After 30 hours of research evaluating 36 products, we picked Bioré Charcoal Acne Clearing Cleanser as our top choice.
Using the right face wash is important in fighting acne, clogged pores, rough texture, dullness, and other skin problems.
According to Kenneth Arndt, M.D. in a Harvard Health Letter, washing your face with just water isn't enough. After all, dirt sticks to the skin. Plus, oil that results from active sebaceous glands needs to be dealt with using a cleanser.
Here's the deal:
Charcoal has gotten extremely popular as a skincare ingredient due to its purifying and detoxifying nature. It is known for its ability to lift and absorb toxins and impurities.
Using one of the best charcoal face wash products can help you maintain cleaner pores and a more refined complexion. Combined with other active ingredients and beneficial extracts, charcoal can get you closer to the skin you've always wanted.
It gets better:
We at Faveable know that finding the best charcoal face wash for different skin types can be time-consuming. This is why we've happily done the hard work for you.
We scoured the internet for days and reviewed dozens of products to find the best of the best. Below, you'll find the seven charcoal facial cleansers that made the cut.
Brickell's Charcoal Purifying Face Wash for Men cleanses the skin without causing dryness or irritation. It absorbs impurities and toxins while fighting bacteria and soothing the skin.
This face wash is quite pricey, but one bottle will last you about two months of twice-a-day use.
This charcoal face wash is packed with charcoal, vitamin E, and antioxidants to cleanse and nourish the skin. It also contains olive oil for dissolving oil, jojoba for rebuilding the skin, and aloe vera for moisture restoration. The scented version has peppermint, eucalyptus, and lemongrass essential oils, as well.
After every wash, this product leaves the skin feeling hydrated and refreshed. Because it's made primarily for men with sensitive, normal, and dry skin types, it doesn't skip on highly-moisturizing ingredients that help fight dryness and irritation.
We appreciate its pleasant lather and scent. Plus, it actually makes the skin look cleaner, brighter, and healthier after several uses.
This product is the best charcoal wash for men, but it's undeniably a bit pricey for a face wash. Good thing one bottle lasts quite a while!
This charcoal face wash for all skin types banners 100% natural ingredients. It draws away impurities while cleansing the face gently. Plus, it smells great and has an emollient formula that will leave your complexion feeling smooth and nourished.
May not be the best option if your skin doesn't react well to coconut oil.
This facial cleanser from Chic Republic contains activated charcoal for detoxing the skin, triple tea extract for antioxidant protection, and Vitamins C and B5 for skin health. It also has coconut oil, aloe vera, and orange peel oil to hydrate and balance the skin.
Even a small amount of this charcoal face wash will lather up nicely, so one bottle will probably last you a long time. It also has a clean, citrusy scent that leaves the face smelling fresh.
This gentle cleanser removes dirt from the pores without drying out the face. The added coconut oil, in combination with the aloe vera extract, makes it feel super moisturizing. In fact, if you're into facial washes that give you a squeaky-clean feeling, you probably won't like this product as much.
Because it's so mild, we love using this product after a no-makeup or light-makeup day. The oils in it help break down mascara and eyeliner, which is always a plus. It doesn't seem to cause irritation or redness, too.
A 6-ounce bottle of this charcoal face wash costs around $18.99, which is on the higher end of the mid-range spectrum. Given its nice ingredients list and gentleness, we think spending a little less than $20 for it is more than reasonable.
The Detoxifying Charcoal Cleanser from Yes To Tomatoes has salicylic acid and natural ingredients to help clear up breakouts. It has a nice, pleasant lather and gently exfoliates dead skin to reveal a more radiant complexion.
While we (and dozens of other reviewers) find the smell of this cleanser pleasant and enjoyable, some people find the scent overwhelming.
This face wash has charcoal, exfoliating jojoba spheres, antioxidant-rich tomato extract, and acne-fighting salicylic acid in its formula. In a nutshell, this charcoal cleanser uses a lot of natural ingredients for a gentle but effective wash.
We appreciate that the jojoba spheres are eco-friendly. Also, it lathers up well and smells great -- though people with super sensitive noses might find the scent overwhelming.
At one point, we all thought that the best way to fight acne is to beat the crap out of our faces with harsh cleansers, astringents, and other strong chemicals. But if you ask any accredited dermatologist, products that are overly harsh can actually do more harm than good.
Yes To Tomatoes' Detoxifying Charcoal Cleanser doesn't do any of that, and we love it! We also like that this cleanser contains acne-fighting ingredients yet it doesn't dry out the skin too much. With every wash, it does make the face feel cleaner and look brighter. Pimples seem to calm down a bit faster when using this product, too.
At an MSRP of $9.99 for a 5-ounce bottle, this charcoal face wash for acne is definitely on the more affordable side of the spectrum. Plus, you'll frequently find it on sale if you buy it from Amazon -- total win!
