Looking for a new cleanser and don’t know where to start? We hear you. The cleansing world is a nuanced place, boasting options for every single skin type, so whether you are oily, combination, dry or normal, there is something out there for you. But that’s a simple way of looking at it.
As one of the most important steps in your skincare routine—it removes all kinds of build-up, dirt and make-up to leave behind a clean and balanced, primed for subsequent products – particular consideration should be made for the texture of your cleanser, too.
There are all manners of milk, oils and foams out there, and picking the right one will depend on your skin’s condition. But the one texture guaranteed to please everyone? Cleansing balms.
This nourishing, deep cleansing texture works as a two-in-one to remove every trace of make-up and daily build-up while thoroughly cleansing the skin simultaneously. Starting off as a solid formula, the balmy texture soon begins to break down with the warmth of your hands and, when emulsified with water, usually transforms into a silky oil or soft milk as the formula is activated.
They successfully remove dirt and impurities, dissolving every last trace of makeup and in most instances, all without stripping the skin. Plus, the luxurious, thick texture encourages you to take a bit of time out for yourself to indulge in a good facial massage which ultimately boosts blood flow and circulation to get that glow.
While it may appear to be suited to dry skin types, this is a cleansing texture which really does work across the board and that comes down to a well-formulated ingredient list. Whether you have mature skin, acne-prone skin or oily skin, there is a balmy offering for you. Below, we answer all your burning cleansing balm questions and round up the best cleansing balm to try now.
Sounds good, but what actually is a cleansing balm?
They’re oil-based cleansers that are great at breaking down make-up and dirt. A good one won’t strip the epidermis of good oils or good bacteria; instead, they actually nourish and protect the skin’s barrier.
How do I use a cleansing balm?
Scoop a generous amount of the balm onto your fingertips; gently massage into the face, neck and décolletage, with a splash of water to loosen the oil; leave on for a couple of minutes (if you have the time); rinse off with either warm water or a warm muslin flannel.
The key is to use a splash of water during the massage stage. It loosens the texture, gives the product a good ‘slip’ around the face and means you can really break down stubborn make-up and grime.
1. Elemis Pro-Collagen Rose Cleansing Balm
A stunning floral-infused iteration on Elemis’ cult classic Pro-Collegen Cleansing Balm, this features delicate and soothing English Rose Oleo Extract (great for sensitive skin) while harnessing essential oils to create a sensorial cleansing experience that melts away dirt with real ease.
2. Drunk Elephant Slaai Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser
Dubbed a cleansing butter, this clever balm-to-oil-to-milk cleanser uses antioxidant-rich fruit extracts and oils, alongside an African oil blend of marula, baobab, and Kalahari melon, to intensely nourish, restore elasticity and boost your skin’s glow. Use the accompanying exfoliating Bamboo Booster (made of fine bamboo and charcoal spheres) to buff away buildup.
3. Sali Hughes x Revolution Skincare Butterclean Makeup Meltdown Cleansing Balm
Beauty journalist Sali Hughes has collaborated with Revolution Beauty to create a seriously savvy skincare range. One of the highlights is this cleansing balm: a solid oil that melts to milk once you’ve emulsified it. It leaves skin comfortable, fresh and nicely clean (though not squeaky).
4. Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm
While plenty of cleansing balms are packed with fragrant essential oils, Clinique’s is fragrance and fuss free! This lightweight cleansing balm quickly dissolves makeup, including stubborn mascara. It transforms from a solid balm to a milky, fluid oil upon application with water and rinses away the day.
5. Augustinus Bader The Cleansing Balm
If you’re on the hunt for something luxurious, this balm is worth its salt. The hefty price tag hasn’t put off the cult following of this biohacking brand which seeks to repair skin at a cellular level. To that end, the brand’s patented signature TFC8 Complex works to support skin renewal, while an avocado-olive fruit oil complex, squalane and vitamin E, calms, purifies and decongests the skin.
6. Eve Lom Cleanser
A true delight to use. The holistic brand’s iconic balm works to dislodge makeup and dirt, while deeply cleaning pores, toning, and gently exfoliating, all at once. Having held undisputed status in the skincare world over the last 35 years, it’s no surprise one sells every 30 seconds.
7. Ranavat Lotus Cleansing Balm
The eponymous Ayurvedic skincare line founded by South Asian scientist turned entrepreneur Michelle Ranavat, brings you one of its most decadent offerings yet. The Lotus Cleansing Balm will clear and purify skin while fortifying its resilience thanks to a cocktail of nourishing mango butter, and sunflower, sesame and blue tansy oils. This is for that post-facial glow in a jar.
8. Byoma Melting Balm Cleanser
Infused with Byoma’s Barrier Lipid Complex, this lightweight blend of grapeseed oil, sea buckthorn and olive fruit extracts works to hydrate, nourish and restore the skin barrier, leaving behind a clear and balanced complexion.
9. Wishful Clean Genie Cleansing Butter
Beauty mogul Huda Kattan’s skincare offering Wishful is worthy of all the praise it gets and this balm is a testament to its success. A super blend of green tea and cherry blossom extracts, and antioxidant-rich malachite makes this a soothing, clarifying and revitalising pick.
This article originally appeared on Grazia International