With so many different types of cleansers out there, it can be hard to choose the right one for your specific skin type and need. We have compiled a cheat sheet for you to spare you from confusion!
Foam Cleansers (ideal for combination skin)
These cleansers are the most common type of facial wash and known for its soft, cloudy feel which we all love! They are lightweight and usually come in the form of cream, liquid or gel that transforms into a foamy lather when combined with water. They gently exfoliate the skin while removing excess oil and impurities. If you have sensitive or acne prone skin, be careful of a harsh foaming agent called Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) as it can strip your skin of its natural oils, drying it out and causing irritation. This ingredient gives foaming cleansers a bad reputation, but there are many great foaming cleansers out there without SLS.
Gel Cleansers (ideal for oily and acne prone skin, even if it’s sensitive)
Gel-based products are generally known to be the best option for oily skin types, and that’s no different for cleansers. Gel cleansers do a fantastic job at unclogging pores and removing excess oils and acne-causing bacteria from your skin. Pair it with other gel-based products and it will do your skin wonders!
Oil and Balm Cleansers (ideal for all skins)
Cleansing oils and balms are perfect as a part of a double cleansing process, but may also be used as standalone cleansers of course. They often contain light oils and surfactants to melt away dirt, excess oil, makeup and sebum from your skin while unclogging pores. Yes, even oily skin types can use oil cleansers! Their balm counterpart, on the other hand, are not recommended for oily skin types as it might be too heavy. They are great for very dry skin though! Please ensure you completely remove the balm afterwards.
Milk Cleansers (ideal for dry and sensitive skin)
Although not actually made of milk, usually, they get their name from their creamy white color and texture that resembles that of milk. Because they don’t contain any surfactants and their formulas are rich in water, these gentle type of cleansers are perfect for people with dry, sensitive and/or dehydrated skin. Acne prone skin types may also benefit from milk cleansers as they help calm down redness and reduce irritation. Because of their light formulas, however, they aren’t highly recommended to remove makeup. They are ideal for a mild morning cleanse or as a second cleanser in the evening.