Clinique Hydrating Jelly review
£3

Clinique Hydrating Jelly review: Pricey but more than worth the investment

7th April 2024 | Author: Victoria Woollaston-Webber
Verdict

Clinique’s Hydrating Jelly is a refreshing alternative to many of the cream and lotion-based moisturisers I’ve tried that can be a bit heavy or slippery.

It has a lightweight, effective formula and during my six-week review period my skin improved across the board. It looked and felt more hydrated, it wasn’t as red or irritated, it was more balanced and it works wonders under makeup.

It’s not perfect. While this jelly was great for helping to balance my combination skin, I don’t think it would work well for people with very dry skin. Despite what the brand says.

At times, when my skin was particularly dry, I found it necessary to put additional, richer moisturiser on top at night. It’s also not as nourishing as other creams I’ve tried.

The pump can take a bit of getting used to, and not to mention that the jelly is expensive which will put it out of reach for many people.

But all things considered, if you can afford this moisturiser then I highly recommend it. If you can’t, the Purito Deep Sea Water Cream is a great, cheaper alternative.

Pros
  • Calms redness
  • Balances oiliness and dryness
  • Doubles up as a primer
Cons
  • Pricey
  • Pump can be tricky to master
  • Runs out quickly
Where to Buy
Clinique £35
Boots £35
Lookfantastic £35
Prices are accurate at the time of publishing and are subject to change.

In my Clinique Hydrating Jelly review, I look at whether the lightweight moisturiser is as hydrating, soothing and protective as the brand claims


Clinique has long been celebrated for its dermatologist-developed, simple, safe and effective skincare and makeup lines.

It was one of the first brands to create sets that helped you know how to layer skincare and target very specific skincare needs. It’s a staple of the UK high-street and promises something for everyone.

Among its most popular lines is the Dramatically Different range and within this range, one of the biggest sellers is the Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly.

The jelly stands out in Clinique’s lineup for its unique water-jelly texture and its promises around providing not just hydration but also protection against environmental pollutants.

This is thanks to what the brand calls Clean Shield Technology.

It’s a dermatologist-tested, fragrance-free, and allergy-tested formula, that Clinique claims is great for all skin types, even sensitive.

To put these claims and promises to the test, I’ve spent the past six weeks putting it through its paces.

Keep reading my Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly review to discover if this moisturiser is worth the money and lives up to its high expectations.


Clinique Hydrating Jelly Review

The Clinique Hydrating Jelly sits within Clinique’s wider Dramatically Different range. There are three types of moisturisers, each one designed to suit different skin types, as well as a cleanser, BB cream, and lipstick.

This includes:

  • Clinique Dramatically Different Jelly: The Clinique Hydrating Jelly is designed to suit all skin types, including oily, dry, and combination.
  • Moisturising Gel: The Moisturising Gel is better suited for oily skin types.
  • Lotion+: This Clinique Lotion is formulated for dry and very dry skin types.
  • BB Moisturising Gel: A BB cream that combines coverage and moisturisation for all skin types.
  • Hydrating Clearing Jelly: This gel specifically targets breakouts, making it great for acne-prone skin.
  • Lipstick: A lipstick that combines pigment with skincare for your lips.

All of the moisturisers, plus the BB gel, are available in tubes, that cost around £22. Larger bottles of the moisturisers then cost around £35 each.

FURTHER READING: The best Clinique moisturiser for your skin type, budget and concerns


Clinique Hydrating Jelly: At A Glance

Clinique Dramatically Different Jelly mamabella | mamabella

The Clinique Hydrating Jelly is a lightweight, water-jelly moisturiser that promises to hydrate and protect the skin for 24 hours

What is Clinique Hydrating Jelly? The Clinique Hydrating Jelly is a lightweight, water-jelly moisturiser that promises to hydrate and protect the skin for 24 hours.

Clinique Hydrating Jelly price: £35 (125ml)

How to use Clinique Hydrating Jelly:Massage a small amount all over the face, neck and chest twice a day, morning and night.

