Hi readers! I’m sure you’ve noticed that face oils are all the rage now, with Sephora’s spotlight on them for the month of January. I do like them and feel like I’m giving my skin a nice big gulp of hydration when I use them. But what I’m really, really excited about recently is what I would call the face oil’s little cousin, the cleansing balm. And I think this little cousin is about to get real big when people catch on to how great she works.
Basically, if you haven’t used one before, it’s a very different face cleansing experience that takes some getting used to, and just like the idea of the face oil, it can be a little counter-intuitive for those who don’t consider themselves to have dry skin. The traditional face cleanser will usually foam up and whisk away everything in it’s path – make up, dirt, oil, what have you, leaving behind squeaky clean skin. And while this is pretty effective in terms of deep cleansing, it can be unnecessary and quite harsh considering that these foaming agents and soap formulas are meant to remove everything in their path, including the moisture you’re getting from your skin’s own oils (which you can now replace from Sephora, ha ha). Recently, I’ve begun using balms, rather than foaming cleansers, and have found a real change in the way my skin looks and feels, which is very strange since I never feel like my skin is responsive to anything.
The balm is this soft, buttery texture that melts when you apply it, and I just slide it all over my skin and my eye area. It feels like a luxurious oil that cleanses gently; rather than forcing the nasties off my face, my balm melts them away and all the unnecessary dirt, oil and make up just slide right off. Some people like to remove it using a wash cloth, and get that extra exfoliating motion going, but I simply just rinse off my face. At first, it’s a bit disconcerting to feel like your face isn’t squeaking, like there’s this thin layer of something left on the skin. But I realized after using it for a week that this layer of moisture is the REASON my skin feels soft and looks more glow-y, and I no longer get those patches of dry / flaky skin from my combination skin misbehaving. The most surprising part of all, however, is that my persistent hormonal chin break outs have been inactive since I’ve started this balm (about two weeks ago). It’s really confusing to me because I was taught all my life that if you have acne, you get rid of it by getting rid of the oil. But I’ve essentially been using oil to fight the oil, and I truly believe that my breakouts are chilling out because I’ve stopped enraging my chin by stealing its oils and forcing it to overcompensate.
Clearly, I am crazy about this stuff and I hope we get more people hopping on this bandwagon. I mean, to summarize the benefits again, it leaves my skin hydrated even after I’ve cleansed, my dry spots AND oily spots are now balanced and under control, I don’t need to use a make up remover as even my darkest eyeliner melts right off, my skin feels so soft and smooth after using… and my approach to my skin has gone from a constant battle to a peaceful friendship.