Cleanser is one of the few products in any beauty routine that reflects your routine as a whole. Whether you're focused on balancing oily, acne-prone skin, repairing a dehydrated or damaged barrier, or just removing your makeup at the end of the day, your cleanser needs to be up for the task — or often, multiple at once. This is why you'll usually hear about skin types, face-wash frequency, or other personal tidbits when you ask someone their opinion on the best drugstore facial cleansers; you can't have one without the other.
Naturally, team TZR is no different. Ahead are nine drugstore picks from The Zoe Report staff, and there is a wide range in formulas — micellar water, cleansing balms, and jelly cleansers all make an appearance. Keep on scrolling to find your very own new favorite.
We only include products that have been independently selected by The Zoe Report’s editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.
Bliss Makeup Melt Jelly Cleanser
"I truly can't live without Bliss' Makeup Melt cleanser. It's my go-to for my sensitive skin because it removes all of my makeup and still gently cleans my face. Makeup Melt is one of the few products in my skincare routine that I have to replace the moment it runs out, and if that doesn't explain how much I love this product then I don't know what will!" — Maggie Haddad, Social Media Assistant
Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Hydrating Cleanser
"I've tried 'gentle' cleansers five times the price of this, but nothing compares to how easy this drugstore formula is on my skin. I have rosacea, so pretty much everything makes my skin red and splotchy, but I never have any reaction to this — it keeps my skin calm, and still manages to take off all my makeup." — Anna Buckman, Shopping News Editor
Bioderma Sensibio H2O
"I'm not big on washing my face, but I do use micellar water religiously. I love this fragrance-free version from Bioderma; it takes off even the most waterproof mascara without irritating my sensitive skin." — Lauren Caruso, Site Director
Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser
"There's been controversy around Cetaphil's effectiveness and ingredients in recent years (yes, it does contain a paraben), but ever since my derm told me about Cetaphil in 2010, I have rarely grabbed for a different cleanser. I have extremely sensitive skin, and unlike other cleansers that can physically burn, Cetaphil's uncomplicated ingredient concoction works for me; it removes oil, is unscented, and, most importantly, doesn't leave me feeling stripped or dry." — Katie Stanovick, Shopping News Writer
Noxzema Classic Clean Original Deep Cleansing Cream
"My mom, grandmother, and great-grandmother have all attested to Noxzema being their secret for smooth, clear skin (that, aside from good genes). While I prefer harder-hitting actives in my skincare products, I find myself reaching for this deep blue jar when I need to remove my makeup, and wipes just won't do." — Khalea Underwood, Beauty Editor
Simple Micellar Cleansing Water
"When my sensitive skin is in need of detoxing from the chemicals in other cleansers, this gentle micellar water gives it a necessary break. It's blissfully fuss-free and makes me feel like a chic French lady even though it only costs $5. I'll use it as a post-flight complexion refresher, too." — Olivia Young, Shopping News Writer
Versed Day Dissolve Cleansing Balm
"I know it's a wee bit on the pricy side as far as drugstore goes, but you'd think this oil-based balm cost twice as much after you've tried it. It melts away full-coverage foundation, baked-on powders, and long-wearing lipstick in about 10 seconds." — Madge Maril, Shopping News Writer
CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser
"My dermatologist suggested this to me a while ago and it has been my saving grace ever since. It also helped with evening out the dark spots on my face." — Ryan Gale, Assistant Market Editor
Avène Gentle Milk Cleanser
"One of former bosses had told me about Avène several years ago when I was dramatically lamenting about my acne and super temperamental skin. I was sold for two reasons: It's French (they know what they're doing with skin care) and it's a milky cleanser. I really dislike anything that feels like it's stripping my skin, and this cleanser feels creamy and soothing while also melting away my SPF and any makeup from the day. Even though I have combination skin, I like to go for products catered more towards dry complexions since a little extra oil is better than tight, flaky skin in my opinion." —Melissa Epifano, Shopping News Writer