Difference between Cleanser and Face wash: {Explained}

Difference between Cleanser and Face wash: {Explained}

Choosing the best product for your face can be challenging, especially when there are thousands of options to select from. While you may already know that washing your face is beneficial and should be an essential part of your skincare routine. But you may be hearing terminology like cleanser and face wash and wondering what are they actually used for? Is there really a difference between cleanser and face wash

You’ve come to the right place for the answer. Here is a complete guide to learn more about the difference between cleanser and face wash.

What is Cleanser?

A cleanser is a product that is used to eliminate dirt from a person’s face and keeps it clean.

The basic use of face cleanser is to remove makeup, grime, and oils, especially before going to bed. When applied to our faces, it is a non-foaming liquid that does not need to be rinsed away.

Difference between Cleanser and Face wash: from basic to top everything explained
What is a Face Wash?

A face wash is a liquid that is used to cleanse our faces instead of traditional soap. Many compounds have been produced by businesses to provide a more modern alternative to soap for cleaning our skin, particularly our faces.

A face wash is a foamy solution that is used to remove deep-seated filth and grime, leaving people feeling fully clean and refreshed.

Benefits of Face wash

Face wash is a majorly used as a daily treatment to keep the skin looking fresh and removing excess oil. Many individuals use this product as a substitute of soap since it provides benefits to the skin that soap doesn’t. Most face washes bubble up like soap, leaving you feeling clean and rejuvenated. A face wash without chemicals is preferable to soap because it is gentler on the face, contains additional medicines that soap lacks, and does not dry up the skin.

Benefits of using Facial cleansers

Skin cleansers are another option for removing dirt and oils, but they work better than face wash at removing makeup and other cosmetics. Some people even use skin cleansers before applying makeup in the morning to ensure that their foundation is smooth and clean. The application of these two items differs, as skin cleansers do not require thorough washing to be removed. A simple wipe with a washcloth or towel after using a skin cleanser would be enough and leaves the skin clean and dry. A deep cleanser, unlike most soaps and body washes, is free of skin irritants such as sodium lauryl sulphate. There are a lot of types of cleaners available, but you should opt for the one made up of natural ingredients


Top 6 Difference between Cleanser and Face wash

Difference between Cleanser and Face wash

People often ask is cleanser and face wash same or not? The answer is no. They both vary on different factors. You can understand the difference between cleanser and face wash through the following table:



Face wash


Skin type

Recommended for Oily Skin

Recommended for Dry Skin

Time of Usage



Production of Foam

Well foaming



Less Gentle

More gentle than face wash


Low moisturization levels

High moisturization levels


Gel-like and foamy

Creamy or milky

1. Skin Type

Face wash is suggested when someone has oily skin and needs a deep clean to remove foreign items from the skin along with providing breathing pores. For oily skin, the face wash is highly recommended since it dissolves and breaks down oil, grime, and dust that cleansers cannot remove.

Cleansers are highly suggested for dry, sensitive skin. They have a hydrating impact on the skin, making it less sensitive. People who are exposed to pollution and wear makeup should use cleansers to protect their skin. This is a major difference between cleanser and face wash.

2. Time of usage

In most cases, a face wash is recommended in the morning while an individual is getting ready for daily activities or going to work.

Face cleansing, on the other hand, is essential in the evening before going to bed. After a day spent in an environment where dirt and other foreign materials adhere to your face, you must remove these materials, as well as any makeup, before going to bed, which refreshes and cleanses your face.

3. Production of Foam

Face wash produce foam when used, which is necessary for keeping the face clean, hydrated, and rejuvenated. This is similar to the qualities of regular bathing soap, implying that the two items can be used interchangeably.

Face cleansers do not produce foam, thus they do not provide a refreshing or moisturising sensation. Their main goal is to get rid of deep-seated filth and grease. As a result, cleansers and soaps cannot be substituted for one another and the difference between cleanser and face wash remains.

4. Gentleness

A daily use face wash is believed to be softer than standard bathing soap, which is why many individuals prefer to use face wash to remove dirt from their faces.

A cleanser, on the other hand, is milder than face wash ingredients and plain soap. Cleansers provide thorough cleaning by eliminating all oils and other foreign particles from a person's face.

5. Moisturization

These two products have different moisturization levels too. Face washes are less hydrating and moisturizing on the skin as it’s basic function is removing dirt from debris and cleaning the pores

A cleanser is more hydrating and moisturizing because it not only removes the dirt, but also effectively works in eradicating excess oils. 

6. Texture

An alcohol free face wash is intended to thoroughly clean your pores. The texture is frequently gel-like or frothy and usually lathers into a foam when applied to damp skin. A face cleanser is created to cleanse, moisturise, and soothe your skin. Its texture will be creamy or milky as it contains cream, oil, lotion or powder. The texture is an integral part that determines the difference between cleanser and face wash.

Difference between Cleanser and Face wash: {Explained}

FAQs related to Difference between Cleanser and Face wash

Q.1 What type of face wash is good for dry skin?

Ans. A plant powered, chemical free face wash would be an ideal choice for dry skin. Mother Sparsh Turmeric Healing Face Wash is an Ayurvedic face wash for dry skin which  could be the best face wash for dry skin in winter. It could also be opted as a face wash for combination skin.

Q.2 What is face clean up?

Ans. A face clean-up helps in removing the dead-skin cells, dirt build-up along with the excess oil and sebum from the top layer of our skin. There are many face clean up benefits as it helps in deep cleansing and exfoliating the face. Also, there is a difference between cleanup and facial as clean up is a quick option while facials can be beneficial for skin in the long run. 

Difference between Cleanser and Face wash What are the main differences

Face wash and cleansers both remove excess oil, dirt, and other pollutants from your skin, but the additional benefits they provide vary depending on your skin type and needs. If you follow a few simple skincare tips, you can have young, radiant skin. We hope you won't get now that you know the difference between cleanser and face wash.

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1 comment

Very useful.. Well written and explained

Anjali Singh

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