best vegan cruelty-free cleansing oils

Looking for a cleansing oil that’s free of animal testing as well as animal ingredients? You’ve come to the right place! We searched for the best vegan + cruelty-free cleansing oils of 2022.

Cleansing oil is used as the first step in a double-cleanse and effortlessly melts away, makeup, sunscreen and other impurities.

Double-Cleansing

What is double-cleansing you ask? It’s as simple as it sounds.

It’s washing your face twice, with two different types of cleansers, one right after the other.

Generally, this involves an oil-based cleanser, followed up by your regular (water-based) face wash.

The concept behind this is that oil-cleansers break up makeup, sunscreen, and excess oil from the skin and clear the way for your regular cleanser. The result is ultra-clean skin.

Read on for the best vegan + cruelty-free cleansing oils.

6 Benefits Of Using An Oil Cleanser

  1. Oil cleansers are non-stripping and non-drying, as opposed to regular (soapy) cleansers
  2. It effortlessly dissolves makeup, SPF, dirt and excess oil. the reason behind this is that oil dissolves oil. Makeup, sunscreen and skincare are generally oil-based, which is why it’s way easier to remove with an oil-based cleanser than a regular (water-based) cleanser
  3. Oil cleanser leaves skin ultra-clean, allowing skincare to better penetrate the skin and work its magic
  4. It balances skin and regulates oil production. Traditional cleansers can cause dryness which can ultimately result in overproducing oil
  5. It leaves skin soft, hydrated and nourished
  6. Oil cleansers are gentle on the skin

Index

  1. Best All-Round: iUNIK – Calendula Complete Cleansing Oil
  2. Best Value: The Ordinary – Squalane Cleanser
  3. Cleansing Oil for Dry and Sensitive Skin: Purito – From Green Cleansing Oil
  4. Best Cleansing Balm: Paula’s Choice – Omega Complex Cleansing Balm
  5. Cleansing Oil for Combination to Oily Skin: Klairs – Gentle Black Deep Cleansing Oil
  6. Best for Dry and Sensitive Skin: The Inkey List – Oat Cleansing Balm
  7. Exfoliating Cleansing Oil: Mara – Chia + Moringa Algae Enzyme Cleansing Oil
  8. For Dry to Normal Skin: Biossance – Squalane + Antioxidant Cleansing Oil
  9. Best Smelling: Dermalogica – Precleanse Cleansing Oil
  10. Gentle Cleansing Oil: Pai Skincare Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil


The 10 Best Vegan + Cruelty-Free Cleansing Oils & Balms

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1/10

Best All-Round:

iunik complete calendula cleansing oil vegan cruelty-free

iUNIK

Complete Calendula Cleansing Oil

Shop at Amazon | $$

iUNIK uses plant oils including sunflower seed oil to break down sunscreen and makeup effortlessly and purifies pores. The thick velvety texture emulsifies with water and rinses completely clean without any leftover residue. It has a subtle nutty-like scent. The short ingredient list makes this a safe bet for sensitive skin.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, alcohol, silicones, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, iUNIK is a cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, this is a vegan product. However, iUNIK is not a vegan brand, since it also sells products that do contain animal (by)products | Packaging: glass + plastic



2/10

Best Value:

the ordinary squalane cleanser vegan cruelty-free

The Ordinary

Squalane Cleanser

Shop at LOOKFANTASTIC | $

This balm-to-oil formula easily detaches makeup, sunscreen, and other impurities, without drying your skin. Instead, it’s formulated with squalane for its hydrating properties and leaves your skin clean and cushiony-soft. The oil cleanser is non-comedogenic which means it doesn’t clog your pores. Plus, it’s 8$ only.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, alcohol, silicones, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, The Ordinary is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, The Ordinary is a PETA-certified vegan brand | Packaging: plastic



