A regular CTM routine helps keep your skin clean, clear, and fresh. This is all the more important if you have oily skin. It needs a well-maintained pH balance and reduced sebum secretion. Oily skin is also more susceptible to the effects of acne-causing bacteria due to environmental aggressors. These effects include inflammation, redness, and irritation. Using a gel cleanser for oily skin can help solve these issues.
In fact, studies have shown that regular use of a gentle facial cleanser regulates excess sebum formation and provides deep-pore cleansing – reducing acne-associated symptoms (1).
Here, we have listed the 13 best gel facial cleansers specifically meant for oily skin. Check them out!
Table Of Contents
13 Best Gel-Based Cleansers For Oily Skin
1. Best Anti-Aging: InstaNatural Vitamin C Cleanser
The InstaNatural Cleanser is enriched with potent antioxidants like vitamin C and natural organic extracts like aloe vera that rejuvenate the skin. Vitamin C penetrates skin and helps unclog the pores. It cleanses skin deeply and prevents blemishes and breakouts. The combination of soothing oils balances excess sebum formation and boosts hydration, leaving one feeling refreshed. The extracts along with green tea restore skin radiance and reduce the appearance of wrinkles, dark spots, and fine lines.
Key Ingredients: Vitamin C, aloe vera, green tea extract
- No synthetic dyes
- No added preservatives
- Natural organic ingredients
- Maintains electrolyte balance
- Can be used both day and night
- Provides gentle exfoliation
- May cause a burning sensation
- Not suitable for sensitive skin
The La Roche-Posay Effaclar Gel Cleanser is formulated with zinc pidolate (Zinc PCA), one of the active ingredients that purify the skin and remove excess oil. Zinc PCA, when applied topically, acts as an astringent and reduces acne breakouts and blemishes. It also controls excess sebum formation. It exhibits antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties that halt the production of acne-producing bacteria, and reduce redness and inflammation. This refreshing foaming gel is safe and gentle to use both day and night.
Key Ingredients: Zinc PCA
- Tested on acne-prone oily skin
- No alcohol
- Gentle cleanser
- Safe for using both day and night
- Reduces acne-causing bacteria
- Contains fragrances
- May not suit sensitive skin
|1|| ||La Roche-Posay Toleriane Hydrating Gentle Cleanser, 13.52 fl. oz||1,449 Reviews||$14.99||Buy on Amazon|
|2|| ||La Roche-Posay Toleriane Face Wash Cleanser, Purifying Foaming Cleanser for Normal Oily & Sensitive...||819 Reviews||$14.99||Buy on Amazon|
|3|| ||La Roche-Posay Effaclar Medicated Gel Acne Face Wash, Facial Cleanser with Salicylic Acid for Acne &...||1,099 Reviews||$14.99||Buy on Amazon|
3. Best Acne-Resistant: Neutrogena Acne Proofing Gel Cleanser
The Neutrogena Acne Proofing Gel Cleanser is one of the best acne-fighting formulae that clear breakouts and blur blemishes. This cleanser is infused with maximum strength salicylic acid, which is an effective beta-hydroxy acid that unglues the bonds holding dull, dead skin on the surface. Once these bonds are separated, the cleanser gently exfoliates and buffs away dead skin for smoother, younger-looking skin.
Key Ingredients: 2% Salicylic acid
- Buffs away dead skin
- Clinically-proven formula
- Fights breakouts
- Safe for regular use
- Unpleasant chemical smell
- Not suitable for hormonal acne
4. Best For Morning Routine: COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser
COSRX Good Morning Gel Cleanser is a low pH formula (5.0-6.0) that protects the skin from external influences from a virus, bacterium, or pollutant. It helps retain skin moisture content. It is also infused with tea-tree oil and natural BHA that reduces the size of the pores and offers a deep cleansing effect that refines skin texture. It provides gentle exfoliation and sloughs off dead skin cells for a more defined and refreshing look. The skin-purifying ingredients with mild acidic cleansing properties leave the skin feeling soft, smooth, and supple.
Key Ingredients: Tea tree oil, natural BHA
- Low pH formula
- Suitable for day and night use
- Gentle on skin
- Soothes irritated skin
- Free from SLS
- May not suit sensitive skin
The Simplified Skin Vitamin C Cleanser is an organic natural gel cleanser infused with a unique blend of natural ingredients like vitamin C, aloe vera, cucumber extract, and avocado oil that deeply nourish and protect the skin. The potent antioxidant vitamin C helps boost collagen, and prevents breakouts, blemishes, and redness. It offers a refreshed and rejuvenating look. It also protects the skin from free radical damage. The cucumber extract and aloe vera soothe the skin. The cleanser also contains vitamin B complex that helps blur the signs of aging, and improves uneven skin tone and texture in both men and women.
