For someone who thought that cleansers were the least important part of a skincare routine, to have an entire year dedicated to cleansers and cleansing is BIG deal! 2014 will go down in (my) history as the year I understood cleansers and spent a good deal of funds and time on.
I have for you today the full deets on all the cleansers I’ve used last year, fulfilling their prescribed functions and taking up a substantial part of my skincare course. I have nearly everything outlined here except specific makeup removers (which is a matter of another post). So here goes..
Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel – The balm cleanser – 100 ml £23.33
Texture : Orange colored, gel consistency, greasy balm cleanser. There is almost nothing “gel like” about this.
Key Ingredients (From CultBeauty‘s website) : Lactobacillus/Cucurbita Pepo Ferment Extract (Pumpkin Enzyme) deeply cleanses pores and thoroughly removes dull skin cells without irritation for a balanced complexion. Vitamin A Palmitate improves the appearance of sun damaged, dry and mature skin to reveal soft, supple texture. Vitamins C & E, known for their restorative properties, help fortify and protect the skin against free radical & environmental damage. Starflower Oil, a powerful source of gamma-linolenic-acid (Omega 6), Magnesium and Vitamins B² & C, helps improve elasticity & firmness while restoring and enhancing the lipid barrier to soften and nourish. MSM, the most bio-available form of sulphur, known for its detoxifying and anti-inflammatory properties, helps soothe.
How I Use It : On non-makeup days (5/7 days), one pump goes straight on the face and I massage it for a good 2-3 minutes. Break it down with warm water and then wash it off. The key here is to use warm water to get as much of the product off as possible. I am not a proponent of a wash cloth or muslin as my experience hasn’t been great, but so long as one uses warm water the product comes off well leaving only a thin film behind, which you may not experience with a muslin. Review
Experience : This product definitely took time getting used to but once I got over the initial greasiness I could appreciate the benefits. The glow is clearly there, it has helped tremendously in clearing out my skin which had a ton of redness and marks left after breakouts. My skin is at a much better place and except for a rare small spot I have essentially no skin problems right now. As you can probably tell my bottle is the original 150 ml bottle which they no longer have, and this is going to last me a while. I have nearly half of it left after constant use for 4 months.
Fresh Soy Face Cleanser – The gentle all purpose cleanser – 150 ml $38
Texture : This has a very soft texture like cornflower dissolved in water and it goes on clear and does not foam.
Key Ingredients (From Fresh’s website): Amino acid-rich soy proteins help maintain elasticity and healthy skin. Rosewater is notable for its calming and balancing properties. Calming cucumber extract aids in soothing the skin. Borage seed oil helps to nourish.
How I Use It : This is a true gentle cleanser, and the only one of its kind that I’ve come across. Unlike some other reviews that I’ve read, this does not leave any kind of residue on my skin and neither does it make it dry or parched. I can use it on my eyes and it does not sting which makes it an ideal post makeup removal, second cleanser. This is also my choice on some mornings when I feel extra greasy and water does not suffice for a cleanse.
Experience : I have recommended this to any and everyone and my readers are no exception. I am on my third tube of this and its a generous size. This tube alone has lasted me almost 6 months and its only half way gone. If its gentle you’re after this could fit your bill perfectly, unless of course, availability is a problem for you.
Clarins Gentle Foaming Cleanser (CottonSeed) – Summer cleanser – 125 ml, $24
Texture : A creamy cleanser which actually does not foam (contrary to the name) and goes on like a white cream and a joy to use.
Key Ingredients (From Sephora’s website): Cottonseed Leaves skin soft and smooth. Katafray Bark Extract Prevents moisture loss. Tamarind Fruit Acid Helps eliminate dry skin cells that block pores. Shea Butter Protects, nourishes, and regenerates skin.
How I Use It : This is my preferred cleanser all through summer when my skin is an oily mess. This is definitely one of the “squeaky” clean cleansers and can make your skin feel very parched post cleanse, but for those of us who yearn that deep cleanse in summer this is definitely a win! I use it as my second cleanser after makeup removal.
Experience : Like I said this one has a very limited audience, but for my combination skin which turns oily in summer, I love it! I’ve also used a sample or two of their Gentle Cleanser with Shea Butter which might be a better choice for drier skin types as it works just like this one but without “squeaking” it out.
REN Micro Polish Cleanser (Radiance) – The Exfoliator – 150 ml, £20
Texture : A creamy cleanser with tiny exfoliating beads. The exfoliant is neither small or large and I have never found it to aggravate sensitivity or redness.
Key Ingredients (From Ren’s website): Papain from Mexican Papaya helps to exfoliate the skin and reduces inflamation. Glycolic Acid from Pineapple exfoliates, decongests and removes dead skin cells to renew skin’s surface. Amber Microbeads from Amber Powder exfoliates and polishes skin surface
How I Use It : I restrict myself to a once in ten days use, as my skin has gradually grown to be quite sensitive. I avoid exfoliating my cheek and neck with this and only use it where I am most afflicted with blackheads and congestion, specifically nose and chin. I have always loved a traditional exfoliator and this one was a delight instantly. Review
Experience : Inspite of my sensitive skin, this cleanser gives me a very satisfying cleanse whenever I use it. It is probably not suited for my skin type but I have found that restricting the areas of use I can make it work and not irritate my skin. The Radiance line from REN has been really good to my skin so far. I have already tried the Glycolactic Radiance Renewal Mask and recently added the Radiance Perfection Serum into my routine.
Other cleansers that I have used and reviewed :
I hope you find this useful. I have a few other cleansers lined up for this year which should be up on the blog soon!
Let me know what you think!