If you’d have told me 5 years back that I’d be writing a CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser review and it’d be positive, I’d have called you mad. As a long-haul acne sufferer with oily af skin, anything with the word ‘hydrating’ in sent me running for the hills. Literally.
FYI, I was so wrong about that. A simple hydrating cleanser like this can do wonders for all skin types. Yes, even for you oily guys and girls! I wish I’d have used it back in the day, rather than raiding the Clearasil and Freederm isle, which made my skin 100x worse.
CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser review
Anyway, I bloody love this face wash. It’s simple, it’s reasonably priced and it’s so, so, so gentle on the skin! If you want to know the deets before trying it out for yourself, here’s my full CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser review.
I’ll discuss what this product did for my skin, who I think it’d work best for and what you can expect in terms of gentleness, consistency, make-up removing power and packaging.
Key product benefits & claims
Price: Around £9-10
Key benefits & claims: Gentle, non-foaming gel formula to cleanse the skin and remove excess makeup and dirt. Contains 3 essential ceramides to help protect the skin barrier, plus Hyaluronic Acid helps to retain the skin’s natural moisture.
- Removes dirt, oil and makeup without leaving the skin feeling dry and tight
- Protects the skin’s natural barrier
- Retains skin’s moisturiser
- Fragrance-free and non-comedogenic
Suitable for: Recommended for normal to dry skin, although I think it’d work for most skin types!
The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser does exactly what it claims to. I wear a full (ish) face of makeup most days and this removes the bulk of it, without leaving my skin feeling tight or in dire need of a drink. I double-cleanse, so it’s rare to find a face wash that I can use twice in a row without a little bit of tightness—but this one’s a real winner!
I discovered this whilst on accutane and, let me tell you, it really saved my dry skin. If you have sensitive or dry skin or are currently using accutane or spironolactone for acne, I promise this is a great choice for you. It won’t sting or make dry/cracked skin worse; it’s super gentle. And it doesn’t sting your eyes either!
If you are using accutane, have a read of my accutane skincare guide for some more produce recommendations.
I wish I’d have discovered this while I was struggling with acne. I know it would have done so much more for my skin, than the super drying and stripping acne face washes I used. If you’re an oily or acne skin guy or girl, don’t be put off by hydrating face washes. Using gentle products is the best thing you can do to balance out your oil production and create the best environment for healing.
If I had to point out a negative, it’d be that this face wash isn’t the best at removing waterproof eye makeup. This doesn’t bother me so much as I tend to remove my eye makeup with micellar water or oil cleanser before going in for the full wash.
The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is non-foaming and has a translucent white, lightweight, gel-like texture. It doesn’t foam up at all, so if you’re used to foamy washes, it might take some getting used to.
I still feel that a little goes a long way, as it almost melts into the skin once applied and spreads easily. It washes away with little to no effort and doesn’t leave any sort of film on the skin.
The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser comes in an opaque white plastic bottle, with a pump. The bottle has a twist-stop-cap (that’s probably not the right word, but hey), so there’s no risk of spillage if you’re travelling.
The only gripe I have here is that it can be hard to get the product to come out of the pump when you’re nearing the end of the bottle.
The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser retails at around £9-10 for a 236ml bottle, but I often see it on sale for around £7. While it’s a bit pricier than your bog standard face wash, it’s still a fair price; and I definitely think it’s worth the money. If my skin is feeling sensitive or dry, there’s no other face wash I trust quite as much.
Make sure to check if Boots and Superdrug have any offers on before buying this product elsewhere. They’ll often have CeraVe on a 3 for 2 deal. I love their Moisturising Cream & Moisturising Lotion, so it’d be a great chance to pick them all up at a bargain price.
Good for, bad for…
CeraVe say that this product is best suited for normal to dry skin. While I’d totally agree that it’s a winner for drier skin types, I’d say it’s a great choice for combo, oily and acne-prone skin too.
Why? In my experience, using a gentle, calming face wash does so much more for acne-prone or oily skin than using harsh, acne-fighting cleansers. Harsh cleaners can easily dry your skin out, which could leave your skin looking red and stressed, as well as triggering it to produce more oil to compensate. The Cerave Cleanser, on the other hand, will leave your skin feeling clean but soft, soothed, balanced and hydrated. If you do suffer from acne, you might find my full guide on how to clear acne useful.
Ultimately, I’d honestly say that the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is a good choice for all skin types. If you’ve got dry and sensitive skin, it’ll give you a gentle cleanse without drying out or irritating your complexion. If you’ve got oily or acne-prone skin, it’ll help to balance out your oil production, soothe and calm any active breakouts and leave your skin feeling soft, rather than stressed.
CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser ingredients
Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Stearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Peg-40 Stearate, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Glyceryl Stearate, Polysorbate 20, Ethylhexylglycerin, Potassium Phosphate, Disodium Edta, Dipotassium Phosphate, Sodium Lauroyl Lactilate, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Phytosphingosine, Cholesterol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Tocopherol, Ceramide EOP.
This product is non-comedogenic (won’t clog your pores) and free from fragrance. Head over to CosDNA for a full breakdown of the ingredients.
CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser review: A winner for all skin types!
This gentle, non-drying face wash is a great buy for all skin types, whether you’re dry, oily or acne-prone. It’ll remove most of your makeup and provide a gentle cleanse, without stripping or drawing moisture out of your complexion. In fact, if anything, I’d say my skin feels more hydrated after using this, which is rare in a face wash at this price point.
As I said earlier, if you wear heavy make-up, I’d recommend using a micellar water or oil to remove stubborn make-up before going in with this cleanser. As it’s so gentle, it’s not the best at removing waterproof eye make-up or long-wearing foundation. Other than that, there’s literally nothing negative to say. A winning face wash all round!
I hope you enjoyed my CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser review. Let me know what you think of it in the comments! Fancy sticking around? Have a read of my other beauty & skincare reviews or follow me on Instagram for more…