What Is A Cleanser?

Cleanse: Clean skin from dirt, oil and environmental grime. Removes impurities from the pores -Sounds good!

From basic soap and water, skincare has, overtime developed and become sophisticated. Today’s skin-care ranges are vast and have a large selection to suit your own needs. What works for one person, will not for another.

As part of a daily skin routine, along with toning and moisturising cleansing is the base. Without it, the others will be unable to perform and produce the desired end results we all look for from a skincare routine.
It’s important to find the correct cleanser for you. The look, feel and overall end result you’re looking for as well as what suits your skin type and your environment.

There are lots of different cleansers, from facial wash cleansers to foaming cleansers and typical wipe on wipe off cleansers all available online and in store. If you have a favourite brand of skin products, you may find your skin type is suited to that brand, so more susceptible to the addition of that brand’s product into your routine.

Cleansing bars are often favoured instead of soap. Ordinary soap is too drying for most skins. However, now you are able to lather up, just like you would with traditional soap, yet with all the nutrients and moisture your skin requires by using a cleansing bar.
They’re particularly refreshing for oily skin types and help prevent spots and blackheads developing and re-occurring.

For dryer completions, a cleansing cream is advisable. Cream cleansers cleanse and nourish skin simultaneously.  They typically have a light, fluid consistency, which makes them easily spreadable and ideal to evenly apply to the face.  Creams contain oil to dissolve surface dirt and make ups and give positive results when applied with cotton pads. You can also create a fresher faced look by simply using dampened cotton wool when applying your cleanser.

The products I have researched are all readily available. An accessible price and are suitable for an everyday homecare skin care routine.  

Name: Aloe Calming Facial Cleanser
Store/Brand: The Body Shop
Sub range: Aloe Collection
Skin Type: Sensitive
Price: £4/100ml 200ml £8
Availability: In store and online
USP: Cleanses without skin irritation.

What it’s users have to say:

I have combination skin and I bought the small bottle to try combat redness and irritation. I wasn't expecting much as it is a cream and I thought it would make my skin oily.” – Tea Leaf

Have used this before and it is gentle and has minimum drying effect. Does not irritate my sensitive/rosacea skin...it is a little drying for me....but non stinging, irritating and probably one of the best cheaper face cleansers” – JMG1956

This skin kind lotion is made with sensitive skin in mind. In order to correctly use this product from The Body Shop simple apply a ten pence piece worth of the lotion to a clean cotton pad or freshly washed and sanatised hands. Then apply to the face evenly. Due to its calming nature, you can apply this product on acne, open skin, abrasions and spots. Once applied, take another fresh cotton pad and remove the excess off the face.  Daily grime will be visable on the removal pad.  Repeat this process if in a dusty or grimy environment such as the underground, and if you’re wearing make-up.

This product is in eco packaging and is not tested on animals at any stage. You can use your body shop points, vouchers and cards on this range of ‘Aloe’ products.

Butylene Glycol is used in this product, typically people find Butylene Glycol to be very drying. However the other ingredients added to make this cleanser counteract this, such as Aqua (Water.)  Butylene Glycol is a thinning agent, which aids the smooth and seamless lotion
 application and removal. It’s conditioning agent qualities is what makes it a suitable addition to the lotion. This combined with Aloe barbadensis keeps the skin irritation free, hence the label ‘Sensitive Skin’
From a manufacturers point of view, Butylene Glycol is used to keep the product intact and usable for longer periods and in higher temperatures.

Butylene is the least irritating of the Glycols.

This product is Ideal for summer use, however. Due to its drying ingredients, is not suitable for everyone.
During the winter period, sensitive skin needs something more hydrating that retains moisture and leaves skin less exposed and more protected from the environment and ever drying air.

