CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser

overall rating:



Deanna Roldan
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CeraVe is usually a product that seems appealing because of how simple it is in comparison to other skincare products. Its simplicity makes the product stand out but it is misleading sustainability-wise. They focus their marketing on how their products are curated by dermatologists which is part of their appeal. Due to their marketing strategies, they are very transparent about their ingredients but it is not in the context of sustainability. Their website contains no other information about their sustainability efforts or even goals they have for themselves. Their transparency is very limited and it is only in the context of being an effective and simple product. Sustainability is not mentioned or discussed at all by the company. The quality and development of this company and its products are impressive but in the context of sustainability, they do not even attempt to seem like they care. I believe this is a product that works well but CeraVe needs to make legitimate attempts towards reaching sustainability in order to be an exceptional product. They have the ability to do so but they continue to be selective about what they are transparent about. While CeraVe seems to be a safe choice for consumers who want a simple product, their lack of transparency and concern for the environment is disappointing.

What it's made of:


CeraVe prides itself because of its ingredients which is why their website is so thorough with some of the ones they use. Their website has a page for 14 of their ingredients. In their Hydrating Facial Cleanser, out of 24 ingredients, only very few have a dedicated page on their website. The ingredients that do have a page on their website are very well thought out and I appreciate the information they include. They address the safety of the ingredient, who should use it, how it’s used, a comparison, and possible combinations with other ingredients. Due to the level of transparency they have for some of their ingredients, I do not understand why they cannot expand it throughout the brand. A few concerning ingredients in this product are PEG-40 Stearate, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Phenoxyethanol, and Polysorbate 20 according to the Environmental Working Group. These ingredients are concerning due to contamination and toxicity concerns. PEG-40 Stearate has the potential to contain 1,4-dioxane which is a toxic impurity. Polysorbate 20 has a high possibility of being contaminated with 1,4-dioxane and ethylene oxide. For a brand that focuses on its simplicity of ingredients, they are not as transparent about all of them as they should be. What should have been a strength for this brand turns out to fall short.  

How it's made:


CeraVe’s website was thorough for certain aspects of their products but anything else was completely left out with no information included. Finding outside information that was not included on their website was extremely difficult. The lack of information is concerning and makes me question what CeraVe is hiding. CeraVe is a good quality product but they use the success of their product as a way to ignore everything else about the company. The simplicity of their products does not automatically make them a sustainable brand. The only information I could find was on the bottle that stated the product was made in the United States using imported ingredients and/or ingredients from the United States. The difference between using imported ingredients and ingredients from the United States is notable due to emissions from transportation. CeraVe cannot definitively source its ingredients which brings more questions than answers. This information was only on the bottle and was not even mentioned on the website. The disconnect between the information included on the packaging and the website is disappointing. 

Who makes it:


CeraVe claims they do not test on animals on their website in their frequently asked questions. I do not believe this was adequately addressed by CeraVe because this is the only mention on their entire website about testing on animals. One sentence on their website is not acceptable. Additionally, CeraVe does not have any certifications that prove their claim. This claim is also misleading because CeraVe is owned by L’Oreal which is not a cruelty-free company. L’Oreal does address sustainability on their website which is better than CeraVe but it does not seem to be authentic in their motivations. They include statistics but they mean nothing without any additional information. The inclusion of random percentages is more of an attempt to seem impressive about their progress instead of being genuine.