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Anua Heartleaf Acne Facial Cleanser Ingredients Explained

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Updated on February 09, 2024 Submitted by NANA1107

Overview

What it is

Face cleanser with 34 ingredients that contains BHA, ceramides and hyaluronic acid

Cool Features

It is vegan, cruelty-free, and reef safe

Suited For

It has ingredients that are good for fighting acne, anti aging, dry skin, brightening skin, sensitive skin, oily skin, reducing pores and scar healing

Free From

It doesn't contain any harsh alcohols, parabens, silicones or sulfates

Fun facts

Anua is from South Korea. This product is used in 26 routines created by our community.

We independently verify ingredients and our claims are backed by peer-reviewed research. Does this product need an update? Let us know.

You should know

Here's our breakdown of the notable ingredients, benefits, and concerns we determined from the ingredients in this product. Click any item to learn more.

Notable Ingredients

BHA
Ceramides
Hyaluronic Acid

Benefits

Hydrating (2)
Good For Oily Skin
Redness Reducing (4)
Reduces Irritation (2)
Reduces Large Pores
Anti-Aging
Scar Healing
Acne Fighting
Brightening (2)

Concerns

Drying (3)
Acne Trigger
Irritating
Rosacea (2)
Eczema

Ingredient Info

Click any item below to learn more and view relevant ingredients.
alcohol-free
silicon-free
fragrance-free
sulfate-free
paraben-free
oil-free
fungal-acne safe
reef-safe
eu-allergen-free
vegan
cruelty-free

Ingredients Overview

Here's our quick-to-read summary of the ingredients in this product. Keep scrolling if you'd like to learn more about what each ingredient does!
Ingredient
Features
1
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
2
Cleansing
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
3
Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
0 / 0
Helps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps brighten skin Icon
4
Emollient, Emulsifying, Skin Conditioning
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
5
Cleansing, Foaming
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
6
Solvent
7
Emulsifying
8
Skin Conditioning
Helps reduce Skin Redness Icon
9
Skin Protecting
10
Skin Conditioning
11
Cleansing, Skin Conditioning, Smoothing, Soothing, Tonic
Helps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation Icon
12
Humectant
13
Skin Conditioning
14
Skin Conditioning
15
Masking
Oil Icon
16
Masking, Skin Conditioning, Tonic
Oil Icon
17
Masking, Perfuming, Tonic
Fragrance IconOil Icon
18
Emulsifying, Skin Conditioning
19
Masking
Can worsen Dry Skin IconBad for Acne Prone Skin IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
20
Cleansing, Foaming
21
Masking, Preservative, Skin Conditioning
BHA IconPreservative IconCan worsen Dry Skin IconGood for Oily Skin IconMay cause irritation IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconHelps fight Acne IconMay worsen Eczema IconMay worsen Rosacea IconHelps brighten skin Icon
22
Buffering, Masking
AHA IconMay cause irritation IconGood for Skin Texture IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconGood for Scar Healing IconMay worsen Rosacea IconHelps brighten skin Icon
23
24
Skin Conditioning
25
Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
1 / 0
26
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
27
Skin Conditioning
Helps reduce Skin Redness Icon
28
Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Hyaluronic Acid Icon
29
Skin Conditioning
Ceramide IconHelps hydrate Dry Skin IconHelps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation IconHelps with Anti-Aging Icon
30
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
31
Antioxidant
Antioxidant Icon
32
Skin Conditioning
33
Perfuming, Solvent
Fragrance Icon
34
Perfuming
Fragrance IconEU Allergen Icon

Ingredients Explained

This product contains 34 ingredients. Click on any ingredient to learn more about it
1
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: 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. Talk about multi-purpose! If you see this, drink a glass of water. Stay hydrated!

Learn more about Water
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What it does: Cleansing
Community Rating: Disliked

Sodium cocoyl isethionate is a natural ingredient from the fatty acids of coconut oil. It is a surfactant and helps with cleansing the skin.

By binding to water and oil, it helps gently clean skin. It also helps the spreadability of the product.

Sodium cocoyl isethionate is also added to help create foam without drying the skin. However, this is depending on the amount of Sodium cocoyl isethionate.

Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate may not be fungal acne safe.

Learn more about Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate
3
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Solvent
Community Rating: Loved

Glycerin is already naturally found in your skin. It helps moisturize and protect your skin.

A study from 2016 found glycerin to be more effective as a humectant than AHAs and hyaluronic acid.

