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Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser Versus COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser

Face Cleanser
Face Cleanser
American Brand United States
Korean Brand South Korea

Updated on July 19, 2024

Overview

What they are

These products are both cruelty-free face cleansers. They have a total of 6 ingredients in common

Cool Features

They both contain BHA

Suited For

They're both likely to be good for sensitive skin, oily skin, reducing pores and scar healing

Free From

They both do not contain any harsh alcohols, common allergens or silicones

We independently verify ingredients, and our claims are backed by peer-reviewed research. Spot a product that needs an update? Let us know.

Ingredient Info

Click any item below to learn more and see relevant ingredients
ph level
5.31

At a glance

Click on any of the items below to learn more

Notable Ingredients

Benefits

Concerns

Notable Ingredients

Benefits

Concerns

Ingredients Side-by-side

found in both products
AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser
Water Skin Conditioning, Solvent

Water. It's the most common cosmetic ingredient of all. You'll usually see it at the top of ingredient lists, meaning that it makes up the largest part of the product.

Sodium Laureth Sulfate Cleansing, Emulsifying, Foaming
Sulfate IconCan worsen Dry Skin Icon
SulfateSulfate Icon Can worsen Dry SkinCan worsen Dry Skin Icon

Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) is a foaming, cleansing, and emulsifying ingredient. It is created from palm kernel oil or coconut oil. SLES is not the same as sodium lauryl sulfate. It is much milder and less likely to irritate.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Cocamidopropyl Betaine Cleansing
May worsen Eczema Icon
May worsen EczemaMay worsen Eczema Icon

Cocamidopropyl Betaine is a fatty acid created by mixing similar compounds in coconut oil and dimethylaminopropylamine. Dimethylaminopropylamine is a diamine, an amine with two amino groups.

Disliked Full details ->
Jojoba Esters Emollient, Moisturising, Skin Conditioning
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Jojoba Esters is a wax created from Jojoba oil. It is an emollient and film-forming ingredient. In bead form, it is an exfoliator.

Disliked Full details ->
Acrylates Copolymer

Acrylates Copolymer is used as a film-forming agent and texture enhancer.

Disliked Full details ->
Glycol Stearate Emollient, Emulsifying
0 / 0 Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Glycol Stearate comes from stearic acid and ethylene glycol.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Disliked Full details ->
Butylene Glycol Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
1 / 0

Butylene Glycol (or BG) is used within cosmetic products for a few different reasons:

1 Com. / 0 Irr.
Sodium PCA Humectant, Skin Conditioning
0 / 0

Sodium PCA is the sodium salt of pyroglutamic acid and is naturally occurring on human skin.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Helps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation IconGood for Dark Spots Icon
3 Benefits

Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate comes from licorice root.

Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate Antioxidant
Vitamin C IconAntioxidant IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconGood for Skin Texture IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin Icon
Vitamin CVitamin C Icon AntioxidantAntioxidant Icon 6 Benefits

Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate is a form of Vitamin C. It is the salt of ascorbic acid.

Glycolic Acid Buffering
AHA IconGood for Oily Skin IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin IconMay cause irritation IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
AHAAHA Icon 7 Benefits 2 Concerns

Glycolic Acid is arguably the most famous AHA with a ton of research to back up its benefits.

Lactic Acid Buffering, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
AHA IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconHelps with Anti-Aging IconGood for Dark Spots IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin IconMay cause irritation IconMay worsen Eczema IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
AHAAHA Icon 6 Benefits 3 Concerns

Lactic Acid is an AHA that is derived from fermenting lactose, a carbohydrate from milk. It removes the top layer of old and dead skin cells and helps increase cell turnover.

