What’s the Difference Between Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser and Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser?

Choosing the right cleanser for your skin is essential for maintaining healthy-looking skin and addressing any skin concerns without damaging your skin barrier’s natural balance.1 Cetaphil offers a wide variety of skin cleansers for different skin types and concerns, but Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser and Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser are the core options for cleansing your skin.


If you aren’t sure, which one is right for you, our article will assist you in choosing the right Cetaphil cleanser for your skin type and individual needs.

Cleanser products

Which Cetaphil cleanser is better? 

Everyone's skin is different, and what works for one person may not work for another. It's important to remember that the best cleanser for you is the one that is most suitable for your individual skin type and concerns.

That’s why Cetaphil offers a range of cleansers that are specifically formulated for different skin types. Whether you have oily, dry, or sensitive skin, eczema symptoms or acne-prone skin, Cetaphil has a cleanser that can meet your unique needs. If you’re unsure what your skin is like, Cetaphil AI Skin Analysis will help you in only four simple steps to discover your skin type. All you need is a selfie! Use the Cetaphil Product Finder for personalized products solutions.

woman cleaning her face

What is a facial cleanser? 

Facial cleansers are designed to remove dirt, excess oil, makeup, and other impurities from the skin.1 Cleansers are typically used as the first step in a skincare routine to ensure that the skin is clean and free of debris before applying other products.2 To get started on a skincare routine, try following our six steps for a better skincare routine.

Cetaphil offers facial cleansers in various forms, including foam, gel to foam, cream, and cream to foam, which are formulated for different skin types and concerns. Cleansers are essential for maintaining healthy-looking and glowing skin, as they help to improve the overall texture and appearance of the skin by tackling the 5 signs of sensitivity.

Let's take a closer look at the different Cetaphil cleansers available and their unique features.

Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser

This foaming cleanser is designed for combination to oily, sensitive skin and won’t clog pores. With its hydrating gel to foam formula, Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser is clinically proven to effectively remove dirt, excess oil, and makeup and reduce the appearance of pores without stripping the skin or drying it out. This cleanser comes with a light fragrance and a dermatologist backed blend of ingredients like glycerin and the vitamins niacinamide (vitamin B3) and panthenol (vitamin B5) to help soothe the skin and to improve the resilience of sensitive skin.

For those who prefer unscented products, the fragrance-free version of Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser is a great option when looking for a gentle and effective cleanser. This cleanser has the same formula as the original but without added fragrances.

How to use Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser 

To use Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser, start by wetting your face with lukewarm water. Then, apply a small amount of the cleanser to your fingertips and gently massage it into your skin using circular motions. Be sure to avoid the delicate eye area. Continue massaging the cleanser into your skin for 30 to 60 seconds to ensure that all dirt and impurities are removed. Finally, rinse your face thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat dry with a clean towel.3

After cleansing, it's important to follow up with a suitable moisturizer to help hydrate and protect your skin.3 Cetaphil Daily Oil-Free Facial Moisturizer SPF 35 is a great option to use after cleansing in the morning as it is lightweight, non-greasy, and provides broad-spectrum sun protection. For night time, try Daily Facial Moisturizer Night.

Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser

Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser has a creamy yet simple formula that includes glycerin and niacinamide to help reinforce your skin’s moisture barrier. This gentle skin cleanser is hypoallergenic, won’t clog pores, and is free of fragrance, parabens, and sulfates, making it a great option for those with dry to normal, sensitive skin. Formulated with Micellar Technology, this Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser gently yet effectively removes dirt, makeup, and impurities both with and without water. It’s clinically proven to provide continuous hydration and protection against dryness.

If you prefer your cleanser to be creamy and foamy, try out Cetaphil Hydrating Foaming Cream Cleanser which has a cream-to-foam formula and helps to maintain your skin's natural protective barrier and pH to leave your skin feeling nourished and soothed. 

How to use Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser

To use Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser or Cetaphil Hydrating Foaming Cream Cleanser, wet your face with lukewarm water and apply a generous amount of the cleanser to your fingertips. Gently massage the cleanser onto your skin in a circular motion, being careful to avoid the eye area. Rinse your face thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat dry with a clean towel.2

To use Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser without water, apply a generous amount of the cleanser to a cotton pad or soft cloth and gently wipe your face in a circular motion. Repeat until all dirt and makeup are removed from your skin. There is no need to rinse with water when using this method.

Again, don’t forget to follow up with a suitable moisturizer to assist with hydrating and safeguarding your skin.3 Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion or Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer SPF15 are great fragrance-free options to use after cleansing as they are lightweight, non-greasy, and provide lasting hydration.

woman rinsing her face

The bottom line

Cetaphil offers you a great range of facial cleansers that are specifically formulated for different skin types and concerns, including oily, dry, and sensitive. If you have oily, sensitive skin, you might want to opt for Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser. For dry to normal, sensitive skin, the hypoallergenic formulas of Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser and Hydrating Gentle Foaming Cleanser, that both come without any fragrance, parabens, and sulfates, might be the better choice.


  1. Mukhopadhyay P. Cleansers and their role in various dermatological disorders. Indian J Dermatol. 2011;56(1):2-6. doi: 10.4103/0019-5154.77542.
  2. American Academy of Dermatology Association. Should I Apply My Skin Care Products In A Certain Order? https://www.aad.org/public/everyday-care/skin-care-basics/care/apply-skin-care-certain-order Accessed May 3, 2023
  3. American Academy of Dermatology Association. Face washing 101. https://www.aad.org/public/everyday-care/skin-care-basics/care/face-washing-101 Accessed May 3, 2023