Many people who have oily skin use a face wash specifically designed for oily skin.
If you have oily skin, cleansing twice daily (morning and night) is paramount to keeping excess oil at a minimum.
The best face washes for oily skin will rid the skin of pore clogging impurities and will help keep acne under control:
1. Neostrata Ultra Brightening Cleanser
This non drying, soap free cleanser from Neostrata creates a light foam that effectively eliminates makeup, oil and dirt. Alongside this, it contains a radiance-renewing formulation which performs a deep cleansing action to promote an even, healthy-looking complexion with a luminous glow.
It also has some powerful ingredients such as orange peel and vanilla extracts and lemon balm. On application, the skin will be gently exfoliated which will refresh the complexion.
The inclusion of NeoGlucosamine (a patented non acid amino sugar that delivers firming and anti aging properties) make this cleanser ideal for oily skin sufferers who are looking to reduce the appearance of dark spots or scarring, caused either by acne or hyper-pigmentation.
2. Bioderma Sebium Purifying Cleansing Foaming Gel
Despite the name, Bioderma’s Cleansing Foaming Gel is about a lot more than just cleansing the skin. This gel is composed of zinc sulfate and copper sulfate, which helps to keep pores from being clogged. The soap free formula is gentle and also respects the skin’s balance.
It’s high ranking is due to the fact that it actively works to reduce the skin’s irregularities and mattifies the skin at the same time. In case you were wondering whether this is all too good to be true, the natural complex of this gel was even patented by the Dermatological Advanced Formulation, which is a testament to the brand’s ongoing work with biologists and dermatologists.
Additionally, the gel also reduces the secretion of sebum (which is what contributes to an oily T-zone) ensuring that it is of better quality in order to reduce breakouts. Gentle and effective, it is hard to go wrong with this product.
3. Biore Daily Baking Soda Liquid Cleanser for Combination Skin
Biore’s Liquid Cleanser comprises of powerful exfoliating and cleansing properties of natural baking soda. The brand claim that skin feels up to 91% cleaner. Also approved by dermatologists, it penetrates pores to remove impurities such as dirt and oil while exfoliating dead skin cells away.
Delivering a reasonable concentration of salicylic and citric acid, it is safe enough to use on a daily basis. It would be ideal if glycerin wasn’t one of the primary ingredients, but the appearance of salicylic acid, which has been hailed for its pore minimizing properties, make this is a very solid cleanser.
4. L’Oreal Paris Skincare Pure Clay Purify and Mattify Facial Cleanser
L’Oreal Paris’s skincare range has become very popular in recent years. Their facial cleansers are powered by three different clays and on application, they transform from to mousse, which removes impurities from the skin without overdrying it. Some skincare experts may argue that clay-based products should only be in face masks, but the advantage is that these ones are light enough to wash off.
The Purify and Mattify cleanser is ideal for oily skin types. The formula is enhanced with eucalyptus and it removes excess sebum from the skin for a refreshed look and feel. Unlike the cleansers already mentioned, salicylic and citric acid are some of the last ingredients mentioned, however, zinc is a more active ingredient which is promising. Zinc is beneficial for reducing skin inflammation and acne related scarring.
5. Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser for Normal to Oily Skin
Cetaphil’s Daily Facial Cleanser comprises of a low foaming formulation which makes it gentle enough for everyday use. It removes surface oils, dirt and makeup without stripping the skin of its natural oils. This cleanser already stands out from the crowd due to the fact that it is unscented and in addition to this, the skin isn’t left with that tight, dry feeling which can lead to irritation.
A contrast compared to its competitors is that this cleanser doesn’t have any of the acids as a key ingredient. Glycerin and Hydrogenated Castor Oil are the only significant components, meaning that it wouldn’t be ideal for skin that is extremely oily.
Another minor disadvantage is the fact that it is being marketed as suitable for normal to oily skin when the majority of face washes are specifically formulated for different skin types. There is barely any congruity between normal and oily skin types. This cleanser has reviewed well among users who have oily skin.
6. La Roche Posay Effaclar Purifying and Foaming Gel
This paraben free gel has a soap and dye free base. It cleans up the skin and with the help of zinc and glycacil, supports the elimination of excess sebum. The light texture of this gel make it ideal for skin that has also been impacted by irritation as well as excess oil.
Restorative La Roche Posay thermal spring water ensures that skin is left feeling clean and fresh. To end, this focuses on ingredients such as citric acid and sodium hydroxide. In order to get the best results, the gel needs to be worked into a lather and applied every morning and evening by massaging it gently into the skin. The fragrance is also pleasant which makes it a decent choice.
7. Neocutis Exfoliating Skin Cleanser
This cleanser from Neo Cleanse has been formulated without harsh sulfates, dyes or fragrances for skin that feels fresh and clean after cleansing. It promises to retexturize and purify the skin as well as hydrate the skin due to the appearance of glycerin. It also primes skin prior to procedures.