Salicylic Acid Masking, Preservative, Skin Conditioning
BHA IconPreservative IconGood for Oily Skin IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps fight Acne IconHelps brighten skin IconCan worsen Dry Skin IconMay cause irritation IconMay worsen Eczema IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
BHABHA Icon PreservativePreservative Icon 5 Benefits 4 Concerns

Salicylic Acid (also known as beta hydroxy acid or BHA) is one of the most well-known ingredients for treating skin that struggles with blackheads and acne. It helps to exfoliate both the skin's surface and pores, and also acts as an anti-inflammatory agent.

Polyquaternium-4

We don't have a description for Polyquaternium-4.

Unknown Full details ->
Sodium Hydroxide Buffering

Sodium Hydroxide is also known as lye or caustic soda. It is used to adjust the pH of products; many ingredients require a specific pH to be effective.

Sodium Chloride Masking
Can worsen Dry Skin IconBad for Acne Prone Skin IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
3 Concerns

Chances are, you eat sodium chloride every day. Sodium Chloride is also known as table salt.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Citric Acid Buffering, Masking
AHA IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin IconMay cause irritation IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
AHAAHA Icon 4 Benefits 2 Concerns

Citric Acid is an AHA derived from citrus fruits (think oranges, lemons, and limes!).

Disliked Full details ->
Disodium EDTA

Disodium EDTA plays a role in making products more stable by aiding other preservatives.

Disliked Full details ->
Phenoxyethanol Preservative
Preservative Icon
PreservativePreservative Icon

Phenoxyethanol is a preservative that has germicide, antimicrobial, and aromatic properties. Studies show that phenoxyethanol can prevent microbial growth. By itself, it has a scent that is similar to that of a rose.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Methylparaben Preservative
0 / 0 Preservative IconParaben IconNon-Reef-Safe IconMay worsen Eczema Icon
PreservativePreservative Icon ParabenParaben Icon 2 Concerns

Methylparaben is a preservative and is a paraben. It is used to prevent the growth of fungus, mold, and other harmful bacteria. Parabens are chemicals used as preservatives in both cosmetics and food.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Propylparaben Preservative
0 / 0 Preservative IconParaben IconCan worsen Dry Skin IconNon-Reef-Safe Icon
PreservativePreservative Icon ParabenParaben Icon 2 Concerns

Propylparaben is a preservative and is a paraben with antifungal and antimicrobial properties.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser
Water Skin Conditioning, Solvent

Water. It's the most common cosmetic ingredient of all. You'll usually see it at the top of ingredient lists, meaning that it makes up the largest part of the product.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine Cleansing
May worsen Eczema Icon
May worsen EczemaMay worsen Eczema Icon

Cocamidopropyl Betaine is a fatty acid created by mixing similar compounds in coconut oil and dimethylaminopropylamine. Dimethylaminopropylamine is a diamine, an amine with two amino groups.

Disliked Full details ->
Sodium Lauroyl Methyl Isethionate Cleansing

Sodium Lauroyl Methyl Isethionate is a cleansing ingredient. It is a surfactant, meaning it helps gather dirt, oil, and other pollutants. This helps them be rinsed away easily.

Sodium Chloride Masking
Can worsen Dry Skin IconBad for Acne Prone Skin IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
3 Concerns

Chances are, you eat sodium chloride every day. Sodium Chloride is also known as table salt.

Very Disliked Full details ->
Polysorbate 20 Emulsifying
0 / 0 Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
Not safe for Fungal AcneNot safe for Fungal Acne Icon

Polysorbate 20 is made by combining ethoxylation of sorbitan, ethylene oxide, and lauric acid. It is a mild cleansing agent, surfactant, and emulsifier.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Very Disliked Full details ->
Styrax Japonicus Branch/Fruit/Leaf Extract Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Styrax Japonicus Branch/Fruit/Leaf Extract.

Unknown Full details ->
Butylene Glycol Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
1 / 0

Butylene Glycol (or BG) is used within cosmetic products for a few different reasons:

1 Com. / 0 Irr.
Saccharomyces Ferment Skin Conditioning

Saccharomyces Ferment is created from fermenting and filtering saccharomyces, a group of fungus that includes yeasts. It is a humectant and helps hydrate the skin.

