The best shower gels in the UK 2023

Did you know that skin can be dry, oily or normal? In all cases, your skin deserves the best in terms of care. And it needs to be cleansed every day. With this in mind, there's nothing like a good shower gel to get rid of impurities and prevent external aggressions. Moisturizing, exfoliating, soap-free... what type of shower gel suits your skin type? We've found the best ones for you!

L’Oréal Men Expert Cool Power

Best value for money

L'Oréal Men Expert Cool Power

The best shower gel in 2021

If you want coolness, especially in hot weather, take advantage of the Cryo-Caps formula and choose L'Oréal Men Expert Cool Power Shower Gel for Men.

15,12 £ on Amazon

The L'Oréal Men Expert Cool Power is a grooming ally for men all summer long. Indeed, this shower gel, specifically designed for men, promises extreme freshness from the first application and throughout the day. It takes advantage of the Cryo-Caps formula, especially since it brings an icy sensation on the skin thanks to its minty fragrance.

Do you tend to sweat a lot? Do you have underarm odor problems? Don't worry! Aside from washing your body, L'Oréal Men Expert Cool Power is perfect for cleansing your face, shaving, and even your hair. It's as much an anti-perspirant (48 hours) as it is an effective deodorant.

La Provençale La Douche Hydratante

Best value for money

La Provençale Moisturizing Shower

The best entry-level shower gel

This organic shower gel with olive oil is suitable for those who are particularly fond of the delicate fragrance of this fruit with countless virtues and those who wish to further moisturize their skin.

3,54 £ on Amazon

No more tugging and aching muscles! When you get out of the shower, you'll feel relaxed and soothed. This shower gel signed La Provençale is highly recommended if you want to moisturize your skin (oily, dry, normal or combination) as it should be. The soap not only cleanses your skin, it also nourishes it and gives it a real feeling of relaxation.

For soft, smooth skin, be sure to apply a layer of La Provençale La Douche Hydratante gel after you wet your body. Lather and rinse. This French-made product has a formula rich in natural ingredients, which is why it is certified organic by the Ecocert label.

Sanex Dermo Hypoallergénique

Best premium value for kids

Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic

The best high-end shower gel

If you have sensitive or very sensitive skin, we recommend Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic shower gel. There are no colorants or acidic soaps in its composition.

27,54 £ on Amazon

Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic admirably respects the very sensitive skins. This is why it has been recommended on several occasions by French dermatologists. Its use allows you to restore the natural pH of your skin without attacking it. It is distinguished by its formula rich in soothing agents and dermo-essential active ingredients precisely selected to provide the necessary care and carry out a gentle cleaning.

The shower gel Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic is free of soap and dyes in order to limit to the maximum the occurrence of cutaneous allergies. Available in 12 bottles of 500 mL, Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic seems ideal for people who take several showers a day.

Weleda Lively Lime Kids

Weleda Lively Lime Kids

The best kid-friendly shower gel

The Weleda Lively Lime Kids takes care of your little one's skin and hair. Moisturizing, softness and suppleness assured, the bath becomes a privileged moment of fun.

4,52 £ on Amazon

Did you know that at their age, your children do not yet have developed skin? This means that it is thinner and more fragile than yours. In order to help parents like you, Weleda offers you this special shower gel for children that can also be used as a hair gel. You can safely apply it to your little one. It can be used from the age of 3.

This gel shampoo is made of 100% vegetable ingredients, including organic sesame oil, for a gentle cleansing. The lime flavor leaves a pleasant subtle scent on the skin. It produces the perfect amount of lather to keep your little one entertained.

Buying guide • November 2023

Best shower gel

Any specific needs?

