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When you’ve got dry skin, moisturizer might be the product that you reach for the most. But face wash can be just as important in your skin care arsenal for keeping your skin looking and feeling its best.

In fact, choosing the right cleanser for your skin type might just be essential to achieving the glowing, even skin tone you’re after.

As a clinical review on the importance of cleansers notes, the oils, dirt, and toxins in our environment won’t dissolve with water alone. That’s why everyone should cleanse their face at the end of each day.

Cleansing your face gets impurities and dead cells off the surface, which can prevent acne outbreaks, inflammation, and other skin conditions.

When you have dry skin, finding a cleanser that’s gentle, won’t clog pores, and that adds moisture to your skin is crucial. We rounded up 10 of the best reviewed and most highly recommended daily facial cleansers for dry skin.

The products listed below all contain ingredients that dermatologists recommend for the specific conditions that they address.

Price points are based on 8-ounce product size, and we considered the product’s negative reviews and any possibly hazardous ingredients to give you a well-rounded view of what each cleanser has to offer your skin.

First Aid Beauty Pure Skin Face Cleanser

Price point: $$

Why we love it: This face wash has a creamy, moisturizing consistency when it mixes with lukewarm water. This “whipped” texture locks in moisture on your face while it works to cleanse.

The product is free from alcohol, as the American Academy of Dermatologists (AAD) suggests a good cleanser should be. It’s also vegan, cruelty-free, and free from phthalates, parabens, and oxybenzone.

What you should know: Some people have reported breakouts and red bumps on the face after using this product.

Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser

Price point: $$$

Why we love it: This face wash is fragrance-free and foams up when you use it. It’s also loaded with emollient ingredients, including apricot kernel oil and squalene. This cleanser contains vitamin E, which is great for facilitating healing of acne outbreaks and scars.

What you should know: Keep in mind that Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser is advertised as being “for all skin types,” so it’s not specially made for acne-prone dry skin. It also contains alcohol, which may strip or irritate your skin.

Mario Badescu Acne Facial Cleanser

Price point: $$

Why we love it: Cult favorite beauty brand Mario Badescu infuses this cleanser with extracts of thyme, aloe, and chamomile to soothe irritated skin. It’s also powered by salicylic acid, an ingredient known to deep clean and help prevent acne breakouts.

What you should know: This cleanser does contain alcohol, which the AAD says is a no-no. It’s also got some paraben ingredients and lists “parfum” on its label, which could mean anything. Do a test run with this cleanser before you throw away the packaging.

It works well for lots of happy customers but some ingredients might irritate your skin.

Differin Daily Deep Cleanser

Price point: $

Why we love it: The active ingredient in this formula is benzoyl peroxide, a powerful anti-acne agent. Most forms of benzoyl peroxide are only available with a prescription, but this OTC cleanser has just enough (5 percent) to work to fight acne.

What you should know: Some with acne swear by this cleanser because it gets rid of acne-causing bacteria and clears pores. But there are some users who have reported redness and dry patches after use.

If you have skin that’s both dry and acne-prone, use this cleanser with caution. Start by cleansing your face with it once a day before bedtime, and work up to using it twice a day if your skin can handle it.

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Hydrating Gentle Cleanser

Price point: $$

Why we love it: This oil-free, paraben-free formula has been specifically tested on sensitive skin. Reviewers love how quickly it dissolves makeup, and how easy it is to rinse off of your face. It’s also got tocopherol, a naturally occurring type of vitamin E which helps heal irritated skin.

What you should know: This product doesn’t foam or change textures when you apply it, which some users don’t like. It also has butyl alcohol, an ingredient that strips moisture and causes redness for some skin types.

Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Extra Mild

Price point: $$

Why we love it: Clinique’s cleansing formula for sensitive skin is deceptively simple. Hydrating olive oil, soothing cucumber, and cleansing sunflower ingredients refresh your skin, while caffeine and vitamin E give your skin that “awake” feeling post-cleanse. It’s also free of parabens.