When to use Clinique Hydrating Jelly: Gentle enough to be used AM and PM after your cleanser, toner, and serums, and before SPF in the morning.

Who should use Clinique Hydrating Jelly? Suitable for all skin types, especially sensitive skin but is particularly good for combination, and dry skin types.

Where to buy: Clinique |Boots | Lookfantastic

Clinique Hydrating Jelly dupes: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel (£14); The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA (£6.10); La Roche-Posay Hyalu B5 Aquagel SPF30 (£39)


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Clinique Hydrating Jelly Performance

The Clinique Jelly’s lightweight consistency is one of its best features, in my opinion. It absorbs quickly without leaving behind any oily or sticky residue, which my combination skin loved, and it’s instantly cooling on the skin. I could also see a noticeable improvement in how plump and hydrated my skin looked almost immediately after I’d applied this jelly.

This no-residue finish also made the Clinque Jelly a great primer for makeup. It created a smooth and hydrated canvas for my foundation and concealer and this was an unexpected, very welcomed benefit.

The product promises 24-hour hydration which, in my experience, is a bit of a stretch. In my hydration tests, the jelly increased the hydration of my skin by 12 percentage points after five minutes. This was the third highest hydration of any moisturiser I’ve tested – the Purito Deep Sea Water Cream and Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Water Cream taking the top two spots.

It also represented a percentage rise of 43.8%. After an hour, this hydration continued to increase by a further 0.2 points, taking the total percentage rise to 44.5%.

Clinique Jelly moisturiser worth it?mamabella | mamabella

My real-world experience with the jelly confirms this and my skin looked and felt hydrated all day but started to feel a bit imbalanced by the evening

My real-world experience with the jelly confirms this and my skin looked and felt hydrated all day but started to feel a bit imbalanced by the evening. This hydrating feeling was also a lot shorted in colder weather which is to be expected, but is worth noting.

Another promise of the product is the fact it forms a barrier against environmental pollutants. Over the course of the six-week review my skin was definitely brighter, more balanced and even, and less red.

It’s difficult for me to categorically say whether that was because the jelly was protecting it from pollution, or if another ingredient in the formula was helping, but it was a welcomed improvement.

My only real complaint about the Clinique Jelly was that the pump dispenser can be tricky to get the hang of and it took me a while to work out the ideal amount of gel to cover my face and neck. One pump was too little while two pumps was a bit much. I erred on the side of putting on more than I needed but this meant I got through the pot much quicker than other moisturisers I’ve tested.

Which, at this price, was a bit galling.

BUY NOW

Clinique Hydrating Jelly Formula

Clinique Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly reviewmamabella | mamabella

The ingredients in Clinique’s Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly have been designed to hydrate and protect the skin

The ingredients in Clinique’s Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly have been designed to hydrate and protect the skin.

  • Clean Shield Technology: This technology is a blend of sunflower seed cake, barley extract, and cucumber fruit extract, designed to strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier and improve its resilience against pollution. Cucumber extract particularly is known for calming the skin, helping to reduce irritation.
  • Hyaluronic Acid: Known for its ability to retain up to 1,000 times its weight in water, hyaluronic acid helps draw moisture into the skin to keep it plumped and hydrated throughout the day.
  • Glycerin: Like hyaluronic acid, glycerin is known for its skin-repairing and hydrating properties. It’s a skin-identical ingredient that helps to maintain the skin’s barrier and overall hydration.
  • Caffeine: An antioxidant with stimulant properties, caffeine can help improve circulation, reduce puffiness, and protect the skin against environmental aggressors.

The formula is non-comedogenic, promising not to clog pores, and has been dermatologist-tested to confirm its efficacy. Its also fragrance-free which helps minimise the risk of irritation, making it a good for people with sensitive skin.


Clinique Hydrating Jelly review video

In my TikTok video below, I test the hydration levels of the Clinique Hydrating Jelly after five minutes, and an hour.