The best shower gel in 2021

The best entry-level shower gel

The best high-end shower gel

The best kid-friendly shower gel

Your guide : Samuel

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Comparison table of the best shower gels

L’Oréal Men Expert Cool Power
La Provençale La Douche Hydratante
Sanex Dermo Hypoallergénique
Weleda Lively Lime Kids
L'Oréal Men Expert Cool Power
La Provençale Moisturizing Shower
Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic
Weleda Lively Lime Kids
If you want coolness, especially in hot weather, take advantage of the Cryo-Caps formula and choose L'Oréal Men Expert Cool Power Shower Gel for Men.
This organic shower gel with olive oil is suitable for those who are particularly fond of the delicate fragrance of this fruit with countless virtues and those who wish to further moisturize their skin.
If you have sensitive or very sensitive skin, we recommend Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic shower gel. There are no colorants or acidic soaps in its composition.
The Weleda Lively Lime Kids takes care of your little one's skin and hair. Moisturizing, softness and suppleness assured, the bath becomes a privileged moment of fun.
Skin type
All skin types
Very sensitive skin
Number of bottles
300 mL
500 mL
500 mL
150 mL
For men
Certified organic
No dyes, no soap
2 in 1 special for children 3 years and older

Help us improve this table:
Report an error, request the addition of a feature to the table, or suggest another product. Thank you for your kindness!

Buying guide - shower gel

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How to choose your shower gel

Bathing or showering is second nature to all of us. This intimate moment of relaxation cannot be done on a daily basis without a shower gel worthy of the name. Discover the advice of our experts to help you find your way around:
choisir gel douche

#1 - Skin type

Get to know your body to know your skin type. You will know exactly which shower gel will be the most suitable without being too irritating. If your face has a slightly oily texture, you have oily skin. Therefore, a purifying and exfoliating shower gel is recommended in order to tone and firm your skin.

Dry skin will be dull and will need a moisturizing solution, often rich in natural oils. As for a combination skin, it will look halfway between an oily skin and a dry skin. Sensitive skins will adopt hypoallergenic shower gels, both perfume-free and soap-free. In any case, don't hesitate to check the ingredients that make up the shower gel of your choice.

#2 - Ingredients

The best shower gel usually contains only natural ingredients. This way you can clean your skin without the risk of irritation. Check the labels on the back of the bottle to ensure that it does not contain any chemical-based ingredients, as these agents tend to disrupt the natural pH balance. In general, the formula should contain 80% water, about 15% surfactants (foam producers) and about 4% thickening ingredients (gel texture). The remaining 1% is reserved for fragrance and preservatives, if any.

#3 - Properties

All shower gels are not equal. This means that each product, beyond its main role of cleansing the skin, contains different beneficial properties depending on the variety of its composition. For example, Aloe Vera-based cleansing gels are excellent moisturizers. Refreshing gels are very popular in the summer when it's hot, while toning gels can be adopted in any season.

#4 - Multi-functionality

In general, shower gel is a product designed for body cleansing only. However, some models, multipurpose, can also help you wash your face and even your hair. Practical, this will save you the purchase of additional bottles or bottles for specific uses.

#5 - Capability

How long will a bottle of shower gel last? Take into account the frequency of use and the amount used during the bath. However, we advise you to pay attention to the expiration date, represented by an opened jar and accompanied by the number of months recommended by the manufacturer or the PAO (period after opening) which remains variable between 12 to 24 months.

How to make a homemade and natural shower gel?

You are not very excited by shower gel despite the countless models available on the market? Why not make your own shower gel? Here are 2 recipes to apply without moderation!

The shower gel with Aleppo soap

The ingredients

  • 100 g or 12 tablespoons of Aleppo soap
  • 45 cL of boiling water
  • 2.5 cL of glycerin
  • And optionally, 10-20 drops of essential oils (flowers, fruits ...)

The preparation

Put all your ingredients in a saucepan. Let it heat on low heat while stirring from time to time until the soap is completely dissolved. Add a little water if the shower gel seems thicker to your taste. If, on the contrary, it seems too liquid, don't hesitate to add more salt or a little surfactant. Finalize the process by transferring the preparation into a sealed container. Leave it on for 2 days before using.

