When I first started my Asian beauty inspired routine I knew what my first step had to be, both literally and figuratively.
Oil cleanser! I live in Australia, I’m very pale, and I want to keep it that way so I wear a LOT of sunscreen. I read that it was the best way to remove makeup, sunscreen and general goo from your face so your “normal” cleanser can really get in and do what it’s supposed to do.
So I approached the idea with caution. This is because I dye my hair and sometimes use Vaseline to cover my skin to stop it from going blue-black but ugh. That feeling… It makes my skin crawl just thinking about it. It’s greasy, sticky, and personally, I’m not a fan. I can’t stand using it so I put up with dye stained ears for a few days rather than subject myself to the evil vat of petroleum sludge.
So first hearing about oil cleansing I got that same, crawling feeling in the pit of my stomach. I was going to wash my face… with oil? Ew. No thanks. Nope. No.
So I read up on it, I asked around on reddit, and someone suggested the Banila Co. Clean it Zero to start me off, as it’s a different texture, easy to find, not drippy and messy, and a bit easier for a creeped out newbie to handle. Sounds good!
I managed to snag a sample pack of each of the four kinds because I’m quite indecisive and even though I looked quite a bit I couldn’t find a comparison that suited the questions I had. (If you find or have written one please please link me!)
I’ve broken down my comparison as I have a couple of requirements, however my skin is pretty hardy and not at all sensitive and firmly balanced between oily and dry – yes I’m a mythical creature of no not combination really it’s normal skin type.
If I’m going to be slathering this stuff on my face daily, massaging and hopefully drawing out those stubborn grits out of my nose, it has to smell okay. It doesn’t have to be scented at all, but if it is, I want it to be nice. Not necessarily a deal breaker but it might help if I’m torn between two. Obviously the rating on this will totally depend on your taste. The scent on all four of these is quite subtle to my nose but if any of these sound gross to you, well, here’s your heads up.
Regular – sweet, lightly floral almost baby powder scent. A little cloying to me but that just because I jammed my nose in the pot. 3/5
Purity – one of the big draws for Purity is that it’s free from any added fragrances, but it does have a scent. It’s the lightest herby lavender smell, which considering it has lavender oil in it is unsurprising. 4/5
Reveratrol – very bright fruity scent, mostly green apple. This is my fave! 5/5
Radiance – soft, floral almost candy like scent. Kinda meh but not offensive. 3/5
2. Makeup & sunscreen removal
Now this is why I bought the four pack! I’ve tested them all quite a bit and found it to be a tie overall, but I did another small test so I could show you guys!
I slathered some makeup on my hand, two eyeliners, a liquid liner and a liquid lipstick as well as a slather of my indomitable mascara (review for that one coming soon!) as it’s easier to show makeup removal in picture format than sunscreen removal.
I tried really hard to put the same sized tiny blob of each cleanser onto each section of my hand. I rubbed them in a bit to get them breaking down the makeup, as you can see the liquid lipstick and eyeliners gave up immediately!
I ran some water over my hand and, still trying to keep each quarter seperate, emulsified them. You can’t see it here but all four went milky when mixed with water, this is when the liquid eyeliner gave in.
And rinsed off! As you can see that mascara doesn’t budge, unfortunately my hand isn’t a perfectly flat even surface for testing, but I can tell you that I was rubbing and working the hardest on the Radiance quarter.
So, after multiple face tests and the little experiment above I gave each one a score out of 10 for makeup removal.
Again, this is totally subjective but I wanted my oil cleanser to give me some slip, especially when I’m doing a facial massage.
Regular: Nice, creamy, soft. Emulsified well. Left minimal residue. 8/10
Purity: A bit more slippery when melted than the regular kind. Left no noticeable residue. 9/10
Resveratrol: Almost the same as the regular. Minimal residue. 8/10
Radiance: Same again, doesn’t feel different until rinsed off. Leaves a film behind that my regular cleanser removed. 6/10
4. Bonus round!
Purity gets a bonus point for being clean, simple and free from stuff that makes people not able to try the regular kind, sooo a point for being inclusive.
Regular gets a point for being the most readily available and usually the cheapest.
I really like all of the “flavours” of Banila Co Clean it Zero… except Radiance. I was so so excited to try it but it wasn’t the best at removing makeup, smells not so great and just left me feeling kinda meh.
I was also interested in the Resveratrol version as I keep seeing it advertised being for oily skin OR anti-aging. I didn’t notice any difference in oil production or skin texture during my tests but I may grab a full size soon to investigate further.
Down the track I may purchase a full size of the Radiance, just to see if I’m being too harsh but for now, I’m totally in love with the other three, but the smell of the Resveratrol version has my heart.