Best Face Wash for Dry Skin Buying Guide

woman with beautiful skin because of using the best face wash for dry skin

You’re in a rush for work. You slept through the alarm, and you can only do the very basics of your beauty routine. Which parts do you leave out?

Chances are, cleansing your face was one of the last things you’d toss out the window in a hurry. That is unless you have dry skin. Even the supposed “soft, gentle” cleaners can be painful, which makes finding the best face wash for dry skin essential to looking your best.

Several cleansers can be far too harsh, even though the foamy mixture leaves your face feeling squeaky clean afterward. That’s because the clean feeling is stripping away the moisture barrier on your skin. So, how can you find a cleanser that leaves your face both clean and moisturized?

Taking Care of Your Skin

Years of drying out your skin can lead to rashes, irritation, and even premature aging. While women like Betty White wear their old age beautifully, very few women in their 20’s or even 50’s want to tack on a few years due to an incompatible self-care routine. Finding the right facial cleanser is a vital aspect of your beauty and health.

woman touching her face

For those with dry skin, oil-based cleansers are a lifesaver. Their ability to dissolve makeup and dirt without drying your face to a prune is something many just cannot live without. Some even offer a protective layer to lock in moisture, leaving you glowing for the rest of the day.

Others prefer gel-balms and mud foams, which are excellent choices if you don’t want to give up the lather. Either way, look for hydrating ingredients like olive milk, shea butter, and organic oils.

How We Chose Our Ratings

Our goal is to bring you the absolute best products possible through honest, accurate research. To do this, we take a lot of factors into consideration. For starters, top brands in the specific industry are weighed based on their merit.

woman using an organic face wash

After picking out only the ones who produce high-quality products, we take the user experience into consideration. What do the customers have to say, and what can they tell us about the effectiveness of a facial cleanser?

From there, we gather data about each item we encounter and see how a company’s claims stack up to what customers had to say. After we collect all of our information, we pitt the products against one another to develop our rating system. It’s a long process, but we feel confident that this list contains only the best face wash for dry skin available.

Top 10 Best Face Washes for Dry Skin

Here are our top ten facial cleansers. We’ve arranged with five-star products at the very top, and three stars at the bottom.

Julep – Bare Your Face

Julep Love Your Bare Face Cleansing Oil - Full Size & Travel Size

Julep Love Your Bare Face Cleansing Oil – Full Size & Travel Size

  • In a consumer use study, 91 percent of participants agreed bare face cleansing oil leaves…
  • 94 percent reported there was no oily residue after using bare face
  • 97 percent agreed bare face cleansing oil did not irritate skin

Bare Your Face is an age-defying cleansing oil from Julep that comes in a neat yellow color. Despite its oily base, users found that it rinses clean without leaving a hint of residue or film behind. It also happens to double as an excellent makeup remover.

The formula contains invigorating coffee bean oil to help get your morning started and promote the turnover of skin cells. Rosehip seed oil is also added to repair and rejuvenate your complexion. If you’ve never used a wash with rosehip before, prepare to be wowed at what this organic oil can do.

REN – Evercalm

Ren Evercalm Gentle Cleansing Milk, 5.1 Fl Oz

Ren Evercalm Gentle Cleansing Milk, 5.1 Fl Oz

  • Evercalm Gentle Cleansing Milk (For Sensitive

Ren’s Evercalm Gentle Cleansing Milk might sound a little out of place in the realm of face washes, but it holds its own with a variety of benefits. The rich lather, which feels lovely on the skin, helps to remove impurities while calming blackcurrant seed oil gently cleanses your pores. Combined with seabuckthorn berry oil and calendula, this cleanser will leave you feeling hydrated and clean as a whistle.

La Roche-Posay – Hydrating Gentle Cleanser

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Hydrating Gentle Cleanser, 13.52 Fl. Oz.

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Hydrating Gentle Cleanser, 13.52 Fl. Oz.

  • Gentle hydrating face wash cleanser for normal skin to dry skin suitable for sensitive…
  • Formulated with La Roche-Posay Prebiotic Thermal Water, Ceramides, Niacin amide and…
  • Soap-free. Oil-free. Fragrance-free. Non-comedogenic. Allergy-tested. Paraben-free.

Looks can often be deceiving, and this face wash’s container is proof of that. While it looks like any old pump foam cleanser, the formula behind La Roche-Posay’s product is incredible. It features a mix of prebiotic thermal water, ceramides, niacinamide, and glycerin.

Together, these ingredients soothe and hydrate your skin while cleaning out even the most stubborn of pores. All the while, this wash balances the delicate pH levels of your skin. Multiple reviews mentioned how silky smooth their skin felt afterward.

