Skin Cleansing Products

Skin cleaning products include everything from soaps to sponges. Learn more about skin cleaning products at HowStuffWorks.

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Sodium isethionate is a mild soap derived from coconut oil found in many products. Find out why it can handle hard-to-remove dirt and oil on your skin.

By Elizabeth Forester

A staple in many cleansers, sodium stearate is strong enough to remove dirt and oil from your body's surface. But how much will it irritate your skin in the process?

By John Barrymore

This chemical compound has reportedly been used in cleaning products for thousands of years. How are animal by-products used in this cleaning agent that has stood the test of time?

By John Barrymore

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Stearic acid is commonly used in products such as candles, makeup and medicine, but it's also a key ingredient in skin cleansers. How exactly does it help soap to get you even cleaner?

By Elizabeth Forester

A fresh sweet orange might be on your grocery list, but you may also find it on your skin cleanser's ingredients list. Is this citrus oil as good for your skin as the fruit is in your diet?

By Sarah Jourdain

This chemical compound is often used as a kind of helper in cleansers. How does it help soap do a better job of getting your skin clean?

By Elizabeth Whitmore

Titanium dioxide is a common ingredient in many cleansing products, but it doesn't help to wash your skin. So why does it make it into the mix?

By Elizabeth Whitmore

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Trisodium etidronate can come to the rescue when your water contains minerals that could keep you from getting squeaky clean. How does this chemical compound work against them?

By Alexander Page

Witch hazel might not have anything to do with cauldrons and potions, but many people say using it in skin cleansers can have a magical effect on your skin. How does this plant work to improve your skin's appearance?

By Alexander Page

Ylang-ylang oil is a sweet, spicy fragrance from South Asia that's popular in cosmetics, cleansers and aromatherapy products. Some product makers claim it might even have another special property.

By Gina Fisher

If rough, scaly patches of skin make you feel like a desert lizard, it might be time to introduce exfoliating soap into your skin care arsenal.

By Sarah Siddons

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Your body is constantly shedding thousands of dead skin cells to reveal the smooth, bright skin underneath. And you can help put your best face forward by using the proper exfoliating tools.

By John Barrymore

Face cleansing wipes can come in handy when you need a quick midday refresher or you're too tired to wash your face. But can they protect your skin from breakouts?

By Aida Duncan

Still using that bar of body soap to wash your face? You might actually be harming your skin by getting it too clean.

By Aida Duncan

Manufacturers claim facial mist sprays can do wonders for your skin, whether you're moisturizing in the middle of the day or setting your makeup. But are these watery mists really worth the money?

By Susan Sentry

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Soap's not the only option out there for cleansing your skin -- you can also use non-soap products. But if they're not soap, what are they made of, and can they actually get you clean?

By Sarah Siddons

It's common knowledge that skin cleansers contain dyes and fragrances, but did you know that many soaps also contain animal fat?

By Alexander Page

If you've ever glanced at the label of your skin cleanser and found a confusing list of difficult-to-pronounce chemicals, you're not alone. But what ingredients should you look for in a cleanser?

By Jamie Palamon

You may have seen soaps, shampoos and facial cleansers advertised as "pH-balanced," but what does that mean? And should you be using a pH-balanced skin cleanser?

By Susan Sentry

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Mild cleansers aren't just for people with sensitive skin. If you have dry, oily, aging or acne-prone skin, you could also benefit from a mild cleanser. But what makes a skin cleanser mild?

By Sarah Siddons

There are many different kinds of soap in the world and most of them have one major thing in common: They can make bubbles. But how do they do it?

By Alexander Page

If you've been cleansing your skin with soap and then applying a moisturizer, you could save yourself some time -- and some bathroom clutter -- by switching to a moisturizing body wash.

By Sarah Siddons

If you're trying to find a cleanser that doesn't use animal products, check the ingredients for sodium cocoyl isethionate -- it's a common alternative to animal-based substances.

By John Barrymore

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You wouldn't buy a window cleaner that advertised "mild" cleaning power or said it removed 50 percent of greasy fingerprints -- but your skin is different, and mild is actually best.

By Sarah Siddons

There's nothing like a freshly washed face -- unless your cleanser is leaving you high and dry. If your soap is drying out your skin, it's time to switch to a moisturizing cleanser.

By Susan Sentry