The Top 3: Facial Cleansers


As much as it pains me, I had spent many years thinking that a tight, dry face after cleansing signaled that my skin was "clean." I look back on those dark ages wishing I could slap that tortured face right into a vat full of moisturizer, but luckily those days are far gone, and I've since tried my fair share of lovely cleansers that effectively cleanse without stripping. I've come across a lot of beautiful cleansers (and some terrible ones), but here's my personal top 3. 

Note - I remove my makeup prior to using cleansers with micellar waters and eye makeup remover (for those layers of waterproof mascara that these straight lashes require to hold a curl). I'm still in search of an oil cleanser or balm that my skin agrees with, so if you have suggestions please let me know!

Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser (6 oz. for $18.00): this cleanser has become something of a cult classic, and I'm fully on board this bandwagon. It's a creamy gel formula that removes the dirt, makeup & grime that my makeup removing steps left behind, while still leaving my face feeling nourished and healthy. I've never felt dry or itchy after rinsing, or that I'm over cleansing or stripping my skin. Plus my skin loves rosewater, which gives it its really lovely subtle scent. It's the cleanser I grab when I want something I know will work every time and I don't have to think about it - the simplicity of it is what makes it so great. Surprising game-changer - the fact that there's a lock/unlock function on the pump nozzle. Leaky cleansers in my travel bag? Not here!

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Ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Rosa Damascena Flower Water, PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Propanediol, Isohexadecane, Poloxamer 184, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Xylitylglucoside, Betaine, Allantoin, Glycerin, Panthenol, Symphytum Officinale Root Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Anhydroxylitol, Polysorbate 80, Xylitol, Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, Isopropyl Myristate, Benzoic Acid, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Hydroxide

Indie Lee Rosehip Cleanser (4 oz. for $32.00): my cleanser of choice for my nighttime routines, this mild cleanser comes out as a pink gel with a minimal foam. You'll sense a theme here, but it doesn't leave my skin dry or tight, and gives it the clean feeling without the squeakiness. There's rosehip oil in this, which is another ingredient my skin really enjoys, and in general the ingredient list is surprisingly short. It's in a pretty substantial glass bottle with a pump, so if you're travelling you'd probably want to decant - but for a cleanser that works so consistently well, it's worth the extra step!

Ingredients: Water, Sodium Olivate (Fatty Acid from Olive), Glycerin, Rosa Rubiginosa Seed Oil, Chondrus Crispus, Eriobotrya Japonica Extract

Dr Roebuck's CLEANSE Natural Nourishing Creme Cleanser (4.22 oz for $22.00)*: we're moving from gel cleansers to a creme cleanser that has the consistency of a runny moisturizer - which may not sound appealing but it's SO lovely. It has a warm apothecary scent to it, but what I really love about it is how soothing and nourishing it is. I prefer using this in the morning, but also grab for it anytime I'm trying to calm my skin from any irritation. Again, I get no dryness or tightness from this cleanser, and instead am left with a boost of hydration. It feels like a glass of milk for the face, super comforting and simple.

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Ingredients: Purified Water, Searic Acid, Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate*, Glycerin, Emulsifying Wax, Cocamidopropyl Betaine*, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Arnica Montana Flower Extract, Schinacea Purpea (Coneflower) Extract, Calendula Officinalis (Pot Marigold) Flower Extract, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Camellia Oleifera Seed Extract, P-Anisic, Coco-Caprylate, Glyceryl Caprylate (Natural Preservative). 

What do you typically look for in cleansers, and do you have a top 3? Let me know in the comments!

*Denotes products that were PR gifts, but all opinions are my own