SKIN | Get amongst these cream cleansers

cream cleansers

If you’re unhappy with your current skincare routine, the one change I would recommend over anything else is switching to a cream cleanser. Dry skin? Perfect. Oily skin? It sounds counter-intuitive, but I promise my oily skin responds so much better to a cream cleanser than a foaming one.

Cleansers spend such little time on your skin, it’s hard to justify spending a lot of money on them. With that in mind, here’s a selection of seven cream cleansers, from cheap to less cheap (and you can buy ALL of them in stores in New Zealand!)

Dove Deep Pure Face Cleanser*, $6-7

Browsing for cleansers at the supermarket you’ll see that cream ones are hard to come by. This is the cheapest in my list and while it’s technically a wee bit cheating (it foams up a bit), it’s a creamy foam. It’s actually a good choice if you can’t bear to part with that clean feeling a foaming cleanser gives.

Goodness Every Day Cream Cleanser, $16 (usually $20)

I’ll never stop singing the praises of Goodness and their cream cleanser is as deserving as the rest of their range. It has lots of lovely fruit extracts, and is largely sweet almond oil-based, with chia seed, avocado and coconut oils too (although I don’t find it cloggy at all). Bonus: you can pick it up at the supermarket.

Burt’s Bees Sensitive Facial Cleanser*, $23

This one’s surprisingly affordable—when I spotted it on the Burt’s Bees stand I expected it to be closer to forty dollars than twenty. It’s another lovely, lightweight, incredibly gentle cleanser. It’s based on sunflower seed oil, again with lots of fruit extracts.


Oasis Beauty Light Milk Cleanser*, $35

Callum reckons this one smells like pencils, but I’m not quite picking that up. It’s a functional lightweight cream cleanser, although with added lavender essential oil there’s a small risk of irritation (and it makes their claim of being fragrance-free not quite true).

Trilogy Very Gentle Cleansing Cream, $44

The be-all and end-all of cream cleansers for me, I always, always come back to the Trilogy Very Gentle Cleansing Cream. You should know this by now! Although, with the stocks of cream cleanser that this post has brought me, I won’t need to buy another one for a while.

Avene Extremely Gentle Cleansing Lotion, ~$46

I really like Avene products, but their price in New Zealand is slightly restrictive. I bought this online for less, but I’m noticing an increasing number of pharmacies carrying Avene, which is awesome. It’s a great range for very, very intolerant skin, so it’s worth a look if you have a lot of trouble with sensitivity.

Clinique Redness Solutions Soothing Cleanser, $56

I got this when I worked for Clinique, and like the Avene cleanser it’s a good option for very, very sensitive skins. You’ll notice the cheaper cleansers in this line-up are plant oil-based. For most people, this is fine, but for truly sensitive skin (not just skin that has preferences) these options are better. More expensive, but if you’re at your wits’ end with skincare, you won’t mind.

Have you tried any of these cream cleansers? How much will you pay for a good cleanser?



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  • Lucie_EB

    I love love love the Trilogy VG Cleansing Cream – must have been through a good 3 tubes. So good for an effective and hydrating cleanse. Need to try the Goodness one, though!

    • The Goodness one is very similar, as per their shared origins I imagine! I’m gonna work through the Goodness tube and hope that it’s good enough to replace the Trilogy one as it’s so much cheaper!

  • I love that Goodness one! I use it a lot of the time. I also use Cetaphil which isn’t really a cream cleanser but also isn’t a foaming cleanser, it has SLS but quite low down the ingredient list.

    • I considered including Cetaphil in the list but I feel like I’ve written about it so much already! Also Callum had used ours all up

  • I definitely can vouch for cream cleansers even for oily skin, sometimes foaming ones can be super drying! Love the Goodness one, and so affordable too. I’m using a Kiehl’s one at the moment which is actually pretty affordable among this bunch and really good.

    • I can’t wait til Kiehl’s comes back to Wellington! Their counter was in Kirks and they didn’t go into David Jones so I am devoid of any Kiehl’s love in my life 🙁

  • OMG SO MANY CLEANSERS! I like the sound of the burts bees one best. Your post reminds me to get new cleanser too hehe xx

    • Can you get Goodness over there?

  • Christel Hansen

    The Goodness one is great, and I love Burts Bees anything to be honest. I’ve always said that you don’t need to spend much on cleansers, so most of the time I don’t. To me it’s much more important to put money into treatments and moisturisers 🙂

    • Agreed – cleansers spend so little time on your skin!

  • squeezlesqueezer

    Are any of these touted as being good for makeup removal?

    • I think they all are, actually. I don’t tend to remove my makeup with my cleanser (I’ll use Bioderma or a wipe first) but I can definitely speak to the Trilogy one’s efficacy as a makeup remover – the Goodness one, too.

      • squeezlesqueezer

        Sounds good. I’m using an oil cleanser and then following with a foaming cleanser afterwards, but if any of these creams are good at removing my weirdly strong mascara, I’d rather switch to a single product!

        • Which mascara is it? I don’t think any cream cleanser would move waterproof mascara, but it does regular stuff well. You can use it like a makeup remover on a cotton pad, too.

          • squeezlesqueezer

            Koji “Spring Heart” Long & Curl – didn’t realise it was waterproof/sweatproof when I purchased, I was just looking for something to get free shipping. I might have to stick with a separate remover for it.

  • Aimee Gibson

    I bought the Burts bees one on holiday last month – $5usd from Walmart…wish I had of filled my suitcase it’s a great cleanser

    • Ah that’s heartbreaking! Are you enjoying it? If I ever went to the US I’d have to bring back an extra suitcase!

      • Aimee Gibson

        Yes, it’s a lovely cleanser. I should have checked it out before I went to the states – then I would have known what a good deal I got!

  • Salomi

    The Vichy Purete Thermal Foaming Cleanser (a misnomer since it contains glycerin as its second ingredient) is great for my oily skin but that one is on its last leg. I like the sound of Goodness cream cleanser – got to run to countdown and give it a go.