There are few things in life that excite me more than a good cleanser. What few things? It's coffee, climbing and cats - all good things seem to begin with a 'C'. What's good cleanser is totally personal, but to me it's a sum of efficiency, enjoyment and great ingredients. As much as I love applying my make up I equally love taking it off; the good 5-10 minutes of "me time" properly cleansing and massaging my face. To me it's anything but a chore. Josh Rosebrook team kindly sent me a couple of his products to try and I already raved about his Active Infusion Serum (review here), which I've been loving in my current skincare routine. Today I'm reviewing you his Complete Moisture Cleanse.
First of all, I need to say that Josh's website is excellent and very straight-forward. If you want to learn more about him, his approach to skin- and haircare or quality of the ingredients the info is there. Josh began working in high end hair salons in Los Angeles in his twenties, and his fascination for natural ingredients made him expand his background in hair and scalp to the biochemistry of the skin. Today works with a team of phytochemists and herbalists, striving for uncompromising high standards in both formulation and quality of ingredients.
All plant ingredients in JR skin an hair care products are 100% organic, certified organic or wild-crafted. They do not use pre-made herbal or plant extracts but make their own. This is to ensure absolute purity, safety and zero toxicity. Their products are obviously free from animal testing, sulfates, parabens, synthetic fragrances, artificial colors, silicones, petrochemicals or GMOs. This brand doesn't just say "we're X-free", but truly invest in their ingredients. I'm a fan.
Complete Moisture Cleanse
This cleanser is advertised suitable for all skin types, gently cleansing skin from dirt, oil and bacteria with the aid of rich plant oils and potent herbal actives. Available in two sizes $50.00 for 4oz/120ml or travel size $27.00 for 2oz/60ml on Josh Rosebrook official site. They ship internationally, available also in EU at a beautiful world and Reina Organics - the prices are considerably higher though. I have the travel size for this review.
Using the Cleanser
Despite containing a variety of oils, this cleanser isn't nearly oily enough to remove make up. However, I don't see this as a downside as I always double cleanse with a separate product. Personally I like to save this type of expensive cleansers for my bare skin and not wash down the drain with my make up. Using the cleanser is straightforward: I pour the cleanser into my hands and gently massage my face. There is a very slight lather, but not foaming or bubbling, which can be potentially stripping. The texture is milky and a bit jellied, I assume it's because of the aloe vera gel base. I love the scent, it's similar (natural) vanilla-marshmallow goodness as in the Hydrating Accelerator or Active Infusion Serum.
According to the JR website the Complete Moisture Cleanse is supposed to be pH balanced. My pH meter + strips gave the result of ~5.7, which is not bad but a slightly higher than I prefer. An ideal would be pH 5.5 (or lower for exfoliating cleansers), which is slightly acidic to protect skin's natural acidic mantle from bacteria. Compete Moisture Cleanse's pH is not high enough to raise any concerns in me, I haven't noticed any breaking out while using this cleanser. I doubt my home meters are perfectly accurate, but I still like to measure a rough result.
Afterwards my skin feels very soft, smooth and plump. I want to keep stroking my face! You'd think this cleanser would be packed with silicones or other slipping agents, so nice and soft my skin feels. None of that stuff in here. If one can be blown away by a cleanser, it's done. Despite the name my skin is more on the balanced side than moisturised, I could feel little tightness when I raised my eyebrows. Despite containing oils, there's no residue and I feel the Complete Moisture Cleanse could be a potential face for oily and acne prone skin types.
*Aloe Vera Gel, Water, †African Black Soap, *Honey, *Vegetable Glycerin, *Avocado Oil, *Jojoba Oil, *Argan Oil, *Evening Primrose Oil, *Baobab Oil, *Hemp Seed Oil, *Borage Oil, *Almond Oil, *Sunflower Oil, *Grape Seed Oil, *Sesame Oil, †Broccoli Oil, *Sea Buckthorn Oil, Saponifed Coconut Oil, *Rose Petal, *Eyebright, *Turmeric, *Rosemary, *Sage, *Goji Berry, *Alfalfa, *Beetroot, *Dandelion, *Ashwagandha, *Marshmallow, *Raspberry Leaf, *Chickweed, *Calendula, *Elderberry, *Rose Hips, *Ginkgo, *Milk Thistle, *Black Cohosh, *Licorice, *Ginger, *Bladderwrack, *Fenugreek, *Hawthorn Berry, *Cats Claw, *Lavender Flowers, *St. Johns Wort, *Cinnamon, §Xanthan gum, §Potassium sorbate, *Vanilla extract, †Rosemary Essential Oil, †Ylang Ylang Essential Oil, †Eucalyptus Essential Oil. (*=Certified organic †=Organic §=Non-GMO plant sourced)
I was quite blown away looking at this ingredients list. The formula is packed with all things I personally love in my skincare: nourishing honey, treating plant-based oils and herbal extracts in a calming aloe vera gel base. All ethically, safely and environment friendly harvested. There is very little to complain about, unless you're very sensitive to essential oils, but there aren't that many. As the name suggests, the cleanser has a great amount of highly moisturising ingredients: organic honey, evening primrose oil, jojoba oil, argan oil and sea buckthorn oil - just to name a few. Josh's website has good info about the origin of the ingredients, so I'm not copy-pasting them here, but I've highlighted a couple of my favorites:
African Black Soap is a gentle plant-based cleanser with antimicrobial activity against bacteria and yeast (study), which makes it good in treating problematic skin and balancing oil. For this reason, I've used African Black Soap in the past as a lightly exfoliating body wash. The Black Soap is usually made of the ash of African plants, such as plantain or palm. According to Josh's site their Black Soap is made of ashes of these plant sources: plantain leaves, cocoa pods, shea butter residues, shea tree and Agow tree barks. Their African Black Soap is also certified Fair Trade.
Sea Buckthorn is a yellow 'oily' berry (delicious in porridge and smoothies, my Grandfather picks them when available) which is full of excellent antioxidants like Vitamin C and carotenoids. I've written more about the benefits of Vitamin C in skincare in this post. Of course, this doesn't substitute using a high % Vitamin C serum, but I'm happy when ingredients are potent and beneficial for the skin. Sea buckthorn not only nourishes, but can moisturize and soften the skin.
As you may know, honey is wonderful multi-purpose ingredient in skincare. It's naturally antibacterial, repairing, moisturising and healing. If you suffer from troubled skin, honey can help to treat and prevent acne while calming irritated skin. I follow a strict plant based diet with the exception of honey, but I pay close attention to its origin. Josh's honey is ethically sourced from organic certified beehives that have not been exposed to herbicides or pesticides.
I love it when brands practise what they preach, Josh Rosebrook's cleanser is beautifully formulated and a bliss to use. I am most definitely going to purchase the full size of this as I run out of it (which is very soon). Complete Moisture Cleanse is one of my favorite 2nd/morning cleansers to date among both eco and conventional brands. My skin loves how balancing, gentle and nurturing it feels and I got to say the heavenly scent is a big plus. I understand it's quite a pricey cleanser if you live outside the US, but I think the quality of the ingredients makes up for it.
Have you tried anything from the Josh Rosebrook's range? Would you be intrigued to? Please share your thoughts below!
More Josh Rosebrook: Active Infusion Serum (review)
Other cleansers I love: January Labs Pure and Gentle Cleansing Gel (review)
The product in this post was generously provided for consideration. Regardless, my opinions are my own honest and unbiased views. The links are for your convenience and do not contain ads.