CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

An Honest CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Review From A Consumer

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If you’re on the hunt for a hydrating cleanser that won’t break the bank, CeraVe’s Hydrating Cleanser might just be the answer to your skincare prayers. 

This popular drugstore cleanser has been praised for its gentle, non-stripping formula that effectively removes dirt and makeup without leaving your skin feeling tight or dry. 

I have to say that I’ve personally been through bottles of it, so it’s about time that I share some honest thoughts in this CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Review.

In this CeraVe Cleanser review, I’ll reveal the ingredients that make this facial cleanser a must-have in your skincare routine, as well as some pros and cons.

My product review process is that I only review items that have been personally tested by myself after a period of a few months. This gives me enough time to determine the effectiveness of the product, and provide a trustworthy overview.

I use this as my daily cleanser, morning and evening, to eliminate traces of dirt, oil, and makeup from my face. It’s gentle enough to use daily but effective in removing impurities. 

What is CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser?

This affordable cleanser is designed to help you maintain your skin’s natural barrier while providing much-needed moisture and hydration.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is formulated with ceramides, which are natural lipids that help to protect and strengthen the skin’s barrier. This can be especially beneficial for those with very dry and sensitive skin, as a compromised barrier can lead to irritation and dryness.

Plus, it’s fragrance-free and non-comedogenic, making it suitable for even the most sensitive of skin types.

In addition to ceramides, this cleanser also contains hyaluronic acid, a popular ingredient in skincare products due to its ability to attract and retain moisture. This helps to keep your skin hydrated, plump and glowing, potentially reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Review

Here’s a brief breakdown of what you can expect from this CeraVe Cleanser. 

Texture and lather

The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser has a creamy texture that feels gentle and hydrating on the skin. However, it doesn’t lather much, which may feel strange if you’re used to foaming cleansers. This is because the product is sulfate-free, making it a great option for those with dry or sensitive skin.

Fragrance and appearance

One of the standout features of the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is that it’s fragrance-free so if you prefer products that have a distinct scent you may find this one a little underwhelming. Personally, I prefer products without fragrance as they are generally less irritating. 

The appearance of the product is simple and straightforward, with a white, creamy texture that’s easy to dispense from the pump bottle. You only need one to two pumps of product per use.


Overall, the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is highly effective at removing dirt and impurities without stripping the skin of its natural oils. If you wear heavy makeup or sunscreen, you may find that it doesn’t remove everything – I normally use a makeup remover prior to cleansing if I’m wearing a lot of makeup

This cleanser doesn’t sting my eyes, and it leaves my complexion feeling clean, soft, and smooth. I’ve never broken out from this product, and it’s never irritated my skin either – I think this is due to the ingredients.


It’s generally priced around £11.50 for 236ml of product but check the current price below as it’s regularly on special offer.

Key Ingredients in CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

The key ingredients in this cleanser include the following. 


Ceramides are a type of lipid naturally found in the skin. They help to strengthen the skin barrier, helping to prevent moisture loss and protect the skin from environmental stressors. 

The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser contains three essential ceramides (ceramide 1, 3, and 6-II) that can help to restore the skin barrier and improve skin hydration.

Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid is a powerful humectant that can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water. It helps to attract and retain moisture in the skin, helping to plump and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Ingredients List

Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Stearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Peg-40 Stearate, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Glyceryl Stearate, Polysorbate 20, Ethylhexylglycerin, Potassium Phosphate, Disodium Edta, Dipotassium Phosphate, Sodium Lauroyl Lactilate, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Phytosphingosine, Cholesterol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Tocopherol, Ceramide EOP.

How to Use CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

When should you use CeraVe hydrating Cleanser?

You can use it as your morning or evening cleanser as part of your skincare routine. Here’s my step-to-step guide on how to use it. 

  1. Start by wetting your face with warm water. This will help to open up your pores and prepare your skin for cleansing.
  2. Apply a small amount of CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser to your fingertips or a soft washcloth. You don’t need a lot of product – a pea-sized amount is usually enough.
  3. Gently massage the cleanser onto your face in circular motions. Be sure to focus on areas that are prone to oil and dirt buildup, such as your nose and forehead.
  4. Rinse your face thoroughly with warm water. Make sure to remove all traces of the cleanser from your skin.
  5. Pat your face dry with a clean towel. Avoid rubbing your skin, as this can cause irritation.
  6. Follow up with your favorite moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated and nourished.

Alternatively, you can mix a little of the CeraVe cleanser with water and splash over your face before rinsing with water – I sometimes do this if I’m stuck for time. 

