Okay, so this may not be a full on rave, but I feel like this product definitely needs to be addressed. I really did like it, will I rush out to buy it? Probably not. Lets start from the start, shall we?
I received a sample of this with my recent Nordstrom order. It wasn't a deluxe sample or anything, just a simple sample package. Right away I can tell you that a little of this goes a long way. I've had that one sample packet for a little over a week now & I have about 2 or 3 more uses left from it. I only use it at night & cleanse with a different cleanser in the morning (more about that one later). There are several pros & cons to this product & to be truthful, I'm probably more on the fence about it than anything else.
First the pros: I've seen a vast improvement in my cheeks. I always have a deep blemish on one of my cheeks & I can never seem to shake it no matter what I do. This seems to finally have worked on it. But my chin/lip/nose area seems to have had a slight reaction to it. Nothing terrible & I feel like it's not irritating that area any longer (maybe time was needed for that area to adjust to the new cleanser??). Before I would double cleanse even when I didn't have a full face of makeup on, but with this I feel like I only need one cleanse with it when I wear daily makeup & maybe 2 if I have a heavier full face on. I have combination skin, so I haven't been using a moisturizer at night with this or a toner. I wash with this & put on a serum & I'm done for the night, so this has most assuredly minimized my night time routine. The less, the better for someone like me. This is also the first time I've ever used a cleansing balm & I really enjoy the concept. I still use my hydrating face mask twice a week, but I haven't used my glycol-lactic face mask since I've starting using this for fear of over exfoliating. Since this does come with a muslin cloth, it does a gentle exfoliation every time you use it. A little of this does go a long way & if my terrible math skills are anything to be trusted, the largest tub of this would last me about a year & a half. Wowza. Finally, because I'm a designer I need to point this out, I love the packaging & branding of this product. Swoon!
Now for the cons: I'm not overly fond of the smell. I presume that it's the Egyptian Camomile, but regardless of what it is, it can be a little nauseating to me at times. If you tend to be sensitive to smell, be sure to smell this before you drop the cash on it. Which brings me to this, it is incredibly expensive. The larget tub of it is 6.7 ounces & will run you about $135. Even though it would last much longer than the typical 6.7 ounce cleanser, I'm still not positive that it's worth it. Maybe if all of the other cons weren't there, I wouldn't hesitate to drop the bucks on it, but I'm not so sure with how it stands now. The Pièce de résistance, there is a big to do all over the beauty blogging world about the fact that this product does contain mineral oil & parabens (see here). For me that's not too terrible, other than the fact that you're paying a high price for something that has some pretty cheap ingredients in it. There are studies that go both ways as to the benefits & non-benefits of these products, so if it's something that you don't want to be using, steer clear of this product & don't let the very natural scent of it fool you.
I like this & think that it really is a good cleanser, but with all factors counted, I'm not too sure that I would purchase this cleanser. I am, however, keeping it & this entire brand on my radar. More than anything else, this introduced me to balm cleansers & I want to try more of them out. Does anyone have any particular favorite balm cleansers that they'd suggest?