As a humectant, it helps the skin stay hydrated by pulling moisture to your skin. The low molecular weight of glycerin allows it to pull moisture into the deeper layers of your skin.

Hydrated skin improves your skin barrier; Your skin barrier helps protect against irritants and bacteria.

Glycerin has also been found to have antimicrobial and antiviral properties. Due to these properties, glycerin is often used in wound and burn treatments.

In cosmetics, glycerin is usually derived from plants such as soybean or palm. However, it can also be sourced from animals, such as tallow or animal fat.

This ingredient is organic, colorless, odorless, and non-toxic.

Glycerin is the name for this ingredient in American English. British English uses Glycerol/Glycerine.

Learn more about Glycerin
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What it does: Emollient, Emulsifying, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Glycol Distearate serves as a pearlizing or opacifying agent in cosmetic products.

It's often included in cleansers and haircare products to give them a lustrous or shimmering appearance.

It is derived from stearic acid, a natural fatty acid commonly found in vegetable oils and animal fats.

Glycol Distearate isn't fungal acne safe.

Learn more about Glycol Distearate
5
What it does: Cleansing, Foaming
Community Rating: Very Disliked

This gentle cleansing and foaming ingredient is known for leaving a smooth feeling in skin and hair. It is made using coconut oil.

According to the manufacturer, it is soluble in water and has resistance to hard water, acid, and alkali.

Due to its coconut base, it may not be Malassezia folliculitis safe.

Learn more about Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate
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What it does: Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

Methylpropanediol is a synthetic solvent and humectant.

As a solvent, it helps dissolve other ingredients, helping to evenly distribute ingredients throughout the product. This ingredient has also been shown to have antimicrobial properties which makes it a preservative booster.

Methylpropanediol is able to add a bit of moisture to the skin. It also helps other ingredients be better absorbed into the skin, such as salicylic acid.

Learn more about Methylpropanediol
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What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

This ingredient is the potassium salt of coconut acid. Coconut acid is created by mixing fatty acids from coconut oil.

It is an emulsifier, surfactant, and cleanser. According to a manufacturer, it contains glycerin.

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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Houttuynia Cordata Extract is more commonly known as Heart Leaf, Fish Mint, or Chameleon plant. It is an herb native to southeast Asia and used throughout the continent. It is used in traditional cooking and medicine.

The components found in Heart Leaf give it antioxidant, hydrating, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Heart Leaf is rich in flavonoids such as quercetin, apigenin, and more. It also contains polysaccharides, the most common type of carbs in food.

Flavonoids have been shown to be effective antioxidants. They help neutralize free-radical molecules. Free-radical molecules are unstable molecules that may damage our skin cells and DNA. The flavonoids in Heart Leaf also help soothe the skin.

Polysaccharides are naturally found in our skin. They play a role in hydrating and repairing the top layer of skin. The polysaccharides in Heart Leaf help moisturize our skin.

Studies show decanoyl acetaldehyde, a component of Heart Leaf oil, is effective at killing bacteria.

The name 'Fish Mint' comes from the herb's natural fishy smell.

Learn more about Houttuynia Cordata Extract
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What it does: Skin Protecting
Community Rating: Mixed

Laminaria Japonica Extract comes from a kelp more commonly known as 'sweet kelp'. It is commonly eaten in Japan, Korea, and China.

Sweet kelp is a humectant and helps hydrate your skin. Humectants draw moisture from the air to your skin.

Studies show Laminaria Japonica has antioxidant compounds. Antioxidants may help with anti-aging. Kelp also contains magnesium and zinc, making it great for calming inflammation and redness.

Learn more about Laminaria Japonica Extract
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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Eclipta Prostrata Leaf Extract comes from the false daisy plant. False daisy contains antioxidant compounds such as flavonoids.

One study found false daisy to absorb UVA and UVB radiation. However, this should not replace your sunscreen.

False daisy is used in both traditional medicines and foods throughout Southeast Asia and India.

Learn more about Eclipta Prostrata Leaf Extract
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What it does: Cleansing, Skin Conditioning, Smoothing, Soothing, Tonic
Community Rating: Loved

Centella Asiatica Extract is derived from an herb plant native to Southeast Asia. It is rich in antioxidants and amino acids. In skincare products, Centella Asiatica Extract is used for its anti-inflammatory and soothing properties.

Many active components found in Centella Asiatica Extract, such as Madecassic Acid and Asiaticoside, encourage the skin to naturally produce hyaluronic acid. This helps keep our skin hydrated. Many of these components also show antioxidant activity and may help reduce the signs of aging.

