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Looking for a vegan face wash to gently yet effectively cleanse your skin without drying or stripping it? In this guide, I’m sharing the best vegan face washes; whether you need a cruelty-free facial cleanser for acne, or sensitive, dry, normal, or oily skin, there’s something for you in this list!
What To Look For:
Unfortunately, most drugstore and high-end face washes are from brands that still test on animals like CeraVe, Cetaphil, Neutrogena, Aveeno, La Roche-Posay, Clinique, Fresh, Kiehl’s, Caudalie, Avene, Shiseido, Bioderma, DHC, EltaMD, Dr. Jart+, Obagi, Chanel, SkinCeuticals, Eve Lom, Origins, Sulwhasoo, Eucerin, and should be avoided when looking for a cruelty-free and vegan facial cleanser.
In addition, some face washes may contain animal-derived ingredients or by-products. Common animal-based ingredients found in face cleanser formulas may include beeswax, royal jelly, cholesterol, animal-based glycerin, stearic acid, glycerides, hyaluronic acid, or squalane.
There are plant-based and synthetic alternatives to animal-derived ingredients. But it’s sometimes difficult to know with certainty whether a product is vegan just by reading the ingredient list. If a product isn’t clearly labeled as vegan then it’s best to contact the manufacturers to ask about the source of their ingredients.
Best Vegan Face Washes in 2023
Below is a list of best-rated and best-selling vegan face washes and their product claims.
All of the face washes mentioned in this post are from brands that have been verified as being truly cruelty-free and don’t test on animals. Note that I’ve included some options from cruelty-free brands that are owned by an animal-tested parent company. If you choose not to purchase from these brands, avoid the ones marked with an * asterisk.
And all of the face washes have been verified as being vegan-friendly and don’t contain any animal-derived ingredients. However, always check the manufacturer’s website for the most up-to-date information as ingredients and formulations may change.
Best vegan face wash for oily skin
This daily green juice gel face cleanser has a fresh scent and is made with a proprietary superfood-extract blend of kale, spinach, and green tea to remove makeup, support skin’s pH balance, and clear buildup in pores that can lead to blemishes. Effective for single and double cleansing, this antioxidant-rich formula leaves you with glowing, soft, and clean skin without drying or stripping.
Best vegan face wash for dry skin
Squalane Cleanser is formulated to clean skin by removing makeup and dirt. This cleanser also supports your skin’s moisture barrier through hydration. Its skin-cleansing properties harness plant-derived squalane, a well-studied moisturizing agent, alongside lipophilic esters that will leave your skin feeling smooth and soft while dissolving makeup.
Best vegan face wash for combination skin
This breakthrough vegan cleanser starts off as a silky clear gel and lathers into the softest, milkiest foam for that perfect deep-cleanse. Two powerful yet gentle sulfate-free cleansing agents do the heavy-lifting in drawing out impurities. All without stripping skin dry or disrupting the skin barrier. The pH 5.5 formula is then spiked with a cocktail of super-soothing ingredients like “cica,” chamomile and camellia.
Best vegan face wash for normal skin
RESIST Optimal Results Hydrating Cleanser gently but effectively removes makeup and cleanses skin without dehydrating or leaving a tight feeling on skin. A silky smooth formula that replenishes and helps to preserve skin’s healthy barrier while effectively cleansing skin.
Best Vegan Face Wash For Sensitive Skin
Vanicream Gentle Facial Cleanser
Best vegan face wash for sensitive skin
This mild cleanser is sulfate-free, non-comedogenic, and free from essential oils, botanical extracts, essential oils, and harsh cleansing agents. Formulated for daily use to remove makeup and excess skin oils without drying skin.
Best non-foaming vegan face wash for sensitive skin
This pH-balanced, non-foaming cleanser calms heat associated with reactive, sensitized, or over-processed skin. It delicately fortifies skin’s protective barrier without leaving an irritating residue, and easily rinses away or wipes off.
Best luxurious vegan face wash for sensitive skin
A nourishing, creamy cleanser infused with a Micro-Foaming Botanical Blend that lathers into a dense, luxuriously rich foam to gently dissolve buildup and impurities. Designed with a Constructive Cleansing Technology made up of multifunctional cleansing ingredients and a nutrient-rich Lipid Complex, skin is left clean, calm, and conditioned.
Best less expensive vegan face wash for sensitive skin
Derma E’s dermatologist-recommended sensitive skin vegan cleanser was specifically formulated to calm sensitive skin while cleansing. Soothes the look of visibly red skin while nourishing dry and uncomfortable skin.
Best Vegan Face Wash For Acne
Best vegan face wash for acne
This non-drying, lightly foaming cleanser removes makeup and dirt, while penetrating deep into pores helping to reduce blackheads and breakouts. As well as effectively cleansing the skin, this 2% Salicylic Acid cleanser has an added zinc compound. Together they help with oil-control, reducing blackheads and breakouts and promoting a more even looking complexion.
Best vegan AHA/BHA face wash for acne
Experience the refreshing sensation of jasmine, clove, and grape extract while cleansing with this non-drying, gel-to-foam formula. AHAs and BHAs visibly minimize pores, fine lines, uneven tone, and texture while farnesol aids in washing away bacteria. Ideal for all skin types and free of soap and sulfates, this cleanser leaves skin feeling soft and supple.
Best 1.5% salicylic acid vegan face wash
This maximum-strength vegan gel cleanser combats acne and skin breakouts by dissolving excess oil, purifying pores, clearing existing blemishes & prevent breakouts—including maskne. Two types of salicylic acid start treating immediately and over time. Green tea extract helps soothe and calm irritation for healthier-looking skin.
