Hear us out.
Cleansers might just be the most underrated product in your skincare routine.
Are they as flashy as glow-giving chemical exfoliants, or as fancy as serums loaded with active ingredients?
But literally everyone needs an effective cleanser in their routine.
Not just any cleanser - the right cleanser for your specific skin type and concerns.
Wait… am I using the wrong cleanser, you ask?
Not to sound dramatic, but buying cleansers that aren’t suited to your skin has the potential to impair your skin barrier (the thing that ensures your skin can function properly).
Or, maybe your face wash isn’t adequately cleansing the skin, which can lead to uneven skin texture, congestion and breakouts.
From balms and gentle cleansers, to exfoliating gels and blemish products, there are a lot of cleansers to choose from.
Confused? This article was written for you.
We asked our resident dermal therapist to break down which one's right for you (and the cleansers to avoid).
Best Cleanser for Taking Off Makeup (& Sunscreen).
Ever find yourself scrubbing to remove that last ounce of stubborn mascara?
Or feeling like you’ve still got sunscreen on your skin after cleansing?
You need a cleansing balm.
More specifically, our award-winning Melting Moment Cleansing Balm, or the new Limited Edition Melting Moment Cleansing Balm Sage.
According to dermal therapist and Alpha-H's Clinical Training and Education Manager LeeAnne Leslie, everyone can use a cleansing balm.
Yep, even oily skin types.
“This delicious and nourishing balm-to-oil cleanser effectively melts away makeup and SPF, unblocks pores and leaves skin glowing and fresh,” she says.
“Skin feels nourished – never stripped, tight or dry.”
Best Cleansers for Double Cleansing.
Double cleansing is the practice of washing your face twice.
First, with an oil or balm cleanser to remove sunscreen, makeup, sweat and daily debris, followed by a second water-based cleanser to effectively clean the skin.
Does everyone need to double cleanse? Not really.
One cleanser can definitely get the job done for time-poor and low maintenance people.
Double cleansing is a good idea, though, if you’re a regular makeup wearer, or you spend a lot of time outside or exercising.
LeeAnne adds, “Any leftover grime on the skin can potentially disrupt your delicate pH balance, compromise your protective barrier, and leave your skin open to external aggressors that can lead to adverse effects like irritation and premature ageing.”
To try double cleansing, gently massage a generous amount of your cleansing balm into dry skin to break down makeup before removing with water or a face cloth.
Follow with the best cleanser for your skin type (more on that below!) for cleansed skin that feels supple, not squeaky.
Best Cleanser for Blemish-Prone Skin.
Breakouts can happen to anyone - anywhere on your body - no matter your skin type.
Subbing a dedicated acne/blemish cleanser into your routine is the most effective way to manage this skin concern ongoing.
Salicylic Acid is a clinically-proven ingredient for improving the look of breakouts and blemishes on your face and body.
The BHA (beta hydroxy acid) is an oil-soluble exfoliating acid, meaning it can exfoliate deeper within the pore to break down acne-causing oil and bacteria.
Clear Skin Daily Face & Body Wash has a non-stripping gel texture and contains 2% Salicylic Acid to target breakouts while reducing the appearance of inflammation.
Added Thyme, Tea Tree and Eucalyptus remove bacteria on the skin, and Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide) helps control excess oil and brighten the look of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
That's the red, pink or brown spots left behind once a blemish has cleared.
Above, you can see some Clear Skin before and after results from our 12-week clinical trial!
Best Cleanser for Dry Skin & Sensitive Skin.
Does your skin feel parched, dry, or tight after cleansing?
Or maybe it gets flaky, red or sensitive throughout the day?
Gel, foaming or exfoliating cleansers can be too stripping for dry or impaired skins, but a cream cleanser is a dry skin staple.
“The Alpha-H Balancing Cleanser is a creamy multi-tasking cleanser made with luxurious Vitamin E and Aloe Vera,” LeeAnne says.
“The gentle non-stripping formula respects the skin's natural pH balance, and calms stressed or irritated skin, while still effectively cleansing and preparing skin for your next skincare steps.”
After removing makeup and/or sunscreen with your balm cleanser, apply the cream formula to damp skin before rinsing with water.
Best Cleanser for Oily Skin & Combination Skin.
For oily or combination skin-havers, a cream cleanser likely won’t cut it.
You need something that’ll remove excess sebum (oil), mitigate midday shine, and get rid of any acne-causing bacteria on the skin to prevent breakouts and clogged pores.
LeeAnne's recommendation? The Triple Action Cleanser.
It's a refreshing non-foaming gel formula that effectively cleanses the skin, without stripping your natural oils.
“Thyme Extract fights the spread of oil and bacteria, working to reduce the length and severity of breakouts, whilst the natural anti-inflammatory properties of Aloe Vera and Cucumber work to calm stressed skin.”
Now you know which cleansers to use, and not to use.
Go forth, friends, and pick the right one for you, and add it to cart!