COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser Ingredients Explained

Last updated on September 20, 2023.

Overview

What it is

Face cleanser with 25 ingredients that contains BHA

Cool Features

It is cruelty-free and reef safe

Suited For

It has ingredients that are good for sensitive skin, oily skin, reducing pores and scar healing

Free From

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

Fun facts

COSRX is from South Korea. This product is used in 2584 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

Benefits

Good For Oily Skin (3)
Redness Reducing
Reduces Irritation
Reduces Large Pores
Scar Healing

Concerns

Drying
Acne Trigger
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
ph level
5.3

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
May worsen Eczema Icon
3
Cleansing
4
Masking
Can worsen Dry Skin IconBad for Acne Prone Skin IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
5
Emulsifying
0 / 0
Not safe for Fungal Acne Icon
6
Skin Conditioning
7
Humectant, Masking, Skin Conditioning, Solvent
1 / 0
8
Skin Conditioning
9
Humectant
10
Skin Conditioning
11
Tonic
12
Skin Conditioning
13
Astringent
14
Humectant
15
Antioxidant, Perfuming
Antioxidant IconFragrance IconOil IconGood for Oily Skin Icon
16
Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Soothing
0 / 0
Helps reduce Skin Redness IconHelps reduce irritation IconGood for Scar Healing Icon
17
Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
18
Skin Conditioning
19
Antimicrobial
BHA IconGood for Oily Skin IconGood for Minimizing Pores IconMay worsen Rosacea Icon
20
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
21
Solvent
22
Skin Conditioning, Solvent
23
24
Masking, Preservative
Preservative Icon
25

Ingredients Explained

This product contains 25 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
2
What it does: Cleansing
Community Rating: 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
3
What it does: Cleansing
Community Rating: Liked

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.

4
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
5
What it does: Emulsifying
Community Rating: Very Disliked

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

As a surfactant, it helps collect dirt and oils for washing. Emulsifiers prevent oils and water from separating.

Polysorbate 20 also adds scent to a product. Since it is made using sorbitol, it has a sweet scent. Sorbitol can also be found in fruits such as apples and peaches.

The lauric acid used to create Polysorbate 20 is often derived from coconuts.

Polysorbate 20 may not be fungal acne safe.

Learn more about Polysorbate 20
6
What it does: Skin Conditioning

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

7
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.

8
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Mixed

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.

This ingredient contains amino acids, beta-glucan, and vitamins. Beta-glucan is a potent antioxidant and may help with the signs of aging.

9
What it does: Humectant

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

10
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

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

11
What it does: Tonic
Community Rating: Mixed

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

12
What it does: Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Loved

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

13
What it does: Astringent

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

14
What it does: Humectant
Community Rating: Loved

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

15
What it does: Antioxidant, Perfuming
Community Rating: Mixed

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

According to the book Journal of Profiles of Drug Substances, tea tree helps in reducing acne-causing bacteria such as Propionibacterium acnes. This is due to the Terpinen components of tea tree oil.

Tea tree may cause sensitivity and irritation for some people. This oil naturally contains fragrance such as linalool and limonene.

However, research shows irritation usually occurs when using pure tea tree oil and not in cosmetic products.

Tea tree oil was found to help relieve the symptoms of psoriasis in one study.

Tea tree oil is toxic when ingested. Another study showed it to caused damage to the nervous system of dogs and cats when applied to their skin or given orally.

Learn more about Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Oil
16
What it does: Skin Conditioning, Skin Protecting, Soothing
Community Rating: Loved

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

Some studies have shown this ingredient can promote wound healing with higher concentrations.

Allantoin is derived from the comfrey plant but produced synthetically for cosmetic products to ensure purity.

Learn more about Allantoin
17
What it does: Emollient, Humectant, Skin Conditioning
Community Rating: Liked

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

It is a common ingredient in many products, especially those designed to hydrate skin. The primary benefits are retaining moisture, skin softening, and promoting a healthy skin barrier.

Though Caprylyl Glycol is an alcohol derived from fatty acids, it is not the kind that can dry out skin.

This ingredient is also used as a preservative to extend the life of products. It has slight antimicrobial properties.

Learn more about Caprylyl Glycol
18
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.

19
What it does: Antimicrobial
Community Rating: Liked

Betaine Salicylate is a salicylic acid alternative. It is created with betaine and salicylic acid.

