Beauty / Skincare

5 Face Cleansers for Sensitive Skin

Thanks to my genes, I have really sensitive skin. People with sensitive skin are more likely to have bad reactions to certain ingredients in products, and that reaction could be breaking out in acne or developing a rash. I have eczema and got a really bad eczema breakout on my skin as a result of some specific ingredients in skincare products. As a result, I’ve been on the lookout for skincare products that are gentler on the skin!

Here I’ve compiled a list of some of my favorite water-based facial cleansers for anyone else who has sensitive skin.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

  • Price: $14.99 for 12oz // Purchase
  • Key Ingredients:
    • Hyaluronic Acid: helps to retain the skin’s natural moisture
    • Three Types of Ceramides: helps to restore the protective skin barrier
  • pH Level*: 5.5

This cleanser is a cult favorite. It’s highly recommended and always mentioned on the SkincareAddiction subreddit. I didn’t start trying this until a few months ago. The texture was something that I had to get used to because I’ve never used such a thick cleanser. It feels like you’re washing your face with lotion, and unlike a lot of the cleansers I’ve used in the past, this one leaves your face feeling like there’s a layer of moisturizer on it. My face feels really soft after using this and it doesn’t feel tight and dry.

I love this cleanser because of how easy it is to find, it’s unscented, it’s accepted by the National Eczema Foundation, and it’s pretty affordable.

I have seen some posts on the SkincareAddiction subreddit where people have broken out as a result of using this, so your results may vary.

This is good for those who are just getting into skincare and want an affordable cleanser that’s easy to find. This is one of my top choices for cleanser and I love how hydrating and simple it is.

Innisfree Minimum for Sensitive Skin Cleansing Milk

  • Price: $9 for 3oz // Purchase
  • Key Ingredients: none
  • pH Level*: 6.5

This is a really basic, minimal cleanser. All of the products from Innisfree’s Minimum for Sensitive Skin line are formulated with less than 13 ingredients. This is unscented, not made from animal products, has no parabens, and has no artificial coloring.

As for texture, this does not foam up at all. Like the CeraVe cleanser, this feels like you’re washing your face with a lotion. It leaves my face feeling really smooth afterwards and not dry or tight at all.

This is good for those who have really easily irritated or currently inflamed skin. Since there’s a really minimal amount of ingredients in here, you’re less likely to run into an ingredient that will irritate your skin.

Muji Sensitive Skin Cleansing Face Soap Foam

  • Price: $12.50 for 200ml // Purchase
  • Key Ingredients:
    • Lauric Acid: anti-bacterial
  • pH Level*: 8.5

This has been one of my go-to cleansers for years. I’ve repurchased it several times and I’ve been happy with how well it performs. I am pretty surprised to see how high the pH level is, but I’ve never had any issues with it, which might have something to do with the toners that I use afterward.

It’s very convenient since the bottle foams up the cleanser for you. My face feels really clean after this, but not tight and there’s no slippery feeling afterward.

This is good for someone who’s looking for a basic foam cleanser and has easy access to a Muji.

SoonJung pH 6.5 Whip Cleanser

  • Price: $13.20 for 5oz // Purchase
  • Key Ingredients:
    • Panthenol: hydrates
    • Madecassoside: repairs skin damage
  • pH Level*: 6.5

If you haven’t heard of Soon Jung, it’s a line from Etude House that was made for those with sensitive or damaged skin. They formulate all the products from this line to be slightly acidic since more alkaline formulas can damage your skin.

This cleanser is pretty similar to the Muji one in that it also comes in a foaming bottle. I would say that this foam is a little bit denser than Muji’s and the pH level is also lower. Like the Muji foam cleanser, it does not leave any feeling of lotion on your face afterward.

This is good for people with damaged or sensitive skin who prefers a foam cleanser.

Krave Beauty Matcha Hemp Hydrating Cleanser

  • Price: $16.00 for 120ml // Purchase
  • Key Ingredients:
    • Matcha
    • Hemp Seed Oil
    • Vitamin B5
    • Sodium PCA
  • pH Level*: 6.0-6.5

I love this cleanser, and it might be my favorite cleanser out of the list. The scent smells like matcha-scented soap, it’s refreshing and pleasant. The texture of the cleanser is like a watery gel and it feels nice on the skin. Like some of the other cleansers, it leaves your skin feeling moisturized and soft immediately afterward.

