Emollients are substances that moisten and soften your skin. Topical (for the skin) emollients are used to treat or prevent dry skin. Topical emollients are sometimes contained in products that also treat acne, chapped lips, diaper rash, cold sores, or other minor skin irritation. There are many brands and forms of topical emollients available and not all are listed on this leaflet. Topical emollients may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.