Are You Using the Right Cleanser for Your Skin Type?

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The first step of our skincare routine usually starts with cleansing — simple, right? Think again. Just like how you use certain moisturizers to target specific skin concerns, using the right cleanser for your skin type is key.

Since there’s no shortage of cleanser brands and types these days, navigating your way through the face wash aisle is easier said than done. From oil, gel, foaming, cream, and more, here’s a guide to help you find the right cleanser for your skin type.

Normal Skin: For those without major skin concerns, try a multi-tasking cleanser to simplify your routine. For example, Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Cleanser is a foaming cleanser that contains glycolic and lactic acid and fruit enzymes to exfoliate your skin naturally without over-drying your skin.

Sensitive Skin: Avoid products that contain fragrance, which is considered a “trade secret” by the FDA. In other words, unless the product is marketed as a perfume, companies aren’t required to disclose the ingredients used as fragrance. Many people often have allergic reactions to these fragrance ingredients. Opt for a cleanser that’s formulated for sensitive skin. Try a simple bar soap like Dr. Bronner’s All-in-One Hemp Pure Castile Soap or a liquid cleanser like Philosophy’s Purity Made Simple Cleanser.

Combination SkinFoaming cleansers are ideal because they’re great at deep-cleaning your pores and lathering away oil, dirt, and makeup. We’re fans of GlamGlow’s SuperCleanse Daily Clearing Cleanser because it’s a fun mud-to-foam cleanser that also helps reduce blemishes.

Oily Skin: Gel cleansers (that are activated by water) are perfect for oily skin because they’ll get rid of excess oil without leaving your skin too dry. They’ll also help prevent breakouts by clearing away bacteria, which is great for acne-prone skin. A few of our oily skin picks include Youth to the People’s Age Prevention Cleanser (which uses the power of superfoods to protect your skin from free radicals) and Honest Beauty’s Refreshingly Clean Powder Cleanser (which is also travel-friendly!)

Dry Skin: Hydrating cream cleansers, like Caudalie’s Gentle Cleansing Milk, are the way to go for people with dry skin. You want to avoid ingredients that can leave your skin too dry like alcohol, ammonium lauryl sulfate, or sodium sulfate. It’s also a good idea to avoid foaming cleansers because they might strip too much of your skin’s much-needed oils.

What are your favorite cleansers? Share with us in the comments!