This is good for someone who wants to feel a little bit more luxe when washing their face.

I think all of these cleansers are great, but if I could only choose three to repurchase, I would buy the Krave Beauty, CeraVe, and SoonJung cleansers. How about you? Have you tried any of these cleansers or is there another cleanser you’d recommend for sensitive skin?

*NOTE: For the pH level measurements, I purchased these pH test strips from Amazon and tested the pH level myself, which is why some of the levels differ from what is stated on the website.


  • Noor
    March 9, 2019 at 10:44 am

    OMG I have the same problem! Thanks for your tips! 😀

    Xo Noor

  • alimackin2013
    March 9, 2019 at 2:17 pm

    Oooo that Matcha Hemp cleanser sounds REALLY good. I can see why you like. I paid more then that for the Lancome cleanser I use though it lasts about 10-12 months so it is worth it

    Allie of

  • Nicole N
    March 9, 2019 at 11:44 pm

    Looks like a good skincare routine.

    Have a lovely weekend. Xo

  • April Cheung
    March 10, 2019 at 3:49 am

    omg the matcha cleanser sounds amazing

  • Gemma Etc. ❥ (@GemmaEtc)
    March 10, 2019 at 5:49 am

    I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about the Ceravé range but I’ve never tried any of their products, this cleanser sounds ideal for my sensitive skin xx

  • rolalaloves
    March 10, 2019 at 10:21 am

    The Krave cleanser sounds especially lovely. My skin used to be more sensitive before I worked on building up my moisture barrier but I’m still careful about the cleansers I use. I can’t get enough of the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel because it’s so gentle and effective.

    • Mai Nguyen
      March 13, 2019 at 7:44 pm

      I’ve never heard of that brand, I’ll have to check it out!

  • Carrie @ Curly Crafty Mom
    March 10, 2019 at 5:59 pm

    One that I don’t see mentioned here is Cetaphil. I love to use it with my Clarisonic or by itself. I’ve been using it for years. I’ve heard good things about CeraVe and that Matcha one I’d love to try!


    • Mai Nguyen
      March 13, 2019 at 7:43 pm

      Ohhhh, I forgot about Cetaphil! I haven’t used that for a few years but I definitely remember it being gentle and also very moisturizing.

  • busyandfab
    March 10, 2019 at 7:58 pm

    Good to be aware about these cleansers. I’ve been using Innisfree products but not their cleanser yet.

  • sepatuholig
    March 10, 2019 at 10:02 pm

    great review, thank you for sharing
    IG @grace_njio

  • Radi
    March 11, 2019 at 2:09 am

    I would love to try the matcha cleanser! Thanks for sharing these products.

  • Quinn
    March 11, 2019 at 5:34 am

    I definitely have sensitive skin, so this is a great read! I haven’t heard out of 3/5 brands – must try xx

  • sundaydahlias
    March 11, 2019 at 10:49 am

    Ooo I was curious about Muji’s skincare products. It sounds promising with how gentle it is.

  • WhatWouldVWear
    March 11, 2019 at 1:15 pm

    Need to try! Sounds fantastic!
    Happy Monday, babe!
    xoxo, Vanessa

  • selinasinspiration
    March 12, 2019 at 2:35 am

    I have very sensitive skin! Need to check out the brands you mentioned ❤
    Selina | Selina’s Inspiration

  • Chynna
    March 12, 2019 at 4:40 am

    I haven’t tried any of these cleansers but they seem really good. I also suffer from eczema and have sensitive skin, so skincare is a minefield for me. Will have to check these brands out!

    Chynna |

    • Mai Nguyen
      March 13, 2019 at 7:43 pm

      Good luck, I hope they work out for you!

  • Jessica
    March 12, 2019 at 9:28 am

    Love your roundup dear. Will check these products out. Thanks for sharing!

    Jessica |

  • Ashley
    March 12, 2019 at 9:56 am

    I love that CeraVe cleanser- my skin is pretty sensitive and I love a gentle cleanser!

    Le Stylo Rouge

  • Melody Jacobs
    March 12, 2019 at 3:45 pm
  • yuka
    March 12, 2019 at 6:17 pm

    thanks for the recommendations!

