Cetaphil Review - The Dermatology Review

Cetaphil Review



If you look up just about any article written about the best facial cleansers, there is one product that is almost guaranteed to be on it – Cetaphil. This gentle cleanser has been a member of that rare pantheon of cult favorite products which have maintained their popularity for decades. The cleanser originally debuted in 1947 but didn’t gain momentum until the 1960s. Today Cetaphil has expanded to include moisturizers, body lotions and cleansing cloths in addition to its original cleanser. Here’s a closer look at the Cetaphil brand, what it sells and is it right for you?

What are the Best Skin Care Products of 2021?

What is Cetaphil?

According to the company, Cetaphil Cleansing Lotion was invented by a pharmacist in 1947. It was formulated to be a gentle but effective product that cleans the skin without stripping it. It was also designed to moisturize the skin without clogging pores. At first the product was available only from pharmacists but its popularity grew as dermatologists, pediatricians and other healthcare professionals recommended it to their patients, especially those with sensitive skin or rosacea. By the 1980s it was widely available in North American drugstores.

Cetaphil certainly has staying power –the formula hasn’t changed at all since 1947. What has changed is that today Cetaphil has over 40 products, including moisturizers, body lotions and a baby line as well as a Pro collection for sensitive skin. The company is owned by Galderma, a division of Nestlé Skin Health.

What Are Some of the Most Popular Cetaphil Products?

Cetaphil sells a wide variety of face and body products. Here’s a breakdown of some of the best-sellers. Keep in mind that “lotion” refers to facial cleansers.

Cetaphil Lotion
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser – This cult favorite product has a gel like texture that moisturizes skin as it cleans it. The cleanser is soap free and can be used with or without water- just use a tissue or a cloth to wipe it off.

Cetaphil Gentle Foaming Cleanser – The pump on this cleanser creates a face wash with a rich lather. The formula is fragrance free, hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic.

Cetaphil Cream
Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream – This jar of creams helps hydrate and soothe dry skin on the body with ingredients such as glycerin, petroleum and sweet almond oil.

Cetaphil Daily Advance Lotion – Cetaphil likes to say this product can be used from the head down to the toes. It is formulated with five key moisturizing ingredients designed to give 24 hour hydration, including macadamia nut oil and shea butter.

Cetaphil PRO Gentle Body Moisturizer – This body cream is endorsed by the National Eczema Association and can be used on babies as young as six months old. It is powered by ceramides and the protein filaggrin.

Cetaphil Moisturizer
Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer SPF 15 – Hyaluronic acid, which holds up to 1,000 times it weight in water, is one of the key ingredients in this facial moisturizer. The cream is lightweight and ideal for dry or sensitive skin.

Cetaphil Rich Hydrating Night Cream with Hyaluronic Acid – The price tag may be small but Cetaphil’s night cream is big on hydration thanks to moisture magnet hyaluronic acid.

Cetaphil Hydrating Eye Gel-Cream – The brand’s first eye cream launched in 2018, and is designed to hydrate the delicate eye area, as well as smooth and brighten the skin.

Cetaphil Bar Soap
Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing Bar – Cetaphil’s bar soap can be used on the face and the body. The non-comedogenic formula is soap free, which means it is ideal for dry and sensitive skin. The bar creates a rich lather to clean the skin without stripping it.

Cetaphil Deep Cleansing Bar – The Deep Cleansing Bar has replaced Cetaphil’s Gentle Cleansing Anti-Bacterial Bar. The new formula has five nourishing ingredients to soothe the skin while also sweeping away dirt and oil.

Cetaphil Acne
Although Cetaphil doesn’t have a specific acne line, some of its products are suited for oily skin. The Cetaphil PRO line is also suitable for sensitive skin and works to soothe redness caused by dryness.

Cetaphil PRO Oil Removing Foam Wash – This non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic foaming face wash used to be called Cetaphil DermaControl. One of the key ingredients is zinc to help reduce oil and keep shine at bay.

What Ingredients are in Cetaphil Products?

Cetaphil products have commonly used skincare ingredients such as shea butter, macadamia nut oil, glycerin, petroleum, zinc and hyaluronic acid.

Where is Cetaphil Sold?

Cetaphil is widely available at drugstores such as Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid along with big box retailers like Walmart as well as Target. It is often found in supermarkets.