The Pros of CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

Here are some of the benefits of using this product:

  • Hydrating – The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is formulated with hyaluronic acid, which helps to increase skin hydration and lock in moisture. This makes it a great choice for those with dry or sensitive skin, or anyone looking to boost their skin’s moisture levels.
  • Fragrance-Free – This cleanser is fragrance-free, which is important for anyone with sensitive skin or allergies to fragrances. Fragrances can often be irritating to the skin, so using a fragrance-free product can help to reduce the risk of irritation. I personally only use fragrance-free options as my skin tends to react to added fragrances.
  • Non-Comedogenic – CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is non-comedogenic, which means it won’t clog pores or cause breakouts. 
  • Gentle Cleansing –  CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser uses gentle surfactants to cleanse the skin without stripping it of its natural oils. 

The Cons of Using CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

Here are some cons that people have noted:

  • Reactions – Some people have said that CeraVe has reacted with their skin, causing stinging. I’m pretty sure I saw Wayne Goss mention this on his YouTube channel, but I’ve read comments from others who haven’t had good experiences. If you have super reactive skin, I would probably look for a more suitable cleanser like the First Aid Beauty Face Cleanser. 

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser for Different Skin Types

Here’s how the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser can work for different skin types. For reference, I have normal to combination skin during summer, which tends to lean more dry and dehydrated during colder months. 

Dry skin

If you have dry skin, you know how important it is to use a cleanser that won’t strip your skin of its natural oils. The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is designed to cleanse while also providing much-needed hydration – a great option for dry or mature skin types. 

Oily skin

If you have oily skin, you might be hesitant to use a hydrating cleanser. However, the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser can still work for you. My skin becomes oily in summer, and this cleanser helps to balance my complexion. 

The gentle formula removes excess oil and impurities without leaving your skin feeling dry or tight. Plus, its non-comedogenic formula means that it won’t clog your pores.

Sensitive skin

If you have sensitive skin, a fragrance-free, non-irritating cleanser that’s gentle enough for daily use is perfect for you. The CeraVe option soothes and hydrates your skin without causing any redness or irritation.

Normal to dry skin

If you have normal to dry skin, the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is a brilliant choice. Its hydrating formula keeps your skin moisturized and soft, while also gently cleansing away impurities. Plus, its non-drying formula means that it won’t leave your skin feeling uncomfortable.

Acne-prone skin

If you have acne-prone skin, the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser may work for you. However, your skin may be more suited to the CeraVe Blemish Control Cleanser since that one is specifically designed for acne-prone skin. 

Comparison with Other CeraVe Cleansers

You may be wondering how the Hydrating Cleanser compares to other CeraVe options like the Foaming Facial Cleanser and Renewing SA Cleanser. 

Here’s a breakdown of the key differences. 

Foaming facial cleanser

The Foaming Facial Cleanser is an ideal option if you have oily or acne-prone skin. It contains ceramides and hyaluronic acid, just like the Hydrating Cleanser, but it also includes niacinamide, which can help reduce inflammation and redness. 

The main difference is that it foams up when you use it, helping to remove excess oil and dirt. However, some people find that it can be drying, so if you have dry or sensitive skin, you may want to stick with the Hydrating Cleanser.

Renewing SA cleanser

The Renewing SA Cleanser may be for you if you have acne-prone skin or are searching for a cleanser that can help exfoliate your skin. 

This option contains salicylic acid, which can help unclog pores and remove dead skin cells. If you have sensitive skin, you may find it too harsh 


Is CeraVe hydrating cleanser good for acne?

It’s gentle and hydrating so it shouldn’t aggravate acne-prone skin. However, I’d recommend trying the CeraVe Blemish Control Cleanser instead since that has ingredients tailored towards clearing blemishes.

Can I use the CeraVe hydrating facial cleanser every day?

Yes, you can use the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser daily as it’s super gentle. 

Should I use CeraVe cleanser at night or morning?

You can use the cleanser at morning and night. It doesn’t leave any residue on the face so you can follow with the rest of your skincare routine. 

Do you use water with CeraVe hydrating cleanser?

Yes, you should use water with the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser. Either mix a little water with the product and splash over your skin, or apply the cleanser to damp skin and remove with a damp cloth before rinsing your face with lukewarm water. 

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser: Final Thoughts

The CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser is my most used skincare product – I’ve used up several bottles, and it’s one I always have in my skincare routine. 

It’s gentle and moisturizing, making it a great choice for a daily face wash. The creamy texture feels soothing on the skin, and it effectively removes makeup and dirt without leaving your skin feeling stripped or dry.

For normal, dry and oily skin types, this is an excellent affordable option to have. 

If you’re dealing with breakouts, this cleanser may not be the best choice for you as it doesn’t contain any acne-fighting ingredients – therefore, I’d suggest the Blemish Cleanser instead.

Overall, the CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser is a solid choice for anyone looking for a gentle, moisturizing cleanser that won’t irritate the skin. Whether you’re a skincare newbie or someone with an extensive skincare routine, this cleanser is definitely worth trying out.

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