Full ingredients list:
Aqua (Water) (Solvent/Diluent), Aloe barbadensis (Aloe Vera Gel) (Skin Soothing Agent), Pentylene Glycol (Solvent), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Emollient), Elaeis guineensis (Skin-Conditioning Agent), Butylene Glycol (Humectant), Cyclomethicone (Emollient), Glycerin (Humectant), Glyceryl Stearate Citrate (Skin-Conditioning Agent), Cetearyl Alcohol (Emulsifier), Sorbitol (Humectant), Glyceryl Stearate (Emulsifier), Orbignya oleifera (Babassu Oil) (Emollient), Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer (Stabiliser/Viscosity Modifier), Xanthan Gum (Viscosity Modifier), Disodium Phosphate (pH Buffer)

Name: Cucumber Cleansing Milk
Store/Brand: The Body Shop
Sub range: Cucumber
Skin Type: All skin types
Price: 250ml £10
Availability: In store and online / Now discontinued
USP: Refreshes and lightly moisturises.

“This is a good make up remover, it smells nice too” – Pink Diamond

“I use make up every day and find this cleanser the most gentle but effective I have ever used. Was devastated when it was taken off the market, but delighted when came back as a limited edition. Please keep it in stock as I am lost without it.” – Friendly Shopper


“I thought I would try this and I am so glad I did! It is fantastic! Removes all make-up and leaves your skin feeling clean and soft. I did not find it greasy as some I have used. Try it!” –Fnicole

I personally have used this cleanser. As an Acne and Eczema sufferer, I find it difficult to find a product that will hydrate and help heal the broken skin.
This cleanser, from one of my personal favourite stores ‘The Body Shop’ really does calm the skin down, especially after heavy make-up has been removed.
The cucumber cools and sooths any problem areas. I don’t find this lotion to be tingly once applied like similar cleansers.
A small amount applied to a cotton pad, then the facial area is enough for a standard morning and night cleanser, however you can add more to the pad if needed.
The use of Glycine Soja in this cleanser conditions and helps lock in skin hydration. As this product is marketed as an all round skin type cleanser. It’s paramount that it is suitable for just that. Lack of hydration is a re-accruing skin issue to many people, so something to sooth and aid that is very much welcomed.  The cucumber range, of which this cleanser is part of is highly recommended for people who have dry or highly sensitive skin.

Indredients: Water (Solvent/Diluent), Glycerin (Humectant), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Emollient), Cetyl Alcohol (Emulsifier), Stearic Acid (Emulsifier), Triethanolamine (pH Adjuster), Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil (Emollient/Skin Conditioner), Benzyl Alcohol (Preservative), Lanolin (Emollient), Phenoxyethanol (Preservative), Cucumber (Cucumis Sativus) Juice (Natural Additive), Fragrance (Fragrance), Hexyl Cinnamal (Fragrance Ingredient), Geraniol (Fragrance Ingredient), Butylphenyl Methylpropional (Fragrance Ingredient), Citronellol (Fragrance Ingredient), Linalool (Fragrance Ingredient), Hydroxycitronellal (Fragrance Ingredient), Benzyl Salicylate (Fragrance Ingredient), Green 5 (Colour), Yellow 5 (Colour).

Name: Estee Lauder Perfectly Clean
Store/Brand: Estee Lauder
Sub range: Perfectly Clean
Skin Type: All skin types
Price: 150ml £22
Availability: In store (Department Stores) and online
USP: Foaming Luxe Cleanser

Estée Lauder Perfectly Clean Foam Cleanser is a duo product incorporating a purifying mask into the product. This formula from Estée Lauder is designed to unclogs pores, it leaves skin healthy with a  fresh and luminous glow.
Used with water, the creamy formula rapidly lathers into a rich foaming cleanser that works for all skin types and is ideal for combination skin without drying, leaving skin soft, smooth and supple.
The foam lather that cleanses the skin gently feels refreshing, yet thoroughly removes excess make-up and environmental impurities.
The two ways to use this product: Morning and night as a daily cleanser to purify skin and rid it of dirt.  Or twice a week as a 3-minute purifying mask use more often, as skin requires.
Our advanced, proprietary technology Calms, Comforts and Clarifies your skin, reducing irritation that can accelerate the appearance of ageing.
This next-generation cleansing technology combines natural skin-loving botanicals and minerals with our proven skincare expertise. Gentle enough to use daily, powerful enough to transform your complexion. Beautiful skin begins now.” -  Estée Lauder
This appears to be a love/ hate cleanser. Ideal for mature (Over 35) and wrinkle, or ageing prone skin. Younger skins, judging by reviews are unable to cope with the mature, rich in depth ingredients within the splash away wash.

