Cleansing Balms—Would You Wash Your Face With One?

Cleansing Balms—Would You Wash Your Face With One?

The Benefits of Cleansing Balms

Cleansing balms have become quite popular in recent years as a gentle, nourishing way to remove makeup and cleanse the skin. Made from plant oils, butters, and waxes, these balms melt into an oil when massaged onto dry skin and lift away impurities without stripping the skin.

Why Try a Cleansing Balm?

  • Gentle yet effective cleansing for all skin types
  • Melts away makeup and sunscreen easily
  • Removes impurities without drying out the skin
  • Soothes, nourishes, and protects skin

How to Use a Cleansing Balm

Using a cleansing balm is simple:

  1. Start with dry skin and scoop out about a dime-sized amount of balm.
  2. Warm it between your fingers to melt, then massage gently all over your dry face.
  3. The balm will turn into an oil as you massage. Rinse thoroughly once finished.
  4. You can use a washcloth and warm water if needed to remove any residue.

Choosing the Best Cleansing Balm

With more brands making cleansing balms, how do you pick the right one for your skin? Here are a few tips:

  • See the ingredients list – Nourishing plant oils and butters are best.
  • Avoid added fragrance which can irritate skin.
  • Consider your skin type when choosing lightweight or richer balms.
  • Always patch test before applying to your whole face.

DIY Cleansing Balm Recipe

You can even make your own custom cleansing balm at home with just a few ingredients:


  • 1⁄4 cup oil of your choice (sweet almond, olive, grapeseed etc)
  • 1⁄4 cup butter or wax (cocoa, shea, beeswax etc)
  • 10-15 Drops essential oil for scent (optional)


  1. Gently melt your chosen oil and butter/wax in a double boiler.
  2. Let cool slightly and add essential oils if using.
  3. Pour into a jar and allow to set fully before using.


What is the difference between a cleansing balm and oil?

Cleansing balms have a thicker, balm-like texture due to containing plant butters and waxes. The oils in a balm allow it to melt into a nourishing oil when massaged onto skin.

Are cleansing balms safe for sensitive skin?

Many cleansing balms are formulated specifically for sensitive skin types. Look for simple, nourishing ingredients free of common irritants.

Can you use cleansing balms on acne-prone skin?

Gentle, non-comedogenic cleansing balms may work for some acne-prone skin. Perform a patch test first, and ensure balms are rinsed thoroughly.

How often can you use a cleansing balm?

For most skin types, safely using a cleansing balm 1-2 times daily is fine. Listen to your skin and cut back if it feels dry or irritated.

Should you use a cleanser after a cleansing balm?

Not usually necessary. Rinsing thoroughly with water is typically enough. But if makeup/sunscreen residue remains, follow with a gentle water-based cleanser.