Cryptomeria Japonica Leaf Extract Humectant

We don't have a description for Cryptomeria Japonica Leaf Extract.

Unknown Full details ->
Nelumbo Nucifera Leaf Extract Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Nelumbo Nucifera Leaf Extract.

Pinus Palustris Leaf Extract Tonic

We don't have a description for Pinus Palustris Leaf Extract.

Ulmus Davidiana Root Extract Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Ulmus Davidiana Root Extract.

Oenothera Biennis Flower Extract Astringent

We don't have a description for Oenothera Biennis Flower Extract.

Pueraria Lobata Root Extract Humectant

We don't have a description for Pueraria Lobata Root Extract.

Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Oil Antioxidant, Perfuming
Antioxidant IconFragrance IconOil IconGood for Oily Skin Icon
AntioxidantAntioxidant Icon FragranceFragrance Icon OilOil Icon Good for Oily SkinGood for Oily Skin Icon

This tea tree oil comes from the leaves of the Tea Tree plant. Tea tree oil has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties.

Allantoin Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Soothing
0 / 0 Helps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation IconGood for Scar Healing Icon
3 Benefits

Allantoin plays a role in soothing and moisturizing the skin. Because of this, it is often added to products with strong active ingredients.

0 Com. / 0 Irr.
Caprylyl Glycol Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning

Caprylyl Glycol is a humectant and emollient, meaning it attracts and preserves moisture.

Ethylhexylglycerin Skin Conditioning

Ethylhexylglycerin (we can't pronounce this either) is commonly used as a preservative and skin softener. It is derived from glyceryl.

Betaine Salicylate Antimicrobial
BHA IconGood for Oily Skin IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
BHABHA Icon 2 Benefits May worsen RosaceaMay worsen Rosacea Icon

Betaine Salicylate is considered a salicylic acid alternative.

Citric Acid Buffering, Masking
AHA IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps brighten skin IconMay cause irritation IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
AHAAHA Icon 4 Benefits 2 Concerns

Citric Acid is an AHA derived from citrus fruits (think oranges, lemons, and limes!).

Disliked Full details ->
Ethyl Hexanediol Solvent

Ethyl Hexanediol is an aliphatic alcohol. It is a solvent.

1,2-Hexanediol Skin Conditioning, Solvent

1,2-Hexanediol is a multi-tasker ingredient. It acts as a preservative to increase shelf-life and can aid other preservatives in preventing microbe growth. 1,2-Hexanediol also helps the skin retain moisture as a humectant.

Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate

Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate is used to help stabilize a product.

Sodium Benzoate Masking, Preservative
Preservative Icon
PreservativePreservative Icon

Sodium Benzoate is a preservative. It's used in both cosmetic and food products to inhibit the growth of mold and bacteria. It is typically produced synthetically.

Disliked Full details ->
Disodium EDTA

Disodium EDTA plays a role in making products more stable by aiding other preservatives.

Disliked Full details ->

Ingredients Explained

These ingredients are found in both products.

Ingredients higher up in an ingredient list are typically present in a larger amount.

Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Loved

Water. It's the most common cosmetic ingredient of all. You'll usually see it at the top of ingredient lists, meaning that it makes up the largest part of the product.

So why is it so popular? Water most often acts as a solvent - this means that it helps dissolve other ingredients into the formulation.

You'll also recognize water as that liquid we all need to stay alive. If you see this, drink a glass of water. Stay hydrated!

Learn more about Water
Cleansing
Disliked

Cocamidopropyl Betaine is a fatty acid created by mixing similar compounds in coconut oil and dimethylaminopropylamine. Dimethylaminopropylamine is a diamine, an amine with two amino groups.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine is a surfactant and cleanser. It helps gather the dirt, pollutants, and other impurities in your skin to be washed away. It also helps thicken a product and make the texture more creamy.