Name: Clinique Rinse Off Foaming Cleansing Mouse
Store/Brand: Clinique
Sub range: Cleansers
Skin Type: Normal
Price: 150ml £17
Availability: In store (Department Stores) and online
USP: Part of Clinique’s 3 step skin care programme.

The rinse off foaming cleanser effectively removes long-wearing makeup, sunscreen and grim quickly and gently. Skin feels moist, clean, and fresh. Contains chamomile. Concentrated formula is long-lasting.
As a Clinique product, it is fragrance free 100% and is allergy tested, due to the sensitive nature of the product.
The application of this product is designed for home, facial recreational use. Simple lather the cleanser between two, freshly clean hands and apply to the facial area, avoiding open blemishes or scars. Massage then rinse thoroughly.
This product from Clinique is Ophthalmologist tested, which means it has been specially tested around and on the eye area, this is a form of medical testing. The product itself is tinted pink.
The Chamomile is used as a soothing agent, to calm skin and make it usable on sensitive skin, without stripping skin or being too harsh.

As the winner of ‘Best Cleaner’ 2011. It was only natural that I investigated. Just what makes this cleanser so popular!?

Name: Simple Cleanser Kind To Skin Purifying Cleansing Lotion
Store/Brand: Simple
Sub range: Cleansers
Skin Type: Any
Price: 150ml £1.50
Availability: In boots, Superdrug and online
USP: Uses minimum ingredients to help even sensitive skin.

For the very best results apply first thing in the morning and last thing at night, simply apply to cotton wool and gently cleanse with an upward and outward motion.

The reason so many people opt to use this simple cleanser as part of their daily skin care routine, is due to the fact it is skin type versatile. It can cope with areas of dryness as well as normal skin types. It targets those dry areas to help nourish and improve their look and textural quality.

This simple cleanser contains Pro-Vitamin B5, Bisabolol and Allantoin, which helps to soften and gently cleanse the skin.

I have tried several different cleansers from different brands but this is the best one I've come across so far! As i have combination skin but also often get dry patches of skin this cleanser is great at removing makeup and general day-to-day grime and leaves skin soft and moisturized (no more dry patches!) - will be repurchasing!” Emma

Full ingredients list: Aqua, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Glycerin, Isopropyl Palmitate, Polysorbate 60, Sorbitan Stearate, Panthenol, Allantoin, Acrylates/ C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crospolymer, Bisabolol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Methylparaben, Sodium Hydroxide, 2Bromo 2 Nitropropane 1-3 Diol, BHT, EDTA

Overall, before you dive into a skin care regime, or change your current one. Write down what you’d like to gain or achieve by the changes. You also need to be fully aware of the key benefits of products you may potentially use.

Check the ingredients list, and research anything that stands out to you, or that you don’t understand.

Budget is a priority factor when looking to change your skin regime. There are many multipurpose, award winning high street ‘Budget’ cleansers like the simple one which are under £5 and readily  available in supermarkets and drug stores.

It’s often a case of trial and error. In order to find the perfect cleanser you may have to try a few. Once you’ve found the one that suits you best, make notes of any changes to your skin. Your environment, lifestyle and weather can all effect your skin and the cleanser’s performance on your skin.
You may find during the winter months your skin requires a more hydrating, longer lasting formula in order to keep it looking smooth, even and fresh throughout the day.

Without a cleanser in your daily skincare routine, you will not get the best out of your skin. Using a cleanser refreshes and hydrates your skin. It also treats and aids problem areas such as rough patches or sores.

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