Research shows Centella Asiatica can help increase Type I collagen production by increasing fibroblast production. Fibroblast helps form connective tissue.

The combination of all these properties makes Centella Asiatica Extract effective at soothing the skin.

Other components of Centella Asiatic Extract include Vitamin A, vitamin C, several B vitamins, and Asiatic Acid.

Recent studies found madecassoside may help prevent damage from UV rays by preventing UV-induced inflammation. Further research is needed.

This plant has been used as a medicine and in food for many centuries. As a medicine, it is used to treat burns, scratches, and wounds.

Learn more about Centella Asiatica Extract
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What it does: Humectant
Community Rating: Loved

Ficus Carica Fruit Extract comes from the fruit known as the fig. Figs are rich in antioxidants and helps hydrate the skin.

Figs also contain fatty acids and Vitamins A, B1, and B2.

As a humectant, figs are able to draw moisture from the air to your skin. This helps keep your skin hydrated.

Learn more about Ficus Carica Fruit Extract
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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

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

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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

We don't have a description for Amaranthus Caudatus Seed Extract.

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What it does: Masking
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Oil comes from the bitter orange, an orange native to Southeast Asia.

This orange is commonly used in cosmetics and food. It is a common ingredient for marmalade.

Citrus peels are often made up of mainly limonene, a fragrance with a citrus scent. They also contain flavonoids, which have anti-inflammatory properties.

Learn more about Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Oil
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What it does: Masking, Skin Conditioning, Tonic
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Citrus Nobilis Peel Oil is an oil.

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What it does: Masking, Perfuming, Tonic

Litsea Cubeba Fruit Oil is a fragrance and is an oil.

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What it does: Emulsifying, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Hydrogenated Lecithin is created from the hydrogenation of lecithin. Hydrogenation is a chemical reaction between molecule hydrogen and another element.

Hydrogenated Lecithin is an emollient and emulsifier. As an emollient, it helps soften skin by trapping moisture within.

The phospholipids in Hydrogenated Lecithin can produce liposomes. Liposomes help other ingredients get through the skin barrier to be better absorbed.

As an emulsifier, it prevents oil and water ingredients from separating.

Learn more about Hydrogenated Lecithin
19
What it does: Masking
Community Rating: 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
20
What it does: Cleansing, Foaming
Community Rating: Disliked

Coco-Glucoside is a surfactant, or a cleansing ingredient. It is made from glucose and coconut oil.

Surfactants help gather dirt, oil, and other pollutants from your skin to be rinsed away. Coco-Glucoside is considered gentle and non-comedogenic.

This ingredient is a known skin-irritant.

Learn more about Coco-Glucoside
21
What it does: Masking, Preservative, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

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.

This multitasking property makes it a great ingredient for cleaning out pores, controlling oil production, and reducing inflammation.

Unlike AHAs which are water soluble, Salicylic Acid is oil soluble. This means that it's able to exfoliate the inside of pores and reduce blackheads.

Concentrations of 0.5-2% are recognized by the U.S. FDA as an over-the-counter topical acne product.

It can cause irritation and/or dryness if one's skin already has a compromised moisture barrier, so it's best to focus on repairing that before introducing a Salicylic Acid into your routine.

In general, Salicylic Acid is a great ingredient for oily acne-prone skin.

While salicylic acid does not increase sun-sensitivity, we still recommend wearing SPF.

If you are looking for the ingredient called BHA or Butylated Hydroxyanisole, click here.

Learn more about Salicylic Acid
22
What it does: Buffering, Masking
Community Rating: Disliked

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

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.

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 look more even.

Read more about some other popular AHA's here:

Learn more about Citric Acid
23
What it does:
Community Rating: 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
24
What it does: Skin Conditioning

We don't have a description for Decylene Glycol.

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What it does: Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: 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.

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What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Fructooligosaccharides is an alternative sweetener. It is often derived from the blue agave plant.

Fructooligosaccharides is a prebiotic and helps to hydrate the skin. Emerging studies are also showing fructooligosaccharides to have antioxidant properties.

As a humectant, Fructooligosaccharides helps draw moisture to the skin, helping to hydrate the skin.

Bananas, onions, garlic, asparagus, jΓ­cama, and leeks also contain fructooligosaccharides.

Learn more about Fructooligosaccharides
27
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Beta-Glucan is a polysaccharide. It can be derived from the cell walls of seaweed, oats, yeast, and fungi.

