After downing two bottles of the ED4OLO Cleansing Oil (yeah, that good, see past review here) over the fall semester, I nabbed de Mamiel’s Restorative Cleansing Balm in the 100ml size from Shen Beauty just before returning home from school for winter break. I hadn’t used a cleansing balm since my first #greenbeauty purchase two summers ago (which the skin, sadly, did not like), but a combination of an interest in Annee de Mamiel’s philosophy and background, Megan from Seed to Serum’s post on de Mamiel’s new Botaniques line, and the harsh winter had me itching for a second try at balms.
And thank goodness because it was worth it. This is a beautiful, beautiful balm. Whether in the #polarvortex of the East Coast or in dry California, this remained buttery soft in spite of whatever weather. Thanks to a mix of flower essences and essential oils (Honey Myrtle, Fragonia, Chamomile, Rose Geranium), the balm smells beautifully floral–not in any way overwhelming, but truly restorative. It’s the best kind of calming scent to breathe in at the end of the day, almost making your insides feel more beautiful (I can just imagine my olfactory nerves turning to each other, “Hey, you’re looking good today!”).
Paired with Aurelia’s softest of the softest bamboo muslin cloths (obsessed), this melts away all traces of makeup and grime from a dry face. I was always a bit heavy-handed since I loved smearing this balm over my face, but a marble-sized amount is a perfect amount to remove face and eye makeup. I used this as my first cleansing step to remove makeup pretty much exclusively for the whole (and very long) winter. While I always followed up with a second cleanser (YÜLI’s Halycon, R.L. Linden & Co.’s Bee Charmer), this always left my skin as the description puts it, “satin-soft, glowing, and calm”. When experimentations with other first step cleansers left my face less than happy, I always came back to this one. While of course this balm can’t yank a sweet bun from my fingers (over my dead body), I felt cleansing with this helped to improve the condition of my skin. No mysterious widespread breakouts–just happy, balanced, healthy, well-cleansed skin.
The secret? A good amount of oils and butters topped with anti-all-the-bad-things and therapeutic manuka honey and skin-harmonizing probiotics (yes, even applied topically, not just orally!). The oil roster includes: fatty-acid rich but non-greasy camellia oil, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial calendula oil, deeply moisturizing and squalene-containing rice bran oil, restorative and healing borage oil, antioxidant-and-oleic-acid-rich marula oil, nourishing baobab oil, anti-inflammatory-and-ageing and moisturizing moringa oil, impurity-puller castor oil.
If you thought the oils were beautiful, take a look at the butters: moisturizing kukui nut, vitamin-rich and moisturizing mango, fatty-acid rich and anti-bad murumuru (isn’t that the most fun name ever), and fat-rich and nourishing cocoa.
tl;dr Beautiful, buttery-soft balm with moisturizing, cleansing, anti-bacterial/fungal/all-bad-things, anti-inflammatory ingredients that make you feel pretty. Oh, also removes makeup perfectly as the first step in cleansing. Would repurchase, but the weather’s finally looking up and I’ve got fresh bottles of ED4OLO to get through thanks to a past NMDL Friday Deal.
Have you tried this balm? What are your thoughts? If not, what’s your current favorite cleanser, balm or not?
Ingredients: Camellia oleifera (camellia) oil*, Aleurites moluccans (kukui nut) butter, Calendula officinalis, Helianthus annuus (calendula) oil*, Squalene, Oryza sativa (rice bran) oil*, Borago officinalis, Tocopherol (borage) oil*, Polysorbate 20 (derived coconut oil), Cera alba (beeswax)*, Rosa damascena (rose) wax, Sclerocarya birrea (marula) oil*, Mangifera indica (mango) butter, Adansonia digitata (baobab) oil*, Moringa oleifera (moringa) oil*, Ricinus communis (castor) oil*, Astrocaryum murumuru (murumuru) butter, Theobroma cacao (cocoa) butter, Inulin, Alpha-glucan oligosaccharide, (prebiotic), Bisabol, Manuka honey, Daucus carrota (carrot seed) oil*, Melaleuca teretifolia (honey myrtle) oil, Agonis fragrans (fragonia) oil, Pelargonium graveolens roseum (rose geranium) oil*, Eriocephalus punctulatus (cape chamomile) oil, Rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) oil*.
Naturally occurring citral, geraniol, citronellol
Flower and Gem essence of Heart Balm – Alpine Forget-Me-Not, Alpine Willowherb, Lime Blossom, Pink Frangipani, Scots Primrose, Silk Tree and Twinflower, Rose Quartz