Hada Labo Tokyo – Hydrating Facial Cleanser

Hada Labo Tokyo Gentle Hydrating Cleanser 5 Oz - with Hyaluronic Acid...

Hada Labo Tokyo Gentle Hydrating Cleanser 5 Oz – with Hyaluronic Acid…

  • GENTLE AND HYDRATING FACIAL WASH This luxurious japanese facial wash offers a deep and…
  • HYDRATED SKIN IS HAPPY SKIN This facial wash is water based and it’s formulated with…
  • A TRUE JAPANESE FACIAL WASH EXPERIENCE True to its origin’s traditions of quality and…

As you might have guessed, this is favorite in Japan. It also happens to be a popular choice in the U.K. and U.S. Hada Labo Tokyo has earned a name for itself by adding hyaluronic acid into their products, which acts as a moisture binding agent.

We consider their Hydrating Facial Cleanser a best face wash for dry skin because it not only works but avoids the use of harmful ingredients. You won’t find any chemicals, dyes or fragrances in this product. Even better, it doubles as a makeup remover.

Banila Co. – Clean It Zero

BANILA CO NEW Clean It Zero Original Cleansing Balm 3-in-1 Makeup...

BANILA CO NEW Clean It Zero Original Cleansing Balm 3-in-1 Makeup…

  • Clean it Zero 3-in-1 Cleansing Balm Original is a hypoallergenic cleanser that transforms…
  • Formulated with Active botanicals, Hot Springs Water, Vitamin E and Vitamin C for a…
  • Formulated without: Parabens, Sulfates, Phthalates, Mineral oil, Alcohol, Artificial…

This deep cleansing balm has the consistency of a delicious sherbet, dissolving makeup and impurities the same as a harsh cleaner can but with the gentle touch of an oil-based cleanser. There’s more to this facial wash than you’d expect, though.

Clean It contains resveratrol, the same antioxidant found in wine. This ingredient helps to protect your skin from free radicals without any of the side effects, or calories, that come with drinking. The packaging might be small, but keep in mind that a little bit goes a long way with this product.

Paula’s Choice – Moisture Boost

Paula's Choice MOISTURE BOOST Hydrating Treatment Cream, Niacinamide &...

Paula’s Choice MOISTURE BOOST Hydrating Treatment Cream, Niacinamide &…

  • DEEP HYDRATION, MOISTURIZER FOR DRY SKIN–This formula provides a protective barrier from…
  • Paula’s Choice–Moisture Boost Hydrating Treatment Cream Moisturizer with Niacinamide is…
  • Use Paula’s Choice–Moisture Boost Hydrating Treatment Cream Moisturizer twice daily as…

This is a simple one-step cleanser that doubles as a makeup remover, but Paula’s Choice stands out amongst its competitors for two reasons. First, it provides the milky lather that many enjoy while cleansing their face. Second, countless reviewers said the way their skin felt afterward as the best it’s ever been. If there were a third, it would be that the formula is fragrance a dye-free.

Indie Lee – Rosehip Cleanser

Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser, 4 fl. oz.

Indie Lee Brightening Cleanser, 4 fl. oz.

  • Skin Care

Harsher cleansers can leave dry or rosacea-prone skin irritated and red. Rosehip seed oil, on the other hand, is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Indie Lee takes advantage of this natural ingredient to deliver a delicate face wash perfect for those with dry skin.

The formula is naturally rich in antioxidants as well as vitamins A, E, and K. Combined, they’ll leave you glowing like a radiant sunbeam. The pump cap also helps you use the perfect amount every time.

Glamglow – Thirsty Cleanse

GlamGlow Thirstycleanse Daily Hydrating Cleanser, 5 Ounce

GlamGlow Thirstycleanse Daily Hydrating Cleanser, 5 Ounce

  • It effectively remove surface impurities while brightening skin complexion and tone
  • It protect skin from environmental pollutants
  • Rinsing away pore-clogging debris and impurities

Glamglow delivers an exciting mud cleanse that foams as you use it. Aside from the fun factor, the results of incorporating Brazilian yellow clay have been phenomenal. Coconut water, olive milk, and Teaoki olive leaf powder can also be found within its formula.

This is an extremely deep cleanse, but the natural moisturizing agents keep your skin from becoming damaged. All in all, you can’t go wrong with this one.

Eve Lom – Gel Balm Cleanser

EVE LOM Gel Balm Cleanser, 3.2 oz

EVE LOM Gel Balm Cleanser, 3.2 oz

  • Gently removes impurities while also nourishing the skin
  • Perfect for all skin types, even the most sensitive ones
  • the skin feeling healthy and smooth.