How Much are Cetaphil Products?

Cetaphil products are priced accordingly with drugstore brands. Cetaphil Gentle Foaming Cleanser is $9.99, the Moisturizing Cream is $10.99 and the Hydrating Eye Gel-Cream is $17.99

Is Cetaphil tested on Animals?

Cetaphil’s Canadian and Philippines websites say that the brand does not test on animals.

Does Cetaphil Work?

Finding the right beauty products and skincare regimen always involves some trial and error, as one person’s miracle product may do nothing for someone else. It’s also helpful to look at product reviews and customer feedback.

Cetaphil has been a beloved beauty brand for decades, which is largely thanks to its original product, the Gentle Skin Cleanser. This product has racked up over 40 awards, and was given an Allure Best of Beauty award seven times, along with a Reader’s Choice Award four times. It has been named one of the best drugstore cleansers by Byrdie and InStyle magazine has named it to their Beauty Hall of Fame. Good Housekeeping included it in a 2018 piece about “ 7 Best Face Washes for Dry Skin Will Keep You Hydrated All Day Long.”

The brand has its fair share of celebrity followers. Victoria Beckham’s dermatologist recommends it, and Kim Kardashian and Sofia Vergara are fans. Dermatologists continue to recommend it for anyone with sensitive skin, dry skin or rosacea.

Cetaphil’s other products have also generated plenty of positive editorial coverage in Allure, Vogue, Real Simple and Marie Claire.

Customer reviews are also largely positive. The Gentle Skin Cleanser has over 1,500 Amazon reviews and gets a 4.2 out of 5 star rating. Fans say “No other product cleaned my oily skin without drying it horribly, and it took care of my acne and later it helps with rosacea” and call it the “Only cleanser I will use on my sensitive skin!” Customers who gave it a lower rating said they didn’t like the consistency, or complained that it didn’t really clean their skin. This was also noted in the Allure review. The writer said “The only downside to this beauty staple is that because it’s so gentle it doesn’t always cut through heavy makeup.”

One much buzzed about piece in Well + Good criticized Cetaphil’s Gentle Cleanser for containing parabens and cetyl alcohol, an emollient that is essentially a wax. A writer for SokoGlam also criticized it in 2018 saying, “Nothing in this cleanser is actually really good for the skin.”

Cetaphil’s Gentle Foaming Cleanser gets over 500 reviews on Walgreens.com, along with a 4.8 out of 5 star rating. Satisfied customers write “I have been using Cetaphil Gentle Foaming Cleanser for about a month now and I would not use any other brand after trying it. I love the way it makes my face feels.” Most complaints have to do with the pump applicator not working, and one reviewer called it “Nothing extraordinary.”

The Cetaphil Pro Oil Absorbing Moisturizer With SPF 30 Broad Spectrum Sunscreen has plenty of Amazon reviews; over 1,300 customers gave it an average 3.8 out of 5 stars. Fans say that the product does what it says it does, at a good price. “For the price you can’t beat this product. There are super pricey professional grade products that don’t control oil as well as this lotion.” Negative reviewers wrote that the product stung their eyes, or they had a bad reaction to it.

What Are Some Alternatives to the Cetaphil?

Cetaphil may not be the right choice for everyone. It may not react well with your skin, or perhaps you’re looking for something a bit more special. If you’re looking for a well-rounded skincare line, there are a few other brands to consider.

Formulyst’s philosophy is long-term and effective skincare. The brand wants to help its customers achieve their best looking skin, rather than covering it up with makeup. The comprehensive line of products focuses on everything from wrinkles to dark spots and dry skin. Formulyst Clarifying AHA Cleanser is designed to give a skin a gentle but effective cleanse. The formula contains alpha hydroxy acids (AHA) derived from citrus and botanical extracts. These acids work by dissolving dead skin cells and drawing out impurities from the pores to reveal smooth, refreshed skin.

If you want smoother looking skin, skip the harsh exfoliators which can do more harm than good. Formulyst Retexturing and Perfecting Serum is powered by gentle but effective alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) which works to dissolve dead skin cells. Packed with plant based acids, it whisks away old skin cells, leaving behind fresher, smoother looking skin. The serum also works to on unevenness and blotchiness. Want to get rid of a blemish? Don’t pop it- dry it. Apply a dab of Formulyst’s Blemish Clearing Complex. It contains a whole cocktail of bacteria fighting, pimple drying products including zinc oxide, salicylic acid, and camphor. It also helps to unclog pores.