What you should know: Clinique Liquid Facial Soap does give off a distinct, slightly medical smell. If you’re looking for a cleanser that will lather up or create foam on your face, you might be disappointed in this formula. In fact, some users described the greasy feeling of this product like “washing your face with lotion.”

Hada Labo Tokyo Gentle Hydrating Cleanser

Price point: $$

Why we love it: This product line is extremely popular in Japan, and for good reason. Hada Labo Tokyo’s Gentle Hydrating Cleanser is alcohol- and paraben-free, so it’s safe to use. It’s also packed with hyaluronic acid that seals moisture into your skin, and uses derivatives of coconut oil for an extra moisture-sealing barrier. Users also love that one bottle of product lasts a long time, as you only need a pea-sized amount to get a good cleanse.

What you should know: While some people aren’t affected by using coconut oil on their face, others find that it clogs their pores. If you’ve noticed that coconut oil clogs your pores in the past, you might not like this product.

Aveeno Absolutely Ageless Nourishing Cleanser

Price point: $

Why we love it: This extremely affordable pick lathers up your skin with vitamin E and blackberry extracts. These ingredients may soothe inflammation that aggravates eczema symptoms. It also contains vitamin C in the form of ascorbic acid, which may reduce redness
from eczema.

What you should know: Some people report a strong perfume smell and skin irritation after using this product.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

Price point: $

Why we love it: CeraVe often boasts that its formulas are developed with the help of dermatologists, making them exceptionally gentle. This cleanser is no exception — it’s got the seal of approval from the National Eczema Association and is packed with hyaluronic acid to seal moisture into your skin. It’s also fragrance-free and noncomedogenic, so it won’t clog pores.

What you should know: This formula does contain alcohols and parabens. Some reviewers find CeraVe’s Hydrating Face wash to be too creamy, leaving their skin feeling oily or cakey even after rinsing.

Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Hydrating Daily Facial Cleanser

Price point: $

Why we love it: This drugstore favorite brand gets the green light from the National Eczema Association for being super gentle on your skin. This cleanser simply does what it’s supposed to: cleanses skin gently, without triggering eczema or drying your skin out. It’s easy to get off and doesn’t have any essential oils that can be a trigger for some skin types.

What you should know: This really is a no-frills product. There isn’t much by way of fragrance, and there’s no lather when you apply it.

With so many cleansing products on the market, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Here’s a process to help you narrow down what cleanser you select:

  1. Figure out your priorities. Is it important to you that a product is cruelty-free or vegan? Are you concerned about ingredients like parabens or phthalates? How much does your price point figure into your decision here? Answering these questions will narrow your options down considerably.
  2. What’s your primary concern? Are you concerned about skin that’s overly dry? Are you looking to prevent acne outbreaks? Most products excel in one or two areas, but it’s rare to find a product that does everything. Be realistic about your expectations and find a product marketed toward your number one skin issue.
  3. Make a list of products that meet your criteria. If you select a cleanser that doesn’t work for you, discontinue use after a couple of days and return it if you can. Keep all of your receipts. Go down the list of products until you find the one that’s matched best for your skin. Remember that it might be a process of trial and error.

Using a gentle cleanser on your face is a good idea for most people. But there are some things you should know when you use a facial cleanser:

  • If you’re using a prescription or OTC anti-acne product, you might not want to use an acne-fighting cleanser, too. Overuse of acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide can dry out your skin and hurt you in the long run.
  • If you’re using a cleanser that contains retinols (vitamin A), be extra careful to apply sunscreen whenever you go outside. Retinols can make your skin more prone to sun damage.
  • As we mentioned above, the AAD recommends that cleansing products not contain alcohol. However, many of them do — even the cleansers made specifically for dry skin. Read ingredient labels carefully and look out for alcohol and other potential irritants.

Figuring out a cleanser that works for you can take your beauty routine to the next level. Even if you have dry, sensitive skin, or skin that’s prone to acne breakouts, chances are there’s a cleanser out there that can work for you.

Be patient, as you might need trial and error to you find your perfect match. If you’re concerned with the way that your skin looks or about visibly dry skin, make an appointment with a dermatologist.