Battle of the cleansing balms

Cleansing balms have become more and more popular in the past couple of years. What started with a few options are now many and that makes it hard to choose the right one. Especially in the ‘green beauty world’ where it’s often difficult to try something before purchase, you end up with lots of hits and misses.

My hunt for the perfect cleansing balm still continues even though I’ve discovered some really great options. My perfect cleansing balm would be one that is easy to massage in, rinses off completely without the need of a towel, smells incredibly good and has great ingredients. Let me share with you the ones I’ve tried, the battle is on!

Holistic Green Beauty Chocolate cleansing balm

size2chocolatePackaging: A big (100 ml) ultraviolet glass tub that is easy to use and feels very luxurious.
Ingredients: The Chocolate Cleansing Balm contains Green Tea, Açaí Berry, Rosehip, Cacao Extract, Calendula, Copaiba,… All very rich in antioxidants and thus this product serves as a great facial mask as wel.

  • Rare and wild crafted Mafura Butter from Africa helps to reduce redness and inflammation. Mafura Butter has anti microbial properties and is rich in antioxidants, helping to combat free radical damage. This indulgent butter helps soften skin and it is deeply nourishing and healing.
  • Infused with antioxidant rich organic Green Tea, Cacao Extract, Rosehip oil and Açaí Berry oil provide protection against pollution, free radical damage and environmental stress on the skin.
  • Hydrating organic Cacao Butter, Coconut oil, Almond, Avocado and Sunflower oil soothe, hydrate and nourish the skin.
  • Anti-inflammatory Calendula and Copaiba help to heal the skin and reduce redness.
  • This cleanser also benefits from being scrumptiously chocolate scented with organic Cacao Butter, Cacao Extract and Vanilla.

Performance: This is one of the easiest and probably most luxurious cleansing balms I’ve used so far. The balm instantly melts into a soft oil that is perfect for massaging the skin. I also love to use this one for removing makeup as it takes it all of without dragging the skin. To take it off, I wet my hands and loosen the product. Then I take a hot cloth and remove access product. This balm leaves a bit of a residue but I don’t really mind as it makes my skin feel very soft and hydrated.
Scent: So so nice! Chocolaty but not in a sickly sweet way. It’s a very sophisticated herbally chocolate scent.
Overall: Very good, especially for makeup removal and a long facial massage.
Score: 9,5/10 (would be a 10/10 if it rinsed completely clean)

La Bella Figura Curative cleansing balm

img_2278Packaging: A small (30 ml) glass tub. Looks very luxurious as do all LBF products.
Ingredients: This cleansing balm is made with some very high quality butters and oils.

  • Theobroma Grandiflorum (Cupuacu) Butter*, Camellia Oleifera (Camellia) Seed Oil*, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil*, Cetearyl Olivate (and) Sorbitan Olivate (Wax Derived From Olives), Decyl Glucoside (Plant Source), Citrus Limon (Lemon) Kernel Oil*, Coriandrum Sativum (Coriander) Seed Oil CO2, Vetiveria Zizanioides (Vetiver) Oil*, Citrus Aurantium Var. Amara (Orange) Blossom Extract*, Arnica Montana (Flower) Extract CO2*

Performance: Hmm…this is a hard one to explain. The balm feels waxy and it is quite hard to melt the product. A technique that works best for me is to take a small amount between my hands and warm it up (sometimes I add a few drops of Barbary fig seed oil). Then I place my hands on my face and let the product melt into my skin so I can perform a little massage. The magic with this one is actually when you rinse the product off. It creates a little lather which makes it super duper easy to rinse off COMPLETELY. I don’t use this balm to remove makeup as it’s to hard to work with that way but I adore to use this as a morning cleanse to start the day fresh.
Scent: A very subtle yet fresh scent. Imagine a mixture between lemon and white chocolate.
Overall: A very unique cleanser in every way that I highly recommend if you’d like to create a special experience. My prefered way to use this is as a morning cleanser or as a second cleanser. To give the product a little more ‘slip’ I mix a little balm in with any non-rinsable cleansing balm.
Score: 8,5/10

Moss Beurre Céleste

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Packaging: A 58ml ultraviolet glass tub that is easy to use and keeps the product as potent as possible.
Ingredients: Macadamia nut oil meets organic honey for a gentle yet powerful cleanse. Active enzymes gently exfoliate, tone and heal while honey acts as a natural antibiotic. Macadamia nut oil is incredibly soothing and moisturizing. Kokum butter supports with its amazing anti-aging and anti-wrinkle properties.

  • Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Mel (Local Organic Honey)*, Garcinia Indica (Kokum) Butter*, Macadamia Ternifolia (Macadamia Nut) Seed Oil*, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Esters*, Di-PPG-2 Myreth-10 Adipate, Hydroxystearyl Alcohol, Hydroxystearyl Glucoside, Sorbitan Olivate, Sunflower Lecithin*, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Sea Buckthorn) Fruit CO2 Extract*, Citrus Bergamia (Bergamot) Oil FCF, Backhousia Citriodora (Lemon Myrtle) Oil*, Cymbopogon Martinii (Palmarosa) Oil*, Coriandrum Sativum CO2 Extract*, Pelargonium Graveolens (Geranium) Oil*, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract *Organic/Wildcrafted

Performance: This cleanser is on the thicker side but spreads beautifully across the skin and is easy to massage with. The balm contains little granules which gently slough off dead skin cells. My prefered way to use this is a morning or second cleanse since it’s easy to use and rinses completely clean with just water. It can be used as a makeup remover but I prefer to leave the product on a little longer and act as a flash mask. The ingredients are so soothing, healing and moisturizing that I find it’s way to precious to rinse off right away. Sometimes I leave it on up to an hour and I notice my skin is a lot more even and calmer when I take it off.
Scent: A blend of sweet honey and fresh lemon. Very nice if you’re a sweet tooth.
Overall: Excellent as a morning or second cleanser. Works also wonderfully as a mask.
Score: 9/10

Mahalo Unveil

unveil-petitPackaging: Mahalo has the most stunning packaging ever! A glass that is housed in the most beautiful bamboo case with the Mahalo logo ingraved. What more can a girl ask for? The only negative point is that I wish the jar was a bit bigger (it’s 50 ml).
Ingredients: Wow, what an impressive ingredients list!

  • Prunus amygdalus dulci (sweet almond) oil and in-house phytonutrient infusion* [medicago sativa (alfalfa), arnica montana (arnica), calendula officinalis (calendula), symphytum officinale (comfrey), centella asiatica (gotu kola), ocimum sanctum (holy basil tulsi), azadirachta indica (neem), scutellaria lateriflora (skullcap)], persea gratissima (avocado) butter*, macadamia integrifolia (macadamia) oil*, helianthus annuus (sunflower) oil*, jojoba esters, mangifera indica (mango) butter*, theobroma cacao (cocoa) butter*, astrocaryum murmuru butter*, theobroma grandiflorum (cupuacu) butter*, argania spinosa (argan) oil*, cera alba (beeswax)*, ricinus communis (castor bean) oil*, cetearyl olivate (and) sorbitan olivate, non-gmo mixed tocopherols, salix alba L. (willow) bark*, plukenetia volubilis (sacha inchi) oil*, coco glucoside, camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf*, calophyllum inophyllum (Polynesian tamanu) oil*, cucurbita pepo (pumpkin) seed oil* & papain*, lecithin*, montmorillonite (french green clay), citrus lemon oil*, agonis fragrant (fragonia) oil*, elettaria cardamomum (cardamom) oil*, zingiber officinalis (ginger) oil*, schinus molly (peppercorn) oil*, frankincense sacra oil*, melaleuca quinquenervia (niaouli) oil*, citrus aurantium var. bergamia (bergamot) oil*, commiphora myrrh oil*, rosmarinus officials (rosemary antioxidant) extract*
    *clean ingredients: organic + local and/or wild harvested (when available)

Performance: This cleansing balm feels like a thicker balm which doesn’t really change in consistency when applied to the skin. I need quite a lot of product to cover my whole face so I let the product sit for a few minutes to absorb all the amazing ingredients. I wet my hands which transforms the balm into a milk which is very easy to rinse off almost completely. It really is a unique and relaxing experience to use this balm.
Scent: Fresh scent of lemon, rounded with notes of exotic fragonia, ginger, cardamom and pink peppercorn and hints of warm cocoa. Although the scent is very nice, I expected something more heavy like the scent of the Petal and Rare Indigo which are beyond amazing.
Overall: Because of all the precious ingredients, I prefer to use this as a morning cleanser. I wouldn’t use this for makeup removal as it’s too unique to use it that way. Really enjoy using it every morning and highly recommend.
Score: 9/10

De Mamiel Restorative Cleansing balm

1e05b2585051c1c5fedd12a64605e1fdPackaging: A ultraviolet glass tub that is easy to use. The De Mamiel outer box is truly stunning in every way!
Ingredients: This ingredients list is also quite impressive and unique!

