The Best Face Wash For Acne Prone And Sensitive Skin

For people with acne, skin care tends to be a bit more involving than usual. When it comes to washing your face, the usual combo of soap and water is not enough. Cosmetic companies have created special cleansers that acne sufferers can use on the face to minimise the appearance of blemishes and smoothen the skin.

A high quality face wash gets rid of dead cells on the surface of the skin and combats bacteria that cause skin breakouts. Not only does this improve the look of your skin, it can also make whatever medication you are using for acne more effective. To help you buy the best face wash, we have reviewed the top 5 from a selection of dozens available on the UK market.

Best face wash for acne prone skin – Out top picks

1. Art Naturals Clarifying Face Wash

best face wash for acne and pimples

Acne is generally caused by the accumulation of dirt and oils in skin pores. Art Naturals face wash goes deep into the skin to cleanse out these oils. This helps get rid of blackheads and pimples. At the same time natural extracts of cucumber and aloe work together to moisturize the skin, leaving it soft and supple.


  • Contains natural plant extracts that leave the skin healthier and better looking.
  • Has a thick soothing texture, perfect for skin with acne.


  • If you prefer all-natural skin care products, you will be disappointed. Art Naturals face wash is not 100% natural.

2. Poppy Austin Vitamin C Facial Cleanser

best face wash for acne prone sensitive skin

This cleanser combines the benefits of vitamin C and skin cleansing ingredients to fight acne. It makes use of 100% natural ingredients to tackle the oils and dirt embedded deep in skin pores while enriching the skin with vitamin C. This will not only leave your skin cleansed but also softer, smoother and healthier.


  • It is 100% natural with plant based extracts forming the main ingredients.
  • Contains vitamin C to deliver additional benefits to the skin alongside the cleansing ingredients.


  • Tends to leave the skin with a slightly shiny appearance, something that some users may not like.

3. Senvie Organic Face Cleanser

best face wash for oily acne prone skin

The ‘organic’ in this cleanser’s name is not just a marketing gimmick, it is actually certified organic. This means no harmful or harsh chemicals to make things worse for your skin. It unclogs pores, removing oil and dirt and helping to get rid of white and black heads. At the same time, the organic ingredients provide a cooling relief to the skin especially for users with dry skin.


  • Certified organic. If you love all-natural products, this one is for you.
  • Ideal for moisturizing, cleansing and removing makeup.


  • May cause a breakout in some people. This could be caused by an allergic reaction to a specific ingredient or having extra sensitive skin. If this happens, stop using the product immediately.

4. Teana Micellar Foam Cleanser

acne face wash for oily skin

This cleanser uses Micellar technology – tiny components that cleanse the skin – to achieve amazing results. It contains plenty of natural ingredients, avoiding things like alcohol and harsh alkalis that could worsen the acne.


  • Contains an extra ingredient – calmosensine complex – that reduces muscular tension, making wrinkles less pronounced.
  • It both treats and prevents acne.


  • Not ideal for use with dry skin as it can cause skin dehydration. If you have to use it, also apply an appropriate moisturiser.

5. Venus Secrets Exfoliating Face Wash and Scrub

best face wash for acne and dark spots

Made for all skin types, Venus Secrets face wash brightens the skin, hydrates it and most importantly, cleanses it of dirt, dead cells and oil. It has been formulated to be strong enough to tackle acne but gentle enough for sensitive skin. Some of the ingredients are vitamin E, chamomile extract, green tea extract and olive oil among others.


  • Contains plenty of natural ingredients including lemon extract, aloe and almond seeds.
  • Comes with a non-greasy texture, something that users with oily skin will appreciate.


  • Makes use of an artificial fragrance – listed as ‘parfum’ in the ingredients list – instead of natural essential oils.

A brief buying guide for face wash products

One thing to note is that a face wash is not just for people with acne. You can use it whether you have acne or not. That being so, acne sufferers should make sure that the face wash they buy is designed to tackle acne. Here are some key considerations to make as you shop around.

