Best Oil Cleansers for Acne-Prone Skin to Fully Remove Sunscreen

Selection of oil cleansers for acne prone skin

Summer is officially here, and hopefully you’re slathering on a sunscreen daily that works for acne-prone skin. But after applying and reapplying your sunscreen all day, how can you be sure that you’ve fully removed it at the end of the day, particularly if it is a water-resistant formula?

Meet double cleansing.

What is Double Cleansing?

Popularized by Korean skin care, double cleansing is simply washing your face twice to fully remove any impurities. Double cleansing usually starts with an oil or balm cleanser to dissolve the initial layer of grime, makeup, and sunscreen. It then follows up with a water-based face wash to wash away any lingering residue. This method ensures your skin is thoroughly cleansed without stripping away its natural moisture. 


Should you double cleanse? Cleansing your face is so important for removing dirt, grime, pollution, excess oil, makeup, sunscreen, and all the build-up from the day. But interestingly, in many people, it’s not enough to remove EVERYTHING. Double cleansing takes things to the next level when it comes to adequate cleansing. If you found this #skincaretip helpful, but sure to follow and share with a friend! #doublecleansing #skincareroutine #derm #dermatologist #drmamina

♬ original sound – Dr. Mamina Turegano, MD

If you’re trying to keep your skin care routine simple and don’t want to add an oil cleanser, you can get a similar effect by using your favorite water-based face wash twice.

What Are Oil Cleansers?

Oil cleansers are often overlooked as a skincare option for acne-prone skin, but they can be a gentle and effective way to thoroughly cleanse your skin without stripping it and damaging your skin barrier.

Oil cleansers are designed to melt away impurities like makeup, dirt, and—crucially, as we bask in the summer sun—sunscreen. They do this by targeting oil-based debris that can clog pores and lead to breakouts. Unlike traditional water-based cleansers, oil cleansers work on the principle that “like dissolves like”—meaning the oils in the cleanser bind to the oils on your skin and in makeup, allowing them to be rinsed away.


Oil cleansing first can help to efficiently remove water resistant sunscreen & cosmetics, but it is not necessary. #oilcleansing #skincareroutine #dermatologist

♬ original sound – Dr Dray | Dermatologist

Oil and balm cleansers are usually formulated with emulsifiers, which allows them to rinse off with water. You start by rubbing these products onto dry skin to break down your sunscreen, then add a little water to emulsify before rinsing it off. You then follow with a normal water-based face wash to make sure that the oils have been fully removed.

Best Oil Cleansers for Acne-Prone Skin

When choosing an oil cleanser for acne-prone skin, it’s important to look for a product that is non-comedogenic. It should emulsify and rinse off your skin easily, but you should still follow it with your normal face wash to ensure it is all removed.

The below oil and balm cleansers are perfect for gently removing the layers of sunscreen this summer, without aggravating acne-prone skin:

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