There's nothing better than a quick spritz with a face mist or spray for refreshing tired skin in the morning or midday. Face mists are traditionally water-based liquids dispensed via spray bottles that can contain skincare ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and antioxidants, meant to deliver skin-nourishing and protective benefits.
But do face mists work? Yes! While they can't replace skincare treatments like serums and moisturizers, they do work to quickly cool, invigorate, and soften skin. You should use a face mist in the morning as a first step in your skincare routine after cleansing or to set makeup, to revive skin during the day, or after cleansing at night to prep your skin for other treatments.
Here, the best hydrating face mists and sprays you can buy, according to Good Housekeeping Institute Beauty Lab experts, including drugstore picks and finds with SPF, and picks to get glowing skin fast:
- High-end ingredients
- Aromatherapy benefits
A cult classic, this Caudalie face mist is said to be inspired by a recipe used by a 16th century Hungarian queen, blending orange flower water with rosemary, mint, and rose oils. "Every spritz of this feels like an indulgent, luxurious mini spa treatment thanks to the aromatherapy and instant skin-boosting effects," GH's beauty editor says.
- Large size
- Naturally-derived ingredients
Made with softening glycerin and aromatic rose flower water, this top drugstore face spray packs the best bang for your buck. "It smelled so heavenly and it really made my face feel fresh and hydrated" a reviewer said. "The perfect refreshing spray to keep in my bag for touch-ups on the go."
Based on moisturizing botanicals like aloe, chamomile, and olive extracts, this Jane Iredale face mist a beauty editor favorite for dry skin. "It instantly makes skin dewy and the fresh floral scent from ylang ylang essential oil is so pampering," GH's beauty editor says.
Biossance’s face mist is infused with skin-softening ingredients like hyaluronic acid and squalane. “I have pretty dry skin that sometimes flakes, and this makes it feel so much more hydrated,” says GH beauty assistant Katie Berohn. “When I use it under my skincare products, I can really see a difference in how hydrated my skin looks and feels.”
Top-rated on Amazon, this multi-use Baja Basics face spray is made of a single ingredient: 100% rose water. A "holy grail product, I use it on my hair, after I wash my face, to set my makeup, or to refresh my skin throughout the day," a reviewer raved. "It calms my skin."
From the New York City spa brand Mario Badescu, this face mist combines lavender water and oil with aloe, chamomile, and vitamin C to get skin glowing. “The spray feels calming on skin and makes it look dewy,” says GH Beauty Lab senior chemist Sabina Wizemann. “My skin soaks it up quickly and looks glowy and moisturized after, but the scent is the best part– it smells of lavender, which both energizes in the morning and relaxes at night."
GH Beauty Lab experts also love this classic “multifunctional” Avène mineral thermal water mist. “There’s just something about a cool spray against tired, dehydrated skin after a full day of makeup!” Wnek says. “I like using this right after I wash my face and before I apply either a moisturizer or serum or to bring my makeup back to life throughout the day—it doesn’t leave any film or aggravate my oily, acne-prone, sensitive skin.”
Bursting with a bouquet of plant oils and extracts, including rose water, lavender, honeysuckle, and neroli, this spritz is a GH beauty editor go-to. “It’s refreshing and a few spritzes wake up my skin with the perfect light, natural scent,” says beauty editor Dori Price. “I love starting my skincare routine with it.”
A double-duty pick, this MAC Cosmetics face mist functions both as a makeup primer and setting spray. “It gives my skin a light dose of moisture and doesn’t make my oily skin look or feel greasy throughout the day,” Wnek says.
Antioxidant powerhouse green, white, and black teas are the base of this True Botanicals face spray. "I keep this at my desk for midday pick-me-ups— the jasmine scent is so relaxing and I love that it gives my skin a quick layer of protection," GH's beauty editor says.
Mother Dirt's innovative spray is made with live probiotic bacteria to foster a healthy skin microbiome and barrier, key for sensitive complexions. GH's beauty director uses it on her eczema-prone face and body. "Instant relief! Chapped, itchy, red skin soothed after one spray," an Amazon reviewer raved.
A best-seller on Dermstore, Herbivore's face spray is a cocktail of skin-nourishing, radiance-boosting ingredients, including aloe, hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and rose water. "I love misting this over my face whenever I'm feeling dull and dry," a reviewer reported. "I feel like this really awakens the skin."
Like a thirst-quenching juice for your skin, Fresh's face spray invigorates both skin and senses with citrus extracts like orange and lemon. "I can't get enough of the citrusy scent and the fine mist relieves parched late afternoon face," GH's beauty editor says.
If you're a rose fan, look no further than this Rosen face mist, made with a trifecta of rose water, rosehip oil, and rose extract. Many Urban Outfitters reviewers called it "the best rose water mist". It's "magic in a bottle," one enthused. "My skin has a gorgeous glowy look all day."
Treat skin to a luxe indulgence with La Mer's face spritz, which contains a cocktail of the brand's signature marine botanicals. "More than just a water mist, it provides a non-greasy, non-sticky hydration layer with lasting comfort," a Nordstrom reviewer said.
Vichy's mini-sized mineral water face mist is TSA-friendly and small enough to tuck into any bag for toting on-the-go. "I use the travel-size to cool down my skin after a workout or at the beach," a Dermstore reviewer said.