When editing the above photo, I cannot believe that I have that many cleansers right now on my bathroom shelves. I am crazy about cleansers and as far as I know, I would usually have at least 4 different cleansers at any one time - the balm cleanser (which I have depleted and didn't replenish), milk cleanser, oil cleanser and cleansing water or micellaire for my 1st step in removing makeup; exfoliating cleanser with fine beads if I feel I needed to intensify my cleansing ritual; and foamy or cream cleanser, to finish up the cleansing step.
No, I don't use all 10 cleansers at one go. So, why do I need so many? Well, let's just say I wasn't born with perfect flawless skin. I work hard to achieve good skin and knowing what is good and what is not good for me and cleansing is the most important step in achieving good skin. In the morning, just one cleanser will do and after a hard day's work, I would use 2-3 cleansers, depending on how my skin is feeling. Sometimes, I'd feel that the skin is so congested that I'd go for the balm. Sometimes, I'd want to soothe my tired skin, and I'd go for the milk cleanser first. When I'm lazy, I'd just pick up the micellaire (which I've omitted recently from my cleansing products due to having too many cleansers already!).
I also have so many types perhaps from greed (sigh! 😝) but more so because when I was reaching my 40's, I felt that the skin behaves in a way that it wants to behave, as and when it likes. I've tried many brands, from the drugstore brands to not so costly ones and as you can see in the photo above, even those of slightly expensive range, all in the name of getting my cleansing ritual right. And I'm not loyal to one brand when it comes to getting a cleanser because through experience, the brands don't always have it right with each and every product they sell. They can be good with certain type of serums or moisturiser but they can suck at producing a good cleanser.. well, that is for my skin, at least. And I always go out to look for a good one but I'm never really stuck to just one brand.
1. So, let's start with the first one - Chanel Le Blanc Brightening Tri-Phase Makeup Remover:
I chanced upon this by accident as I was in a Chanel outlet getting some other stuff. As I am crazy about cleansers, I got this out of curiosity, without even checking out reviews. As I mentioned before, the Chanel brand is kinda not talked about much when it comes to its skincare range and the perception that it must be very very very expensive. But if you have been using luxury skincare brands like Guerlain, Dior and the likes, you will find that the price of some of the common products in Chanel is not that bad. What's more, the quality of packaging and the product inside is something that has impressed me so much.
From Chanel, I've tried 3 types of cleansers but since I've used up and thrown the other 2 empties, I am only left with this. It has a clear gel-like texture that's suppose to work like an oil cleanser - to be applied sparingly all over a dry face. Using dry fingers, massage in and it turns into oil, attaching itself to the layer of makeup. Ooops but before all these, please remove your eye makeup first, using the right eye makeup remover. I don't believe any of these cleansers (not even the oil cleanser) do a good job in removing eye makeup totally nor do they protect the delicate skin from the extra tugging and pulling.
When the cleanser has transformed into oil-like texture, you're supposed to add water to your palms, and continue to massage the face and you'll see the cleanser turn into a light milky texture. Hence, this is where it gets its name, Tri-Phase - from gel, to oil, to milk.
How do I like it? Well, let's just say, this was probably one of the expensive mistakes I've made. Compared to some other products I've gotten from them, this was quite a disappointment and which is why it is taking ages to finish. It is not one of my favourite go-to makeup cleanser, as the gel feels too thick to be spread and I can't see how it lifts makeup off, that effectively. I'm of course, comparing this cleanser to the hundreds of other cleansers I've used. My skin doesn't feel clean enough for the next step and not rested. You know, when makeup is lifted off your skin, you'd feel like thousands of burden being lifted off your face and you feel free? Well, I didn't every time I use this. So, don't bother getting this. As for brightening, well, it didn't help brighten at all. In fact, I don't think any cleansers can brighten up your skin, so I wasn't expecting anything on the brightening claim.