  • Camellia oleifera (camellia) seed oil*, Mangifera indica (mango) seed oil, Helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil*, Cera alba/beeswax/Cire d’abeille*, Borago officinalis (borage) seed oil*, Aleurites moluccana (kukui) seed oil, Moringa oleifera (moringa) seed oil, Oryza sativa (rice) bran oil, Adansonia digitata (baobab) seed oil*, Squalane, Sclerocarya birrea (marula) seed oil*, Astrocaryum murumuru (murumuru) seed butter, Theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter*, Polysorbate 20 (derived from coconut), Rosa damascena (rose) cera, Ricinus communis (castor) seed oil*, Bisabolol, Calendula officinalis flower oil*, Daucus carota sativa (carrot) root extract*, Agonis fragrans (fragonia) leaf oil, Pelargonium graveolens (rose geranium) leaf oil*, Eriocephalus punctulatus (cape chamomile) oil**, Melaleuca teretifolia (honey myrtle) leaf oil,  Leptospermum petersonii (rose myrtle) leaf oil, Eucalyptus radiata (eucalyptus) leaf oil*, Tocopherol (vitamin E). Geraniol˚, Linalol˚, Citronellol˚, Citral˚, Bespokely botaniques, created from flower and environmental essences, LightBringer Essences Alpine Meadow  (Self heal, Le jardin des alpes, Campanula rotundifolia (harebell), Aster alpinus (alpine aster), Parnassia palustris (grass of parnassus))
    *Certified organic ˚Natural essential oil constituents

Performance: A very soft and silky texture which is very easy to apply. The aroma gets stronger once you start working with the product. I like this as a massaging product, not so much as a cleanser though. It’s a hot cloth cleanser but for me it’s very hard and even impossible to remove the product. Therefore I don’t reach for this much as I need a lot of time to remove the cleanser. I also notice my skin is slighly irritated after usage so not sure about this one…
Scent: Honey and lemon. Delicious and quite unique scent!
Overall: Easy application but very hard to remove. If you don’t have a problem with using a second cleanser afterwards, you might like to try this one.
Score: 5,5/10

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8 Comments Add yours

  1. Great round up! I almost brought the De Mamiel one, I’m glad I held off now.
    The holistic green beauty one sounds fabulous!

    1. Thank you so much! It depends on what you’re looking for. The De Mamiel is loved by lots of people, I think if you like the hot cloth ritual you might be really into it. The Holistic Green Beauty also requires a cloth but is easier to work with. Hope this post helps you to find a nice cleansing balm 🙂

  2. Thank you for this great overview! Now I’m sure I want to try the Mahalo one as a morning cleanse when I shower. I imagine it really nice, putting on the balm in a soft massage, get it steamed in the shower to even better penetrate and clean the skin, and then just showering it away under the running water with no cloth and no sponge.

    1. Hi Karin, thank you for your kind comment! Mahalo would be excellent for under the shower, the aromas of the product are even better in the steam! I would only suggest to apply the product before getting in the shower to avoid water leaking into the bottle. Hope you enjoy this wonderful cleanser! 🙂

  3. Kelly says:

    I had the same experience with de mamiel. I didn’t think I would consider buying a balm cleanser again but tried a tiny sample of mahalo and I’m in love. The little sample surprised me with 5 uses. A little seems to go a long way but I wish too that it was a bigger size. The aroma of it …swoon!

    1. De Mamiel was also my very first cleansing balm so I immediately though ‘nope, these balms are not for me!’ but I was wrong. There are so many different balms on the market and they all work differently. Mahalo is one of the most pleasant and easiest ones to use, so glad I didn’t give up on the cleansing balms 😉

  4. Peggy says:

    I am using Mahalo ! But I think it is too expensive to me as 50ml is one month usage for me.
    Any other recommendations?

    1. Wow 1 month is fast! Then it is indeed too expensive. Well for makeup removal my faves are Holistic Green beauty Chocolate cleansing balm an the Jane Scrivner Nourishing cleanser(not mentioned in this post). Both are balms that quickly turn into an oil and work so well. Note that both require a cloth as they don’t rinse clean.

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