Korean skincare is known for being at the forefront of new trends and technologies. Korean skincare products are formulated for effectiveness and performance. Korean facial cleansers are no exception. Whether you are looking for two different cleansers to use in a Korean double cleanse, or are looking for a Korean cleanser for a specific skincare concern, you will have no issue finding an effective Korean cleanser.
Korean cleansers come in a variety of formats such as balm cleansers, cream cleansers, milk cleansers, gel cleansers, and foam cleansers, also known as cleansing foams, which we will discuss today.
Cleansing foams are just what their name implies: cleansers that create a foam to wash away dirt, oil, makeup, sunscreen, and other impurities from the skin. It is important to use the right cleansing foam for your skin, to ensure that you don’t dry out your skin, which can occur with some foam cleansers.
The best Korean cleansing foams are formulated to be effective while gentle enough on skin to respect your skin barrier and not strip your skin. These cleansing foams are ideal for the second step of a double cleanse in a Korean skincare routine.
What is a Double Cleanse?
A double cleanse is a two-step cleanse. It uses an oil-based cleanser as the first cleanse to remove stubborn makeup, dirt, oil, and sunscreen followed by a water-based cleanser to remove any residual oil or other impurities that the oil-based cleansing balm or cleansing oil may have missed.
A double cleanse can especially benefit oily and acne-prone skin that frequently experiences clogged pores. Be sure to take extra care in product selection if your skin is sensitive or dry by looking for a cleansing foam formulated for dry or sensitive skin. Cleansing dry skin twice may be too much for some complexions, so be sure to adjust your skincare routine based on your skin.
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The Best Korean Cleansing Foams
The Face Shop Rice Water Bright Foam Cleanser is a cleansing foam enriched with rice water extract and soapwort to brighten skin while cleansing away dirt, oil, makeup, and other impurities.
This cleanser also hydrates and softens the skin while providing a rich foam. It leaves skin soft and smooth without feeling dry or tight. You don’t need much since it is highly concentrated. This is the ideal second step of a double cleanse. This cleanser has a fresh, clean soapy fragrance.
Tonymoly Clean Dew Foam Cleanser comes in four varieties each with a different key ingredient that targets specific skin concerns:
- Lemon: Formulated with Vitamin C, a potent antioxidant that offers brightening benefits and helps to even out skin tone.
- Aloe: Formulated with 96% aloe extract to soothe and moisturize dry and sensitive skin.
- Red Grapefruit: Filled with antioxidants to support skin elasticity for a bouncy younger looking complexion.
- Blueberry: Rich in vitamins and minerals, this hydrating cleanser protects skin from external stressors for a smooth healthy complexion.
Each variety of this Tonymoly cleanser provides a rich lather yet a gentle cleanse.
Don’t be fooled by the small tube. Mizon Snail Repairing Foam Cleanser is highly concentrated and you need only a small amount of cleanser to create a rich foam. This cleansing foam is formulated with snail mucin filtrate and has that sticky consistency prior to mixing with water.
Mizon describes the texture created by the cleanser as dense mochi bubbles. Mochi refers to mochi skin, a way to describe soft, plump, and line-free skin. The cleanser removes excess sebum and dead skin cells while protecting the skin barrier and helping the skin retain moisture, which is ideal for dry skin types. Papaya fruit extract acts as a gentle exfoliant that helps to remove dead skin cells and unclog pores.
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Skin Food Egg White Perfect Pore Cleansing Foam is formulated with egg white extract, also known as Albumin Extract, to deep clean and refine pores. This cleanser is ideal for those with acne-prone, oily, and very oily skin, as this cleanser will target excessive sebum production, dirt, bacteria, blackheads, and impurities that clog pores.
It’s also ideal for those that have visible and enlarged pores as this formula helps to tighten pores and minimize their appearance. The 5 benefits of this cleansing foam include:
- Provides a deep cleanse
- Absorbs sebum
- Removes impurities
- Purifies pores by removing skin bacteria
- Refines pores
Mizon Snail Cushion Foam Bubble Cleanser is a rich foam cleanser that creates a dense marshmallow type lather that cleanses deeply, removes heavy makeup and other impurities. It forms a cushion on the skin, leaving it soft and supple.
This Korean cleansing foam is enriched with filtered snail mucus, also known as snail slime, to firm the skin. Copper peptides in the snail mucin have wound healing properties. Centella Asiatica, Portulaca Oleracea Extract and Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract soothe the skin. It also contains salicylic acid, a beta hydroxy acid, to help deep clean the pores (perfect for oily skin types) and sweep away dead skin cells.
Etude House Wonder Pore Deep Foaming Cleanser deeps cleanses and minimizes pores by controlling sebum production, thanks to white clay which helps to remove excess sebum. This cleansing foam is enriched with mint, for a bright uplifting scent in addition to a cooling effect. It offers the following 10 benefits:
- Deep cleans
- Controls sebum
- Improves skin tone
- Tightens pores
- Balances skin’s pH level
- Smooths skin for glass-like texture
- Retains skin elasticity
- Removes dead skin cells
- Offers a cooling effect
Banila Co Clean It Zero Foam Cleanser is formulated with natural amino surfactants and Banila Co patented Zero Balance Technology which includes, acerola, rooibos leaf, bamboo, and angelica extracts to soothe skin and to help skin retain moisture.
This Korean micro-foam cleanser draws out impurities from clogged pores and is gentle on the skin to reduce irritation. It is formulated with hot springs water, vitamin E, and vitamin C, for a bright and healthy complexion.
Its texture is that of a whipped gel-cream. You need very little product to get a lightweight foam. This foam cleanser does not contain parabens sulfates phthalates, mineral oil, or alcohol.
