Essential for removing makeup and daily grime, cleansing is arguably the most important stage in your skincare routine.
And face wipes just don’t cut it, as this shocking video from a cosmetic doctor shows. You need to be using a best cleanser, worked thoroughly into the skin and then removed with a splash of water or a clean flannel.
Fortunately nowadays there’s a formula for every skin type. Gel cleansers will leave normal-to-oily skin types feeling refreshed, while micellar waters are a quick and easy way to get rid of makeup (although are best followed with a cream or gel cleanser to remove any lingering surfactants).
If your skin errs more towards the dry side, an oil-based cleanser or a thick, dense balm, massaged in then removed with a damp cloth, are great at effortlessly removing makeup, while a cream texture makes an excellent morning or second cleanse.
Read on to see which ones get five-star reviews from the OK! beauty team…
Best micellar cleanser
CeraVe Micellar Cleansing Water, £10 here
The beauty editor-favourite skincare brand has just added a new micellar water to its line-up of cleansers. This promises to whisk away makeup and grime with a quick sweep of a cotton pad, and it’s also packed with CeraVe’s trademark blend of skin barrier-bolstering ceramides.
Tester says: “I think CeraVe's cleansers are brilliant, so I was excited to try this new one. It removes my makeup easily (although stubborn mascara will take a couple of swipes), and doesn't leave skin feeling at all dry. The instructions say you don't need to rinse your face afterwards, but I always like give my face a quick splash anyway after using a micellar water." 5/5
Best cleanser for blemish-prone skin
SLMD Skincare Salicylic Acid Cleanser, available in the Winter Wonderland OK! Beauty Box, worth £140 but costs just £4.95
Created by Dr Sandra Lee – aka Dr Pimple Popper – who certainly knows a thing or two about keeping breakouts at bay. This gel cleanser will gently remove dirt from pores without stripping the skin.
You can find a full size tube of this cleanser, worth £26, inside the Winter Wonderland OK! Beauty Box, which is packed full of top products for your skin and body. The box contains five beauty must-haves and is worth an impressive £140 – including a night cream worth over £50 alone – but new customers can pick it up for just £4.95 here when they shop using the code 67FIRST BOX – that's 67% off the usual monthly subscription cost of £15.
About SLMD Skincare Salicylic Acid Cleanser, tester says: "I love using a gel-textured cleanser in my morning shower, and this is an excellent one. It has quite a runny consistency, so it rinses off super easily, and has a lovely fresh, eucalyptus scent. This leaves oily or combination skin feeling really clean, and I like the fact that I'm giving more pores a gentle exfoliation every time I use it." 5/5
Best oil cleanser
REN Clean Skincare Perfect Canvas Clean Jelly Oil Cleanser, £25 here
Suitable for all skin types, this contains three oils to effectively break down makeup and grime. REN also gets brownie points for the packaging – the tube is made from 50% post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic, with the cap made from 100% PCR plastic.
Tester says: “This comes out as a thick, balm-like jelly, which then transforms into a milk when water is added, rinsing away completely clean. It made short work of my makeup, removing every speck of mascara with hardly any effort required, and my skin was left feeling really soft and smooth. Seriously impressive!” 5/5
Best balm cleanser
Palmer's Coconut Monoi Cleansing Balm, £7.50 here
A blend of coconut, monoi and sweet almond oils work to melt away makeup.
Tester says: “I suffer with dry skin so I look for a really hydrating cleanser, and this is perfect! It feels so nourishing, removes makeup – including mascara – in one application, and leaves my skin feeling soft and dewy. I also love the tropical coconut oil scent, which reminds me of the beach. A really great, soothing cleanser that I'd definitely re-buy.” 5/5
Best cream cleanser
Indeed Labs Hydraluron Cream Cleanser, £19.99 here
Part of the Hydraluron range, this contains papaya enzymes to brighten the skin, and it’s also packed full of hydrating hyaluronic acid.
Tester says: “There aren’t really any bells or whistles with this, but it’s just a really good, basic, suits-all cream cleaner. It rinses away easily, and while it won’t remove eye makeup, it does leave skin feeling soft and smooth. If you’re totally unsure what your skin needs, you can’t go wrong with this.” 4/5
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