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Home » The Best Cleansers for Winter: Oils to Gels and Everything In Between

The Best Cleansers for Winter: Oils to Gels and Everything In Between

Everything starts with cleansing. No matter what creams, lotions or potions you put on your skin it won’t make any difference if you are not cleansing properly. I love cleansers – there are so many out there that are just incredible. I use different cleansers for morning and night because in the morning you don’t need a deep cleanse like you do in the evening (when you are taking the day off). So here are some of the best cleansers for winter out there that will help prep your skin for the colder months. Winter. Is. Coming.

The Best Cleansers for Winter

Eve Lom Cleansing Oil Capsules

Now we have all long hailed the cleansing oil but a cleansing oil capsule? That’s a new one! But yes, Eve Lom has done it with her latest launch which are the Eve Lom Cleansing Oil Capsules. It’s a great cleanser for travel because each capsule is for one cleanse so if you are going away for five days you only need 10 capsules (2 per day, morning and night).

The capsules contain a cleansing oil that has omega fatty acids that help bind to oils on the skin, make-up and dirt and melt them away without stripping the skin. The cleansing oil also contains botanical oils such as eucalyptus, clove, Egyptian chamomile and hops which ensure your skin stays hydrated for 12 hours. I definitely felt this left my skin quite soft and glowy and it’s one of the best cleansers for winter out there simply as it helps protect your skin’s barrier function.

Eve Lom Cleansing Oil CapsulesEve Lom Cleansing Oil CapsulesEve Lom Cleansing Oil Capsules

Pai Skincare Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil

The simple concept behind a cleansing oil is that an oil clings to oil and therefore oil cleansers are actually quite effective at removing excess oil from the skin. I hear so many people talk about how they are scared to use a cleansing oil but I always advise them because they won’t make your skin oilier, in fact they help to balance the skin out. I’ve been really impressed by the Pai Skincare Rosehip Cleansing Oil. First of all Rosehip is so good for the skin because it’s so full of Vitamin C which is an antioxidant that helps to brighten the skin and defend it from free radicals. The Pai Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil feels lovely to apply and rinses away with water. Easy as that.

Pai Skincare Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil

Decorte AQ Meliority High Performance Cleansing Cream

I love beauty brands from Japan and Korea and my latest love comes in the form of a cleanser. The Decorte AQ Meliority High Performance Cleansing Cream is a luxurious cleansing cream that is a joy to use. The product comes in super-luxurious packaging and the product feels amazing on the skin. If you feel like really splashing out and you take in mind the sensorial experience that comes with the cleanser then this cleanser might be worth giving a go. The texture is like a soufflé which melts into the skin. You can tell that it’s effectively melted down dirt, make-up and impurities because it actually changes texture letting you know that you can then remove it with a wet cloth. This cleanser contains collagen-supporting peptides which really help to bolster your skin’s barrier function so it makes it one of the best cleansers for winter.

Decorte AQ Meliority High Performance Cleansing CreamDecorte AQ Meliority High Performance Cleansing CreamDecorte AQ Meliority High Performance Cleansing CreamDecorte AQ Meliority High Performance Cleansing Cream

Pestle & Mortar Renew Gel Cleanser

I love the Pestle & Mortar New Gel Cleanser because for me this is hybrid between a cleansing cream and a balm. So for those of you who find cleansing balms too heavy or too oily this is a great alternative because the texture is somewhere between a gel and a balm. This cleanser contains papaya and mango enzymes that eliminate dirt and impurities all the while tightening pores and hydrating the skin with meadowfoam seed oil to both smooth and clarify. Also you can just rinse this off with water (it emulsifies with water) so no need to wipe off with a wet cloth.

Pestle & Mortar Renew Gel CleanserPestle & Mortar Renew Gel CleanserPestle & Mortar Renew Gel Cleanser

Crabtree & Evelyn Evelyn Rose Luminous Cleansing Balm

Here’s some news. Crabtree & Evelyn, who we typically think of for bodycare, has now launched into skincare! There’s a few new players in the mix with an Overnight Mask, a foaming cleanser and the new Evelyn Rose Luminous Cleansing Balm. Now I haven’t always been a fan of balms, it’s only been recently that I’ve given them a second chance. The Evelyn Rose Cleansing Balm is a great balm for people who don’t like a heavy balm (i.e. the Neal’s Yard Rose Cleansing Balm) because this one emulsifies with water so it rinses off really easily. It also smells lovely so if you like a real sensorial experience I would suggest using this in either morning or night when you need a pep in your step. The formula contains rosehip fruit oil, cotton seed oil (rich in Vit E and antioxidants), rose wax for hydration and eucalyptus oil for an uplifting scent.

Crabtree & Evelyn Evelyn Rose Luminous Cleansing BalmCrabtree & Evelyn Evelyn Rose Luminous Cleansing Balm

KIEHL’S Pineapple Papaya Facial Scrub

Exfoliation is so important to turn over those dead skin cells and reveal a more radiant complexion – I could harp on about exfoliation until the cows come home. Some people like a hard manual scrub while others prefer a gentle scrub. If you like a gentle scrub then the Kiehl’s Pineapple Papaya Facial Scrub is really love and it’s so gentle you can use it every day. It smells incredible as well with real fruit extracts and finely ground scrub grains. I like to use this after my first cleanse to lift off any remaining dead skin cells so that my skincare products sink in better and are more effective. No use wasting nice creams on dead skin cells – you know what I mean?

