We're investigating an issue causing images to not load correctly.

I Put The Ordinary’s Not-So-Ordinary Squalane Cleanser To The Test

Dive into our refreshing review of The Ordinary's Squalane Cleanser, where skincare meets simplicity in the most extraordinary way! Prepare to be swept away by a cleansing journey that’s anything but ordinary – it’s a clear-cut case of purity in a bottle, one soothing wash at a time.

Table of Contents

When it comes to skincare, The Ordinary has always been a brand that piques my interest with its straightforward, no-nonsense approach to beauty. It’s like that friend who gives it to you straight, no frills attached. So, when I got my hands on their Squalane Cleanser, I was curious to see if it lived up to the hype. First off, the packaging is pretty standard for The Ordinary – minimalistic and clinical, which honestly, I kind of like. It’s like they’re saying, “Let’s skip the fancy stuff and get down to business.”

The cleanser itself promises a gentle yet effective cleaning experience, packed with ingredients like squalane and glycerin that are known to be kind to the skin. As someone who’s always on the lookout for a cleanser that’s effective without being harsh, I was ready to dive in and see what this product had in store.

About This Cleanser

Alright, let’s talk about what this Squalane Cleanser from The Ordinary is all about. First up, the texture – it’s unique, sort of a cross between a gel and a balm. It feels pretty luxurious, not too heavy or too light, just right for a good face massage. There’s no strong scent, which is a relief, because who needs their face to smell like a perfume store, right?

The star ingredient is obviously squalane, known for its hydrating powers. It’s like giving your skin a big glass of water – super refreshing. Then there’s glycerin, another hydration hero, making sure your skin doesn’t feel like a dried-up sponge after cleansing. What I really appreciate is what’s not in it – no harsh chemicals or weird fragrances that make you wonder what you’re putting on your face.

The cleanser also packs some other cool ingredients like Malic Acid and Tocopherol (that’s Vitamin E for us non-scientists). Malic Acid is like a gentle exfoliator, giving your skin a subtle glow-up without any harsh scrubbing action. And Vitamin E? Well, it’s like the guardian angel for your skin, fighting off those nasty free radicals and keeping your skin looking smooth.

Now, don’t expect any crazy foam party – this cleanser doesn’t lather up much. It’s more about gently melting away the day’s grime and leaving your skin feeling clean, but not stripped. It’s like the cleanser version of a chill, laid-back friend who’s there to help you unwind without any drama. Perfect for those nights when you just want to quickly clean your face and crash.

How Did It Work For Me?

So, diving into my personal journey with The Ordinary’s Squalane Cleanser, let me walk you through it, step by step, no detail spared. Starting off, applying this cleanser is kind of an experience in itself. It comes out of the tube as this smooth, almost creamy substance. As I began to massage it onto my dry face, it had this silky, almost luxurious feel. It didn’t transform into an oily mess, nor did it feel like it was just sitting on top of my skin. It was like this perfect middle ground, making the whole process feel more like a mini spa treatment than a daily chore.

The first time I used it, I was a bit skeptical about its cleansing power, considering its gentle nature. I mean, how much can something so mild really do, right? But here’s the surprise – it actually did a pretty decent job at removing the day’s buildup. I’m talking about the usual city grime, some light makeup, and the natural oils my face seems to love producing. It didn’t completely dissolve heavy makeup like a dedicated makeup remover would, but for everyday dirt and light makeup, it was a champ.

After rinsing it off, here comes the real test: how does my face feel? I’ve had cleansers in the past that left my skin feeling tighter than a drum, but not this one. My skin felt clean, sure, but also soft and kind of plump. It’s like the cleanser managed to wash away the unwanted stuff without stripping away all the moisture. I didn’t get that squeaky clean feeling, which I’ve learned isn’t actually great for your skin. Instead, it was more of a ‘clean but nourished’ vibe.

I kept using it for a few weeks, twice a day – morning and night. Consistency is key with skincare, right? Over time, I noticed a subtle but welcome change in my skin. It seemed a bit more balanced, like it wasn’t as oily in my usual T-zone area, but also not dry in the usually dry spots. The texture of my skin also seemed smoother, maybe thanks to the gentle exfoliating action of Malic Acid.

Now, let’s talk about its effectiveness as a cleanser. For everyday dirt and grime, it’s pretty solid. My skin felt thoroughly cleansed without any tightness or dryness. For light makeup, it did a good job too. But if you’re someone who wears heavy or waterproof makeup, you might want to double cleanse, starting with a dedicated makeup remover. The cleanser’s gentle nature means it’s not the best at tackling heavy-duty makeup on its own.

In terms of skin types, I’d say it’s a pretty safe bet for most. If you’ve got dry skin, the hydrating ingredients like squalane and glycerin are a boon. For oily skin, it’s balancing enough without adding extra grease. And for sensitive skin? Its mild formula means it’s less likely to irritate.

