The rule of, 'you get what you pay for' is very true, up till a point. I call this the hump-back whale rule. It's the reason why you shouldn't spend more than £20 on a skincare cleanser

Why You Shouldn’t Spend More Than £20 on a Cleanser

In Being Savvy at Skincare by Cheryl Woodman MChem2 Comments

Have you ever asked yourself the question, how much money should I really spend on this new glitzy (oh yes magpie eyes in full-out action!) must have? If you’re not sure what you’re looking for when it comes to skincare then it can feel like you’re opening Pandora’s box with no clue what it’s going to do until you get it home and open the darn thing.

Today we are going to take a skin savvy step to demystifying the Pandora’s box of cleansers with the answer to the question, ‘How much money should I spend on a cleanser?’.

How much money should i spend on a cleanser? The rule of, 'you get what you pay for' is very true, up till a point. I call this the hump-back whale rule. It's the reason why you shouldn't spend more than £20 on a skincare cleanser


Let me tell you lovely lady, you are awesomely spectacular and one crazy multi-tasking genius. So I know you need quick, simple and trusty skincare advice that helps you pick a skin winner that is also completely fair on the pounds in your purse.

There are 2 pieces of advice we usually rely on, ‘You get what you pay for’ and ‘The more expensive the better it’s got to be’.

Remember those uber science-y graphs from school that pretty much all looked the same? The ones that looked like the profile of a hump back whale? You start off climbing your way up that ‘y’ axis and then something happens, maybe it’s time for a snooze and you strap yourself onto the side of that humpback mountain to rest for the night (true story! Can you believe people do that, not on a humpback of course, on a mountain #Brave&Crazy).

Well this is true for pretty much everything in life as well as skincare. Doing more of something helps up to a point. Once you’re there, at that point of the humpback whale,  you can do that thing all you want but it’s not going to make even a tiny-weeny bit of difference.

Investing in a good cleanser is a HUGE step in the road to long term healthy skin function. When it comes to that question, ‘How much money should I spend on a cleanser?’, £20 is your magic mark.

Spending up to the £20 magic mark and you’re likely still climbing that ‘y’ axis. Spending over the £20 magic mark and you’ve likely paused on the humpback for a nap.


The very first cleansers, were all about removing stuff from your face, we’ll call it ‘traditional cleansing’. It’s as basic as a soap, there’s something in there called a surfactant that eats up oil, grime and dirt and waves ‘Au revoir’ to it down the plug ‘ol. Traditional cleansing was about taking stuff from your face, they were takers not givers.

Wind on the years and there are new options…

  • Traditional cleansing with added extras. Traditional surfactant/soap based cleansers are balanced out with other skin conditioning ingredients that help to counteract the harsh, drying and irritating nature of the surfactant beast.

  • Cream, Oil & balm cleansers with a little to zilch of traditional surfactant/soap and a whole lotta skin conditioning plant butters and oils that dissolve up oil and grime while also protecting and conditioning skins natural barriers.

These steps up from the basic ‘traditional cleansing’ are well worth the £’s, you knew that anyway ‘eh. You are just so skincare savvy!

The magic to these guys is this, they are takers AND givers.

The reason you shouldn’t spend more than £20 on a cleanser is this, they only get 5 minutes to give.

True story, as much as we can pack a cleanser FULL to the brim of skin loving ingredients, they only get a tiny amount of time on your skin. That’s just not enough time for advanced active skincare ingredients to absorb to where they need to be. If your cleanser costs you over the £20 mark, it’s likely they’ve used some of these added extras, thing is, it’d give you much better results if it were in your moisturiser.


If you have a very ‘giving cleanser’, that’s going to be a pick from the cream/oil/balm bracket of cleansers then you can do a few things to maximise their giving skills.

  1. Give yourself a good ol’ face masseuse. Go on, you have my permission to indulge yourself *winks*. Stimulate your skin’s blood flow & lymphatic drainage while also giving skin some extra time to absorb what your cleanser has to give. #MaximiseThatJuice

  2. Double cleanse and let the second sit on for a 5 minute face pack. This is best done with a balm cleanser, but you can also give it a test drive with a cream or oil cleanser. Your first cleanse removes the grime and dirt you wouldn’t want to voluntarily leave sit on your skin and the second cleanse ‘wring out’ all the good juice your cleanser has to give skin.

What cleanser do you use right now? Are you in the sub £20 bracket? If you’ve read this and you are mega attached to a cleanser that is over the £20 mark then let me know what it is and I’ll find you an alternate with similar skills!