1. Does it cleanse the skin?

Do not get a face wash that simply cleans off your makeup; you need a product that will penetrate into your skin and perform an effective deep cleanse. Look at the features of a face wash before you buy it. If it pays more attention on moisturizing and brightening than cleansing, it may not be the best one for you. It is also a good idea to find out what users are saying.

Customer reviews can help you determine whether a product really works as advertised.

2. Skin type

You will find that a sizable number of face wash cleansers are made for people with oily skin. It makes sense because they are the ones most commonly affected by skin breakouts. This is not to mean that dry skin cannot be affected. For dry and sensitive skin however, special cleansers are necessary. If you try to use a normal face wash, it could dry out and irritate your skin.

Check the label to ascertain that the product is made for your specific skin type.

3. Ingredients

Look at the ingredient list before you make a purchase. The best cleaners contain mostly natural ingredients, usually plant extracts. Even better, look for a face wash that comes with extra components that moisturise, smoothen and enrich the skin. Avoid products with harmful ingredients like alcohol, phthalates and parabens.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can face wash remove acne?

If your skin is prone to acne, the sad news is that nothing can remove it entirely. That is, you cannot change the fact that you have the type of skin that is prone to acne – it may be your age, or some health condition that makes you predisposed to it, and nothing short of a major life overhaul will make a lot of difference.


A really good face wash can help remove the causes of acne, and can also help you to manage the spots that you have going on so that they become more bearable and less unsightly to you. Removing the build ups of oil, sweat, dirt and make up can really help the skin and can prevent outbreaks of spots.

There are many different ingredients in acne washes that can do amazing things for your skin; depending on your skin type and the type of spots you have you should be able to do a little internet search and find the best face wash for acne prone skin that you can. As a little guide, have a look at these ingredients in acne washes that might help you.

  • Salicylic acid. This is a great exfoliator, and one that is very common in acne washes.
  • Benzoyl Peroxide. This ingredient has antimicrobial properties that can help to remove the bacteria beneath the skin that can cause acne.
  • AHA. Alpha hydroxy acids can help remove dead skin cells, as well as promote the production of collagen.

2. Should you use acne wash every day?

It may be tempting, especially if you have acne prone skin and you have found a wash that works for you, to wash your face with it as often as you can. But… This may not be the best thing for your skin.

Over washing your skin can actually cause even more breakouts, as your body tries to compensate for the oils that are being removed by producing more. Too much washing is also no good for sensitive skin, and can cause dryness along with the acne issues.

Washing your face first thing in the morning and last thing at night is the optimum amount of washing, and the best times to do it. However, if you only have time for one wash a day, make it the night time one.

This means that you can wash off the grime from the day, and potentially any make up that you have on, before you go to sleep and let your skin rest for the night.

You can rinse your face in the morning, and wash it properly at night, to make sure that you give your skin a break throughout the day and a good cleanse at night.

3. Can face wash cause pimples?

Although you might want to wash your face repeatedly because of spot outbreaks or acne, you night not actually be doing your face any favours. Instead of washing over and over again with your new favourite product, give it a while to start working first.

Many face washes contain chemicals that take a while to work, so instead of repeatedly using them over and over, hoping to see results, give them a bit of time to start working their magic.

Over washing your face can, in some cases, lead to pimples. This is because if you strip the skin of the oils that it uses to protect itself, the same oils that can cause pimples, it can compensate by producing more of these oils, with the unwanted side effect that you end up with more of a breakout than you had before you started using the face wash.

Remember to always be gentle with your skin. Scrubbing madly at your spots with a facial wash may cause irritation and an acne flare, so make sure you only ever gently cleanse and moisturise your skin, even with your new favourite gentle acne scrub.


Millions of people suffer from acne. Unfortunately, most resign themselves to a life of scarves and heavy makeup. Acne can be treated or at least, controlled. A face wash for acne is one of several steps you can take towards a better and healthier skin. With our reviews and brief guide, you should be able to buy the right face cleanser to minimise your acne.

As you apply a cleanser, do not forget the basics of good skin care: exfoliation, hydration, sun protection and eating right.

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