Best less expensive 1.5% salicylic acid vegan face wash
A gentle, non-drying, foaming cream vegan cleanser with 1.5% salicylic acid that shuts down breakouts without stripping the skin of its natural oils. The apple fruit extract acts as a gentle exfoliant (removing buildup that can contribute to breakouts) all while calming and moisturizing the skin. And that dreamy blue hue? That’s all thanks to blue tansy, a natural antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties that cool and soothe irritated and inflamed skin. If you experience breakouts and understand the words ‘fine lines,’ this cleanser is made for you.
Best 2% salicylic acid vegan face wash
Powerful acne cleanser with salicylic, azelaic and glycolic acids reduces breakouts and minimizes excess sebum that can clog pores. It targets all forms of acne, including Malassezia folliculitis (“fungal acne”). Supports healthy skin pH levels for a balanced surface microbiome.
Best Vegan Cleansing Oil and Balms
Best vegan cleansing oil
Formulated with vitamin C-rich rosehip—the star of Pai’s iconic Rosehip BioRegenerate Oil—this golden cleansing elixir effortlessly rinses away every last trace of sweat, grime, and makeup. Conditioning olive and sunflower oils melt away impurities, while geranium and jasmine oils soothe and soften, leaving even the most sensitive skin feeling fresh, balanced, and oh-so-clean.
*Note: Pai is cruelty-free, but Pai is owned by Clarins, a parent company that is NOT cruelty-free.
Best vegan cleansing balm
This award-winning cleansing balm quickly and effortlessly melts away makeup (including long-wearing and stubborn eye makeup) without stripping your skin or leaving any residue behind. Transforming from a sorbet-like balm to a milky lather, it seamlessly removes sunscreen, visible impurities, and excess oil while gently exfoliating skin to leave your complexion hydrated and smooth.
Then I Met You Living Cleansing Duo
Best vegan cleansing duo
Makeup, city grime, pollution — our skin is exposed to so many impurities throughout the day, that can lead to premature aging, breakouts and rough skin. By incorporating the Living Cleansing Balm (an oil-based cleanser) and The Soothing Tea Cleansing Gel (a water-based cleanser), you’ll be sure to remove these dulling elements from the surface.
Best Daily Vegan Face Exfoliator
Best vegan face exfoliator cleanser
Gentle enough for daily use, this rice-based powder cleanser exfoliates with unique visibly brightening enzymes (without overprocessing your skin). Activated by water, it transforms into a foaming, creamy paste, releasing papain and salicylic acid to minimize the appearance of blackheads, uneven texture, and hyperpigmentation.
Best drugstore vegan facial exfoliant
A gentle exfoliant that peels away dry, dead skin to bring your fresh face forward. E.L.F.’s best-selling gentle exfoliant works to shed layers of dry skin buildup and restore your radiant, youthful complexion. The liquid formula is full of nourishing tangerine, papaya, and licorice extracts that soothe skin, while prepping it to better absorb the benefits of your other face products.
More Vegan Facial Cleansers
Best vegan face wash under $15
COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser is an ultra-gentle face wash formulated with pore-purifying ingredients that gently rinse away impurities. While refining the skin texture, this cleanser will help cleanse with no stripping. Great for all skin types, wake up to a firmer-looking skin while letting it rest clean during the night.
Best 2-in-1 vegan face wash
This is a nourishing cream and gel cleanser in one. The “milky” phase conditions skin to keep it fresh, happy, and moisturized. The “jelly” phase works to dissolve oil, dirt, and makeup. It’s gentle enough to use daily, twice a day, or more! It’s formulated with five skin conditioners (like Allantoin and Pro-Vitamin B5) that leave your skin feeling baby soft (not like you need to rush for moisturizer afterwards)
Best vegan cream cleanser
A PH-neutral, daily cream cleanser that gently washes away impurities without stripping skin—leaving it hydrated, feeling soft, and looking luminous. For centuries, Japanese women have repurposed the milky water leftover from rinsing rice for cooking to use in their beauty rituals. A rich source of vitamins A, B2, B12, and E, this byproduct softens and boosts the look of luminosity. This original cleansing ritual was the inspiration for this wash, combining Okinawa red algae and hyaluronic acid with Japanese rice powder to replenish essential moisture for clean, hydrated skin.
Best-smelling vegan face wash
Wake up your skin and your senses. This seaweed-infused gel cleanser removes everything from surface impurities to excess oils. Scented with an energizing twist of lime and sweet jasmine with a citrusy light note of bergamot.
Best zero-waste vegan face wash
A first-of-its-kind gentle cleanser that transforms from powder into a full bottle of non-foaming gel with a skin-balanced pH. The gentle blend of hydrating ingredients creates a gel that is hypoallergenic, non-irritating and fragrance-free.
Best non-stripping vegan face wash
The face wash that leaves your skin feeling cleaner and better. It uses coconut-based surfactants to deeply cleanse without stripping skin. Instead, nourishing Matcha and Hemp Seed Oil restore hydration and antioxidants to the skin. Seems like the wise choice to us!
Naturium Niacinamide Cleansing Gelée 3%
Best vegan niacinamide face wash
This essence-like cleanser is formulated with 3% niacinamide and works to gently dissolve makeup, oil and impurities, while improving the appearance of skin, for a healthier-looking complexion. This niacinamide facial cleanser leaves skin feeling softer, smoother, and balanced, never dry or stripped. Can be used on dry or damp skin.