Cleansing Balm Review: High end vs Drugstore. IT Cosmetics vs elf
“Drugstore vs high end ” seems to be the debate that’s always going on when people talk about skincare. The phrase “you get what you pay for” always comes out to play. But is that really true?
I’ve never been anyone who suffered from brand snobbery. It’s been about the concentration of ingredients for me. In the end it’s about ingredients and performance regardless of brand.
What is a cleansing balm? A a thick or solid balm cleanser that melts into a oil-like texture that melts away makeup.
How do you use it? Moisten face and massage into the skin using circular motions and watch your makeup melt away! Rinse with warm water.
Booth brands are cruelty free and I tried them for a week. I have normal skin. I’ll be listing the first 13 ingredients of both since that’s what the majority of the cleansing balm is made up of.
I used a charcoal scrub after using both balms on the face as a double cleanse.
Bye Bye Makeup Cleansing Balm $38.00, 2.82 oz
Claims: Bye Bye Makeup is your 3-in-1 sulfate-free cleansing balm, instant makeup remover and skin-softening anti-aging serum—all in one step! Developed with plastic surgeons, this gentle face cleanser completely melts away all traces of makeup—even waterproof eye makeup—and impurities without drying or irritating your skin. Proprietary Skin-Softening Serum Concentrate™ is activated on contact, providing a soft barrier of moisture that helps ward off free-radicals and pollutants for healthier, younger-looking skin.
The first 13 Ingredient List:
ETHYLHEXYL PALMITATE, PEG-20 GLYCERYL TRIISOSTEARATE, CARTHAMUS TINCTORIUS (SAFFLOWER) SEED OIL, POLYETHYLENE, MACADAMIA TERNIFOLIA SEED OIL, PEG-8 ISOSTEARATE, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) BUTTER, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, AQUA/WATER/EAU, ALOE BARBADENSIS LEAF EXTRACT, CAMELLIA SINENSIS LEAF EXTRACT, BUTYLENE GLYCOL, GLYCERIN.
The first thing I notice is the smell. It smells very strong of Tea Tree and Licorice (yes, that’s in the formula). IT Cosmetics feels greasy on the skin and leaves a thin gummy film residue on the skin after rinsing. But if you’re someone who does double cleaning this won’t be a big deal. I didn’t like the way my skin felt afterwards though, waxy and heavy. My skin didn’t feel clean. More like I smeared a heavy moisturizer on my face in the shower. If you have super dry parched skin this may work for you. However when taking my eye makeup off it left a film on my eye. NOT good. It spreads into my eyes, blurs my vision and burned my eyes.
CONS: It’s highly fragranced. Leaves a residue on the skin and eyes. Price $$$. Burned my eyes
The thin, waxy, gummy film from the IT cleansing balm was still there after the scrub.
HOLY HYDRATION! MAKEUP MELTING CLEANSING BALM $10.00, 2 OZ
Claims: Easily removes makeup without stripping the skin. Formulated with hyaluronic acid, ceramides and peptides leaving skin feeling plumped with hydration. Leaves skin feeling silky smooth and hydrated. Great for all skin types.
The first 13 Ingredient List:Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Hydrogenated Polydecene, PEG-20 Glyceryl Triisostearate, Polyethylene, PEG-10 Isostearate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Hydrogenated Sunflower Seed Oil, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-1, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Ceramide 3, Ceramide 6 II, Ceramide 1.
The first thing I notice is the texture and lack of smell. Elf Holy Hydration melting cleansing balm is a more gel type balm that rinses far cleaner than the IT Cosmetics one. It’s also thinner in consistency. It spreads nicely on the skin. The Elf has little to no fragrance. It took my eye makeup off beautifully with no scrubbing. It melted it off and did not sting my eyes or leave a film on the them. I felt it lived up to its claims.
The elf one washed off much better but it took far longer than I wanted it to – even in the shower. Cleansing balms aren’t my preferred method of cleansing my face (I like cleansing oils or glycolic cleanser) but I like them for eye makeup removal. They are superior for that.
CONS: More removal time than I care for.
For my money (and my eyes) elf Holy Hydration melting cleansing balm is the winner.
Beauty Tip: Allow cleansing balm to sit on the eye area for an extra 10-20 seconds to allow formula to break down hard-to-remove mascara and eyeliner.