KIEHL'S Pineapple Papaya Facial Scrub

Dermalogia Special Cleansing Gel

I know I’ve talked a lot about balms so far so I want to move on to gels. If you love foaming cleansers then you will LOVE the Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel. This is a soap-free foaming cleanser (woo!) that removes all traces of make-up and grime without that tight feeling that other foaming cleansers can leave. I like using a balm in the morning and the foaming cleanser in the evening because it’s in the evening that I really need to get rid of all my make-up. I love the smell of the Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel as well because it’s got mint and lavender extracts so it both uplifts and calms at the same time. This is also a great recommendation for people who dislike foam cleansers – it will definitely change your mind about them for the better.

Dermalogia Special Cleansing GelDermalogia Special Cleansing Gel

Ark Skin Perfector Triple Action Exfoliator

If you are looking for a sensorial experience then the Ark Skin Perfector Triple Action Exfoliator is amazing. It’s perfect for the winter months because the scent is amazing. It’s so uplifting – like something that a therapist would apply to your skin during a spa treatment. I love an oil exfoliator and this one is amazing – the base is Abyssinian Oil and Bamboo micro-beads for a fabulous, deep exfoliation (and a joyful one at that). This is both a manual exfoliator, an enzyme and an acid-based one so you are getting triple the exfoliation action because the formula contains AHAs and enzymes that help to slough off dead skin cells so your skin will feel baby soft after using. Exfoliation is also great for getting that glow that is so sought after on Instagram as well as targeting pigmentation and helping cell turnover to reveal fresher, smoother skin. Definitely a winner!

Ark Skin Perfector Triple Action ExfoliatorArk Skin Perfector Triple Action ExfoliatorArk Skin Perfector Triple Action ExfoliatorArk Skin Perfector Triple Action Exfoliator

Pixi Retinol Jasmine Cleanser

I love a retinol product so was excited to try it in a cleanser form with the Pixi Retinol Jasmine Cleanser. I’m a big fan of the Pixi skincare products because I think you get a lot of sophisticated formulas for a really good price. The Pixi Retinol Jasmine Cleanser formula contains retinol, ceramides and antioxidants in one creamy cleansing solution. I like the texture of this cleanser which you simply massage into skin and then rinse off when ready. Along with retinol which helps to smooth the skin, it also contains Jasmine Oil which helps to nourish and brighten the skin. Just what I need. 

Pixi Retinol Jasmine CleanserPixi Retinol Jasmine Cleanser

Paula’s Choice Hydrating Gel to Cream Cleanser

If you live in an urban city and are looking for the best cleanser for pollution then it’s worth having a look at the Paula’s Choice Hydrating Gel to Cream Cleanser. I love a cleanser that transforms into another texture but only because I’m a bit of a skincare geek. This cleanser is gentle enough to use everyday without drying the skin but it removes everything in the process – i.e. dirt, excess oil, make-up, pollution particles, etc. It has an Anti-Pollution Factor blended with green tea, liquorice and soy so any surface pollutants will be blasted away – making this an amazing cleanser to use in the evening after a day in the city. I love the texture as well – it starts out as a gel and then transforms into a cream – brilliant!

Paula’s Choice Hydrating Gel to Cream Cleanser

Elf Watermelon Jelly Cleanser

First of all, I have to say that I love the smell of this cleanser – it smells exactly like watermelon which has to be one of my favourite scents ever. The Elf Watermelon Jelly Cleanser is a really fun texture in a jelly-like gel format which melts away make-up. It’s a fun one I had to add to my list because in terms of the best cleansers for winter, this one certainly adds a bit of fun back into the grey days with the watermelon scent. It also contains Vitamin B5 for an extra boost to the skin because goodness knows in the winter months, we all need it.

Elf Watermelon Jelly Cleanser

Dermalogica Pre Cleanse

I am a huge advocate of a double cleanse, always in the evening after being out all day. If I have make-up and I’ve been out and about I always do a double cleanse in the evening. For a morning cleanse I simply use a balm or a gentle cream cleanser as my skin doesn’t need as much of a cleanse then. But in the evening, a double cleanse is always on the cards. I absolutely LOVE the Dermalogica Pre-Cleanse for this very reason. It’s made for a double cleanse routine with the Pre-Cleanse being step #1. As I mentioned oil grabs oil, so this melts away excess oils, sunscreen, waterproof make-up, pollutants and anything that builds up during the day on your skin. The Pre-Cleanse feels really luxurious with olive and kukui oils, conditioning rice bran and Vitamin E oils.

Dermalogica Pre CleanseDermalogica Pre Cleanse

I simply massage it into dry skin and watch my make-up melt away. Once I’m ready I add a bit of water which makes the Pre-Cleanse emulsify into a milky solution and you can then rinse it all away. You can then follow this with another cleanser for a deeper cleanse, all ready for your nighttime skincare routine.

QMS Deep Cleansing

I’m a huge fan of QMS products which are all based around collagen, an ingredient I absolutely love and one that we lose over time in our skin. Boo. The QMS Deep Cleansing cleanser is a lotion cleanser that removes all impurities (including pollution particles) without stripping the skin and it’s suitable for every skin type so whether you are looking for the best cleansers for acne or the best cleansers for dry skin, then this is the one-size-fits-all kind of deal. You can even use it on your eyes to get eye make-up off. Just apply to dry skin and massage in and then you can either rinse it away or wipe off with a wet cloth.

QMS Deep CleansingQMS Deep Cleansing

What are some of your best cleansers for winter that you’ve tried before? Would love to hear if you have tried any of these!

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @beautyrocksblog for all my adventures.

*contains PR samples sent for testing purposes



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