3/10

Best Cleansing Oil For Dry and Sensitive Skin:

purito from green cleansing oil vegan cruelty-free

PURITO

From Green Cleansing Oil

Shop at Amazon | $$

This non-stripping oil cleanser gently lifts all traces of sunscreen, makeup, and dirt, without leaving an oily film after washing it off. It has a short ingredient list and is fragrance-free (it naturally smells a little like olive oil, which is its primary ingredient), making this a great option for dry and sensitive skin types.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, mineral oil, alcohol, silicones, fragrance, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, PURITO is cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, PURITO is a vegan brand, meaning they don’t use any animal derived ingredients in their entire product line | Packaging: recycled plastic



4/10

Best Cruelty-Free + Vegan Cleansing Balm:

paula's choice omega complex cleansing balm vegan cruelty-free

Paula’s Choice

Omega Complex Cleansing Balm

Shop at Amazon | $$$

Made with jojoba and meadowfoam seed oils Paula’s Choice’s new cleansing balm removes even the heaviest of makeup effortlessly. The balm emulsifies to a creamy texture that rinses off completely clean. Skin is left soft and soothed post-rinse. The fragrance-free formula has the lightest clean scent, that makes you feel even cleaner. We love.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, phthalates, sulfates SLS and SLES, alcohol, fragrance, essential oils, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, Paula’s Choice is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand. That said, the brand is owned by Unilever, a parent company that is not cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, this product as well as the majority of Paula’s Choice products is vegan | Packaging: recyclable plastic



5/10

Best For Combination To Oily Skin:

klairs gentle black deep cleansing oil vegan cruelty-free

Klairs

Gentle Black Deep Cleansing Oil

Shop at Amazon | $$

Cleansing oil of Korean beauty brand that provides gentle deep cleansing without irritating or drying the skin. It’s formulated with oils from black bean, black sesame, and black currant seed, that all work together to clean out the pores, control oil production, and balance the skin. When mixed with water the oil emulsifies into a milk-like texture and skin is left skin feeling soft, balanced, and cleansed.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, Klairs is cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, this product is vegan. However, Klairs is not a vegan brand, as it also sells products that do contain animal (by)products | Packaging: plastic


RELATED: The Best Cruelty-Free + Vegan Gel Moisturizers



6/10

Best For Dry And Sensitive Skin:

the inkey list oat cleansing balm vegan cruelty-free

The Inkey List

Oat Cleansing Balm

Shop at LOOKFANTASTIC | $

A thick cleansing balm that dissolves makeup and day’s dirt in a very gentle way while nourishing. If you have dry sensitive skin, you’ll love this. Made with oat kernel oil to help boost moisture into the skin and colloidal oatmeal to soften and soothe irritated skin. It won Allure 2020’s Best of Beauty Award. And best of all, it’s only 10 bucks.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, phthalates, sulfates SLS and SLES, synthetic fragrance, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, the Inkey List is cruelty-free | Vegan: this product is vegan. However, The Inkey List is not a vegan brand, as they also offer products that do contain animal-derived ingredients | Packaging: The Inkey List products come in plastic packaging of which 75% is recyclable



7/10

Best Exfoliating Oil Cleanser:

mara chia + moringa algae enzyme cleansing oil vegan cruelty-free

Mara

Chia + Moringa Algae Enzyme Cleansing Oil

Shop at Amazon | $$$$

This oil cleanser made with jojoba seed oil not only washes away makeup, SPF, and impurities, it also doubles as a mild exfoliator to sweep away dead skin cells thanks to the addition of four fruit enzymes. What’s more, the oil-to-milk cleanser is packed with skin-soothing and hydrating ingredients like algae extracts and squalane to keep your skin in its best condition.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, phthalates, sulfates SLS and SLES, alcohol, mineral oil, synthetic fragrance, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, MARA is a Leaping Bunny-certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, this product, as well as the majority of MARA’s products are vegan | Packaging: recyclable glass bottle with an aluminum gold cap