Betain Salicylate is a keralytic ingredient. This means it breaks down the top layer of skin. Due to its similarity to salicylic acid, it can be considered a BHA alternative.

This ingredient is most effective at a pH range of 3.8-4.2.

Learn more about Betaine Salicylate
20
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
21
What it does: Solvent

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

Solvents are used to keep ingredients together in a product. They can help dissolve ingredients to stable bases or help evenly distribute ingredients throughout the product.

22
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.

23
What it does:
Community Rating: Liked

Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate is used to help stabilize a product.

It is a chelating agent, meaning it helps prevent metal ions from binding to other ingredients. This prevents unwanted reactions in products. Metal ions can come into a product via the water ingredient. They are found in trace amounts and are not known to be harmful.

24
What it does: Masking, Preservative
Community Rating: Disliked

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.

Both the US FDA and EU Health Committee have approved the use of sodium benzoate. In the US, levels of 0.1% (of the total product) are allowed.

Sodium benzoate works as a preservative by inhibiting the growth of bacteria inside of cells. It prevents the cell from fermenting a type of sugar using an enzyme called phosphofructokinase.

Sodium Benzoate is the salt of benzoic acid. Foods containing sodium benzoate include soda, salad dressings, condiments, fruit juices, wines, and snack foods.

Studies for using ascorbic acid and sodium benzoate in cosmetics are lacking, especially in skincare routines with multiple steps.

We always recommend speaking with a professional, such as a dermatologist, if you have any concerns.

Learn more about Sodium Benzoate
25
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
Embed Ingredients

Here's what our community thinks of the 25 ingredients in this product ✨

36% are loved or liked
24% have mixed ratings
24% are disliked or very disliked
16% have no rating yet

When to use

We've created a guide with info on when you should use COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel 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 Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser ->
Verified by SkinSort

We're dedicated to providing you with the most up-to-date and science-backed ingredient info out there.

The data we've presented on this page has been verified by a member of the SkinSort Team.

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Top Reviews

View all 52
katrina1's Avatar'
Jan 20, 2024

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

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

Great Value
Strong Scent
aliehnate's Avatar'
Jan 23, 2024

had high hopes for this :(

had high hopes for this :(

Broke Me Out

Latest Reviews

View all 52
skinogre's Avatar'
Feb 13, 2024

It does the job, I used to have nasty breakouts but to be fair I was using Cosrx salicylic acid cleanser before this so anything would be an upgrade from that. I do think it helps clear up acne but I must admit the fragrance and fungal...

It does the job, I used to have nasty breakouts but to be fair I was using Cosrx salicylic acid cleanser before this so anything would be an upgrade from that. I do think it helps clear up acne but I must admit the fragrance and fungal acne prone ingredients aren’t the best, I really advise opting for one that doesn’t encourage fungal acne, it never broke me out, it was a good cleanser but I just think there’s better. I use it when I wait for my Etude house foam whip cleanser to arrive from Korea.

Great Value
Light Scent
Works Well
DamDamfino's Avatar'
Feb 9, 2024

Skin type: combination (oily U zone and nose), acne prone, sensitive/easily irritated, mild rosacea.

I like this as a shower cleanser. I use it with a facial brush to get an extra lather and exfoliation in. It can give me that...

Skin type: combination (oily U zone and nose), acne prone, sensitive/easily irritated, mild rosacea.

I like this as a shower cleanser. I use it with a facial brush to get an extra lather and exfoliation in. It can give me that "squeaky clean" striped feeling though, so I need to use a hydrating essence/toner afterwards ASAP.

I honestly didn't remember purchasing this. It just showed up in one of my skincare hauls, and I thought it might've been a freebie thrown in or I simply forgot it was in my cart.

I didn't realize this had BHA in it.
I already had a fairly exfoliation heavy routine, so I didn't plan or know I was adding yet another BHA with this at night.
I ended up accidentally damaging my barrier and needing to tone back the exfoliation for a while after introducing this cleanser.
My goal right now is to find another low pH, gel lathering cleanser for the shower *without* a chemical exfoliant in it, since my PM routine is supposed to be gentle.

Otherwise, I think it is actually a pretty good cleanser (even without using a brush) if you aren't using a lot of other exfoliants as well. It's a great texture and formulation for using in the shower.

Great Value
Light
Read more reviews ->

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