If you like the simplicity of a skincare kit, consider Advanced Dermatology. This no nonsense brand offers a pared down approach to skincare. The packaging is simple and streamlined, and the products bring skincare back to the basics. The kit contains just six essential items including a daily cleanser; serum; anti-wrinkle firming treatment; night cream; day cream and an eye cream. In other words, everything you need to achieve your best possible looking skin.

There’s no need to compromise when it comes to finding skincare that is effective and safe. Carrot & Stick takes a tough love approach to skincare, perfectly balancing the power of plants with cutting edge science. Not only is Carrot & Stick good for your skin, it is also good for the environment as the formulas skip harmful chemicals as well as the preservatives, emulsifiers and thickeners commonly found in skincare products.




The philosophy of Formulyst is long-term and effective skincare, rather than covering up any imperfections. The comprehensive line of products tackles everything from wrinkles to dark spots and dry skin. While some brands rely on unnecessary fillers and scents, Formulyst focuses on ingredients that help create results, such as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.Read More

Carrot & Stick

Carrot & Stick takes a tough love approach to skincare. What does this mean? It perfectly balances the power of plants with innovative science, offering the best of both worlds.Read More

Advanced Dermatology

The Advanced Dermatology skin care regimen addresses the most pressing aging concerns.Read More

Cetaphil Pro Oil Absorbing Moisturizer SPF 30 Review

The Cetaphil Pro Oil Absorbing Moisturizer SPF 30 was designed to serve as a moisturizing, hydrating and rejuvenating daily moisturizer that specially serves oily skin types. For those with naturally oily skin, finding a moisturizer that works for you can be extremely frustrating. In order to make this a little easier, the Cetaphil Pro Oil Absorbing Moisturizer delivers all of the ingredients your skin needs to stay healthy and balanced, while also absorbing excess oil and sebum for a shine free finish. In addition to helping regulate oily skin types, this product also includes SPF 30, which is essential for maintaining healthy and well balanced skin in the long term. More and more research has been published to support the importance of minimizing sun damage for your overall health and risk for developing things like skin cancer, as well as minimizing the effects of premature aging on the skin. With all this in mind, this would be a great product for those of you who aren’t yet incorporating anti-aging actives into your routine, but would like to start out with some preventative steps to benefit you in the long run.


Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser Review

An absolute classic, the Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser is by far one of the most recognizable skincare products on the market. Cetaphil is a drugstore brand that makes sensitive friendly skincare products and a very affordable price point, making them an excellent option for those workhorse skincare products like foaming cleansers and basic moisturizers. The Daily Facial Cleanser is the hero product from Cetaphil that offers users a simple yet effective cleanser that us suitable for use both as part of your morning and evening routine. The ingredients list behind this product is super simple, featuring mainly gentle surfactants to offer that cleansing, foaming action, with a few additional ingredients to create the gel-like texture. This product can be slightly drying for those with already dry skin, so we’d recommend this type of product to those of you with oily or combination skin types that are looking for an easy, no frills, no fuss cleanser that will slot into your existing routine without worry.


Cetaphil Rich Hydrating Night Cream Review

The Cetaphil Rich Hydrating Night Cream was designed to serve as a workhorse moisturizer for use as part of your evening skincare routine. Slightly more rich then their daytime equivalent, the Cetaphil Rich Hydrating Night Cream packs a bit more of a nourishing punch with a combination of humectants, emollients and occlusives to balance the skin and protect your natural moisture barrier. Like all Cetaphil products though, you won’t find an extensive ingredient list here. Instead, the beauty of this product lies in its simplicity. The minimal ingredients list allows this product to work well with a wide variety of skin types and to also layer well overtop other serums in your routine. Although we don’t often think about it, moisturizers with active ingredients on top of already active serums can actually do more harm than good and be too much of a good thing. Using a more basic moisturizer like the Cetaphil Rich Hydrating Night Cream allows the rest of your skincare to go to work and deliver even better results without causing any irritation or sensitivity.


Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer Review

Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with SPF 50 is a fragrance-free sunscreen moisturizer that is claimed to nourish and hydrate your skin while helping to defend against sunburn. The active sunscreen ingredients in this formula include octinoxate (7.5%), octisalate (5%), octocrylene (7%), oxybenzone (6%), and titanium dioxide (5.7%). The first four ingredients are chemical sunscreen agents, which protect the skin by first absorbing UV light, then transforming that light energy into some other form of energy, such as heat. In contrast, titanium dioxide works by blocking or deflecting UV light, rather than being absorbed by the skin. The micronized titanium dioxide in this formula is said to absorb quickly, leaving no filmy, white residue.

Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with SPF 50 includes the humectant glycerin, which works by drawing moisture into the upper layers of skin to improve hydration. This moisturizer also contains several different types of silicones, such as dimethicone, cyclomethicone, and dimethiconol. Silicones help this sunscreen to spread easily across the surface of skin, providing a silky, smooth skin feel. Silicones also form a thin film on the surface of skin that helps to keep moisture in. There are also some good but rather basic emollients in this formula, such as stearic acid and glyceryl stearate, which help to soften and soothe the skin. Lastly, Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with SPF 50 contains a small amount of the antioxidant vitamin E.


Cetaphil Hydrating Eye Gel Cream

Eye creams can be a particularly challenging product to introduce in your skincare routine, given that the eye skin is the most sensitive skin on your face. In fact, the skin around the eye area is the thinnest skin, making it one of the most susceptible areas for skin issues like milia or clogged pores to start appearing. If you’ve struggled with these skin concerns before and have become a little bit weary of heavy eyes creams, you may want to check out a lighter eye gel cream like the Cetaphil Hydrating Gel Cream. This lighter weight, hybrid formula is becoming more and more popular in skincare products, and for good reason. Rich in humectants, these gel creams combine all of the essential moisture that our skin needs to function optimally, along with a much more lightweight texture. The result is a product that sinks into the skin quickly, leaves no greasy residue, and yet appropriately hydrates and calms the skin. This specific eye gel cream from Cetaphil contains hyaluronic acid, which is a humectant that is capable of holding up to 1000 times its weight in water. In addition to this heavy hitting ingredient, this formula also contains a pro-vitamin complex as well as licorice root extract to smooth and brighten the skin under the eye.


Cetaphil Moisturizer Lotion

Where to Buy Cetaphil Moisturizer Lotion If you cannot find enough information about this product after reading Cetaphil Moisturizer reviews and do not feel confident about buying it online, you can also find it locally at supermarket and drugstore chains. While there is no store locator on the company website, it does list which chains carry their products. However, the company also warns that not every store carries the complete line of products from the brand, and that you can always order Cetaphil Moisturizer Lotion directly from the website or from other authorized online dealers.

This Cetaphil Moisturizer comes in several different sizes, from as small as two ounces to as large as sixteen ounces. Prices range from about $3-$12, depending on where you shop and the size of the product you purchase. The low cost of this product may be beneficial for those who have a limited skin care budget and cannot afford to buy a number of costly moisturizers in order to find one that works for them.


Cetaphil Oil Control Foam Wash Review

Cetaphil Dermacontrol Oil Control Foam Wash is designed to cleanse oily skin. It is clinically proven to effectively remove pore-clogging oil, impurities, and makeup from the skin. One of the key ingredients in this cleanser is zinc coceth sulfate, a mild surfactant that cleans the skin while simultaneously depositing zinc basic salts onto the skin. A surfactant molecule contains one end that is hydrophilic (attracted to water) and one end that is lipophilic (attracted to oil). This allows surfactants to attract and suspend oil, dirt, and other impurities that have accumulated on the skin and wash them away. Cetaphil Dermacontrol Oil Control Foam Wash also contains zinc gluconate (the zinc salt of gluconic acid). The exact mechanism for how zinc gluconate works when applied to skin isn’t fully understood. One theory is that zinc has a balancing effect on the skin microbiome, which refers to the naturally occurring microorganisms that live on the surface of skin. In addition, zinc gluconate has anti-inflammatory activity that can be helpful for reducing redness from acne. Besides these two zinc ingredients, Cetaphil Dermacontrol Oil Control Foam Wash contains the humectant glycerin, which draws moisture into the upper layers of skin to improve skin hydration. This cleanser also contains dipotassium glycyrrhizate, a component of licorice root extract that functions as a skin-conditioning agent with anti-inflammatory and skin-soothing properties. Lastly, Cetaphil Dermacontrol Oil Control Foam Wash does contain fragrance, which can aggravate the skin.


