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8 Types Of Face Cleansers For Your Skin Type

Determining which face cleanser is best for your skin type is a fundamental step in personalizing your skincare routine.

In our post "A Derm's Recommended Skin Cleansing Method," we briefly discussed the "double cleansing method" of removing makeup and then washing your face in two separate steps, rather than in one.

But today we’ll briefly review the actual cleanser products, and how to find your right one!

It’s easy to get overwhelmed, especially when there’s a ton of different options. Reviewing the basics & knowing the differences between each type allows you to filter your options. It's easy to get overwhelmed but we'll break it down here. Through some trial & error, you’ll find the right one for you in no time!


Cream cleansers are usually a thick substance rubbed into a lather. They often contain moisturizing ingredients like botanical oils and cleanse your skin without stripping off its natural oils.

You may see these cleansers come as cleansing “milk” or “lotions” and see keywords like “hydration” used. They are great for Dry and Sensitive Skin.


Gel cleansers are typically light, colored, and not milky. They are generally designed for deep cleansing and are more effective at unclogging pores. They can remove excess oil and sometimes kill acne-causing bacteria. They may contain antiseptic and/or exfoliating additives and work best for Oily and Combination Skin.


These cleansers are generally lightweight and start as a cream or gel and turn into a vibrant, foamy lather during the cleaning process. This type of cleanser removes excess oil just as effectively as gel cleansers. It’s best for Oily & Combination Skin.


Although using oils on your skin may sound counter-intuitive, especially if you have oily skin. Most experts disagree.

Oil cleansers are gentle and help remove sebum & debris from pores - including waterproof makeup; without drying your skin. It’s great for All Skin Types.


Have fantastic absorbing power and can easily pull excess oil & toxins from the skin as well as purify your skin down to the pores. Best used with Oily & Combination Skin.


Start as wax and melt into an oil-like liquid when applied. You might need to wash your face with a separate cleanser. Try for Dry & Sensitive Skin.


These feature “micelles,” which are tiny oil molecules suspended in soft water. They attract oil, dirt, and makeup. Best of all, you don’t need to rinse them off with water. Use for Dry & Sensitive Skin.


With cleansing wipe cloths, mitts, and/or sponges. There’s a lot to choose from! Just a few examples include muslin cloths, Kassa mitts, and konjac sponges.

These products are made with unique fibers, that are often plant-derived and help remove dead skin cells and impurities via a mechanical method.


While this is only meant to be a high-level introduction to the many types of cleansers available on the market. Finding the right one for you will take patient trial and error.

Not only does the product have to work for your skin type, but it also works with the other products (such as moisturizers) in your skin regimen.

Depending on your skin type and skin regimen goals, we recommend you try a particular cleanser category above then narrow down on a particular brand that seems to work well with your other products.

Remember to start slow and work your way up to using more often. The good news is cleansers, for the most part, are quite gentle and at most may cause skin drying from excessive usage - which can be quickly remedied. We wish you the best in your search and as always hoped you enjoyed this post and found the information useful. Let us know your favorite cleansers and brands below or leave us a comment or message!

~The HealFast Medical team


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