When you go shopping for beauty products and face wash cleanser, you’re generally not looking for a chemistry lesson or history lecture. But in this case, it’s worth knowing exactly what’s up with sulfates and why you might (or, since you’re here, definitely) want to invest in sulfate-free face wash cleanser.
Long story short, sulfates are a chemical compound that attract both oil and water. Sulfates have been key ingredients in soaps and lathers for years, as they’re able to help lift and remove dirt and junk from faces, hands, and everywhere else. Conveniently for marketers, Sulfates are also responsible for creating that wonderful lather we’re now so used to seeing when we soap up — sulfates were developed in the 1930s and became regular ingredients in shampoos and face wash cleansers in the 1950s, so basically every soap commercial and every kids book since the middle of last century has emphasized their importance. It’s built into our perceptions — you see lather and bubbles, you inevitably think of cleanliness.
So, what’s wrong with that? Why should you want sulfate-free face wash cleanser? Lathering and bubbles are good, right? Well, sure, they feel good, and when it comes to shampoo, some people are generally OK with sulfates as long as they’re not too concentrated. But over the years, people (and doctors) have found that sulfates tend to have some significant negative effects. In short, they often do too much cleaning, and that’s a big problem. They strip hair and skin of good oils in addition to the bad ones, and wash away antimicrobial peptides and proteins, too. This is particularly troublesome in body washes and face wash cleansers, because it leads to dry and irritated skin as well as the worsening of some types of acne. In short, having sulfates in your face wash cleanser can often lead to skin that looks worse than it would have if you didn’t use it at all.
The good news is that there are now a ton of sulfate-free face wash cleansers on the market. The bad news? Just because a label says a facial cleanser is sulfate-free doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re actually sulfate-free. Drug stores and online shops are filled with what claim to be sulfate-free face wash cleansers, but plenty of them still have chemicals that are very, very close in composition to sulfates, to the point that they cause the exact same problems. But don’t worry — MASSE is here to help and clean up any confusion.
At MASSE, we provide a trustworthy list of the best sulfate-free face wash cleansers that don’t mess around with sulfate-like chemicals. These sulfate-free face wash cleansers are all recommended by real shoppers who have really used them, so you can be sure they actually deliver what’s being advertised, so your skin stays clean, well-hydrated, and rash-free. We don’t allow paid reviews or sponsored posts, either, so you can wash your worries away with the list below!