Our Top 10 Lists help shoppers quickly and easily find what they need. Using an intense review and approval process (which you can learn more about here), we break down the best products according to what consumers most commonly search for and want.
There are two types of people in this world: those who spend years searching for the perfect face wash and those who reach for whatever's lying around. Regardless of how you identify, dermatologists and skincare experts agree that a good face wash is an essential step in any solid skincare routine. That being said, finding the right face wash is anything but easy. The best formulas work to remove everyday debris that clogs pores—think dirt, excess oil, and pollution. They'll also work to cleanse the skin, but they'll do so without stripping away the good oils or leaving your skin feeling dry and tight.
When choosing a face wash, it's also important to look for something that jives with your unique skin type. For example, those with sensitive skin should reach for cleansers that contain gentle ingredients and skip the fragrances, while oily and acne-prone skin types should look for ingredients like AHAs and glycolic acid. If you feel like this is a lot to remember, you're not alone. To make your search for the perfect face wash a little easier, we've done the hard work for you. Ahead, discover and shop our data-driven list of the best facial cleansers you can buy—all backed by our data-driven algorithm.
Our Method For Finding The Best Facial Cleansers
Whether you're a minimal, wash-and-moisturize kind of girl or hell-bent on a 10-step lineup, starting with a clean canvas is the best way to reap the benefits of the products you plan to layer on afterward. This is why it's crucial to use a top-notch cleanser that's specifically formulated for your skin type—grabbing any old bar of soap just won't do. With that in mind, we set out to find the best facial cleansers the internet has to offer, all with the help of our data-driven algorithm. This proprietary tool factors in rave reviews, editor recommendations, social media buzz, and more to churn out the best product recommendations on the web. From splurge-worthy options to a drugstore gem under $15, keep scrolling to shop top-rated cleansers from trusted brands like Origins, SkinCeuticals, First Aid Beauty, and more.
Next up, check out the 10 Best Toners. Opening image: sephora.com
Top 10 Lists serve as unbiased shopping guides to the most trusted product recommendations on the internet. Products are scored and ranked using an algorithm backed by data consumers find most valuable when making a purchase. We are reader-supported and may earn a commission when you shop through our links.
First Aid Beauty Pure Skin Face Cleanser
BEST FOR REDNESS
WHY YOU NEED IT: Free of irritating fragrances, this creamy, gentle cleanser boasts a non-stripping, pH-balanced formula that's safe for skin types prone to redness. With calming ingredients like aloe, allantoin, and glycerin, the formula soothes the skin and smooths its appearance.
THINGS TO KNOW: Thanks to a powerful antioxidant blend, this face wash helps protect the skin from environmental aggressors that can lead to excess irritation and redness.
Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Cleansing Gel
BEST FOR DRY SKIN
WHO IT'S FOR: Loved by those who struggle with dry spots, this award-winning drugstore cleanser is clinically proven to increase and lock hydration into the skin. It applies like a gel and lathers into a rich foam that dissolves away debris like bacteria, dirt, and makeup.
LOVED FOR: This formula is soap-, oil-, and paraben-free.
Fresh Soy Face Cleanser
BEST FOR FINE LINES
WHAT IT DOES: A blend of soothing ingredients like rosewater, cucumber, and aloe vera combine to deliver this spa-worthy experience. The formula is pH-balanced and uses the power of soy proteins to melt away makeup and reduce the look of impurities and imperfections.
FROM THE EXPERTS: During an in-vivo test, 97% of participants said their skin was more supple after using this anti-aging cleanser, and 93% said it perfectly soothed and softened the skin.
SkinCeuticals LHA Cleanser Gel
BEST FOR ACNE-PRONE SKIN
WHAT IT DOES: This pick is definitely a splurge, but it's so worth it. The deep-digging formula works to decongest the pores with a boost from cell-by-cell exfoliation. And thanks to a potent combo of chemical exfoliants, it delivers a refined, brightened skin tone in the process.
USERS SAID: “Researched the SkinCeuticals line of products in the months prior to my summer wedding. Thanks to the LHA cleanser, my skin was glowing from my face to my bare back in my TOTALLY backless gown.”
Vanicream Gentle Facial Cleanser
BEST FOR SENSITIVE SKIN
WHY YOU NEED IT: Free of dyes, parabens, and fragrances, this affordable facial cleanser is one of the most gentle in the game.
THINGS TO KNOW: Don't let the word "gentle" fool you—this cleanser removes everything from excess oil to makeup.
Origins Checks and Balances Frothy Face Wash
BEST FOR COMBINATION SKIN
WHAT IT DOES: With a blend of skin-loving ingredients like kelp extract, wheat protein, and tourmaline, this cleanser works to balance out combination skin types. After a few washes, you'll notice that both your dry and oily zones are left feeling comfortably clean and balanced.
WHY YOU NEED IT: This cleanser does so much more than leave your skin squeaky-clean—it also uplifts the mind through soothing aromatherapy with a blend of essential oils, including field mint, bergamot, lavender, and geranium.
Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser
WHY YOU NEED IT: Ideal for various skin concerns from acne to eczema, this formula is pH balanced, free of soap, and contains a ton of fatty alcohols to avoid the dreaded post-cleanse tightness.
USERS SAID: "This facial cleanser is my ride or die. I struggled with light acne through my teens and early twenties and would jump from one cleanser to another just trying to find something that worked. Something must have told me to stick with this one, and once I started to be consistent with using this morning and night—WOW."
SkinMedica AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser
WHO IT'S FOR: For those new to the anti-aging skincare game, this exfoliating cleanser is the perfect revision to an existing routine. The formula unclogs pores by ridding everyday impurities, excess oil, and makeup, improving skin texture, tone, and smoothness.
USER REVIEW "I've been using this cleanser twice a day for about a month, and it's made a positive difference in the appearance of my skin. I am in my 50s and live in an arid climate, so I wanted an exfoliating product to help with dryness. My skin is softer, looks more youthful, and never feels tight or dry after cleansing. Great product. Highly recommend!"
DHC Deep Cleansing Oil
BEST CLEANSING OIL
WHY YOU NEED IT: Rich in vitamins and antioxidants, this formula provides your skin with all of the moisture it needs and removes every trace of makeup, leaving you with a nourished, younger-looking appearance.
FROM THE EXPERTS: In a clinical study, 92% of participants agreed this product works better than a leading cleanser at removing complexion makeup.
CeraVe Hydrating Face Wash
THINGS TO KNOW: Raved about by dermatologists and TikTok influencers alike, this best-selling cleanser works to remove dirt, oil, and makeup without leaving the skin tight or dry. It's also won two Allure Best of Beauty Awards.
WHY YOU NEED IT: This formula is developed with dermatologists to help retain skin's natural moisture and uses three essential ceramides to cleanse, hydrate, and restore skin with every wash. Thanks to hyaluronic acid, it practically guarantees hydration and a healthy moisture barrier.