If you’ve never used a balm before, the experience is vastly different from any other cleanser. The formula is incredibly concentrated, which means you’ll only need a little bit of Eve Lom’s product for your entire face. As it comes into contact with water, the balm turns into a milky cream that is wonderfully refreshing.

This gel balm cleanser features clove, chamomile, argan and olive oils that work together to hydrate and calm the skin. Eve Lom’s gel also includes antiseptic, helping to heal and purify any damages.

The Face Shop – Rice Water Bright

[THEFACESHOP] Rice Water Bright Foaming Cleanser with Rice Bran for...

[THEFACESHOP] Rice Water Bright Foaming Cleanser with Rice Bran for…

  • Moisturizing, brightening, and detoxifying cleansing foam made with rice water and moringa…
  • Its creamy and cushiony texture eases handling and moisturizing ingredients leave skin…
  • Moringa oil and soapwort

Rice water brightens up your complexion, making this particular product a favorite amongst reviewers. The Face Shop uses only natural ingredients to make this face wash, mostly from rice hydrate. These variations on their organic compound exfoliate dead skin cells while hydrating, ensuring that your face will feel clean without being stripped.

Buyer’s Guide

best natural face wash

Knowing which cleanser to buy for your skin type is an essential part of your beauty routine. Sometimes, sensitive skin can be mistaken for dryness or a wash best suited for a combination would work best. Here’s how to identify your cleansing needs.

Dry Skin

Indicators include itchy, flaky, and generally tight skin. Cleansers that clear away grime or impurities without stripping your face of moisture are essential. Look for natural oils in the ingredients list, and steer clear of soap-based formulas.

Oily Skin

Individuals with oily skin have large, visible pores and a sheen to their face that develops quickly after cleansing. A face wash with oil control is highly recommended, as are any with a formula that balances pH. You still want something that can dig deep into your pores, but nothing that will leave your face feeling dry.

Combination Skin

Typically, the combination is an oily T-zone and drier cheeks. The same formulas that help those with dry skin can aid you here as well. You want something that provides a thorough clean along with plenty of hydration. Anything with a moisture locking barrier will help.

Sensitive Skin

Often mistaken for dry skin due to redness, sensitive skin is highly prone to irritation. Denser, creamier foams with soothing ingredients should be your best friend. Aloe vera, willow bark, and witch hazel are a few excellent ingredients to look for.

You may also need something that balances pH since sensitive skin become dry otherwise. Make sure to avoid the bubblier, sudsy foams though. These can often strip the skin of its lipid layer, causing pH balances to suffer.

Even Skin

If you experience none of the above and only have the occasional breakout, then you have even skin. You don’t have to worry about being picky when it comes to selecting the best face wash, but hydrating ingredients are always recommended. Check out cleansers with bonus perks like anti-aging or toning agents.

Are There Any Products to Totally Avoid?

Aside from the aspects to avoid for your style of skin, there are a few other things you should look out for when buying a facial cleanser. Have you ever turned over the packaging of your favorite wash to find a list of unrecognizable ingredients?

Best Drugstore Foundation Brands

Most people shrug these off because, hey, you still need to scrub your face at the end of the day. However, furthering research has exposed some harmful chemicals found in everyday beauty products. Here are five ingredients to avoid like the plague.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate

This is often added to face wash to create the foaming effect everyone knows and loves. This agent is also found in engine degreasers and garage floor cleaners and is responsible for stripping your skin of its moisture. That can leave dry skin irritated and oily skin overproducing the very thing you’re trying to get rid of.


Have you ever wondered what the fragrance ingredient actually is? Unfortunately, that floral scent doesn’t come from a flower. Fragrance is a list of chemicals bound by phthalates, which are known to cause reproductive problems and birth defects.  Avoid heavily scented products whenever possible.


Keep an eye out for petroleum and mineral oils in your beauty care products. They are often added to cleansers as the hydration ingredient, but there are numerous natural oils that hold more significant benefits. Petroleum and mineral oils can clog pores, leading to other undesirable skin problems.


These nasty chemicals keep products from spoiling by stopping bacteria but have also been linked to breast cancer in certain studies. Some research suggests they can lead to a host of ailments. While the verdict is still out, it’s best to avoid these for now.


You might find this as the base in your cleanser. While it might help vitamins and minerals penetrate the skin, it does so by damaging your skin’s natural protective barrier. Keep alcohol where it belongs, in a glass at the bar or while watching Netflix on the sofa.