Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser

I received a sample of Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser in Birchbox July 2017. I was very excited to receive it as I have heard a lot about the brand but had never tried any of their products. I am always happy to try new skin care products and cleansers are a favorite to try.

For reference, my skin is normal with a tendency to shine in the summer. I have fine lines, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation. I use Tretinoin so any skin care product has to be gentle.

 Ultra Facial Cleanser thoroughly cleanses skin and removes makeup without over-drying or stripping skin of its natural oils. It dissolves excess oil, dirt, and debris, and is pH-balanced to maintain skin’s natural balance. Avocado oil and squalene help to restore hydration—keeping skin extra soft and supple.  

 How to Apply:
  • Apply small amount to clean fingertips
  • Gently massage into damp facial areas in upward, circular motions
  • Avoid immediate eye area
  • Rinse thoroughly or remove excess with damp wash cloth

Ingredients: Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Decyl Glucoside, Glycerin, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Acrylates Copolymer, Peg-200 Hydrogenated Glyceryl Palmate, Lauryl Glucoside, Sodium Chloride, Pentylene Glycol, Triethanolamine, Phenoxyethanol, Peg-7 Glyceryl Cocoate, Distearyl Ether, Behenyl Alcohol, Methylparaben, Laureth-2, Propylparaben, Sodium Methylparaben, Squalane, Sweet Almond Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Tocopherol, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Avocado Oil, Sodium Hydroxide, Citric Acid. 

A 5 oz/150 ml tube sells for $19.50 at Sephora. That makes it slightly more expensive than my Holy Grail Purity Made Simple by Philosophy.  An 8oz bottle of the Purity will run you $24 at Sephora.

I use the Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cleanser as the 2nd step of my Nighttime Double Cleanse Routine.  This is where I usually use my Purity but I have used the Kiehl’s exclusively so I can see how it really works.



It has almost no scent at all. There is a faint hint that smells a touch medicinal. It is not overpowering or bad. The cleanser itself is a thick, creamy gel-like texture. It does not melt on contact with the skin and feels fairly thick when you first start rubbing it in. I add some water to get a faint lather out of it.

It seems to work well getting my face clean. It rinses off easily and does not leave my skin feeling dry or tight. It does not leave a greasy filmy feeling either. There is no burning or stinging of any kind. It has not irritated my skin in any way. Of course, I don’t have particularly sensitive skin.

This is a nice basic facial cleanser that leaves the skin clean and soft. I do like it a lot and would consider it almost as good as my Purity Made Simple. However, I will stick with my Purity when I finish this sample. It is a more lotion-like consistency and it is more cost-effective. All things being equal I will always choose the product that costs less.

Have you tried Kiehls’ Ultra Facial Cleanser? What are your thoughts? What other gentle cleansers do you recommend?

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