Beta-Glucan is a humectant, meaning it can hold large amounts of water. This helps hydrate the skin. It also helps boost your skin's natural barrier.

Beta-Glucan has antioxidant properties. Antioxidants help fight free-radicals. Free-radicals are molecules that may damage your skin cells, such as pollution.

Studies show Beta-Glucan may be an effective wrinkle reducer as it can deeply penetrate into skin. It has also been show to help with wound healing.

Learn more about Beta-Glucan
28
What it does: Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid is a form of hyaluronic acid. It is created by the hydrolysis of hyaluronic acid with a high molecular weight. Once created, Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid has a low molecular weight.

Low molecular weight HA has been shown to hydrate and increase elasticity of the skin. Increasing elasticity is also associated with reduction of wrinkle depth.

One study found topical low molecular weight hyaluronic acid may be considered for the treatment of rosacea in the adult population. However, we always recommend speaking with a professional about your skin concerns.

Hyaluronic acids are a humectant. This means they draw moisture from the air. Hyaluronic acids help moisturize, soothe, and protect the skin.

Read more about other common forms of hyaluronic acid:

Learn more about Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid
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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

Ceramide NP is a type of ceramide.

Ceramides are intercellular lipids naturally found in our skin that bonds dead skin cells together to create a barrier. They are known for their ability to hold water and thus are a great ingredient for dry skin.

Ceramides are an important building block for our skin barrier. A stronger barrier helps the skin look more firm and hydrated. By bolstering the skin ceramides act as a barrier against irritating ingredients. This can help with inflammation as well.

If you would like to eat ceramides, sweet potatoes contain a small amount.

Read more about other common types of ceramides here: Ceramide AP Ceramide EOP

Learn more about Ceramide NP
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What it does: Skin Conditioning, Solvent
Community Rating: Mixed

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.

In products that are water-based, this ingredient can help stabilize perfumes and fragrances. It can also help make the texture of products softer and more smooth.

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What it does: Antioxidant
Community Rating: Liked

Hydroxyacetophenone is antioxidant and helps with skin conditioning.

Antioxidants help fight off free-radical molecules. These unstable molecules may damage your skin cells. By helping stabilize free-radicals, antioxidants may help in anti-aging.

Hydroxyacetophenone boosts the efficiency of other preservatives.

Learn more about Hydroxyacetophenone
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What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

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

You might see Ethylhexylglycerin often paired with other preservatives such as phenoxyethanol. Ethylhexylglycerin has been found to increase the effectiveness of these other preservatives.

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What it does: Perfuming, Solvent
Community Rating: Very Disliked

Limonene is a fragrance that adds scent and taste to a formulation.

It's found in the peel oil of citrus fruits and other plants such as lavender and eucalyptus. The scent of limonene is generally described as "sweet citrus".

Limonene acts as an antioxidant, meaning it helps neutralize free radicals.

When exposed to air, oxidized limonene may sensitize the skin. Because of this, limonene is often avoided by people with sensitive skin.

The term 'fragrance' is not regulated in many countries. In many cases, it is up to the brand to define this term. For instance, many brands choose to label themselves as "fragrance-free" because they are not using synthetic fragrances. However, their products may still contain ingredients such as essential oils that are considered a fragrance.

Learn more about Limonene
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What it does: Perfuming

Citral is a fragrance and used to add a lemon-like scent to products. It is both naturally found in plants and created synthetically. In plants, it is commonly occurring in lemon myrtle, lemongrass, lemon tea-tree, lemon verbena, and other citruses.

The EU mandates Citral be listed separately as a fragrance. It is a known allergen and may cause contact dermatitis. Citral can also used as a masking ingredient.

The term 'fragrance' is not regulated in many countries. In many cases, it is up to the brand to define this term. For instance, many brands choose to label themselves as "fragrance-free" because they are not using synthetic fragrances. However, their products may still contain ingredients such as essential oils that are considered a fragrance.

The term 'citral' is a collective term for two geometric isomers: geranial/Citral A and neral/Citral B.

Learn more about Citral
Embed Ingredients

Here's what our community thinks of the 34 ingredients in this product ✨

44% are loved or liked
15% have mixed ratings
32% are disliked or very disliked
9% have no rating yet

When to use

We've created a guide with info on when you should use Anua Heartleaf Acne Facial Cleanser. We've also included some recommended products to use it with, as well as some routine inspiration!

Read our guide on when to use Heartleaf Acne Facial Cleanser ->
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