Rating: 2/5 ❤️❤️🖤🖤🖤
2. Next, Sisley Buff and Wash Facial Gel:
I was intrigued with Sisley. I had been experimenting on some luxury skincare for my ageing skin and hey, who doesn't want to age gracefully, right? And in order to age gracefully, other than all those healthy habits you're supposed to adopt (which I haven't), I thought I should start with using a friendly brand - friendly to the environment, and one that respects the skin.
From my research, Sisley has amazing claims to how they build the brand and develop their products. Their products contain highest quality active ingredients to ensure potency of their products. What I was intrigued most was that their products contain botanical ingredients and don't contain harmful substances like parabens and other preservatives that can harm the skin in the long run. But their products are super expensive, which kinda contributed to the perception that quality = steep price.
My daily exfoliating cleanser was already empty and I thought I'd like to satiate my curiosity, and I started making cost comparisons to my current favourite brands. I mean, if I wanted to use this long term, I really should do all the calculations, down to going to the Sisley counter myself and taking note of how much they cost if I were to get them from StrawberryNet with the additional 10% loyalty discount I have been enjoying.
Their counters at Robinsons, Metrojaya and Isetan Mid Valley/Gardens KL however, totally put me off the brand. They don't have knowledgeable beauty consultants and are very poor with product knowledge. Service was poor too, something you won't find at Guerlain or SKII. But since I had known the price at the counters, I decided to save the commission for poor service, and ordered from StrawberryNet as the prices were similar. For this, at just 100ml is over RM300. Pretty steep for an exfoliating cleanser, no?
So, did it live up to my expectations? It didn't, unfortunately 😔 well, to be fair, the beauty consultant didn't have good product knowledge and from the reviews I read, they said this can be used as a daily exfoliating cleanser. However, as I started using it, this shouldn't be used daily. It is a scrub, and doesn't contain fine granules. The granules are pretty large in an orange watery-gel formula which at least smells citrusy nice and I'm a little bit happy for that scent. All is not wasted.
For over RM300, the scrub isn't magic and perhaps the St Ives apricot scrub does the same 😑. I am heart-broken but at least it is still on the bathroom shelf for me to use once a week. It's not bad but I won't recommend you to buy for the steep price and mediocre result. Perhaps the friendly ingredient may be what you need in your long-term beauty goals but it isn't in my top priority list. If it is, it's a bonus. For me, it's all about results worthy of the price.
Rating: 3/5 ❤️❤️❤️🖤🖤
3. Over to - Estelle & Thild Biocleanse Silky Soft Cleansing Milk:
I got this at last year's 20% Sephora Black Card sale. I was out of my cleansing milk and this brand was a new addition to the Sephora stores. I liked that it is a Certified Organic brand and although I've had my fair share of sucess and failure rate in using organic products, the 20% discount pulled me to trying this out.
I bought this out of a whim and didn't check out any reviews. The price was somewhere slightly over RM100 for a 150ml pump bottle and with 20% off, I was happy to put this into my shopping basket.
As a cleansing milk, it is a very straight forward product and sad to say, I didn't like it. I had such big hopes for this brand, but the milk cleanser just didn't meet expectations. The milk wasn't smooth in texture and I was put off by the smell. It's like getting an expired product with a musty sour smell instead of the fresh scent you'd expect out of a cleanser. So, with that off-putting experience of what should be a start of a fresh experience, me no likey and hence, me no usey. Another big waste which I should just persevere and live with the mistake until at least 3/4 of it is used and because of that, I haven't really thrown it away. I do think the smell shouldn't be so bad since I did smell it in the tester bottle before buying. Perhaps I got a bad batch. But it shouldn't be so bad like it has expired.
Rating: 1/5 ❤️🖤🖤🖤🖤
Well, it looks like the first part of me entry on cleansers are unfortunately, those I didn't like. It isn't done on purpose as I didn't give it much thought when I laid out all the cleansers to be photographed. There is one ultimate favourite in there and the rest that I like a lot but not love... but you shouldn't guess based on the size of the cleansers (note that some of them are deluxe samples because the retail size are finished and discarded and I'm left with travel sizes that I continuously keep to refill so that I can travel lighter). More positive posts ahead.
To be continued in Part II 🙋🏻