The Best Face Wash for Oily Skin – 2023 Reviews and Top Picks

the best face wash

In our commitment to stay true to our goal of helping you achieve healthier skin, we are rounding up the top performing products to come up with the best face wash for oily skin. We spent more than 15 hours sorting them out based on their effectiveness in controlling oil, key ingredients as well as added skin benefits.

Promising to give you cleaner skin in just one wash, Garnier SkinActive Clean+ Shine Control Cleansing Gel contains charcoal and oil to keep oiliness at bay. It doesn't only reduces shine and oil but it can also lessen your skin's chances of breaking out.

Containing water-soluble clay, Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser also has soothing ingredients. It comes with no artificial fragrance or color that but it's no guarantee that it won't break you out.

Himalaya Neem Face Wash is a good choice if your skin is highly reactive to parabens or SLS. It lathers well and has just the right consistency to cleanse your skin.

Clean & Clear Morning Burst Shine Control Facial Cleanser has an invigorating scent that can wake your senses up. It offers good oil control but can be drying at the same time.

If you are to select this product, make sure to invest in a good moisturize to prevent your skin from cracking and breaking out.

Unlike the other cleansers on this list, Olay Combination/Oily Foaming Face Wash isn't too drying. It does, however, contains fragrance which can cause irritation in sensitive skin.

If your skin isn't hyper-reactive you can look into this product as it lathers up and controls oil well.

2017’s Reviews of The Best Face Washes for Oily Skin





Editor’s Rating



8 fl. oz

Pump bottle



16.9 fl. oz

Pump bottle


Himalaya Herbal Healthcare

150 ml

Plastic tube with flip-open cap


Clean & Clear

8 oz

Pump bottle



7 oz

Plastic tube with flip-open cap

#1 - Garnier SkinActive Clean+ Shine Control Cleansing Gel

Best Face Wash for Oily Skin - Garnier SkinActive Clean+ Shine Control Cleansing Gel

Garnier SkinActive Clean+ Shine Control Cleansing Gel has two main ingredients to keep your skin satisfyingly matte: charcoal and menthol.

Charcoal is a great skin care ingredient since it works like a magnet in pulling out deep seated impurities. The menthol, on the other hand, also helps in controlling oil but it may not be fit for people with sensitive skin.

In just one wash, it promises to make your skin shine-free and a lot cleaner.

Because it has charcoal, don’t be surprised if the product has a light grey color. The packaging includes a transparent bottle so you won’t have a hard time guessing how much product you have left inside.

The cleanser has a mild scent which can stick on your skin for a short time. Since it’s menthol, expect a slight cooling sensation after use.

What We Like:

  • Comes with a convenient pump nozzle
  • Big, see-through bottle
  • Helps prevent breakouts
  • Has a cooling sensation

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Not for sensitive skin
  • A bit drying on the skin
  • Scent can linger on skin

#2 - Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser

Best Face Wash for Oily Skin review - Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser

Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser has water-soluble Kaolin and gray clay to absorb your skin’s excess oil. It’s also packed with extracts of ivy and lemon to further combat grease.

And if you are feeling fretful about it overdrying your skin, the cleanser actually has sage and cucumber extracts to soothe and moisturize your skin.

The cleanser has a thick and creamy texture and looks similar to clay in color. It’s recommended that you apply the product on damp skin in an upward motion and concentrate on areas that are congested.

That means your T-zone, sides of the nose, cheeks as well as your chin. Pay more attention to where you’d normally oil up and make sure to massage the product for a few seconds before rinsing.

What We Like:

  • Has soluble clay
  • Has soothing ingredients
  • Comes with no artificial color or fragrance
  • Fragrance-free

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Expensive
  • Can cause breakouts in sensitive skin

#3 - Himalaya Neem Face Wash

Top rated Face Wash for Oily Skin - Himalaya Neem Face Wash

If you have a particularly sensitive but oily skin, then you’ll benefit greatly from this Himalaya Neem Face Wash. It’s free from parabens, SLS and Phthalates.

It’s soap-free but still does a great job in cleansing the skin.

The cleanser has neem which can prevent breakouts. Its turmeric content, on the other hand, has an anti-seborrheic property which means it can slow down the production of oil.

I find the packaging of this cleanser efficient and convenient. Since it’s a topside-down bottle, you won’t have problems getting every drop of it.

You’ll also love how affordable it is. Considering the benefits you’ll get, this face wash for oily skin can give you your money’s worth.

Take note, however, that this isn’t the best product you can use for your acne. If you have severe breakouts, this might not be enough to heal or even lessen them.

What We Like:

  • Good packaging
  • Affordable
  • Has turmeric for oil control
  • Lathers well

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Not reliable in healing acne
  • Can be drying

#4 - Clean & Clear Morning Burst Shine Control Facial Cleanser

Top picks Face Wash for Oily Skin - Clean & Clear Morning Burst Shine Control Facial Cleanser

If you’re looking for a cleanser that can wake your senses up, then you’ll enjoy this cleanser from Clean & Clear. It has fruit extracts and lemon grass to invigorate your skin and control shine.

I like that it has a gel-formulation and bursting beads. I also find its packaging interesting, particularly because of its color and pump dispenser.

One downside of this product is that it tends to be drying on the skin. Although its purpose is to control oil, it can sometimes overdo its job so make sure you follow up with a quality moisture to address this effect.

