The CeraVe Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser is one of the many face washes CeraVe offers.

While the other cleansers have mainly moisturizing ingredients, this one is different with an active ingredient incorporated in the formulation, making it stand out.

It is suited to acne-prone skin due to its 4% benzoyl peroxide, which targets multiple factors that cause acne.

Key Takeaways

  • Anti-acne ingredient benzoyl peroxide
  • Perfect for oily, acne-prone skin
  • Well-tolerated formulation

Best Cleanser for Acne

Best CeraVe Cleanser for Oily and Acne-Prone Skin

Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser

Clears acne, pimples and blackheads while preventing new acne and allowing the skin to heal.

Skin types: Oily, Acne-Prone
Best for: Acne, Pimples and Blackheads
Tested on animals: No
How to use: Wet face with lukewarm water and apply a few drops of product to your hands, gently work the product into your skin. Wash with lukewarm water. Pat skin dry.
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CeraVe's Acne Cream Cleanser is a great addition to any skincare routine for those who suffer from acne breakouts.


  • Contains anti-acne ingredient benzoyl peroxide
  • Can help prevent new breakouts and diminish existing ones


  • Can be drying

CeraVe Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser contains 4% Benzoyl Peroxide which is a great option for those dealing with acne breakouts. In addition to the benzoyl peroxide, it contains ceramides, hyaluronic acid and niacinamide.

Product Overview

CeraVe Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser is a foaming face cleanser containing benzoyl peroxide as its main active ingredient.

Benzoyl peroxide acts on three of the four causes of acne:

  • oil production
  • comedone formation
  • acne causing bacteria

It can be a great addition to your anti-acne armamentarium.

Although benzoyl peroxide does tend to be drying or irritating, this face wash is formulated with additional ingredients to combat the dryness and soothe the skin.


The CeraVe Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser is a gentle but effective cleanser with its 4% benzoyl peroxide.

The cleanser claims to clear acne acne breakouts and helps prevent new blemishes from forming while also maintaining the skin’s barrier due to its three essential ceramides, leaving your skin feeling soft and comfortable, reducing acne without dryness or flaking.

Key Ingredients

1. Benzoyl peroxide (4%)

Benzoyl peroxide is the main anti-acne active ingredient in this cleanser.

It has a multitude of effects on acne:

  • It decreases acne-causing bacteria Propionibacterium acnes
  • It decreases decreases comedone formation, i.e. it decreases formation blackheads and whiteheads, which are often precede active acne breakouts
  • It decreases sebum production and tends to dry the skin out

Additionally, use of benzoyl peroxide has been shown to reduce bacterial resistance that accompanies excessive use of both topical and oral antibiotics for acne.

That is the reason benzoyl peroxide should be a part of any acne routine.

2. Other anti-acne ingredients

  • Niacinamide: which targets blemishes due to its effect on melanin transfer in the skin. It also decreases redness and inflammation, having a soothing effect on irritated acne-affected skin.
  • Glycolic acid: which helps pigmentation and exfoliates the skin. However, the percentage of acid is not mentioned in this product.

3. Ceramides

The cleanser contains three ceramides, which help keep the skin barrier intact.

Hyaluronic acid, glycerin: moisturizing ingredients with emollient/humectant properties.

Benzoyl peroxide is known to cause dryness and irritation. Addition of ceramides and other moisturizing ingredients make it more tolerable for use, even suiting skin that has a damaged barrier.

How to Use

You should use the CeraVe's Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser twice a day, morning and night.

If your skin does tend to dry out easily, you can use it just once a day initially and gradually increase it to twice a day, if needed.

  1. Use a dime-size amount after gently wetting the skin.
  2. Gently massage it all over the face, being careful near the eyes
  3. Do not rub your skin dry after cleansing your face
  4. Gently pat it dry

It is important to continue using your acne medications along with this cleanser.

Other Tips

Because of soothing and hydrating ingredients like niacinamide, ceramides and hyaluronic acid, the Cerave Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser is generally well-tolerated without any dryness or irritation.

1. Pay close attention for dryness or irritation

If you do feel that your skin is drying out/feeling stretched or tight, limit its use to once a day, preferably at night.

While the skin is still damp from cleansing, apply a layer of moisturiser containing ceramides.

2. See if your skin can tolerate this cleanser with other anti-acne products

If you are using retinoids or salicylic acid-based products (which are often a part of most anti-acne skincare routines), you may find that your skin gets too dry or red and irritated after using this cleanser.

In that case, limit its use to once a day and moisturize liberally.

If you are still experiencing dryness even after once-daily use, then it may be prudent to switch to the Cerave Hydrating Cleanser, with all the hydrating ingredients but no actives.

3. Benzoyl peroxide can stain

Benzoyl peroxide is known to discolor fabric but this should not be a problem with a cleanser that is to be washed off the skin soon.

It tends to be more of a concern while using benzoyl peroxide spot applications. Or consider ordering a benzoyl peroxide resistant towel.

What to Expect

CeraVe Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser is a good creamy cleanser for acne-prone skin. Cream cleansers are known to be more hydrating than gel-based cleansers.

Acne is known to be associated with a damaged skin barrier. This often predisposes one to irritation from actives like benzoyl peroxide. However, this formulation with its ceramides is particularly suited to acne-prone skin with barrier dysfunction.


How long will it take to see results?

It can take a week to see noticeable changes from using this cleanser. The skin will feel less oilier and acne will slowly decrease. Because of the limited time of contact a cleanser has with one's skin, other acne treatments still need to be continued alongside.

Does this product contain fragrance or other irritants?

No, it doesn't. The irritation potential is minimised here using the ceramides and niacinamide with are soothing and barrier-building.

The Bottom Line

CeraVe's Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser is a great option if you are suffering from acne.

Benzoyl peroxide is one of the primary ingredients used for acne treatments and often a part of most skin-care routines.

Apart from creams for spot application on acne, benzoyl peroxide cleansers are a great way to incorporate the ingredient into your routine and this cleanser is a great fit!