Edit 170701: I’ve updated this review. My feelings about the product stand, but I’ve updated my introductory statements.
There are two things I’m really obsessed with: double cleansing and visible male pantyline. When this product was announced, I was like OHH??! And then when it was revealed that the product was made in Korea, I got even more curious and excited. I bought a jar in January shortly after release and I’ve been using it since.
Pixi + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse Review
What it is: a jar with two interior wells for two different products. The first side is an oil cleansing balm, the first step in a double cleanse. The second is a cleansing cream, the water-soluble second step in the double cleanse.
Other first cleansers I’ve reviewed:
(LJH is my favorite)
- Leejiham (LJH) Dr’s Care Cleansing Oil Review
- Sunday Riley Blue Moon Tranquility Cleansing Balm Review
- A Review of 15 First-Step Korean Oil (and other) Cleansers
Other second cleansers I’ve reviewed:
(Glossier Milky Jelly and CosRx Good Morning are my favorites)
- 8 low-pH cleansers that didn’t work for me
- CosRx Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser
- Makeremake, the kbeauty brand that only sells cleansers
- Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser
- Innisfree Blueberry Rebalancing 5.5 Cleanser
- Sunday Riley Ceramic Slip
- Susanne Kaufmann Cleansing Gel
How to use it: apply a nut-sized (you pick the nut you like best) amount of the cleansing balm to dry skin, massage it in, rinse well with water, apply a nut-sized amount of cleansing cream to wet skin, massage it in, and rinse it all off.
Where to put it in your routine: put it in the first and second cleanser slots. Need a basic outline of when to use your products? Here you go:
Cleansing balm ingredients: Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, PEG-20 Glyceryl Triisostearate, PEG-8 Isostearate, Polyethylene, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylgylcerin, Astrocaryum Murumuru Seed Butter, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Camellia Japonica Seed Oil, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil. CosDNA analysis.
Cleansing cream ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Glycerin, Hydrogenated Polydecene, Dipropylene Glycol, Sorbitan Stearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 80, Glyceryl Stearate, Stearic Acid, PEG-100 Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, PEG-40 Stearate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Arginine, Carbomer, Ethylhexylglycerin, Allantoin, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, 1,2-Hexanediol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Ascorbic Acid, Camellia Japonica Seed Oil, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder, Maltodextrin, Butylene Glycol, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, sh-Decapeptide-7, sh-Octapeptide-4, sh-Oligopeptide-9. CosDNA analysis.
Overall ingredient breakdown: each side has a few potential acne and sensitive skin triggers; check those CosDNA links for details.
This product is made in Korea, so I’m not surprised that the balm contains polyethylene, which is a microplastic resin that up until this point I’ve only seen in kbeauty cleansing balms. But since this is sort of a kbeauty product, I’m not entirely shocked to find it here. As I mentioned in my roundup review of 15 kbeauty oil cleansers, I’m not sure that the beauty community can reasonably condemn plastic microbeads (made of polyethylene) with the same mouth that uses polyethylene-containing cleansing balm for lipstick removal. I’d be interested to hear from experts on the subject of microplastics.
Why don’t I talk about the pH of the cleansing balm? when it comes to first cleansers aka. oil cleansers, no need to worry about pH.
What type of skin might like this: this is gentle, but rinses totally clean for me, so I can see any skin type being able to use it.
Packaging: hard, fairly heavy plastic. I’ve dropped it on the floor and it’s fine. Half-empty, the whole thing weighs just over 7 ounces. This does not come with a spatula.
Smell: there’s zero added fragrance and I don’t pick up any sort of obvious chemically smell from the formulas either.
Value: 50ml / 1.69oz of each formula, so 100ml / 3.3814oz total. In comparison, Su:m37’s cleansing balm and the regular jar of Banila Co Clean It Zero are 100ml.
What’s good: since Pixi is based in the UK, I thought the cleansing balm would be one of those balms that refuses to emulsify and can only be removed with a flannel which the person who does my laundry would inevitably lose so fuck that. I was pleased to discover that the balm is actually made in Korea and therefore emulsifies perfectly. There’s no scent, so if that’s a concern for you, no problems here.
What’s not good: gahhh but there’s no scent. I like things that smell good and Korea is the SPOT for magical skincare scents, damn. The cleansing cream really doesn’t get me hot and bothered, I’m not sure that it really adds much to the party aside from feeling like you’ve done a good thing and double cleansed. The packaging is fantastic on one hand and fiddly on the other: I never manage to get the jar completely closed when my hands are wet. Since there’s no spatula, I end up scooping out way too much product, which contributes to a sense that the product is expensive versus the amount of product in each jar (in actuality, 1 jar contains a total of 100ml of product, 50ml cleansing balm and 50ml of cleansing cream, which isn’t bad).
Will I repurchase it: yeah, at some point. I think that I have things in my collection that I like better and will end up costing less, but I like the product formulas enough that having this for travel will be fantastic. It can’t go in my carry-on due to the size, but I rarely just fly with a carry-on, so nbd.
Pixi + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse Balm Dupe
So you just want the cleansing balm: I’ve seen a number of reviews where people mentioned that they’d like to just buy the cleansing balm in one 100ml package. I looked for the closest product match in terms of ingredients and HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA it’s Etude House’s O-LE-MONG One Shot Sherbet Cleanser, believe it or not. I have a jar of the Etude House, so I tested it after making that discovery and yeah, as long as you’re ok with a [nicely done] citrus scent, it’s pretty similar, 150ml (three times as much balm as the Pixi Double Cleanse), and also dead cheap. I see it for $13.48 on eBay from iamlove-shop and $16.90 on Amazon (both shipping from Korea) right now.
Pixi + Caroline Hirons Double Cleansing Cream…Not Dupe, but Sorta
So you just want the cleansing cream but want it in mask form with some little scrubbies (uhh): in terms of the main ingredients, the cleansing cream seems to be really similar to some creamy masks, emulsions, and creams from Korea plus surfactants to help it rinse off cleanly. Which makes sense because it’s a cleansing cream. Anyway, the closest thing I’ve found ingredient-wise is Skinfood’s Rice Wash Off Mask, which also has some little rice/tapioca scrubbies in it. You can find that for under $10 on Amazon.
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