Get skin looking bright, glowing and healthy courtesy of these targeted cleansers.

We are told repeatedly by skin experts that cleansing is the cornerstone of any skincare regime. Get it ‘wrong’, they say, and whatever we apply topically afterwards won’t be absorbed and rendered useless. Yet there is a fine line between effectively removing the day’s make-up, grime and pollutants and stripping the skin of its natural protective barrier and biome.

So how to strike a happy skin balance, and which formula to choose for the job – balm, milk, oil or wash? Confused yet? Fear not. We’ve got a targeted list of seven of the best cleansers, handily divided by skin type so you can find your next skincare buy.


The Inkey List, Salicylic Acid Cleanser, £10.99

If you’re prone to blemishes, seek out a cleanser with Salicylic acid or L-lactic in the ingredients list to help give pores a daily sweep out; dissolve dead skin; and prevent black heads or spots developing. The no-nonsense Inkey List range of skincare was created to give consumers access to the most-wanted ‘buzzword’ ingredients in beauty (Vitamin C, Retinol etc) at accessible prices. For around a tenner, this is one of the best Salicylic cleansers we’ve tried to help reduce breakouts.


Sunday Riley, Ceramic Slip Cleanser, £26

The danger with oily skin is to overcompensate and strip it of its natural, protective lipids, only causing the skin to double-down and create even more sebum in response. Sunday Riley’s Ceramic Slip cleanser is a gentle, plant-based formula with French Green and Moroccan Rhassoul Clays to remove impurities and tighten pores, whilst imbuing some serious glow with anti-oxidant rich Vitamin C. Calmer, smoother, brighter skin. Who doesn’t want that?


The Ordinary, Squalane Cleanser, £5.50

Move over Hyaluronic Acid – there’s a new darling of hydration in town. Squalane is found naturally in the skin and an added dose courtesy of this cleanser from The Ordinary prevents moisture loss and gives dry skin back its bounce. The balm texture melts to an oil, effectively removing all traces of make-up without stripping the skin and drying it further. A mighty product for a not so mighty price.


La Roche Posay, Toleriane Dermo Cleanser, £9.35

Keeping a bottle of La Roche Posay’s Toleriane Dermo Cleanser in your beauty arsenal is a great idea if you’re susceptible to sensitivity flare-ups of any kind. The ultra-gentle milk can be used on face and eyes and is super effective at removing make-up without water. Calming, soothing and a hug for unhappy skin.


Elemis, Pro-Collagen Energising Marine Cleanser, £42

If you’re skin’s a bit ‘meh’ after the summer and needs pepping up, Elemis’ Pro-Collagen Energising Marine Cleanser was voted to leave skin looking ‘energised’ by 90 per cent of independent testers. The lightweight gel formula is supercharged with minerals magnesium, zinc and copper and a trio of acids to give skin a wake-up call, creating a rich lather that really lifts make-up and reveals bouncier, softer, smoother skin beneath.

Mature Skin

Aurelia Probiotic Skincare, Miracle Cleanser, £42

A rich cleansing balm is the perfect option for 40+ skins, nourishing as much as it is cleansing, Aurelia’s award-winning and aptly named Miracle Cleanser has probiotics to activate the skin’s natural ability to repair itself and boost the natural process of restoring collagen, elastin and healthy cells. It’s also packed with detoxing hibiscus, firming kigelia and fatty acid-rich mongongo oil to really deeply hydrate. A great option for stronger, healthier skin.


Dr. Dennis Gross, Alpha Beta® Clinic At Home by Dr Dennis Gross, £90

If, after a summer of sun exposure, you are feeling conscious of hyperpigmentation, Dr. Dennis Gross’ Alpha Beta Clinic At Home kit is a great investment for those unable to get to a facialist any time soon. Containing a powerful three-step set of products from the NYC Dermotologist’s clinic, there’s a daily peel, cleansing gel and exfoliating moisturiser – all designed to hydrate parched skin, calm irritation and reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation. A great post-summer MOT for skin.

By Lydia Mansi
October 2020


Best Beauty Advent Calendars for 2020
Hair SOS! 7 Post-Summer At-Home Nourishing Hair Treatments
Modafirma Beauty Edit

Lydia Mansi

Lifestyle Editor

Lydia is an all-round lifestyle guru, tireless champion of women in business and our resident expert on beauty.