- Facial cleansers clear away excess oil, impurities and makeup from your skin.
- Cream and oil cleansers are best suited to dry and sensitive skin types.
- Clay, bar, gel and foaming cleansers help to control oily and acne-prone skin.
A good facial cleanser will not only leave your skin feeling clean and refreshed, but also help to target your specific skin type and concerns.
There are various types of skincare cleansers, with different formulations and consistencies – from lightweight gel cleansers to deeply nourishing creams and oils. The active ingredients and their properties vary between cleansers – some offer exfoliation while others work to soothe the skin.
Benefits of a Good Facial Cleanser
Facial cleansers are designed to be used at the start of your routine, to lift away oils and impurities from your skin. This leaves it clean, refreshed and prepared for the rest of your routine, allowing for better absorption of products.
Cleansers developed for oily and acne-prone skin provide oil-controlling benefits, while mild, hydrating cleansers help to moisturize dry and sensitive skin. Anti-aging cleansers contain active ingredients, such as retinol, to combat visible signs of aging.
Best Facial Cleansers for Every Skin Type
Cleansers vary on their ingredients and formulations – it’s important to recognize these differences in order to find the right cleanser for your skin’s requirements.
The main types of cleanser include:
Cleansers for oily skin
Oily skin is a result of your pores producing too much sebum – a natural oil that helps to protect and lubricate your skin.
Clay cleansers absorb and draw out oils and impurities deep from within your pores, making them an effective choice for oily skin. Likewise, bar and foaming cleansers provide a more intense cleanse than other variants, clearing away stubborn oils and impurities.
Cleansers for combination skin
Gel cleansers have a lightweight consistency and typically provide hydrating benefits. They can be used to hydrate dry areas, while also controlling sebum on the oilier areas of your face. Look for cleansers containing lactic acid, which has been found to exfoliate your skin and act as a humectant, helping to lock in moisture.
Cleansers for dry skin
Dry skin lacks moisture and has a coarse texture, accompanied by a flaky appearance. Choose a cleanser with hydrating ingredients, such as hyaluronic acid and ceramides to draw and lock moisture into your skin.
Cream and oil cleansers have the thickest and most nourishing consistencies, making them the best choice for treating dry skin.
Cleansers for normal skin
Most cleanser formulations and ingredients are well-tolerated by normal skin.
For added benefit, choose a cleanser with added antioxidants, such as Vitamin C and E. Antioxidants help to protect your skin from sun exposure and pollution – both of which are responsible for causing signs of premature aging.
Good Facial Cleansers for Your Skin Concerns
Facial cleansers can also be used to treat various skin concerns, from controlling acne and eczema to combating signs of aging.
Cleansers for acne
Acne is a common skin condition that results in pimples, blackheads and inflammation of the skin. It occurs as a result of excess oil and clogged pores. Due to their lightweight formula, gel cleansers are an effective option for those with acne-prone skin. Alternatively, choose a clay cleanser to draw out excess oil and unclog your pores.
Look for cleansers containing salicylic acid, a popular anti-acne ingredient. It works by deeply exfoliating inside the walls of your pores, unclogging debris. This reduces the appearance of blemishes and helps to control future breakouts.
Cleansers for mature skin
The most common signs of aging are fine lines, wrinkles and age spots. To combat these, use a cream or oil cleanser to deeply moisturize your skin – well-hydrated skin appears plumper and more youthful.
When it comes to active ingredients, choose a cleanser containing retinol. This powerful ingredient improves the appearance of various signs of aging, including lines, wrinkles and an uneven complexion. It does this by increasing collagen production and thickening your skin.
Cleanser for eczema
Eczema is a skin condition characterized by areas of skin that become dry, itchy, cracked and red. Use a cream cleanser to protect and hydrate your skin, ideally with soothing ingredients, such as colloidal oatmeal.
The beta-glucans in colloidal oatmeal help to relieve the itching and inflammation caused by eczema, while also providing moisturization.
Other Factors to Consider
If you are looking for a cleanser to brighten your complexion, opt for once containing chemical exfoliants, including lactic and glycolic acid. These ingredients stimulate cell turnover, clearing away dead skin cells and revealing a more radiant complexion.
For men who regularly shave their face, opt for cleansers that contain soothing ingredients to reduce any potential redness. These include chamomile, aloe vera and cucumber.
Cleansers are an essential part of your daily routine, working to clear away oils and impurities from your skin. With the right ingredients and formulations, they can also be used to treat various skin types and conditions. Therefore, it’s important to understand your skin type and the ingredients that work in harmony with it.
Those with oily and acne-prone skin types should opt for gel, foaming or clay-based cleansers containing oil-controlling ingredients, such as salicylic acid and bentonite clay. Cream and oil cleansers are best suited for those with eczema or dry skin.
To treat aging skin, use a hydrating gel or cream cleanser infused with anti-aging ingredients, such as retinol.
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