  • Audrey
    March 12, 2019 at 9:29 pm

    I swipe skincare products from my mom whenever I visit home, so I’ve actually never really bought my own skincare products, excluding body lotions from the drugstore 😛 Buuut if I ever run out before I visit home, I’ll definitely keep these products in mind to try :3 Thanks for sharing! (I’m a sucker for anything matcha… mostly for food, but extends to skincare and everything else too hehe) -Audrey | Brunch at Audrey’s

    • Mai Nguyen
      March 13, 2019 at 7:42 pm

      Yesss, matcha is great in all forms :D!

  • Atsuna Matsui (@atsunamatsui)
    March 13, 2019 at 1:46 pm

    Aww thanks for this awesome recommendation. I happen to have sensitive skin so I’m always looking for cleansers that are gentle for my skin. I never knew Muji came out with their own cleanser. That’s so cool and I’ll have to check these out myself.


    • Mai Nguyen
      March 13, 2019 at 7:40 pm

      Yes! Muji’s sensitive skincare line is quite nice and I might make another post of the items in the future :)!

  • Jenny
    March 13, 2019 at 5:46 pm

    I love that Cerave cleanser! It’s not the most fun to use, but it’s so affordable and really does a great job of cleansing without stripping. The Krave one is next on my to-try list, I love anything matcha scented!

    Jenny // Geeky Posh

    • Mai Nguyen
      March 13, 2019 at 7:40 pm

      I also love anything matcha scented! I’m surprised not more brands make matcha-scented items

  • Nahid Akhter
    March 30, 2019 at 9:27 am

    Thanks for this Wonderful read about face cleanser. You shared great content. Keep up the good work.

    Nahid |

  • Elise
    June 5, 2019 at 7:02 am

    this post makes me so so happy simply because the krave matcha hemp and soon jung whip cleanser are in my list. i’ve been searching for the perfect cleanser to replace my cosrx good morning gel cleanser with and i have a feeling i’m going to love krave’s the most. we’ll see about that.

    i’ve been wanting to try the cerave cleanser as well but i’ll have to wait lol my skincare to-try list is too much at the moment.

    i’d like to add cosrx’s low ph first cleansing milk gel into the list too. even though it’s marketed as a first cleanser, i use it as my only cleanser in the morning and it works just fine. it doesn’t lather though and supposedly used on dry skin, so definitely like using a cleansing oil or something. some people say it’s a dupe for glossier’s jelly cleanser too but i wouldn’t know since i’ve never tried glossier’s.

    hadalabo is also another good one, especially for hyaluronic acid fans and people with dry skin. i personally love their gokujyun face wash (the one in tube. but they have the pump version as well) and a little bit goes such a long way. it’s supposedly pH balanced as well, around 5.5 i think.

    speaking of muji, i love their sensitive skin line. i love their toner so much but it’s fairly pricey so i didn’t repurchase. as for the cleanser, i tried the tube version and although it didn’t cause any breakout, i found sulfate in its ingredient list so i stopped using (plus it gave me that squeaky clean feeling which is a sign that i should avoid it) it’s kinda ironic how products marketed as ‘safe for sensitive skin’ still contain surfactants like SLS or SLES. i think sensitive skin folks should avoid these detergents but that’s just how i see fit in order to protect our skin barrier.

    tldr; i think sensitive skin people should also avoid high pH cleansers. alkaline based face wash will probably damage skin barrier so i always tell people to stop using cleansers who have pH level higher than 6 or 6.5.

    • Mai Nguyen
      June 18, 2019 at 5:54 am

      I tried Cosrx’s low pH cleansing gel and I didn’t like it that much. I’ll have to check out the milk version, though! I’ve been using Muji’s sensitive toner for years and I buy the biggest bottle they have since it’s cheaper when you buy a larger quantity. They often have 15% off sales and I’ve noticed that they’ve slowly lowered the price over the past few years. I used to use their sensitive cleanser, but I didn’t realize it had SLS! I’ll have to steer clear of that from now on.

  • jade bevan
    July 29, 2019 at 2:28 am

    wow this face cleansers looks really good!! i have sensitive skin and this would be perfect!

  • Nahid Akhter
    April 21, 2020 at 12:43 pm

    Great post. Love these great findings! Thanks for sharing!

    Nahid |


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