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Complete with suction action!


removes most make - up, leaves skin looking and feeling fantastic

not very good at removing mascara, expensive

Recommendable Yes:

Detailed rating:

How does it affect your skin?

Does it dehydrate your skin?

Value for money

Why did you buy it?No particular reason 

25 Ciao members have rated this review on average: very helpful See ratings
exceptional by (8%):
  1. jo-1976
  2. azana
very helpful by (92%):
  1. Soho_Black
  2. VampirePrincessLizzy
  3. TheHairyGodmother
and 20 other members

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Clarins is a brand I had wanted to try for a long time (their beauty flash balm has been on my wish list for over 10 years!) but for some reason I never got round to buying any of their products. A few months ago I was looking for a new cleanser, when I came across a duo pack of Clarins cleanser and toner for a fairly good price (well a good price for Clarins stuff anyway), so snapped it up.

The cleansing milk I have is the 'Cleansing milk with alpine herbs for normal or dry skin'. I believe there is also a version for combination/oily skin available. Clarins say that this cleanser contains a combination of Alpine herbs, Chinese violet orchid, sweet almond, mallow, linseed oil and vitamins A and E, to cleanse, soften, moisture, soothe and maintain suppleness. They say it will remove all make-up and impurities to leave the skin looking clear, pure and luminous, which sounded just what I needed!

The cleansing milk comes packaged in a clear, flattish bottle with a white flip top lid and dark red writing that is a feature of all Clarins products. The packaging is simple and understated, and no-where near as flashy as some other brands - only a subtle gold band around the top of the bottle gives any indication that this is a premium product. I should note that as I bought this as part of a duo, it came boxed with a leaflet giving instructions on how it should be used, I have no idea if it comes boxed when bought alone.

When I first purchased this, I couldn't wait to try it and dove straight in without reading the instructions. It was only a few days later when I actually bothered to read the leaflet that came with the product I realised Clarins have their own 'exclusive cleansing method' which should be used with this product, so I had been applying it incorrectly.The method you are supposed to apply this with is as follows:
  • First, you must apply some of the cleanser to the palms of your hands and rub together to warm the cleanser up to skin temperature.
  • Secondly, rather than rubbing this onto the skin as I had been doing, you should lay your hands flat onto your face and lift and press back on 5-6 times, in quick succession.
  • Thirdly, rinse with water or remove with a paper tissue.

Also, if you have it, they say you should follow with their toning lotion to remove any traces of cleanser left on the skin. This whole process seemed a little unusual to me, but the idea behind step two, the lifting a patting part, is that the cleanser should thicken up and create a suction effect, which will lift off make-up and impurities without dragging or irritating your skin.The actual 'milk' is not like a milk at all, it's more of a light lotion and is mint green in colour. Given the fact that it is called 'cleansing milk with Alpine herbs' I had expected it to have a herbal scent, but in fact I feel it has a creamy scent with a hint of what smells to me like ginger. It's very soft and pleasant, whatever it is!

I find the whole 'pat and lift' method very quick, but whilst it's easy to do this on my cheeks and forehead, I do have to make sure that areas such as my nose, eyes and chin have been covered. Also, I can't say I have noticed the cleanser thickening on my skin at all, as they say it will.

To remove the cleanser, I have used both the rinse with water method, and have also used a cotton wool pad, as well as both of these methods together. I know it says rinse or tissue off and does not mention cotton wool, but I'm not a fan of using tissues to remove cleanser, as inevitably I get bits of disintegrated tissue stuck all over me - not a good look! I find that the best way to remove it is with cotton wool, and then a splash of water before toning if I feel I need it. It comes off easily and I can see the make-up and grime on the pad, which reassures me that it's doing it's job.

Whilst I do find this effective at removing foundation and eye shadow, mascara is another issue. It really seems to struggle at removing mascara, whether it is waterproof or not. I find that some black will come off onto the pad, but I can still see that I have mascara on my lashes, so I need to use a separate eye-make up remover.

After using this, I have to admit, the way it leaves my skin both looking and feeling is quite impressive. I have quite dry skin and find that this seems to gently hydrate my skin -not enough so that I can go without moisturiser, but enough to make it feel more comfortable. Also since using this (and the matching toner), my skin looks brighter and dewier - just a little healthier altogether.

I have to admit, I don't use this every single day, I get up at about 5am for work and sometimes I'm so tired I just use a cleansing wipe instead. On the days that I do find the time to cleanse and tone properly with this though, I do notice the difference to the appearance of my skin.

Being a Clarins product this is not particularly cheap, however I do feel I got a bargain. I paid £17.99 for the cleanser and toner duo pack, which is fantastic considering the same size (200ml) cleanser costs £17 on it's own from Boots. I have just checked where I bought the product and they still do the duo, albeit at the slightly increased price of £19.99. You only need a really small amount of this per use, so one bottle should last well. I've been using mine 2-3 months and there are still two thirds left.

Overall I have been very pleased with this product, and although I'm now on a budget and might not be able to afford another bottle in the near future, it is one I will be happy to use again when I'm feeling a bit more flush. If you have dry skin I would thoroughly recommend this, it brightened my skin and left it looking healthier and more radiant.

Clarins Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs (Dry/Normal) SDC10856 - Clarins Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herb
Clarins Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs (Dry/Normal
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Comments about this review »

jo-1976 27.03.2011 10:45

Very well covered x

Myredpip 26.03.2011 14:34

Good review x

mag3kids 26.03.2011 12:10

Very well reviewed. I receive some Clarins products for my birthday last year and really like their products.

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Clarins Cleansing Care Cleansing Milk With Alpine Herbs Normal/Dry Skin 200ml

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Product Information »

Manufacturer's product description

Spend over £25 and get a free £25 cosmetics pack and free delivery. Botanical-based milky lotion cleanser to ensure...

Product details

Long Name Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs (Dry/Normal
Type Cleanser / Exfoliator
Genre Cleansing Milk


Listed on Ciao since 31/10/2007

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Review Ratings »

This review of Clarins Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs (Dry/Normal) has been rated:

"exceptional" by (8%):

  1. jo-1976
  2. azana

The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.

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