Cleansing Make-up Remover Wipe Review: Bioderma, Philosophy, Neutrogena, Burt’s Bees, Wotnot

Cleansing Make-up Remover Wipe Review: Bioderma, Philosophy, Neutrogena, Wotnot

I recently tried out a whole bunch of different wipes when I got my eyebrows microbladed (review coming soon) and couldn’t wash my face for a week. I generally prefer a proper cleanse to wipes because it feels less wasteful and polluting, but I do find them handy when travelling, and in situations like these! I tried wipes from Bioderma, Philosophy, Neutrogena, Wotnot Naturals and Burt’s Bees They all tested at a skin-friendly pH 4-5. Here’s what I thought of the individual products.

Cleansing Make-up Remover Wipe Review: Bioderma, Philosophy, Neutrogena, Wotnot

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Wipes

Bioderma Sensibio Micellar Water is a huge hit in Australia, so there’s been a lot of buzz around their new Bioderma Sensibio H2O Wipes ($20.99 for a pack of 25) too.

The Sensibio line is designed for sensitive skin, and these wipes have a very short ingredients list which is good if you need to scan for your specific allergens. I thought it would be just the micellar water in wipe form, but it’s a completely separate product: the surfactant in the wipes is polysorbate 20, while the micellar water contains PEG-6 caprylic/capric glycerides.

I found these a bit of a mixed bag. They didn’t sting my eyes, but they were a little weak in the make-up removal department. My skin felt a bit tight after cleansing with these, but paradoxically it still felt plump and hydrated with that slightly sticky humectant feeling. The regular Micellar Water works better overall in my opinion, although these are a bit more convenient. It has a stronger fragrance than the micellar water as well.

(This is probably a good time to mention my pet hate – when people write H20 (with the number zero) instead of H2O (with the letter O). H2O is the formula for water and means 2 hydrogens + 1 oxygen, H20 is twenty hydrogens bonded together against the laws of physics. I know it’s a super petty thing to get irritated by, but I needed to get that out of my system.)

Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau, Polysorbate 20, Pentylene Glycol, Mannitol, Xylitol, Rhamnose, Fructooligosaccharides, Allantoin, Cetrimonium Bromide, Disodium EDTA, Fragrance (Parfum).

Philosophy Purity Cleansing Cloths

Philosophy Purity Made Simple cleansing cloths ($18 AUD for a pack of 30) are notable because unlike most other wipes, they don’t contain a standard surfactant in the top ingredients – there’s solvents (butylene glycol and water), oils (meadowfoam seed oil is the main one) and gluconolactone (a PHA exfoliant).

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Cleansing Oil Review: Dermalogica, Shu Uemura, Simple, Hylamide, Erno Laszlo

Cleansing Oil Review: Dermalogica, Shu Uemura, Erno Laszlo, Simple

Cleansing oils are a great compromise between convenience and oil cleansing. I’ve tried a bunch more from Dermalogica, Shu Uemura, Hylamide, Erno Laszlo and Simple since my last review, so here are my thoughts.

Cleansing Oils vs Oil Cleansing

First, what’s the difference between cleansing oils and oil cleansing? Simply swapping the two words around makes a big difference!

Cleansing oils are oils that contain surfactants (emulsifiers) – in other words, they’re much like a mixture of oil and soap. When you apply them to your skin they act like oils, but when you add water, the soap part helps the oil dissolve in the water and rinse off your skin (they’ll look a bit milky at this stage – that’s the tiny oil droplets hanging out in the water!).

Oil cleansing involves using plain oils, without surfactants. To get the oil off your skin, you either have to add a separate cleanser afterwards, or you have to use more oil to wash the dirty oil off.

Both methods are great for removing makeup and sunscreen. However, cleansing oils are generally easier to rinse off, since the surfactant is already mixed thoroughly in the oil. I’d still recommend double cleansing by following the cleansing oil with a cleanser (exception: if you weren’t wearing anything too heavy on your skin to begin with, and the cleansing oil is compatible with your skin). Even though cleansing oils should theoretically come off when you rinse with water, sometimes they aren’t formulated with quite enough surfactants for complete removal. There are tons of reports of cleansing oils breaking people out, so it’s a good idea to test it on a small area of skin before using it too liberally before a big event!

Cleansing Oil Review: Dermalogica, Shu Uemura, Erno Laszlo, Simple

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Gentle Cleansers for Sensitive Skin: Review

Gentle Cleansers for Sensitive Skin: Review

Although my skin’s not sensitive, I’ve switched to gentle cleansers to avoid irritation, which can lead to oily, dehydrated skin that’s prone to acne. Here are some gentle cleansers I’ve tried out recently.