The personalized shower gel

  • Ingredients:
    9 cL of cold saponified liquid soap based on vegetable oils
  • 1 teaspoon of Aloe Vera
  • 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil
  • Half a teaspoon of glycerin
  • 12 drops of preservative
  • And the choice of perfume and natural coloring

The preparation

No cooking is necessary. Simply mix everything together and pour the concoction into a bottle with a funnel and close it tightly.

The different types of shower gels

The arrival on the market of this type of shower gel has changed the rituals of the bath, making it more pleasant. It is possible to differentiate shower gels according to the age of the user (adult or child), according to the ingredients (natural, organic...) or according to the effects sought. We will rather focus on the latter.

Hypoallergenic shower gel

Gel douche hypoallergénique

It is the type of shower gel that is applied to sensitive or even very sensitive skin. Its special formula limits the risks of skin allergies. Before being put on the market, the product undergoes numerous laboratory tests on volunteers with sensitive skin. These tests are carried out under clinical and/or dermatological control. The hypoallergenic shower gel, with natural components, may or may not contain soap.

Exfoliating shower gel

Gel douche exfoliant

The exfoliating gel removes all dead and dry cells from the epidermis. You will not be able to use it daily, but rather at an interval of 2 to 3 days, or between 1 to 2 times a week depending on your skin type and its sensitivity. The ingredients of the shower gel penetrate deeply and act accordingly to smooth and soften your skin.

Hydrating shower gel

Gel douche hydratant

Dry skin will soon be dry no more thanks to this type of shower gel. Enriched with moisturizing agents, you'll have an easy time restoring your skin's moisture levels. It works all over your body, so you can make the most of its many benefits. Some models have a pH-neutral formula that provides gentle care, perfect for protecting skin cells. In addition, shower gels with natural ingredients are able to strengthen the skin's natural defenses and soothe the stresses it's under.

Tanning shower gel

Gel douche bronzant

The tanning shower gel is great for those who want to get a pretty complexion during the summer. This 2-in-1 not only cleanses the skin, it also gives it a natural darker hue to the top layer of your epidermis. So you don't need to use spray, wipe or self-tanning cream on top of it. Suitable for all skin types, the product is neither sticky nor too covering. The effect lasts until your next shower.

Multipurpose shower gel

Gel douche multiusage

It's particularity lies in its great versatility. This shower gel is suitable for cleaning the entire body, from head to toe. Beyond this main characteristic, the product offers various other qualities such as optimal protection, soothing and softening of the skin, preservation of the hydrolipidic film... Of course, some shower gels allow you to nourish it by taking advantage of its formula, most of the time, elaborated from vegetable oils and natural ingredients.

Soap-free or pH-neutral shower gel

Gel douche sans savon ou à pH neutre

Very trendy, this type of shower gel seduces by its lightened formula, advocating the absence of perfume and coloring. It is very well suited to children and people allergic to certain chemical components. Its number one asset? It regulates the pH of the skin around 5.5, knowing that it varies from 0 to 14. To give you an idea of its effectiveness and importance, a very alkaline water of pH 10 exposes your skin to rapid drying.

Shower gel or solid soap?

Shower gel

By definition, a shower gel is a cleansing product to be used specifically on the body during the bath or shower. It is presented in a liquid format, as opposed to solid soap. You should not confuse it with a classic liquid soap because it is free of saponified oil. In its initial composition, you will find surfactant detergent (5%) which is mostly associated with water (the main component). The remaining rate is reserved for preservatives, texture, perfumes ... It is important to note that this composition may vary from one product to another, ditto for the brand.

As regards shower gel, you have the embarrassment of the choice. Some have moisturizing qualities, while others praise their invigorating or refreshing characters. However, you should know that the richer the product is in organic ingredients, the more beneficial its effects will be.