What We Like:

  • Available in most local drugstore
  • Has an invigorating scent
  • Has a gel-formulation
  • Comes with a pump
  • Packaging is visually pleasing

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Can overdry the skin
  • Scent can be off-putting for some

#5 - Olay Combination/Oily Foaming Face Wash

Top picks Face Wash for Oily Skin - Clean & Clear Morning Burst Shine Control Facial Cleanser

Olay is a popular brand when it comes to skin care products and its face wash for combination to oily skin is one good reason why. It’s specially designed to control oil without being too harsh on the skin.

It has a thick and creamy consistency. It foams up well but rinses off easily.

One issue I find in this product is its fragrance content. Although it's mild floral scent isn’t too overpowering, it can cause sensitivity reactions in some people.

If you wear makeup, it’s a good idea if you can remove it thoroughly with a makeup cleanser first since this one can’t get rid of cosmetic products well.

What We Like:

  • Not drying on the skin
  • Lathers up well
  • Contains witch hazel

What We Didn’t LIke:

  • Has fragrance
  • Can’t thoroughly remove makeup

Reviews and Comparisons of The Best Face Wash for Oily Skin


Best Overall

2nd choice

3rd choice

4th choice

5th choice

Top-Rated Face Wash for Oily Skin  2017

Best Face Wash for Oily Skin comparisions - Garnier SkinActive Clean+ Shine Control Cleansing Gel
Best Face Wash for Oily Skin comparisions - Dermalogica Dermal Clay Cleanser
Best Face Wash for Oily Skin comparisions - Himalaya Neem Face Wash
Best Face Wash for Oily Skin comparisions - Clean & Clear Morning Burst Shine Control Facial Cleanser
Best Face Wash for Oily Skin comparisions - Olay Combination/Oily Foaming Face Wash




Himalaya Herbal Healthcare

Clean & Clear


Key ingredients

Menthol and charcoal

Water-soluble Kaolin and gray clay

Turmeric root oil and neem

Lemon grass and fruit extracts

Witch hazel



Thick and creamy

Not runny, not thick


Thick and creamy




Mild neem scent

Fruity scent

Faint floral scent

Get Started

5 Tips on How To Control Oily Skin

Oily skin can happen to anyone but there are factors that greatly predispose one person to have more oil on their skin than others. There’s humidity, poor skin hygiene and a handful of other causes.

If you have this concern, you’re probably fed up with trying out products after products just to find the right one that can keep your oil glands in control. Aside from this inconvenience, the trial-and-error that comes with oily skin can be very damaging to your budget, too.

Take this:

Controlling oily skin isn’t just about the right products. Although they matter, there are other factors that come into play on why your skin produces more oil than necessary.

Because of this, you have to take more than one approach if you want to to completely get rid of the excess grease and shine on your face.

Here’s how:

1. Adapt a skin care routine

Oily skin needs as much care as possible. You need to find the best face wash that can control oil without leaving your skin dry and dehydrated.

Find a good moisturizer as it helps protect your skin against further damage. You should also make sure to exfoliate weekly to prevent clogged pores and potential breakouts.

Oily skin are particularly more prone to acne so it’s a good idea to take one step ahead and do preventive measures. The last thing you want to happen is to develop pimples on your already troubled skin.

2. Hydrate

When you’re dehydrated, your oil glands feel stressed out so they produce more oil to compensate. Drink around 8 to 10 glasses of water daily to ensure that your body stays hydrated.

Aside from water, it’s also a good idea to quench your skin’s thirst once in awhile. A good face mask every now and then can do the trick.

3. Cleanse your inside

Although there are no credible studies that can tell how your choice of foods can affect your skin, it’s still better to stay on the safe side and stick with healthy eating. Avoid oily and processed foods and indulge more in fruits and vegetables.

4. Avoid hot and long showers

Using hot water to cleanse your oily skin is probably one of the biggest skin care mistakes you can make. It’s drying and can strip off your skin’s natural oils and protection.

For oily skin, make sure that your water is at a comfortable temperature. You should also skip using cold water as it isn’t effective in removing dirt and impurities.

5. Go easy

Whether you’re applying your moisturizer or makeup, make sure to use just the right amount. Applying more than what’s necessary can make things worse for you.

The same idea applies with exfoliation. Avoid vigorous rubbing as it can cause minute damages in your skin.

Do not scratch your skin or use your hands in wiping sweat and oil from it.

Things To Look for in The Best Face Wash for Oily Skin

Oily skin is marked by large pores and a greasy shine that appears a few hours after you’ve cleansed your skin. Ideally, you should consider these indicators when looking for the right face wash for your skin type.

  • A good rule is to find a face wash that can dig deep into your pores to lift impurities out. Ingredients like charcoal can really help a lot.
  • You should also take into consideration the possibility of experiencing breakouts. For prevention, pick a face wash that has salicylic acid to prevent bacteria from accumulating in your pores.
  • The word “non-comedogenic’ shouldn’t be out of your face wash. If you can prevent your pores from clogging, you can also prevent breakouts.
  • “Oil-free” is another feature you shouldn’t miss. You wouldn’t want to add more oil on your greasy skin.


Oily skin, when improperly taken care of, can lead to more problems than just grease and shine; it’s more prone to breakouts, too.

Because of this concern, we’re selecting Garnier SkinActive Clean+ Shine Control Cleansing Gel as the best face wash for oily skin. It has charcoal that can deeply cleanse your skin and keep it matte for several hours.

If you aren’t particularly sensitive to menthol, this product can be your skin’s best friend.

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Dr Kathleen May Eusebio-Alpapara

A board-certified dermatologist who practices both medical and cosmetic dermatology

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