TIP: This cleansing foam pairs well with Banila Co Clean It Zero Cleansing Balm. Use Clean It Zero Cleansing Balm as the first step of a double cleanse, and follow with Banila Co Clean It Zero Foam Cleanser as the second step of a double cleanse.
Innisfree Hydrating Green Tea Cleansing Foam is a mild facial cleansing foam that contains Jeju Green Tea extract, innisfree’s “Beauty Green Tea”, discovered after reviewing over 2,400 Korean green tea varieties. “Beauty Green Tea”, or Jeju Green Tea Extract, is rich in 16 amino acids and brings hydration to thirsty skin. Jeju Green Tea Root Extract acts as a surfactant, creating gentle cleansing microbubbles.
This rich foam cleanser creates a dense foam to deep clean and removes impurities from the pores, leaving skin dewy, soft, and moisturized. It leaves your skin feeling fresh, clean, and never dry or stripped. Ideal for dry, normal, combination and oily skin types.
Neogen Dermalogy Real Fresh Foam Cleanser Green Tea lets you enjoy the soothing effects of real green tea with this bubbly foam cleanser. What’s unique about this cleanser is that real green tea leaves are included at the bottom of the bottle.
The ingredient list for this foam cleanser is LONG, most of which are naturally-derived extracts. It contains some all-star skincare actives in addition to green tea, including niacinamide, glycerin, and sodium hyaluronate (the salt form of hyaluronic acid), pro-vitamin B-5, aloe vera, and other plant extracts rich in antioxidants.
This hypoallergenic cleanser comes with a pump lid to dispense the foam. This cleansing foam washes away dirt, makeup, impurities, and other waste without irritation, making it perfect for those with sensitive or irritated skin. If you do have sensitive skin, please note that it does have a light fragrance.
Klairs Rich Moist Foaming Cleanser uses an amino acid cleansing formula instead of harsh chemical detergents like sodium laurel sulfate. This hypoallergenic foam cleanser is formulated with hyaluronic acid, ceramide 3, and olive oil for soft, hydrated, and moisturized skin.
This cleansing foam also contains tea tree leaf oil and Houttuynia Cordata extract which can be effective for skin conditions such as acne and dandruff. This foaming cleanser is recommended for all skin types and is particularly helpful for those with dry skin or sensitive skin. It is formulated to be alcohol-free, paraben-free, artificial pigment-free, and is manufactured with no animal testing.
This Korean whip cleanser is all about sensitive, irritated and damaged skin. Etude House SoonJung pH 6.5 Whip Cleanser is formulated with 98.9% naturally derived ingredients at a pH of 6.5.
Panthenol, also known as pro-vitamin B-5 hydrates while madecassoside (from Centella Asiatica) repairs the skin. Antioxidant Camellia Sinensis Leaf (green tea) extract offers anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties.
This hypoallergenic cleansing foam comes with a pump to create a whipped cream texture with weakly acidic bubbles. The cleanser is ideal for irritated and sensitive skin, as it is formulated without ingredients such as fragrance, artificial color, animal materials, parabens, mineral oil, or silicone. This fragrance-free cleanser is very mild and gentle, and won’t leave a film on your skin. Skin is left soft, smooth, and moisturized.
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Nature Republic Soothing and Moisture Aloe Vera Cleansing Gel Foam is a gentle foaming cleanser that is rich in aloe vera extract. Aloe vera extract contains emollient and anti-inflammatory properties. It’s very moisturizing and soothing on the skin.
The cleanser is a gel formula that is especially helpful for sunburned, irritated or inflamed skin. Also good for sensitive skin, this cleansing foam provides that perfect pore cleansing effect to remove dirt, oil, and makeup This cleansing gel foam does not contain any parabens, talc, animal product, mineral oil, or artificial dyes.
AHC Aqualuronic Cleanser Purifying Foam Cleanser is a deep cleaning purifying cleanser that is based on the Korean Aesthetic Clinic approach. It is formulated with ceramides and French sea water to replenish skin and strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier. AHC’s Triple Hyaluronic Complex hydrates and plumps the skin.
The lightweight foam removes dirt, oil and other skin impurities yet is gentle on the skin. Please note that this cleanser has a somewhat strong but pleasant fragrance.
Missha Super Aqua Cell Renew Snail Cleansing Foam contains 30% snail slime extract to help a variety of skincare concerns such as redness, acne scars, dullness, and lack of elasticity. Baobab extract and deep seawater increase moisture while botanical callus extract helps to control blemishes.
This Korean cleansing foam removes sebum and surface waste with its rich finely textured foam. Perfect for combination skin types and oily skin types, it helps to reduce the look of dark spots and acne scars without being too drying. Plus, you only need a small amount to get a rich lather.
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Mamonde Triple Multi Cleansing Foam detoxifies and purifies skin without stripping the skin and removing moisture. This 3-in-1 cleansing foam removes waterproof makeup, sunscreen, other impurities, and dead skin cells in just one step.
Mamonde is a proponent of the power of flowers and uses flower extracts in their skincare products. This cleansing foam is formulated with iris flower to cleanse the skin and remove dirt, oil, and makeup without having to double cleanse. It has a light fragrance and is a lightweight non-sticky formula. Paraben-free, sulfate-free, and phthalate-free.
Final Thoughts on the Best Korean Cleansing Foams
The best Korean cleansing foam for you is the formula that works best for your skin type and skin concerns. Whether you choose a Korean cleansing foam as your only cleanser or use it as the second step of a double cleanse, the best Korean cleansing foams will remove makeup, dirt, oil, sunscreen, and even stubborn eye makeup without drying or stripping your skin. Even better, most of these cleansing foams are available at very affordable drugstore prices.
Thanks for reading, and here’s to your good skin health!