Solid soap

Soap, in solid form, is obtained by mixing vegetable oils (the fat) with an alkali such as sodium or potassium hydroxide. It is used in various fields for cleaning and bleaching thanks to its powerful detergent capacity. It dissolves over time and softens when placed in permanent contact with water.

The solid soap claims to be a natural alternative to shower gel. This is not the case, as only certain types are really natural, such as those made from vegetable oil and water. But beware of counterfeits. Check the label to learn more. Genuine solid soaps are easy to recognize.


The shower gel is addressed to you in case you need a cleanser easy to spread and to keep. Its texture is not affected by hot weather. Although it takes up more space than soap when traveling, you will have no trouble carrying it around thanks to its bottle. In addition, manufacturers usually add a smoothing plant agent, responsible for the soft skin effect. On the other hand, the soap does not contain any preservatives. It is more economical than shower gel if it is well preserved.

Why buy a shower gel?

pourquoi acheter gel douche

You don't buy a shower gel at random. Like any other cosmetic, your purchase is driven by various reasons, including :

Gentle cleansing

The shower gel is mainly made with water, but there are also other elements such as surfactants (it is better to choose them soft and natural even though they foam less) and washing bases that constitute 15% of its ingredients. As more and more natural products are used, fragile skin will be less sensitive and will benefit from a soft and soothing care.

Use to the last drop

Since the shower gel is in a liquid format, you can use it to the last drop. Better yet, you'll be able to control how much gel to use for each bath you take. This will never be the case with bar soap, especially if you tend to leave it in a corner too exposed to water.

A pleasant use

The shower gel occupies the quasi-totality of the French bathrooms, that is to say nearly 80 %. We particularly like it for its practicality, even more for its pleasant side of use. The light perfume which it releases makes the moment of the shower a moment of pleasure. It does not present any risk of overflow or dissolution due to water since it is contained in a well closed bottle.

Respectful of the environment

A shower gel generally has no negative impact on the environment, especially if its list of ingredients is short enough, if it contains only products of natural origin and if the bottle is decomposable. Since organic is going back to its organic state, focus on biodegradability and reduce your ecological footprint.


Of course, if shower gel explodes in your suitcase or travel bag, it will make an indescribable mess. But this is an extreme case rarely considered when choosing to use such a product. Its design has been well thought out to make it suitable for travel. If you want to avoid possible inconveniences, put it in a suitable travel kit along with your hair care, cosmetics and body care products.

The best brands of shower gels

In our opinion, the best brands of shower gels in 2022 are :

L’Oréal Paris

A French company founded in 1909, L'Oréal Paris is the leader in the cosmetics industry. It includes famous brands such as Lancôme, Armani, Ralph Lauren Fragrances or Mugler. What is most appealing about its shower gels is that you will enjoy a quality product, but can also take advantage of a personalized follow-up via its official website.

A subsidiary of the Unilever group, Axe specializes mainly in the design of cosmetics and hygiene products for men. Deodorants, perfumes, hair products, shower gels... In short, Axe is not just a brand, it's a real lifestyle.

Dove is also a property of the Unilever group. Unlike the Axe brand, this one is for a wider audience including children and babies. With the know-how of its experts and the natural properties of their ingredients, Dove shower gels will only be better for sensitive skin.

Sanex markets a wide range of items for personal hygiene incorporating mouthwashes, deodorants, moisturizing lotions and shower gels. In addition to guaranteeing healthy skin through its non-aggressive formulations, the brand promises you the most appropriate choice according to your skin type.

With Garnier, you can build up a complete range of body care products from the tips of your hair to your toenails. This cosmetic brand was born in 1904 and is constantly improving with the current trend. Among its many products, the Ultra Gentle shower gel range is a hit with sensitive skin.

What is the price for a shower gel

The diagram below will help you to get an idea of the typical prices for each price range (entry-level, mid-range and high-end).

However, more expensive does not necessarily mean better.

We therefore advise you to always consult our ranking before deciding, rather than blindly relying on price ranges.

