Cleansing Routine: The Second Cleanse

My Skin – Normal non problematic.

I love, love, love a good facial cleanser. A clean skin that is ready to drink up all the treatment I pile on it after.

I am obsessed by the ingredients, what they do & how they do it and am frankly flabbergasted when friends buy cleansers willy nilly without checking the ingredients. (Hands on hips:”now why would you do that?”)

My current quest is to find Ms Right. The  perfect Ms.Second Cleanse. Second cleanse, the one I use to clean my face (after I have taken all my makeup off ).

This perfect Ms Second Cleanse, other than cleaning my skin, has to

1. leave my skin feeling cushioned,

2. should not leave a residue,

3. should be easily available in Hong Kong, drugstore or department store and

4. not be stupidly expensive.

So imagine my joy when I received 4 cleanser samples after my shopping spree at Lane Crawford

Kate Sommerville Gentle Daily Wash. Verdict: Nopekate

Nope ? What ? Why ? We ALL know I worship at the altar of Kate Sommerville. More than half my skincare IS Kate Sommerville.

But this cleanser ?  It’s gotta go, out the door ! Second ingredient is Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate,  A harsh, drying surfactant.

And I am ashamed to admit that in-spite of this scary ingredient I gave it a fair try. The first few times my skin felt stretched and parched as soon as I washed it off whilst I was still IN a steamy shower. Then as my skin got used to it ( sad how one’s skin can get ‘used’ to harsh ingredients) the feeling of brittle-ness was less but still dry, and once out of the shower, my face screamed for a moisturiser. Not good.


Perricone MD Nutritive Cleanser  Verdict: Thanks but no thankspericconeWhy ? Well its has Sodium Laureth Sulfate as it’s second ingredient. Rated as ‘good’ on Beautypedia but many across the great-net aren’t keen on this ingredient, including Ms. Hirons.

I wont repurchase because of this SLES, but being beauty minded (greedy) I don’t mind testing it out. It’s Formulated with Dr. Perricone’s proprietary Alpha Lipoic Acid, this daily cleansing gel washes away surface impurities and makeup without stripping skin of its natural oils. Leaves skin looking refreshed, radiant and perfectly prepared for treatment

It does not leave my skin feeling stretched or dry after cleansing. I plan to use this and ONLY this over the next few weeks and see if I look exceptionally radiant after 2 weeks of use 🙂  But after that I am giving it away.

Sorry SLES but I worry you might age my skin !

Tatcha Polished Gentle Rice Enzyme Powder Verdict: I Love It, But..IMGP2856

This has a scathing review on Beautypedia and Caroline Hirons does not mention it…but……OMG how I love it.

At first look it foams (Enemy #1), contains Alcohol, albeit way down at the bottom, (Enemy #2). I would have never used this if I hadn’t received this as a sample.

But love at first cleanse! This IS a cult cleanser amongst loads and loads of beauty v-loggers, including Little Bit Etc and now I know why.

Foam, Alcohol, Soap …and yet it does NOT leave my face dry and my skin feels well cushioned and clean!

This is what I did – Treadmill, washed face with Tatcha, then went in for a shower, shampooed, put on conditioner, sat sauna for 10 mins, washed off conditioner, dried off in sauna again and THEN, only then, did I put a serum on my face ! See the time gap between face wash and serum ? And my skin was not screaming.

Usually as soon as I wash my face with water and pat it dry , my skin is already screaming for a moisturiser.( water is very drying)

It’s Japanese magic alright.  And the other magical thing, NO stinging. Now this is Epic ! Even Neutrogena Gentle stings my eyes.

The only thing because it contains an exfoliant I would NOT use it everyday. Probably once or twice a week. I don’t like frequent exfoliation. Especially not if also using acid toners or other exfoliating scrubs.

Usage: I honestly thought this whole mixing with water before use is way too much work but it isnt ! The Japanese, man they just do everything amazingly well. tatcha

Look, just look at the packaging to dispense this powder! A smooth Open-Close slide with a tiny hole to tap out the powder. Easy to use, easy to travel with.

Tap Tap about 1/2tsp on palm,

wet other palm in  water,

rub palms to mix and

cleanse face !

Even the foam is softening, lol.

Rashmi, I recommend you buy it 🙂

13 JUNE UPDATE: This contains Papain. New research shows PAPAIN CAN BE ALLERGENIC AND CAN COMPROMISE SKIN BARRIER, so Rashmi I will probably not buy it for you

Glamglow  YOUTHCLEANSE™ DAILY EXFOLIATING CLEANSER.  Verdict: FK No!IMGP2855This one I am not even going to try. The second ingredient is our harsh friend again, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate.

Even while singing its praises on  (hmmmmm)  they have added the caveat ‘.. One caveat: Though it’s advertised as a daily cleanser, anyone with dry or sensitive skin may want to use this only two or three times a week since it leaves skin feeling thoroughly stripped of oil.’

I would not write Caveat, I would write Beware. Skin should never ever be stripped of its natural oils. But then again I would probably not review it & just toss it in the bin.

Or gift it to an enemy 🙂



  1. Tina, I recommend you buy it for me because I doubt very much it’s available in India. But I will look out for it when I’m traveling. Love your posts. Envy your routine- gym, sauna, masks etc. Enjoy it!

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