Cetaphil Redness Relieving Night Moisturizer Review

The Cetaphil Redness Relieving Night Moisturizer, which has now been renamed the Cetaphil Pro Night Moisturizer could be an excellent option for you if you struggle particularly with sensitive skin. Those with sensitive skin often have the hardest time finding a suitable moisturizer, as the ingredients in moisturizers can often be too thick or rich for the skin, causing clogged pores. Some of the additional ingredients, even those that can benefit the skin, can also trigger allergic reactions that can lead to increased skin reddening, heat in the skin, blotchiness and inflammation. The key to finding a suitable moisturizer for sensitive skin is to keep it simple, which is exactly what brands like Cetaphil are known for. With streamlined ingredients lists that remove some of the most common culprits of allergy or sensitivity including fragrance, alcohol or pore clogging ingredients, you can use this product with confidence. This formula also contains hydrating and nourishing ingredients that help to calm and soothe the skin, making this product an excellent option for those of you who are currently dealing with irritation caused by other factors or products. Ingredients like ceramide NP, hyaluronic acid and shea butter help to thoroughly moisturizing the skin without weighing it down, so your skin feels comfortable and hydrated all night long.


Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream

In the past, you’ve probably picked out moisturizers based on a specific brand name or the marketing claims made by brands. But did you know that all moisturizers are not created equal? There are actually several different types of moisturizers, with the three most common types being occlusive, humectant, and emollient. In this review, our focus is on a product that contains all three of these moisturizers: the Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream.


Cetaphil Lotion

You've probably noticed Cetaphil lotion at your local drug or department store. Typically sold in white bottles that display the blue / green logo of the brand, this cream is widely distributed through many shopping outlets. But individuals suffering from dry, flaky skin may wonder about the benefits of Cetaphil lotion and whether it is strong enough to make a difference. After all, many lotions claim to be the best and to provide relief for severely dry skin. Is there anything that makes Cetaphil lotion different? Does it have specialty ingredients to nourish and moisturize the skin? To answer these questions, we took a deeper look at how Cetaphil lotion works and the ingredients it contains.

Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser

Does Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser Work? Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser was created as an option for individuals with sensitive skin. According to the manufacturer, this skin cleanser has a very simple formula that's gentle enough to be used on young children. Having access to gentle products like Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser can certainly be helpful if you're struggling with problems like atopic dermatitis, allergies, or other skin sensitivities. However, it's vital to carefully consider the ingredients in this product and discuss it with your dermatologist to avoid unexpected side effects. After all, even though most Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser reviews are quite positive, some consumers did experience issues with this product. Therefore, even though it is labeled as "gentle," a full assessment must be made before incorporating this cleanser into a regular skin care routine.

How Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser Works

The idea behind Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser is to cleanse the skin without causing irritation. When it comes to skin cleansers, the ideas of cleansing and skin irritation are often directly at odds with each other. On the one hand, harsh chemicals can do an amazing job at lifting dirt and oil from the skin's surface (chances are your hands have no oil after doing dishes!). But on the flip side, effective cleansing often leaves the skin very dry and can even stimulate an inflammatory response.

  • TDR Original review: Aug 06, 2020. Reply

    Cetaphil Gentle Waterproof Makeup Remover
    Cetaphil is a much-loved drugstore brand that won’t break the bank. Great for sensitive skin, this makeup remover tackles all waterproof makeup and is fragrance-free and non-comedogenic. As a bonus, no oily residue will be left over with this remover.

  • TDR Original review: Aug 03, 2020. Reply

    Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion
    Feel comfortable in your own skin with Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion. Specifically formulated to soothe dry skin, it is non-greasy, non–irritating and non–comedogenic, leaving skin feeling soft and smooth. Lightweight enough to hydrate and soothe even sensitive skin, it enhances natural moisture with special ingredients that bind water to the skin. The result is skin that is pleasantly nourished.

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