Being created from coconut oil means Cocamidopropyl Betaine is hydrating for the skin.

While Cocamidopropyl Betaine was believed to be an allergen, a study from 2012 disproved this. It found two compounds in unpure Cocamidopropyl Betaine to be the irritants: aminoamide and 3-dimethylaminopropylamine. High-grade and pure Cocamidopropyl Betaine did not induce allergic reactions during this study.

Learn more about Cocamidopropyl Betaine
Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning
Mixed

Butylene Glycol (or BG) is used within cosmetic products for a few different reasons:

  • It is a solvent, meaning that it helps to dissolve other ingredients. This also enhances the absorption of the product into one's skin.
  • It is a humectant, which means that it helps attract moisture into the skin.
  • It helps improve product application.

Overall, Butylene Glycol is a safe and well-rounded ingredient. It is unlikely to irritate skin, and works well with pretty much all other ingredients.

Masking
Very Disliked

Chances are, you eat sodium chloride every day. Sodium Chloride is also known as table salt.

This ingredient has many purposes in skincare: thickener, emulsifier, and exfoliator.

You'll most likely find this ingredient in cleansers where it is used to create a gel-like texture. As an emulsifier, it also prevents ingredients from separating.

There is much debate on whether this ingredient is comedogenic. The short answer - comedogenic ratings don't tell the whole story. Learn more about comegodenic ratings here.

The concensus about this ingredient causing acne seems to be divided. Research is needed to understand if this ingredient does cause acne.

Scrubs may use salt as the primary exfoliating ingredient.

Learn more about Sodium Chloride
Buffering, Masking
Disliked

Citric Acid is an AHA derived from citrus fruits (think oranges, lemons, and limes!).

As an AHA, Citric Acid removes the top layer of skin cells from the newer layer of skin underneath. This helps skin to remove dark spots and even out skin tone.

If you spot Citric Acid near the end of an ingredient list, it's likely there as a pH adjuster rather than an active ingredient.

Read more about some other popular AHA's here:

Learn more about Citric Acid
Disliked

Disodium EDTA plays a role in making products more stable by aiding other preservatives.

It is a chelating agent, meaning it neutralizes metal ions that may be found in a product.

Disodium EDTA is a salt of edetic acid and is found to be safe in cosmetic ingredients.

Learn more about Disodium EDTA

Ingredient Ratings

Here's what our community thinks of the ingredients in these products.

AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser
7
2
11
1
liked
mixed
disliked
not rated
Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser
10
7
6
2
liked
mixed
disliked
not rated

When to use

47 Routines
30% use in am
70% use in pm
64% use every day
When to use See routines that use it ->
3,561 Routines
56% use in am
44% use in pm
97% use every day
When to use See routines that use it ->

Reviews

Here's what our community thinks

Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser 21 ingredients

2.0 /5
from 1 rating

COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser 25 ingredients

3.2 /5
from 65 ratings
Great Value (10) Drying (9) Works Well (9)
katrina1's avatar

katrina1

6 months ago ยท Oily Skin
Review

works great on my oily skin, cleanses while not being stripping, so it doesnโ€™t leave my skin feeling tight. 10/10 :)

Roseblushbliss's avatar

Roseblushbliss

5 months ago ยท Sensitive Skin
Review

You will find better things out there.

This wasnโ€™t completely destructive to my skin back in my late teens (dehydrated oily-combo skin with...

You will find better things out there.

This wasnโ€™t completely destructive to my skin back in my late teens (dehydrated oily-combo skin with hormonal acne I assume) but thereโ€™s a reason why I only aimed to finish my tube of this. Doesnโ€™t cleanse very deeply so I felt I needed to use more product (I was oily, sweaty, and in a very place with very polluted air), and tends to leave me more dry after use. I think I remember it being mildly stinging and irritating, leaving my skin feel more raw afterwards rather than just refreshed and clean. May have also left a residue after washing.

Just, please look for something else. You can find something better, even for a lower price point.