Cleansing with the right product for your skin type is the key to a healthy complexion. From gentle facial foams to nifty cleansing tools, we review a range of different face cleansers for clearer skin.
LilaRoze Organic Rose Micellar Water, $35
“Suitable for all skin types, this gentle micellar is made in France using 94 percent natural ingredients, including organic rose extract from Provence. It feels incredibly soothing on my sensitive skin that’s prone to flareups. I always look forward to using it with a cotton pad in the morning as the first step of my skincare routine, especially on days when I don’t want to over-cleanse my face with a foamy wash.
While the natural rose scent may be too strong for someone who isn’t a fan of floral fragrances, it’s absolutely divine for a rose lover like me! The formula is also free of parabens, silicon, sulphate and mineral oil, so it won’t clog the pores. One tip: this product removes light makeup and sunscreen, so if you’re wearing waterproof mascara or eyeliner, you’ll need a stronger, oil-based remover instead.”
– Anthia Chng
Payot Huile Fondante Demaquillante Milky Cleansing Oil, $53
“The product is almost clear, so I had no idea why it was called “milky”; but, as with other Payot products, there was a clever trick! The product is dispensed from a pump; I used one pump if not wearing makeup and two if I had makeup on. When you gently rub it into your face in circles, it feels like an oil – this terrified me a bit first time round, as I’m prone to breakouts; but then after you rinse your hands in water and keep rubbing, the water changes the oil to a slightly milky texture.
Rinse off or use cotton pads with water to wipe, and you can see how well it removes the makeup and dirt. My skin was left with a little bit of glow and my cream went on smoothly afterwards.”
– Danielle Rossetti
INNI by La Source Purifying Gel Cleanser, $38
“This paraben- and sulphate-free cleanser is derived from 100 percent natural sources. It contains a delightful concoction of essential oils including lavender, tea tree and lemongrass, and comes in a handy 120ml pump bottle. I liked the silky, almost lotion-like texture, which makes it easy to massage into my face.
The cleanser doesn’t really lather or foam, so it leaves the skin feeling moisturised even after washing it off. I’ve also found that my skin doesn’t become irritated or feel tight after using it, which is great.”
– Karin Galley
Foreo Luna 3, $299
“I’ve always been a big fan of facial cleansing tools – especially techy gadgets with a strong research backing. The Foreo Luna 3 is a cult favourite amongst beauty mavens, so I was super excited to try it. The handy facial massaging and cleansing tool offers 16 different intensities to choose from, allowing you to customise your cleansing experience to suit your skin.
Setting up the device doesn’t take long; just download the Foreo app to get started. Once your device is activated, you can use it without logging in each time, although you’re encouraged to explore the app for skincare tips from professionals. Only 60 seconds are needed for each session of cleansing, but I like to go an extra round on days when I want a more thorough cleanse. The device is also waterproof, which means you can use it in the shower.
While I still get the occasional hormonal breakout, I’ve found that my cystic acne has reduced after religiously using the tool once daily for a month. It’s definitely not cheap but I think it’s worth the investment!”
– Anthia Chng
Nature Up Organic Facial Cleansing Foam, $31
“I love a good facial cleanser – extra points if it’s foamy. I really like the idea of a mousse cleanser as it feels super light to apply and gives you a proper clean. This cleanser has an ultra-light foamy texture, enriched with four precious extracts: organic grape peels, Sicilian lemon extract, organic wheat, and Trentino apple. The scent smells delicious; you almost feel transported to beautiful Sicily just by using it!
I don’t feel like this cleanser dries out my skin after I use it as other products do, and I can see my face getting a proper cleanse – especially after a day of wearing sunscreen and makeup. It leaves your skin feeling fresh and hydrated, too, while looking brighter and clearer. I’ve used it for one month – both morning and night – and I love its natural, vegan and organic formula.”
– Susan Knudsen-Pickles
Clarifying Cleanser, $58
Sense De Belle, 14 Scotts Road, #02-02 Far East Plaza
“I’ve never been a fan of overcomplicated skincare regimes. Instead, I prefer multipurpose products that are effective and straightforward. In hopes of eliminating the bottles of eye makeup remover and toner from my bathroom shelf, I’ve been on the lookout for a cleanser that not only clears my skin of oily residue but also removes makeup – especially stubborn waterproof mascara!
I recently came across the Clarifying Cleanser by Sense De Belle. Formulated in the US, this clarifying range is said to be composed of a high concentration of active ingredients that offer a deep cleanse, whilst retaining the skin’s moisture to avoid irritation. So far, it’s been effective as a one-step face wash for my makeup and skin, leaving it feeling soft to the touch and smelling fresh from the rose extract – not a pimple in sight either!”
– Leanda Rathmell
Baréskin Glacial Cleanser, $45
“Beauty products are so often multi-tasking nowadays, as we try to simplify our morning and evening routines around work, kids and other commitments. Baréskin is a local brand with only two main products – this cleanser and a facial elixir oil to apply at night. The idea is to use less products but have them treat your skin so well that you have the confidence to wear your skin bare!
Suitable for all skin types, the gel formula is cool (but not glacial!) and easily removes the day’s makeup and general grime. It’s also very soothing, hydrating and leaves the skin super soft and supple. I love the fact it’s in a pump bottle, which makes it really easy to use at the sink or in the shower. Just two small pumps is enough for makeup removal, or one pump for the end of a day without makeup. It’s simple, quick, effective and local – you have to be happy with that!”
– Danielle Rossetti
Supermodel Skinfood Face Wash, USD25
“What first caught my eye about the Supermodel Skinfood Face Wash is that it’s non- comedogenic; it’s something that I look out for in my skincare products. Having a good-smelling cleanser is really important to me too, so I was glad that it has a pleasant botanical scent that’s soothing and almost spa-like.
The bottle may be small but just a couple of drops produced a decent amount of froth. After the wash, my skin didn’t feel dehydrated or tight like it does with some other cleansers. Ingredients such as wheat protein and castor oil helped to retain and restore moisture, preventing the skin from drying up during the cleansing process. My face felt nice and smooth, plus it didn’t hurt that the cleanser’s lovely scent lingered for a while. The face wash also works as a make-up remover, which is great. (You’ll just need to do a second cleanse to remove makeup). So if I’m on the go, I won’t need to lug another bottle of cleansing water along.”
– Lindsay Yap
Want more? See our style & beauty section!
This article first appeared in the December 2020 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase the latest issue or subscribe, so you never miss a copy!