As a cleanser that is free from additives and fragrances, this hasn’t been tested on animals. It’s low ranking is due to the fact that it’s marketed as being suitable for normal to oily skin.
On a positive note, it does contain AHA’s (alpha hydroxy acids) which work actively to reduce the size of enlarged pores. Minimized pores will ultimately reduce the production of oil, which makes this the perfect choice if you are susceptible to stubborn pores.
8. Neutrogena Oil Free Acne Cleanser
This cleanser from Neutrogena is perfect for oily skin sufferers who have problems with acne. The face wash is a combination of a powerful acne treatment and cleanser in one. The oil free formula, which contains 2% salicylic acid is residue free and non comedogenic, which means it will not block pores.
Other ingredients include citric acid and aloe leaf and chamomile extracts. It is gentle on the skin and the exfoliating properties resurface the skin and leave it feeling soft. The gel has been crediting by many reviewers for reducing acne, so it definitely serves its purpose.
9. Burt’s Bees Soap Bark and Chamomile Deep Cleansing Cream
This deep cleansing cream is 99% natural according to Burt’s Bees, and is formulated with soap bark. Soap bark is a natural cleansing agent that effectively removes dirt, oil and makeup. Additionally, the cream is also infused with aloe vera, chamomile and echinacea to moisturize and soothe skin.
Coconut oil is also an active ingredient in this cream as well as tarragon, lemon and jasmine oil. Essential oils have a number of skin benefits but they are not compatible with every skin type. What stands out about this cream is the addition of chamomile, which has a calming and soothing effect on the skin. Also, it doesn’t contain most of the chemicals found in other face washes which is an added bonus.
10. Garnier SkinActive Micellar Foaming Face Wash
This all in one face wash is gentle and kind to skin. Micellar water contains small particles called micelles and their job is to mop up dirt and makeup while hydrating your skin. They trap dirt, oil and makeup which allows the micelles to dissolve impurities. One of the reasons why micellar-based products have been highly praised is due to the fact that they do not irritate the skin, and Garnier’s offering is no exception.
97% of users said that the wash left their skin perfectly clean. Key cleansing ingredients such as citric acid and sodium hydroxide and grapefruit water are present in this face wash.
Who should buy face wash for oily skin?
Face washes for oily skin are suitable for women and men who are 13 and over.
Oily skin is defined as excess of oil on the face which produces a persistently shiny or greasy appearance. A person’s skin type is determined by how much oil the skin on your face produces, and skin changes usually occur once you reach your teenage years. Your skin type can be categorized as dry, combination, sensitive or oily.
If you do have oily skin, treating it is highly recommended. If oily skin isn’t treated, pores can become clogged and enlarged, which leads to breakouts. People who have oily skin are a lot more likely to have blackheads, pimples and other types of acne.
If your face is shiny and usually appears greasy later as the day progresses, then you have oily skin. Oily skin sufferers usually experience a shinier than usual complexion between the hours of 12:00 – 4:00pm. All this means is that your sebaceous glands are producing a lot more sebum than they should. Using a face wash to balance and clear the skin is essential in the battle against oil production.
How we ranked
We looked for face washes that effectively eliminated oil, dirt and makeup with powerful ingredients.We also looked for formulations that are proven to improve the condition of oily skin.
According to Tiege.com, salicylic acid and niacinamide are both effective ingredients as they both eliminate build up and improve the appearance of the skin. Neutralized salicylic acid at a 1% concentration is a suitable exfoliant agent for all types of sensitive skin. Niacinamide is also said to improve skin’s elasticity (1) and even the appearance of wrinkles.
NCBI claim that just 2% of Niacinamide can lower sebum production within two weeks (2). It also has oil absorbing properties, which is essential in order for a face wash for oily skin to serve its purpose.
Labelling rules for products have changed so manufacturers have to list all of the ingredients in their products. Products that deliver ingredients such as salicylic and citric acid proved to be a lot more effective and this was due to them being one of the primary ingredients in the face wash (3).
Finally, research from the American Academy of Dermatology supports the fact that how you wash your face can make a difference in your appearance, and also that it’s best to stay away from products that contain alcohol. Face washes that have a light texture were at the top of our list because they cause the least amount of damage.
The lower ranking face washes were much thicker and contained a combination of ingredients that would question their effectiveness.
A face wash is formulated to cleanse the skin. They remove the normal accumulation of dirt and oils and even makeup, sunscreen and dead skin cells. Face washes work overtime to leave your skin looking and feeling refreshed. In order to get the most out of a face wash, you will need to cleanse twice a day: once in the morning and once in the evening. Washing your face twice daily will protect your skin and prevent imperfections such as spots and blemishes (4).
If you wash your face a little too much, you may experience dryness or other forms of irritation such as itching. If this happens, you need to stop using your face wash immediately. Instead of washing your face, try to use a cleansing oil. Cleansing oils do not make oily skin look even oilier, this is a myth. As long as you use one that’s been formulated for oily skin (or that is lightweight), your skin will be back to normal in no time.