Key Ingredients: Vitamin C, aloe vera, cucumber extract, vitamin B complex
- Suitable for gentle cleansing
- Blurs signs of aging
- Boosts collagen formation
- Protects skin from free radical damage
- Non-toxic organic ingredients
- May dry the face
The Lauer Vitamin C Facial Cleanseris suitable for all skin types. It is infused with 15% antioxidant-rich vitamin C that heals breakouts and blemishes, and fades away the signs of aging. Vitamin C also protects the skin from free radical damage. Rosehip oil is rich in fatty acids that moisturize the skin, promote skin regeneration, improve skin texture and permeability, and reduce the appearance of acne scars. An invigorating blend of aloe vera with vitamin C softens and smoothens the skin, leaving it silky soft and plump. The organic and natural ingredients unclog the pores and remove impurities.
Key Ingredients: Citamin C, rosehip oil, aloe vera
- Great for both men and women
- Hydrates and refines skin
- Fights visible signs of aging
- Evens out skin complexion
- Reduces pore sizes
- Lifts away dirt, excess oil, makeup
- Not suitable for hormonal acne
- Unpleasant smell
- May make skin dry
The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Cleanser is a daily foaming gel formulated to be gentle on blemished skin. It is infused with potent teatree oil that soothes dry skin by reducing itching and irritation. The anti-inflammatory properties of the cleanser heal skin redness and leave your skin feeling fresh. Regular cleansing with this foaming gel helps provide protection against bacterial infection and acne breakouts.
Key Ingredients: Tea tree oil
- Reduces acne, blemishes, dark spots
- Removes dirt, impurities
- 100% vegan
- Hand-harvested pure essential oil
- Not suitable for sensitive skin
8. Best For Sensitive Skin: SeboCalm Facial Cleansing Soap
The SeboCalm Facial Cleansing Soap is a lightweight, gentle, oil-free formula that soothes inflamed skin, reduces redness, and helps relieve symptoms of eczema, psoriasis, and seborrheic dermatitis. It is made with skin-friendly cornmeal and coconut oil for effective and gentle cleansing. Seaweed minerals condition the skin and maintain its elasticity, whereas chamomile extract soothes skin. The oil-free gel cleanser removes dirt, absorbs excess oil, and blurs blemishes. It leaves the skin feeling hydrated and refreshed.
Key Ingredients: Cornmeal, coconut oil
- Soothes skin irritation
- Improves moisture absorption
- Suitable for both men and women
9. Best Detoxifying Formula: Odacité Black Mint face Cleanser
The Odacité Black Mint Face Cleanser is a gentle formula that detoxifies the skin, unclogs pores, and absorbs excess oil. The ultra-fresh minty gel provides invigorated complexion with a refreshing feeling. It also contains activated charcoal and Rhassoul clay – a powerful duo that helps trap excess oil and grime for cleaner-looking skin. Rhassoul clay is rich in magnesium, silica, potassium, and calcium that help support natural skin beauty. The combined astringent properties of peppermint oil and tea tree oil minimize the appearance of pores. They also add a rejuvenating boost to your face.
Key Ingredients: Black mint, activated charcoal, Rhassoul clay
- Natural ingredients
- Gentle on face
- Fresh, pure, organic
- Reduces pore size
10. Best Antioxidant Formula: Easttheory Melon Facial Cleanser
The Easttheory Melon Facial Cleanseris formulated with 95% natural ingredients and 4.5% cantaloupe melon water that rejuvenate the skin and restore skin radiance. Melon is full of antioxidants such as lycopene, vitamin C, and vitamin A that protect the skin from free radical damage and slow down the signs of aging. Vitamin A helps boost collagen production and elastin cells that help keep the skin young and supple. The 100% natural surfactants (coconut, palm, sugarcane, quillaja bark) balance oil secretion and the humectant properties leave the skin moisturized and silky. Chamomile flower extract and vitamin B5 (panthenol) boast anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and reduce redness, irritation, and acne scars. The gel cleanser is super-gentle and provides an exfoliating wash to leave a fresh feeling. It is suitable for both men and women.
Key Ingredients: Melon extract, natural surfactants
- 100% natural cleansing
- Provides mild exfoliation
- No toxic chemicals
- No synthetic colors
- No artificial fragrances
11. Best Protein-Infused: Florencia Botanical Peptide Oxygen Cleanser
The Florencia Botanical Peptide Oxygen Cleanser is infused with high-performance ingredients like peptides, glycoproteins, panthenol, and other botanical extracts that gently cleanse the skin, tighten the pores, remove impurities, and heal acne breakouts. The infused peptides with short-chain amino acids boost collagen and elastin and tighten the skin.
