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There are a few things that you can find in everybody’s bathtub or shower—body wash is one of them. And while you might be tempted to pick up the best-smelling variety at the drugstore and call it a day, take the extra time to find the right one for your skin type and we promise you'll thank us.
Keep scrolling for our picks of the best body washes worthy of the precious real estate in your shower.
Best Overall: Rituals The Ritual of Ayurveda Foaming Shower Gel
It dispenses from the metal cannister like a gel, but upon contact with water, is transformed into a luxe foam that turns any shower into a spa-like oasis, enveloping the bathroom in a fragrant bouquet. The brand offers different scents based on a range of rituals, this one being Ayurveda, so it taps the ingredients of sweet almond oil and Indian rose, which are used in the ancient medical system’s healing practices.
Bonus: Because it’s foamy almost like a shaving cream, it can be used as one and helps a razor glide smoothly. Best of all, thanks to its double usage, it saves you space in the shower.
Best Moisturizing: Dove Dry Oil Moisturizing Body Wash
Whether you have dry skin or not, you’ll enjoy the rich lather of this luscious body wash. Laced with Moroccan argan oil that the skin drinks up, you’ll notice a smoother texture and visibly healthier-looking skin. The scent is fresh (not overpowering) and the formula is dermatologist recommended, so even those with sensitive skin can enjoy using it. For a deeper clean, squeeze some out onto a loofah or shower brush and then scrub the skin to gently exfoliate and cleanse simultaneously.
Best Drugstore: Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Wash
The gentle oatmeal-enriched formula works wonders on all skin types, including those prone to eczema and irritation. It’s packed with rich emollients that help to moisturize and soothe even the most sensitive of skin, all without breaking the bank.
Best for Acne: Murad Acne Control Body Wash
Though it may be pricey, it is one of the best body washes for treating and preventing body acne. If you are prone to breakouts, especially those brought on by sweat during a workout, it’s essential to get ahead of the problem by using a formula like this one after a gym sesh.
Known acne fighters glycolic and salicylic acid help to boost cell turnover and dislodge oil so pores don’t become clogged. Date seed powder provides exfoliation and green tea and licorice extracts address redness and irritation.
Best Budget: Method Body Pure Peace Body Wash
A little bit of this naturally derived gel liquid formula goes a long way and works into a nice lather. And the size of the bottle is generous, so you get plenty of bang for your buck. The Pure Peace scent is comprised of peony, rose water, and pink sea salt, which make for a lovely experience. The soothing rosewater is gentle and hydrating while the peony and sea salt gives off a floral and fresh aroma. What’s more, the formula is paraben and phthalate-free and the bottle is made with 65% recycled plastic.
Best Scent: Fresh Brown Sugar Bath & Shower Gel
The brand’s classic brown sugar line doesn’t disappoint in this scented gel that foams up to a nice lather. Formulated with actual brown sugar and shea butter, it cleanses and smooths at the same time. The combination of evening primrose, sweet almond, apricot kernel, and jojoba oils all work to improve skin texture and is especially great for nourishing dry areas like the elbows, knees, and ankles. Its sweet (but not cloying) scent will definitely appeal to those who enjoy gourmand fragrances. It lingers on skin post-shower and plays nicely with other fragrances that you may want to layer on top.
Best for Sensitive Skin: Cetaphil Ultra Gentle Body Wash
It has everything sensitive skin needs and nothing that it doesn’t; it’s hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and dermatologist tested, making it a great choice for those who suffer from sensitivity. It won’t strip the skin as it cleanses, but instead, it injects some needed moisture for skin that won’t be as irritable.
Best for Itchy Skin: Curél Itch Defense Body Wash
A side effect that often comes along with dry skin is itchiness, especially in the winter months when the skin is even drier than normal. This soap-free formula isn’t the least bit stripping, though it does cleanse and soothe dry skin. Use the jojoba and olive oil laced wash daily and be sure to pair it with water that's not too hot (because that can make the condition worse). Skin will feel hydrated, but it’s a good idea to double-up and slather on some lotion post-shower, too.
Best Nourishing: Drunk Elephant Kamili Cream Body Cleanser
This body wash from Drunk Elephant is nourishing in more ways than one. It's formulated with ultra-mild surfactants for a gentle cleansing, while non-fragrant plant oils and a multi-amino acid blend work to leave your skin feeling calm and replenished. This product also has a pH level of 5.0, which means it's appropriate for all skin types, and it's completely free of silicones, essential oils, fragrance, dyes, and drying alcohols.