Stinging skin can occur as a result of an allergic reaction and it is definitely not to be ignored. A lot of people are under the impression that if a product makes your face tingle, then that’s just a sign that it’s working. This isn’t the case. If your skin starts to sting, then you are either applying too much force or you have combined the product with another product that it may not be compatible with.
In order to reduce the risk of build up, which can lead to breakouts, face washes with acne fighting ingredients such as salicylic acid are highly recommended by experts. This is because it actively works to tackle spot causing debris. Benzoyl peroxide is also another ingredient which works to kill bacteria in your pores (5).
When done correctly, using a face wash will result in a healthier, more radiant complexion.For oily skin, it is best to wash your face with lukewarm water. Contrary to what many sources may say, washing your face with cold water does nothing to tighten your pores. Hard water can actually do your skin more harm than good over time.
Using the right face wash holds the key to boosting hydration. When it comes to managing oily skin, your skin should still maintain its natural moisture levels. Choose a face wash that doesn’t leave your skin feeling dry. Look for soothing and calming ingredients that are perfect for oily skin such as witch hazel, soy or salicylic acid. Also, try to stay away from face washes that are thick in texture as its components may not really compatible with oily skin types (6).
This is a rarity but the wrong facial wash can lead to skin discoloration. If you do notice a change in your skin, discontinue use immediately. Also bear in mind that there may be a specific ingredient that just isn’t right for your skin, so be sure to do some research, read reviews and remember that the most expensive product isn’t necessarily the best one.
Q: What causes oily skin?
A: Oily skin is actually caused by many factors such as genetics, age, where you live, enlarged pores, using the wrong skincare products and even oily foods!
Each pore you have is a sebaceous gland that produces a natural oil called sebum. When sebum production is excessive, this causes oily skin.
Q: Can I use face washes with alcohol on my skin?
A: Alcohol is a harsh drying ingredient. Stripping the skin of oil can actually make your skin a lot worse. Alcohol based products result in dehydrated and irritated skin.
Q: How can I reduce the oil production in my skin?
A: Washing your face regularly can help in the fight against oily skin. Avoid soaps and seek products which contain any of the following acids: salicylic, glycolic, beta hydroxy or benzoyl peroxide.
Q: Are toners good for oily skin?
A: Using a toner may also be beneficial but it is important to ensure that it has been formulated for oily skin. Toners don’t work for everyone with oily skin so do test it out on a small patch of skin in order to avoid irritation.
Q: Does rubbing your face make oily skin worse?
A: Also, pat your face dry instead of rubbing it. Pulling the skin down is not advised because this can actually stimulate the skin to create more sebum. Using a soft towel is also key as this will put less pressure on the skin.
Q: How can I reduce oil production throughout the day?
A: Use blotting papers to reduce oil production especially if you wear makeup. Do not try to diminish an oily complexion with mattifying powder as this will give the face a cakey look. Blot out any oil first and then apply your desired amount of powder.
Q: Can facial masks help make the skin less oily?
A: In addition to washing your face twice daily, using a facial mask is paramount in the battle against oily skin. Look for masks which have been created for oily skin. Clay is one of the most effective ingredients in face masks as it helps to tighten pores and draw out impurities.
Q: Should I use a moisturizer if I have oily skin?
A: Bear in mind that neglecting moisturizer isn’t an option. There are many moisturizers out there which are formulated for oily skin. An oil free moisturizer will help to keep the skin moist and protected, without it feeling greasy.
Q: What type of moisturizers are suitable for oily skin?
A: The best moisturizers for oily skin should be light and oil free. Water-based moisturizers are perfect for oily skin types. Heavy creams will be too rich for your skin. If a cream or moisturizer is too heavy, your pores can’t absorb it so the product will be sitting on top of your skin.
Q: How will I know which face wash for oily skin is right for me?
A: Always do some research before trying a face wash for oily skin. Expect a lot of trial and error to lead you to the right one. A good face wash well mattify your skin, minimize pores and leave your complexion looked refreshed and radiant. If a face wash is doing the exact opposite, then it probably isn’t the one for you.
Q: Do face washes for oily skin get rid of acne?
A: Face washes for oily skin prevent blocked pores, which are the primary cause of acne. Ensure you are washing your face twice a day with a gentle skin cleanser, and use an oil-free moisturizer after. Regarding the fight against acne, do pay attention to your diet as sugar, salt and fried food can lead to more oil production.
Face washes for oily skin dig deep to cleanse pores and regulate oil production without leaving your face feeling dry. A formula that balances pH will also slow the growth of bacteria and help prevent breakouts.
The most important thing to remember when looking for the right cleanser for oily skin is to use one that has been specifically formulated for your skin type.
Lastly, neglecting certain products such as toners and moisturizers will not help in the fight against oily skin. A good and consistent skincare routine will help to keep your skin nourished and protected.