Gentle Cleansers for Sensitive Skin: Review

Bioderma Sensibio Cleansing Milk

Bioderma Sensibio Cleansing Milk is a watery lotion for makeup removal and cleansing, designed for sensitive skin. It works a bit like a cold cream: you apply it to a cotton pad, then wipe it over your face. If you’re removing heavy makeup, you can also massage it directly on skin then wipe it off afterwards. The key feature is that it’s surfactant-free but also cleanses very well, making it great for sensitive skin. (Surfactants are the cleansing ingredients you’ll find in most cleansing products like face washes and shampoos; although they’re great at removing dirt, they also tend to disrupt proteins in the skin and strip away too much oil.) It’s also fragrance-free and contains anti-irritant ingredients.

I was surprised by how much I liked this cleanser, since I’ve never had much luck with cleansing lotions in the past. Sensibio Cleansing Milk removes makeup effectively. It leaves your skin feeling soft and moisturised, not tight and dry, thanks to its long list of humectant ingredients. It also doesn’t sting your eyes like micellar waters can, and because it doesn’t contain any surfactants, I didn’t feel the need to do an extra wipe afterwards. The only issue I had is that it’s not amazing at taking off waterproof gel eyeliner, although the rest of my makeup was removed nicely.

Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Glycerin, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum), Polypropylene Terephthalate, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Mannitol, Xylitol, Rhamnose, Fructooligosaccharides, Laminaria Ochroleuca Extract, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/ VP Copolymer, Pentylene Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Disodium EDTA, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sodium Hydroxide

Avène Tolérance Extrême Cleansing Lotion

Avene Tolérance Extrême Cleansing Lotion incorporates their Sterile Cosmetics technology. Through the use of sterile manufacturing and a special self-sealing dispenser, it avoids the need for preservatives, which is fantastic if you’re allergic to them. Here’s what the self-sealing stopper looks like:

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Clarisonic Smart Profile Sonic Skin Cleansing Brush Review

Clarisonic Smart Profile Sonic Skin Cleansing Brush Review

Clarisonic Smart Profile Sonic Skin Cleansing Brush Review

If you’re in the market for a new skin cleansing brush and you like your gadgets, Clarisonic’s Smart Profile may be just the device for you. I’ve tried both the Clarisonic Mia 2 ($219 AUD) and Mia Fit ($315 AUD) before, but the Smart Profile ($349 AUD) really takes the cake in terms of convenience and features. It still has all the features that Clarisonic fans are used to, with some added bonuses that will make your routine much easier.

Regular Clarisonic Features

“Sonic” cleaning

All the Clarisonic brushes feature the “sonic” oscillating back-and-forth brush movement instead of the one-way rotation on most brushes. This is great because it reduces torque on the skin so it jiggles instead of roughly twisting, giving you a thorough but still gentle clean.

Handy magnetic USB charger

The chargers that currently come with all three Clarisonic devices are USB-enabled, so you can charge them from the wall using a USB wall adapter (included with the brush) or through your computer or laptop. It’s very convenient for travelling, when you might not have the right adapter or enough adapters around. The chargers attach magnetically to the brushes, which avoids exposed metal surfaces so you don’t need to worry about rust or electrocuting yourself, or plugging it in the wrong way. (If your bought your brush a bit earlier, it may not have the USB feature.)

Smart Profile Features

Here are the extra features the Smart Profile has:

“Smart” RFID Facial and Body Brushes

Unlike the Mia 2 and Mia Fit, the Smart Profile is designed to be used for both the face and the body, and comes with both a Smart Dynamic Facial Brush head for normal and oily facial skin, and a larger Smart Turbo Massage Body Brush Head with stiffer bristles for exfoliating and massaging the body. Both brushes contain RFID chips that tell the handle which preprogrammed timer to use. Since brush heads get worn out over time, the Smart Profile also registers how long you’ve used the brush head for. A notification light comes on after 90 minutes (3 months) of use when it’s time to get a new brush head (don’t worry – the brush head won’t stop working if you decide not to change it!). The Smart Profile also works with regular brush heads, but these nifty features won’t function.

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Why Has the FDA banned Antibacterial Soap?

Why Has the FDA banned Antibacterial Soap?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced that hand and body washes containing certain antibacterial ingredients can no longer be widely sold (the final rule can be found here, and the consumer update is here). Why have they been banned?

Why Has the FDA banned Antibacterial Soap?

The Banned Antibacterial Ingredients

In high enough concentrations, antibacterial ingredients kill bacteria either by rupturing their membranes (their “skin”) or by interfering with how they work.