RELATED: The Best Cruelty-Free Face Exfoliators



8/10

Best For Dry To Normal Skin:

biossance squalane + antioxidant cleansing oil vegan cruelty-free

Biossance

Squalane + Antioxidant Cleansing Oil

Shop at Amazon | $$$

Effortlessly deep-cleanses while keeping skin moisturized. Formulated with 8 plant oils to cleanse plus sugarcane-derived squalane to lock in moisture, making this lightweight cleansing oil a top pick for those in need of hydration. The spa-like scent is just another bonus.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, phthalates, sulfates SLS and SLES, mineral oil synthetic fragrance, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, Biossance is a Leaping Bunny-certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, Biossance is a vegan brand | Packaging: glass bottle



9/10

Best Smelling:

dermalogica precleanse vegan cruelty-free

Dermalogica

Precleanse

Shop at Amazon | $$$$

A great go-to for daily cleansing without stripping the skin of vital moisture. Formulated with
gentle botanical oils and extracts, Dermalogica’s Precleanse Cleansing Oil effectively shifts makeup and sunscreen, while also removing dirt, excess oil, and other impurities. It is ideal for all skin types, including sensitive skin. Another plus, it smells like aromatherapy.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, alcohol, mineral oil, synthetic fragrance, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, Dermalogica is a PETA-certified cruelty-free brand. However Dermalogica is owned by Unilever, a company that is not cruelty-free | Vegan: yes, this product is vegan, as well as the majority of Dermalogica’s products | Packaging: plastic



10/10

Best Gentle Cleansing Oil:

pai light work rosehip cleansing oil vegan cruelty-free

Pai

Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil

Shop at LOOKFANTASTIC | $$$$

Powered by hydrating and antioxidant-rich rosehip oil Pai’s cleansing oil efficiently melts away makeup and dirt while moisturizing and soothing your skin. Like all products of the all-natural brand, this ultra-gentle oil cleanser is a dream for sensitive skin. Bonus points for the environment-friendly glass packaging.

Skin Type: all skin types, including sensitive | Free of: paraben, sulfates SLS and SLES, alcohol, synthetic fragrance, animal-derived ingredients | Cruelty-Free: yes, PAI is a Leaping Bunny-certified cruelty-free brand | Vegan: yes, PAI is a vegan brand | Packaging: recyclable glass bottle with a plastic pump

FAQ

When Use Cleansing Oil?

Cleansing oils are typically used at night as the first step in a double cleanse to wash away impurities that accumulated on your face during the day.

What Skin Type Is Oil-Cleansing For?

When it comes to skin type, oil cleansers are a universally friendly product, with formulas made for dry, normal and even oily, and acne-prone skin. When you have oily skin, we understand that washing your face with oil may feel counterintuitive but fear not. An oil cleanser can actually help oily skin as cleansing oils purify the skin without stripping it from its natural oils and hydration, unlike regular foaming cleansers which usually contain higher levels of surfactants that are more stripping to the skin. Ultimately, stripped skin can lead the skin to overproduce oil to compensate for the dryness. Also sensitive skin can benefit from a cleansing oil, as they tend to be more gentle on the skin than a regular cleanser. As oil cleansers are able to melt away even the most stubborn makeup much better than a water-based cleanser, you’re less likely to upset your sensitive skin.

How To Use Cleansing Oil?

  1. Pump cleansing oil on dry hand
  2. Apply cleansing oil to dry skin and gently massage
  3. Add a little water (this will make the oil emulsify and break down makeup and oils) and massage your face for a minute or 2
  4. Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water or wipe away with a washing cloth
  5. Follow with a water-based cleanser

What Is The Difference Between Cruelty-Free and Vegan?

Cruelty-free means a product and its ingredients haven’t been tested on animals. Vegan means a product doesn’t contain animal-derived ingredients. A product can be cruelty-free and not vegan as well a product can be vegan and not cruelty-free. The products in this article are all cruelty-free and vegan.  

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