@victoria_woolly_web JESUS @Clinique UK’s Hydrating Jelly increased hydration by 12 points or 43.8% after 5 mins. This is the second-highest increase of any moisturiser tested, and higher than any serum. What’s more, the Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly continued to increase hydration by a further 2 points after an hour. Giving a total rise of 44.5%. Shame it’s so expensive (applied to damp skin) #mamabella #clinique #dramaticallydifferent #hydratingjelly #hydrationtest #bestmoisturiser #bestmoisturizer ♬ Flowers – Miley Cyrus


Clinique Dramatically Different Jelly review: Verdict

Clinique’s Hydrating Jelly is a refreshing alternative to many of the cream and lotion-based moisturisers I’ve tried that can be a bit heavy or slippery.

It has a lightweight, effective formula and during my six-week review period my skin improved across the board. It looked and felt more hydrated, it wasn’t as red or irritated, it was more balanced and it works wonders under makeup.

It’s not perfect. While this jelly was great for helping to balance my combination skin, I don’t think it would work well for people with very dry skin. Despite what the brand says.

At times, when my skin was particularly dry, I found it necessary to put additional, richer moisturiser on top at night. It’s also not as nourishing as other creams I’ve tried.

The pump can take a bit of getting used to, and not to mention that the jelly is expensive which will put it out of reach for many people.

But all things considered, if you can afford this moisturiser then I highly recommend it. If you can’t, the Purito Deep Sea Water Cream is a great, cheaper alternative.


How I tested the Clinique Hydrating Jelly

For my Clinique Hydrating Jelly review, I spent six weeks applying it to cleansed skin, morning and night.

In the morning, I applied it after my cleanser, toner, and serums. Throughout the testing period, I monitored how hydrated my skin looked and felt, if the jelly calmed redness or made irritation worse, if it helped balance my combination skin type, and if it caused breakouts.

FURTHER READING: How we test skincare to see if it lives up to its claims 


How to use Clinique Hydrating Jelly

The best results I got while testing the Clinique Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly came when I followed the steps below:

  • Cleanse your face – Clinique suggests using its Facial Soap beforehand but I used the Drunk Elephant Beste No. 9 Jelly Cleanser instead.
  • Sweep a hydrating toner over your skin
  • Apply your serums and treatments – during my review period I was using the Torriden Dive In Serum
  • While your skin is damp, massage the Clinique jelly into your face and neck in circular motions

Given its unique texture, I would recommend that you let it settle for a few seconds before applying your SPF in the morning.


Clinique Hydrating Jelly Ingredients

The following list of ingredients is taken from the INCI Decoder website. You can hover over each ingredient to find out more about it.

The numbers next to each ingredient represent its Irritation Rating (the number to the left of the comma), and then Comedogenic Rating (to the right of the comma).

Both ratings are scored out of five and the higher the number, the higher the chance of it causing irritation, or comedones (spots). Green means it has a low rating so is less likely to cause problems. Yellow and red numbers represent high ratings and are more likely to cause problems.

Water solv, Bis-Peg-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane emo|h|surf, Butylene Glycol h|solv 0 1, Glycerin sii|h 0 0, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract so|emo, Hypnea Musciformis (Algae) Extract, Gelidiella Acerosa Extract, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract\Extrait D’Orge emo, Padina Pavonica Thallus Extract , Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake abrasive/scrub, Sucrose h|so, Caffeine aox|perf, Sodium Hyaluronate sii|h 0 0, Hydroxyethyl Urea h, Hydrolyzed Rice Extract, Sorbitol h 0 0, Sodium Polyaspartate h, Ppg-6-Decyltetradeceth-30 emu|surf, Ethylhexylglycerin pres, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate emo, Caprylyl Glycol h|emo, Trehalose h, Polysorbate 80 emu|surf 0 0, Carbomer vc 0 1, Sodium Hydroxide buff, Hexylene Glycol solv|emu|perf|surf 01 02, Citric Acid buff, Sodium Citrate chel|buff, Disodium Edta chel, Phenoxyethanol pres

Hover the mouse / tap over an ingredient for short explanation. Read more on INCIDecoder.


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