Burt's BeesNatural Acne Solutions Purifying Gel Cleanser
5 fl. oz. for $10
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Brand Overview
Expert Reviews

This water-soluble cleanser features gentle cleansing agents but contains fragrance, which makes it questionable for those with temperamental skin. It’s also not especially adept at removing makeup, although those who wear minimal to no makeup will find this adequate for cleansing skin.

The active ingredient is 1% salicylic acid, but its blemish-busting effect is limited because it is far less effective for exfoliation, if at all, in a cleanser. When used in a leave-on product, it can work beautifully to gently exfoliate skin, but in a cleanser it is rinsed off before it can begin to work. If you are hoping for this cleanser to provide exfoliating benefits think again.

By the way, the salicylic acid isn’t derived from willow bark as claimed, so this product shouldn’t be construed as a natural alternative to other anti-acne cleansers. Willow bark contains salicin, a chemical that can be converted via enzymes into salicylic acid when ingested, but not when applied topically.

  • Cleans skin via gentle cleansing agents.
  • Not adept at removing makeup.
  • Fragranced formula makes this an iffy choice for temperamental skin.
  • Doesn’t live up to its claims.
Last Updated:01.04.2017
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Community Reviews

This cleanser is clinically proven to help wash away acne causing bacteria, excess oil and impurities without over-drying or irritating skin. Salicylic Acid, derived naturally from Willow Bark Extract, penetrates pores to help reduce acne and prevent future breakouts. Evening Primrose and Beet Root Extracts help soothe acne prone skin resulting in clear and healthy-looking skin, naturally.


Active: Salicylic Acid (1%), Other: Water, Decyl Glucoside, Lauryl Glucoside, Sucrose Laurate, Salix Nigra Bark Extract (Willow), Coco Betaine, Betaine, Beta Vulgaris Root Extract (Beet), Oenothera Biennis Leaf Extract (Evening Primrose), Sodium Cocoyl Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Hydroxypropyltrimonium Honey, Glycerin, Glyceryl Oleate, Coco Glucoside, Fragrance, Glucose, Alcohol Denatured, Glucose Oxidase, Lactoperoxidase, Citric Acid, Sodium Chloride, Phenoxyethanol

Brand Overview

Strengths: Inexpensive.

Weaknesses: Many products have potent fragranced formulas; several formulas packaged in jars, which compromises their ingredients.

With humble beginnings in the town of Bangor, Maine, Burt's Bees is a brand focused on natural-themed, earth-friendly skincare. Unfortunately, in many cases, this also translates to less than beneficial formulas as not all of the natural ingredients used are helpful for skin.

Many of the plant extracts and oils used in these products, including orange oil, cinnamon oil, clove oil, lemon oil, eucalyptus oil, pine tar, alcohol, lime oil, and balsam peru, are problematic for skin and present a significant risk of irritation or a sensitizing reaction. Both the intriguing philosophy and inexpensive products are attractive, but it takes more than that to establish reliable products that are good for skin. It’s also important to consider the potential benefit (or potential harm) of the ingredients used.

There are some formulas to consider among the brand’s offerings, but some to be wary of—see our individual reviews on Burt’s Bees products for more details.

For more information about Burt's Bees, call 1-800-849-7112 or visit www.burtsbees.com.

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