19 of these ingredients have been targeted:

  • Cloflucarban
  • Fluorosalan
  • Hexachlorophene
  • Hexylresorcinol
  • Iodophors (Iodine-containing ingredients)
    • Iodine complex (ammonium ether sulfate and polyoxyethylene sorbitan monolaurate)
    • Iodine complex (phosphate ester of alkylaryloxy polyethylene glycol)
    • Nonylphenoxypoly (ethyleneoxy) ethanoliodine
    • Poloxamer-iodine complex
    • Povidone-iodine 5 to 10 percent
    • Undecoylium chloride iodine complex
  • Methylbenzethonium chloride
  • Phenol (greater than 1.5 percent)
  • Phenol (less than 1.5 percent)
  • Secondary amyltricresols
  • Sodium oxychlorosene
  • Tribromsalan
  • Triclocarban
  • Triclosan
  • Triple dye

The most common ones in hand soap are triclosan and triclocarban. Any hand or body washes containing these ingredients will not be able to be sold in the US from September 2017.

Three other antibacterial ingredients are still being reviewed, but can still be used in soaps for the time being: benzalkonium chloride, benzethonium chloride, and chloroxylenol.

Why have antibacterial soaps been banned?

The key reason is: because they don’t work any better than non-antibacterial soaps to warrant the potential risks. While antibacterial soaps do tend to kill more bacteria, this hasn’t translated into tangible health benefits, like reduced rates of sickness. In the FDA’s regulatory terms, they’re no longer “generally recognised as safe AND effective (GRAS/GRAE)”.

The risks are:

Possible health effects from long-term, frequent exposure

Animal studies suggest that some antibacterial ingredients may contribute to health problems like hormonal disruption and skin cancer. A positive result in an animal study doesn’t automatically translate to humans, since there are fundamental differences between species – for example, chocolate is poisonous to dogs, and two paracetamol (acetaminophen) tablets will kill a cat. But it does signal that there could potentially be a problem, and more research is warranted (and is currently underway).

Contributing to antibiotic resistance

Antibiotics are a mainstay of modern medicine. However, a few bacteria have a natural immunity to antibiotics, and will survive and multiply. If this happens on a large enough scale, the bacteria will become resistant to that antibiotic, and you’ll need a new antibiotic. The scary thing is that antibiotic resistance is developing at a frightening speed – faster than the discovery and development of new antibiotics. Which means in the not-too-distant future, we may regress back to a scary time when skin infections were ~11% lethal.

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Korean Two-Phase Make-up Remover Reviews

Korean Two-Phase Make-up Remover Reviews

Two-phase or biphasic removers are my favourite type of make-up remover. They’re the ones that look like they have a layer of oil floating on a layer of water (the two layers are often different colours so you can see them easily). You shake them up like salad dressing before putting them on a cotton pad and wiping off your make-up. They remove waterproof make-up easily, generally don’t sting your eyes and if you’re lucky, won’t leave a greasy residue either.

How do two-phase make-up removers work?

In chemistry, there’s a rule of thumb known as like dissolves like, meaning that substances that are alike in polarity will mix together. For example, sugar and water are both polar substances, so sugar dissolves easily in water. Oil is non-polar, so sugar doesn’t dissolve in it.

Two-phase removers contain a non-polar oily layer (usually consisting of lightweight silicones like cyclopentasiloxane or cyclomethicone) floating on a polar water-based layer. They don’t mix because of the difference in polarity. But when you shake the bottle before using it, it ensures that some of each layer makes it onto your cotton pad, which gives it the power to dissolve both polar and non-polar substances (i.e. pretty much all your makeup).

Make-up Remover Reviews

I recently ran out of my Face of Australia two-phase make-up remover (this stuff lasts me forever), so I decided to buy a bunch of Korean ones and try them out – they’re all under $5 on RoseRoseShop and available on Amazon (slightly pricier but faster shipping – still under $10 though!).

Korean Two-Phase Make-up Remover Reviews

Here are my reviews:

Missha Green Tea Eye and Makeup Remover

Missha’s remover has a colourless oily layer on top of a green water-based layer containing green tea extract. It also contains benzophenone-4, a sunscreen ingredient, for some mysterious reason (maybe a cosmetic chemist knows? Edit: “This UV-filter protects the colorants in the formula from fading out. Especially with transparent packaging you need to protect the colorants from UV light. Normally only a small amount is needed and this will not add any sun protection to the skin.” Thanks Roland!). It comes in a cute heart-shaped bottle, which makes the twist-top lid very easy to grip even when your hands are wet.

Links: RoseRoseShop, Amazon

Scent: Moderately strong floral “green tea” scent (the one that’s used in lots of green tea products, but doesn’t smell like any green tea)

Eye stinging: Very very slight stinging if you get a whole heap in your eye

Oily residue: Moderate. It’s barely noticeable after you rinse it with some water, but I wouldn’t want to skip rinsing afterwards.

Effectiveness: Gets everything off easily.

