Choosing the best face wash for oily skin can be a tricky subject. Too harsh, and your angry skin will react producing more and more oil. Too weak, and your skin won’t get properly cleansed, and black spots and acne will make an appearance. The best face wash for oily skin and acne needs to remove makeup and dirt without drying your sensitive skin. Thankfully, there are many products in the market that are designed specially for oily and acne prone skins. Here are our favourites.
Best Natural Face Wash For Oily Skin
The Body Shop Seaweed Deep Cleansing Gel Wash
This is one of the best face wash for oily skin if you aren’t suffering from acne but want a fresh and matified complexion. The extract of bladderwrack seaweek gently cleanses and removes excess oil for a long lasting matte skin effect. It balances moisture and oil production on the skin while being extremely gentle on sensitive skins.
Works best for: Sensitive skin. Skin that needs oil control. Shine control.
Not so good for: Acne-prone skin. Paraben sensitive skin.
Himalaya Herbals Oil Clear Lemon Face Wash
This face wash is 100% herbal, and has lemon and honey as their active ingredients. The lemon extracts have an astringent effect on your skin, which reduces oil production. The honey is anti-bacterial and helps maintain the moisture barrier on the skin. Both combined offer one of the best face wash for oily skin and acne, but this product has less oil control that the body shop above.
If your main beauty concern is skin that goes shinny by mid-day, the Body Shop one is better. But for acne-prone skins, blackheads and blemishes, this one is great and 100% natural.
Works best for: Sensitive skin. Acne-prone skin.
Not so good for: Oil control.
Burt’s Bees Soap Bark & Chamomile Deep Cleansing Cream
This 99% natural face wash for oily skin is a great all rounder. Soap bark provides a super-deep clean that wipes through makeup and daily grime. At the same time, chamomile, aloe and echinacea soften the skin and help tackle inflammation. Witch hazel is a well known traditional acne remedy as well. It doesn’t offer much shine control, but it’s a great nightime cleanser to wash off the day. It’s a rich, luxurious cream, so it works great with a konjac sponge or muslim cloth for exfoliation. It has a vague mint scent.
Works best for: Sensitive skin. Spots and blackheads. Deep cleansing. Mild exfoliation.
Not so good for: Shine control.
Best Face Wash For Oily Skin And Blackheads
Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Facial Cleanser
A classic for a reason, this is one of the best acne face wash for oily skin as it has 2% salycilic acid to treat blemishes. It gently exfoliates to treat blackheads and prevent future breakouts. The fruity smell of pink grapefruit makes it a great option for morning wake-up. Wear sunscreen when using it, as the combination of grapefruit and salycilic acid has caused people’s skin to get sunburnt.
Works best for: Acne-prone skin skin. Congested skin. Very oily skin.
Not so good for: Sensitive skin. Photosensitivity prone skin. Combination skin (it can cause dryness on the already dry or normal areas of your face).
Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser
Fragrance and artificial color free, this is the best the best face wash for oily skin that suffers from sensitivity to chemical products. It combines green clay and kaolin to deeply degunk your pores and remove oil. Elderberry, ivy and lemon add a slight exfoliating effect and help with oil control as well. Sage and cucumber reduce inflammation and menthol revitalises tired skin.
Pricey, but worth it if your skin gets easily irritated or angry at the first sight of fragrance. It can also be used as a purifying face mask, you can leave it on your face for 20 minutes and wash it off with a muslin cloth.
Works best for: Sensitive skin. Oily and congested skin that needs deep cleansing.
Not so good for: TBH, it’s suitable for everybody. Even makes the list as one of the best men’s face wash for oily skin, and recommended by dermatologists.
Amarte Daily Exfoliate Powder
Mild daily exfoliating is often better for acne-prone skin than aggressive treatments once a week. This daily use exfoliating cleanser form Amarte brightens and smoothens skin delicately. If you want to avoid irritated oily skin but still keep your pores clean, this is a great option.
It is a powder that you dissolve on a bit of water when you want to use it, so it’s perfect for travelling as it won’t be part of your liquids allowance.
Works best for: Oily skin with a lot of texture. Blackheads and milia. Preventing under-the-skin cysts.
Not so good for: If you already exfoliate with other products as part of your routine. For example, if you use Pixi’s Glow Tonic 250ml.
Best Face Wash For Oily Skin: Dermatologist Recommended
Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash
Oil free formula with 2% salicylic that removes excess oil while being gentle and hydrating your skin. This face wash for acne-prone skin deep cleanses and unclogs pores without irritating or overdrying your skin. It gives a very clean feel on your skin, with no residue. Perfect if you double-cleanse.
Works best for: Breakout prone skin. Congested skin.
Not so good for: Very sensitive skin. Acne prone skin that dries easily. There are even more gentle options, and some oil-based ones that are better for this kind of skin.
CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser
If you already use salicylic acid in another part of your routine, using a face wash for oily skin that also includes this active ingredient can be too much. CeraVe’s cult following foaming facial cleanser includes ceramides, hyaluronic acid and niacinamide to clean, hydrate and soothe irritated skin. It helps maintain the skin’s natural protective barrier, and the gentle foaming action removes excess oils without causing the skin to overreact.
Worst best for: Normal to oily skin. Skin that gets irritated easily. Skin prone to tightness and patches of dry skin.
Not so good for: This is not the best acne face wash for oily skin as it doesn’t provide any exfoliation, unless you actually use it with a separate exfoliating lotion or pads.
Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Hydrating Cleanser
This is one of the best face wash for oily skin that suffers from redness, rosacea or eczema. If your skin reacts angrily to typical anti-acne beauty products, with peeling, dryness and redness, this is the face wash for you. It’s formulated with extremely few ingredients and dermatologist tested for oily skin with acne, eczema or rosacea. A gem if you want to keep oil under control but even the best best acne face wash for oily skin makes your skin burn.
It won’t provide heavy duty oil control but it will make your face feel clean and mosturised. And it’s under $10.
Worst best for: Irritated skin. Rosacea, acne and sensitive skin in general. Eczema.
Not so good for: If you wear heavy duty makeup or live in a very polluted area you may feel you need to double cleanse with an oil-based cream first to remove all residue. Not a lot of shine control.
If you like to follow a Korean skincare routine, this type of face wash for oily skin is usually used after oil cleansing. You would use it before any facial steaming or moisturizer, but after removing your makeup.
What is, in your experience, the best face wash for oily skin and acne? Let us know in the comments.