it definitely stayed hydrated throughout the day. In fact, I saw a decrease in sebum production just after the third day. Plus, my skin didn’t feel as dry in the mornings!

I really like this product and I will purchase it again after I’ve used it up! I’d also be highly recommending it to my friends and family who are dealing with skin dryness and dehydration.

Rachael, 25

Skin type: Combination-dry
Skin concerns: Dehydrated skin

Simple and very user-friendly, this lightweight lotion has a watery texture that absorbs quickly and doesn’t come with an overpowering scent which I like. My skin felt hydrated and supple after the first use.

After trialling it for two weeks, my skin texture and hydration have greatly improved. It worked really well for my skin type, as I didn’t experience any irritation from this product at all.

Overall, it was a wonderful experience. Some lotions may be nourishing but too oily for certain skin types but the lotion is formulated well enough for our humid climate and it leaves skin feeling more hydrated after each use.

Caroline, 33

Skin type: Combination-oily
Skin concerns: Dull skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

The thing that bothers me most with lotions that I have tried in the past is the overwhelming fragrance that smells really artificial. Some of them also don’t absorb really well, but I didn’t encounter any of these issues with the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion.

Not only is the Japanese lotion free of perfumes, but it’s also got a lightweight texture and non-stick finish which I really like. My skin felt hydrated and softer after the first use.

Like a hydrating sheet mask, it locked in all the moisture within my skin, making it feel hydrated all day long without any greasiness. Overall, the lotion has worked really well for my skin type and I didn’t experience any irritation or any pore-clogging side effects from this product at all.

Amber L., 29

Skin type: Combination-oily, sensitive, acne-prone
Skin concerns: Dull, dehydrated, textured skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

Previously, I was using a pricey hydrating serum to take care of my skin dehydration problems but regrettably, it took me at least two months only to witness minimal improvements. So, you can imagine my surprise when this inexpensive made-in-Japan lotion did a much better job at a quicker rate without burning a hole in my wallet.

Immediately after using the product, my skin doesn’t feel as tight as before. I also like how my skin feels softer, more supple and moisturised after two weeks. Overall, it was a great experience. The lotion was easy to incorporate into my routine and it was incredibly light, so my skin didn’t feel clogged or tacky.

Alicia, 32

Skin type: Combination-oily, acne-prone
Skin concerns: Visible pores and blackheads

I’ve been using witch hazel toners to tackle my skin oiliness but so far, I’ve yet to see any improvements. Trying the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion for the first time, I like how it gives my skin a refreshing, non-sticky feeling and even helps it stay moisturised throughout the day.

For a fragrance-free formula with such a lightweight, fast-absorbing texture, I’m really impressed that it comes with such an affordable price tag. My skin felt truly hydrated and supple without any greasiness after the first use.

Even though it’s formulated for dry and normal skin, I didn’t experience any irritation from this product at all. In fact, I find that it’s helped my makeup stay put even longer. Apart from the positive changes in the skin hydration department, I noticed a visible decrease in my skin’s sebum levels too after three to four days!

Not only did it refresh and hydrate my skin well, but it’s also helped keep my skin oiliness under control as well. Needless to say, I’ll be raving about this product to my friends and loved ones for the time being – I just really like how well it has worked for my skin type.

Amber C., 27

Skin type: Combination-dry
Skin concerns: Dull, textured skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion Readers Review Before After Amber C

I was looking for a lotion that has a lightweight texture, a non-sticky finish, and the ability to keep my skin hydrated throughout the day. Thankfully, the Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion delivered. When I first used the fragrance-free product, I noticed that the lotion absorbed in seconds and left no residue on my skin. My skin felt hydrated and supple right after too.

It’s also helped my makeup glide on more smoothly, which was quite an unexpected bonus for me. After using it twice daily for 14 days, my skin felt more moisturised but not in a greasy manner. I’m pleasantly surprised that the lotion has worked very well for my skin type without clogging my pores at all.

I’ve heard so many rave reviews about this popular lotion and having tried it for myself, I can see why so many people love it – it really works! Plus, it’s just difficult to give this a miss when it comes with such a wallet-friendly price tag.

Kelicia, 31

Skin type: Combination-dry, sensitive
Skin concerns: Dull, dehydrated, textured skin with uneven skin tone, visible pores, and blackheads

I used to be a fan of the iconic lotion when it was first launched and even finished a few bottles before I started trying other brands in the market.

While the consistency of the reformulated Hada Labo Hydrating Lotion is quite liquid, I find that the texture is still quite thick and even left a slightly sticky residue after application. That said, I really appreciate that the formula has no fragrance, which is especially good for sensitive skin users like myself.

I used the lotion in place of my regular toner immediately after cleansing, and my skin felt more hydrated and plumped instantly. As I tend to layer different products in my routine, I love that the lotion helped boost the effects of my subsequent skincare products like moisturiser and sleeping mask.

The product absorbed in seconds to hydrate my skin and has even refined my skin texture after just two days. My skin no longer felt as dry in the mornings and it stayed hydrated even when I am out and about throughout the day.

I like that it’s so compatible with my skin type, and doesn’t irritate my skin or clog my pores at all even though it seals in moisture like a hydrating sheet mask. In a nutshell, this newly improved formula has definitely got me falling in love with the Japanese lotion again.

I love how I’m able to see and feel results almost instantaneously, and I can only imagine how good my skin will look with continuous use. For now, I can already foresee myself making multiple repurchases solely because of how well my skin loves the product.

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This article is brought to you by Hada Labo.