Ingredients: Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Isohexadecane, Butylene Glycol, Sodium Chloride, Camellia Sinensis Leaf extract, Camellia Japonica Flower Extract, Viscum Album (Mistletoe) Fruit Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Caprylyl/Capryl Glucoside, Benzophenone-4, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Polydecene, Squalane, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Fragrance (Parfum), Yellow 5 (CI 19140), Blue 1 (CI 42090).

Innisfree Apple Juicy Lip & Eye Remover

A lot of these Korean removers do have this rather disconcerting name – I can assure you that my lips and eyes are intact! This comes in a round bottle with a smooth twist top that’s a little difficult to open if your hands are wet.

Links: RoseRoseShop, Amazon

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All About Cleansing & How to Choose a Gentle Cleanser

What Makes a Gentle Cleanser? All About Gentle Cleansing

Gone are the days of harsh cleansers that dried out your skin – everyone’s getting into gentle cleansers! What’s the science behind gentle cleansing, and how do you pick a gentle cleanser? Here’s the scientific background behind this skin-loving trend!

Want more about the science behind choosing and using the right cleansers, moisturiser and sunscreen for your skin? Check out The Lab Muffin Guide to Basic Skincare!

How Cleansing Damages Your Skin

Cleansing is the most damaging thing you do to your skin on a daily basis, but unfortunately it’s necessary to get rid of all the dirt, makeup, oil and sunscreen you’ve accumulated on your skin over the course of the day. These unwanted substances won’t come off with water though! That’s why cleansers usually contain surfactants, magical chemicals which can help the grime dissolve in water and wash away.

All About Cleansing & How to Choose a Gentle Cleanser

Surfactants are the key ingredients in pretty much every single cleanser: foaming cleansers, soaps, body washes, cleansing balms, cleansing oils and micellar water. In fact, the only common surfactant-free cleansing methods I can think of are oil cleansing and using a cloth with just water. (I wrote about how surfactants are in everything in this post on The Toast a couple of years ago).

As amazing and useful as surfactants are at lifting grime, they’re not always good for your skin. The outer layer of your skin (the stratum corneum or SC) consists of dead, protein-rich skin cells filled with water-binding chemicals (your natural moisturising factor or NMF), surrounded by carefully arranged oily lipids (mostly ceramides, cholesterol and fatty acids). It looks a lot like a brick wall, with skin cell bricks and lipid mortar. Together, these form a barrier against water evaporating from the skin into the environment, and against external irritants entering your skin.

All About Cleansing & How to Choose a Gentle Cleanser

When the SC’s structure is disturbed, skin becomes dry, itchy, flaky, red and irritated. Luckily, the SC is pretty hardy and holds up well against most things… but unfortunately, surfactants are VERY good at messing things up! Here’s what a harsh cleanser does:

Removes important stratum corneum components

Surfactants are amazing at removing grime, but they can’t tell the difference between the chemicals that make up your skin and the chemicals that aren’t meant to be there. Surfactants are good at removing lipids (particularly cholesterol) from your SC, which messes up its structure and makes it more susceptible to water loss. They also remove proteins and NMF components from your skin, meaning it won’t be able to hold onto water as effectively. This all leads to dry, dehydrated skin.

Remains in the skin, causing irritation and disruption

After cleansing, most of the surfactant gets rinsed off, but unfortunately not all of it. Some surfactant molecules will bind to proteins in the skin, causing them to denature (change shape) and swell.  The more swelling, the greater the irritation. (Interestingly, this interaction with proteins is probably a bigger contributor to the “tight” feeling after cleansing than the loss of oils!) Additionally, surfactants can remain in the lipid “mortar” of the SC, changing its structure. Together, these effects lead to a compromised SC that’s prone to letting water escape and irritants enter.

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PuraBeaute Sonic Facial Cleansing Brush Review

PuraBeaute Sonic Facial Cleansing Brush Review

About the PuraBeaute Sonic Facial Cleansing Brush

The PuraBeaute sonic facial cleansing brush is rechargable and completely waterproof, with a magnetic charger so all the electronics are confined in the plastic case. The brush head vibrates over 300 times a second, with your choice of 3 speeds, indicated by a green (sensitive), yellow (normal) or red (intense) light around the buttons. It has a built-in timer sequence which pulses to tell you to change where you’re washing – it gives you 20 seconds for your forehead, 20 seconds for your chin and 10 seconds per cheek.

The PuraBeaute comes with click-on Everyday (black ring) and Gentle (grey ring) brush heads. You can also buy the stiffer Deep Cleanse brush head for a more thorough clean, or the Soft Silk brush head for very sensitive skin.

The brush also comes with a stand and a USB charging cable which can be attached to a wall plug (provided) or a computer.

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