TL;DR: The Ordinary’s Squalane Cleanser is like that reliable, easy-going friend. It’s not going to rock your world with dramatic results overnight, but it’s consistent, dependable, and gets the job done with a gentle touch.

How It Stacks Up Against Other Squalane-Based Cleansers

Alright, let’s put The Ordinary’s Squalane Cleanser in the ring with some other cleansers I’ve tried, just to see how it stacks up. I’ve dabbled with a variety of cleansers over the years – from high-end to drugstore, foaming to creamy, and everything in between.

First off, compared to those foaming cleansers I’ve used, this one is like the calm, collected cousin. You know, the kind that doesn’t cause a scene? Foaming cleansers can be a bit harsh, often leaving my skin feeling like the Sahara Desert. The Squalane Cleanser, on the other hand, is way gentler. It cleans without that tight, dry feeling afterward.

Then there’s the balm and oil cleansers I’ve experimented with. These are usually great for melting away heavy makeup, but sometimes they can leave a bit of a greasy residue. That’s where this guy is different. The Squalane Cleanser does a decent job at breaking down daily grime and light makeup, and it rinses off clean without any oily film.

Now, let’s talk about those trendy micellar waters and cleansing milks. While they’re super gentle and great for a quick cleanse, I often find they don’t always get deep into the pores, especially after a long day. The Ordinary’s cleanser feels like it cleans more thoroughly without being harsh.

What about those cleansers packed with active ingredients like salicylic acid or glycolic acid? Sure, they’re great for targeted concerns like acne or texture, but sometimes they can be a bit too much, especially if you’ve got sensitive skin. The Squalane Cleanser is like a safe haven – effective yet gentle, without any aggressive ingredients.

And finally, in terms of price point, The Ordinary really hits the sweet spot. Some of the high-end cleansers I’ve tried are great but let’s be honest, they can make your wallet cry. This cleanser does a respectable job without breaking the bank. It’s like getting a decent meal at a reasonable price – satisfying and worth it.

The Pros and Cons

Let’s break down the good and not-so-good about The Ordinary’s Squalane Cleanser.


  1. Gentle Yet Effective: It cleanses without leaving your skin feeling like you’ve just had a face-off with a sandblaster. Perfect for daily use.
  2. Hydrating Ingredients: The squalane and glycerin combo is like a hydration tag team for your face.
  3. No Nasty Stuff: Free from harsh chemicals and weird fragrances, so you’re not left wondering if you’re harming your skin in the long run.
  4. Texture: The creamy-balm-like consistency makes it feel more luxurious than its price tag.
  5. Good for Most Skin Types: Whether you’re oily, dry, or somewhere in between, this cleanser is like Switzerland – neutral and friendly to all.


  1. Not a Makeup Melter: If you’re wearing layers of waterproof makeup, you might need a backup remover.
  2. Lack of Lather: For those who love a foamy experience, this might be a bit underwhelming.
  3. Subtle Results: Don’t expect overnight miracles. It’s more of a slow and steady wins the race kind of deal.

My Final Verdict

Alright, drumroll, please! I’d give The Ordinary’s Squalane Cleanser a solid 7.5/10. It’s like that reliable friend who might not always be the life of the party but never lets you down. Great for everyday use, especially if you’re into a gentle cleanse that doesn’t strip your skin.

Now, if you’re thinking of giving this a try, here’s how to make the most of it. First, use it as part of a double-cleansing routine if you wear heavy makeup. Start with an oil-based cleanser or micellar water, then follow up with the Squalane Cleanser for a thorough clean.

Incorporate it into both your morning and evening routines for the best results. And hey, why not pair it with other products from The Ordinary? Like, follow it up with a nice hyaluronic acid serum for extra hydration or their Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% for a bit of oil control and blemish-fighting action.

So, there you have it. The Ordinary’s Squalane Cleanser might not be the star of a skincare blockbuster, but it’s definitely worth a spot in your daily routine. It’s like a good cup of coffee – reliable, comforting, and gets the job done. Plus, your wallet won’t hate you for it!

Psst! Looking for an amazing cleanser that works AND doesn't break the bank?
Do not buy anything until you've checked out our favorite product of 2024 – rated 5/5 stars in our expert field-test review!
Let us know how you found this article in just a couple of clicks!
Delivered right to your inbox each week. Zero spam, all goodness, opt-out at anytime.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
How did you find this article?
Send us your feedback on this article in just a couple of clicks!
Main Menu
Terms of use
A WCG company.
Get all our top headlines!
Delivered right to your inbox each week. Zero spam, all goodness, opt-out at anytime.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Thanks for liking this article!

We’d love to hear more from you. All feedback is anonymous and will be used to improve the quality of our articles.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We're sorry you didn't like this article.

We’d love to hear more from you. All feedback is anonymous and will be used to improve the quality of our articles.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.