The cleanser is also formulated with natural botanical extracts like aloe vera juice, algae extract, rosehip extract, ginseng root extract, and green tea leaf extract that deeply cleanse the skin, and reduce inflammation and redness. The ginseng root extract is effective in balancing oil secretion. This oil-free oxygenating cleanser with aloe vera juice provides a booster shot of vitamins and minerals to the skin.
Key Ingredients: Peptides
- Natural ingredients
- Infused with humectants
- Restores hydration
- Tightens pores
- Improves elasticity
- Improves skin cellular respiration
- Protects from free radical damage
- Reduces inflammation
- Buffs away dead cells
- Removes impurities
The Lauda Botanicals Oily Skin Control Gel Cleanseris infused with organic botanical extracts like aloe vera, witch hazel, nettle leaf extract, oats protein, lavender, cinnamon extract, cucumber, and vitamin C that offer all-round skin protection. Vitamin C and oatamino acid boost collagen synthesis to give you firmer, plumper skin. They also smoothen fine lines and wrinkles, and blur the signs of aging. These natural ingredients also enhance skin cell metabolism.
Aloe vera, cucumber, and witch hazel extract remove dead skin cells. The combination of natural botanical extracts reduces pore size, reduces excess sebum formation, and lightens dark spots and blemishes. The pH-balanced formula is suitable for both men and women.
Key Ingredients: Aloe vera, oat amino acid, vitamin C, cucumber extract
- No toxic chemicals
- Fresh, natural fragrances
- Minimizes pores
- Anti-aging properties
- Safe and gentle for daily use
- Soothes skin irritation and redness
- pH-balanced formula
The Evanesce New York Purifying Gel Cleanser deeply detoxifies and cleanses your facial skin. This natural gel cleanser is made with tea tree oil that heals acne breakouts, and reduces inflammation, redness, and soreness. It has antibacterial and antifungal properties that halt the growth of acne-causing bacteria. Salicylic acid, a potent BHA, provides gentle exfoliation to the skin. Marine collagen boosts skin firmness and elasticity.
Key Ingredients: Purifying tea-tree oil
- Soothes acne
- Purifies clogged pores
- 100% natural ingredients
- Moisturizes sensitive skin
- Seals skin hydration
These are the 13 best gel-based cleansers for oily skin. But how are they different from a foaming face wash? We have discussed that below.
Gel Cleanser Vs. Foaming Face Wash
Gel cleanser, as the name suggests, has a gel-like texture whereas a foaming face wash has a soapy and airy consistency. The foaming face wash is effective in removing excess oil, dirt, and impurities. But it may contain sodium lauryl sulfate that may cause skin irritation and disturb the skin pH balance.
A gel cleanser is effective in reducing acne and removing dirt and grime. It is gentle on the skin. It is mostly infused with natural organic ingredients that restore skin pH balance. It is usually safe for both oily and sensitive skin.
The following buying guide can help you pick the ideal gel cleanser for your skin.
Gel-Based Cleansers – A Buying Guide
- Ensure the cleanser has soothing and gentle ingredients. Check for natural, organic, vegan ingredients like tea tree oil, chamomile extract, oat protein powder, and vitamin C. These not only reduce oil and breakouts but also can blur the signs of aging.
- Check for exfoliating ingredients. The cleanser should contain BHA to provide mild yet effective exfoliation and leave the skin with clean texture.
- It should be free from all chemicals and toxic ingredients. The presence of sodium lauryl sulfate may irritate the skin.
A gel cleanser with a soft consistency is an overall cleansing solution for your skin. It unclogs pores, removes excess oil, dirt, grime, and impurities. If you want to ditch your pesky acne bumps and clear your skin, gel-based cleansers are the oases to dive into. Pick your favorite product from this list and start cleansing today!
Expert’s Answers for Readers Questions
Is a gel cleanser good for oily skin?
Applying a gel cleanser as part of a regular CTM routine is definitely good for oily skin.
Is a charcoal cleanser good for oily skin?
Yes, a charcoal cleanser is good for oily skin. It is a natural detoxifier that removes dirt and impurities by unclogging the pores. It also heals acne breakouts.
- Draelos ZD. The effect of a daily facial cleanser for normal to oily skin on the skin barrier of subjects with acne. Cutis. 2006;78(1 Suppl):34-40.
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