The Detox Face + Body Wash can effectively be used as a body wash while remaining gentle enough for the face. It has an impressive ingredients list that promises decongested skin and a smoother complexion.
It contains a fair amount of essential oils, which we understand may not be for everyone.
This charcoal face + body wash uses coconut oil as a natural anti-fungal and antibacterial ingredient, tea tree oil and frankincense to deodorize and further kill germs, and activated charcoal plus bentonite clay to remove impurities and toxins from the face and body. It also has soothing aloe vera to help calm irritated skin.
The formula is 100% natural and organic, vegan, and cruelty-free. It's also biodegradable, which is a win for the environment.
As the best natural and organic charcoal face wash, this product is unsurprisingly gentle enough for most people. We love the inclusion of tea tree as it helps dry out pimples faster while the aloe vera extract helps calm redness and irritation. And because it's dual-purpose, we found that it's useful for body acne, too!
Detox leaves the face feeling soft and balanced after every wash. It does a great job removing the dirt and pollution from the day, plus it has a mild and pleasant scent that we find relaxing.
One bottle of the Detox Face + Body wash will cost you $20. The bottle itself is pretty big (it contains 8 ounces of product), so your $20 will likely go a long way. We suggest getting the 3-pack for even better value for money!
This charcoal face scrub removes rough skin and lifts impurities for a smoother and brighter complexion. It helps control oiliness, plus the salicylic acid helps unclog pores and fight acne.
It's not gentle enough for everyday use.
Bioré equipped this face scrub with natural charcoal to absorb dirt, oils, and other impurities. It also contains salicylic acid to help unclog pores and reduce breakouts. Its gritty and oil-free formula gives a slight cooling feeling, which we enjoy.
Using this charcoal scrub leaves the skin feeling super smooth -- almost velvety -- and fresh. The exfoliating particles are gritty enough to give you a deep scrubbing, which is also why we'd advise you to use a light hand. If you have active breakouts that may react badly to manual exfoliation, it's best to avoid scrubbing the affected areas until they've calmed down.
We noticed a reduction in blackheads after using this for a week. It absorbs excess oil and helps acne dry up faster, too.
Bioré is a known drugstore brand, so it's not surprising that this charcoal wash/scrub is super affordable. At less than $5 a tube, we really can't say anything negative about it value-wise.
The Purifying Charcoal Cleanser from DERMA E provides a nice balance between cleansing the face and nourishing it. It leaves the skin feeling clean and refreshed yet soothed and hydrated. It's also free of sensitizing ingredients.
It has a slightly watery consistency, so you have to use an appreciable amount each time.
DERMA E Purifying Gel Cleanser's formula is pH-balanced and fragrance-free, which makes it the best charcoal face wash for sensitive skin. Having the right pH is important in maintaining the integrity of the skin's moisture barrier -- something that will benefit delicate skin significantly.
The star ingredients are activated charcoal and the magnesium and potassium-rich Kimarine Wakame seaweed extract. It also contains green tea, aloe leaf juice, and Bladderwrack seaweed. DERMA E also says that this formula is 100% vegan, cruelty-free, and free of parabens, mineral oil, sulfate, lanolin, gluten, and GMOs.
Using this charcoal face wash feels comforting and refreshing at the same time. The charcoal-infused lather works to remove dirt and toxin buildup while the marine algae extracts feel soothing and protective.
It leaves the skin adequately hydrated yet purified, which is why we think it'll work well with dry, oily, normal, and sensitive skin types. If you're looking for a non-foaming face wash that will leave your face feeling clean (but not tight or flaky!), this cleanser is a good option.
At an MSRP of $15.50 for a 6-ounce bottle, this charcoal face wash is a great mid-range option. You'll probably find it on Amazon at a cheaper price every once in a while, so make sure to be on the lookout.
The Charcoal Acne Cleanser from Bioré contains charcoal and salicylic acid for cleaner and clearer skin. It lathers up nicely and is truly pleasant to use. With continued use, it helps decongest pores and prevent future breakouts.
It might be too strong for sensitive skin.
Bioré's Charcoal Acne Clearing Cleanser has natural charcoal to lift impurities and dirt from the skin. It also contains salicylic acid to further help purify pores and keep acne at bay.
According to Bioré, this charcoal face wash boasts Skin Purifying Technology that prevents acne and removes deep-seated dirt. In our experience, it does a really great job clearing away impurities, oils, and acne-causing bacteria.
We love how the salicylic acid component helps dislodge oil buildup, resulting in a clearer and more refined complexion. This face wash also makes acne dry up noticeably faster without stripping the skin too much. That said, it's not as moisturizing as many of the other facial washes on this list. So if you have dry skin, following up with a potent moisturizer is important.
It's the best charcoal face wash overall, yet it doesn't demand more than $8 from your pocket. It's much cheaper if you buy it from Amazon, too -- and this just makes the deal a whole lot sweeter.