2.5 £ to 15 £
15 £ to 25 £
more than 25 £
Price range diagram


Components to avoid

As you can see, there are a number of ingredients that should be avoided if you don't want to damage your skin. Among them, let's mention SLS or sodium lauryl sulfate (the foaming element), paraben and phenoxyethanol (the preservative elements) and perfume (often allergenic).

Make your own yuzu shower gel

Have fun with your skin by making a homemade shower gel with yuzu. For this, you need 10 cL of neutral and perfectly organic washing base and 35 drops of yuzu essential oil. Nothing complicated! You only have to mix the ingredients in a bottle that you will have disinfected beforehand by shaking it delicately and the trick is played.

Avoid over-washing your skin

About 75% of English people shower every day. However, this habit causes some inconvenience for the good reason that the hydrolipidic film disappears gradually. It is therefore likely to attack it in the long run and irritate it until it becomes vulnerable.

Clean your skin with toilet vinegar

The toilet vinegar has nothing to do with the kitchen vinegar. This product is the result of the decoction of aromatics with cider vinegar flower. Perfumed, softening and firming, it was highly valued during the so-called "dry toilet" ceremony during the Middle Ages.

Prefer shower gels with a subtle scent

Even if you like to smell good in the morning after your shower, avoid highly scented shower gels as much as possible. The milder and lighter the fragrance of the product, the less irritating it is to your skin.


What are the risks of a bad choice of shower gel?

The composition of the shower gel leaves you in doubt? Pass your way! Indeed, products containing harmful products will have a major impact on your health, such as the development of cancer, the appearance of a fertility disorder or skin problems, etc. The skin can become photosensitive, irritated or prone to allergies.

What about the surgras shower gel?

The shower gel called "surgras" is among the syndets or synthetic-detergent. It cleanses the skin while avoiding aggression and is composed of either shea butter, oils or glycerin in order to nourish it in an optimal way. It is particularly intended for people with very dry skin.

Does a very foamy shower gel wash the skin better?

No! This is just a received idea that has been perpetuated for a long time. The amount of foam obtained is entirely dependent on that of the surfactants (such as sodium laureth sulfate) used in the manufacture of the shower gel. They are very unkind to the skin and should be avoided. All of this is to say that the sudsiness has no bearing on the cleanliness of your body.

Is there a maximum duration to take a shower?

You may have experienced something like this at least once in your life: your skin starts to wilt and wrinkle in the shower. This, no matter what brand of shower gel you use, is mainly due to the fact that you've been bathing too long. The water, whether cold or hot, directly attacks the lipidic film of your epidermis. Solution? Don't stay in the bath for more than 15 minutes.


Note: Below are some of the sources we have consulted in writing this article. Links to other sites are not continuously updated. It is therefore possible that a link may not be found. Please use a search engine to find the desired information.
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  3. 14 shower gels : the shower gels tested are healthy except for two products,
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  5. What soap to choose to wash yourself naturally?,
  6. How to choose your shower gel?,
  7. How to choose your shower gel according to your skin type,
  8. What is a good shower gel?,
  9. 5 tips to choose the best shower gel for your skin type,
  10. How to use shower gel,
  11. Shower gel or soap: which product to use every day?,
  12. Shower gel or soap: the "pros" and "cons",
  13. What are the advantages of shower gel over a bar of soap?,
  14. The disadvantages and alternatives to shower gel,
  15. Here's how to make your shower gel with natural products!,
  16. The 9 mistakes we all make in the shower,
  17. Make your own homemade and natural shower gel,
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See more


March 2022 : Translation of this buying guide from our partner

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Our selection
L’Oréal Men Expert Cool Power
L'Oréal Men Expert Cool Power
La Provençale La Douche Hydratante
La Provençale Moisturizing Shower
Sanex Dermo Hypoallergénique
Sanex Dermo Hypoallergenic
Weleda Lively Lime Kids
Weleda Lively Lime Kids


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