Ooh, Honey-Based Cleansing?
As well as being something of a cleanser collector (ahem, hoarder), I’ve also had a love for the hydrating, antibacterial benefits of honey-based skincare since discovering French pharmacy brand Nuxe and their honey-infused goodies about 15 years ago.
So I was really pleased to see other companies including Bee-Yu and Farmacy Beauty get on board the honey train, and excited to try out Farmacy’s Clean Bee Ultra-Gentle Facial Cleanser (£27 for 150 ml, Cult Beauty).
Farmacy Clean Bee Clean Bee Ultra-Gentle Facial Cleanser
The foaming gel alternative to the brand’s cult classic Green Clean (from £24 for 50 ml, Feel Unique), this cleanser contains a naturally derived surfactant (cleansing agent); sodium lauroyl methyl isethionate, which is both coconut based and water soluble.
It also boasts hyaluronic acid to hydrate, liquorice root to brighten, and honey; a humectant and anti-bacterial/viral/fungal.
Like the rest of US-based Farmacy’s line, this cleanser is cruelty-free and paraben, phthalate and artificial fragrance-free.
I’ve included the full list of ingredients at the bottom of this post.
Aside from looking pretty much exactly like honey, one of the first things that struck me about this cleanser it also smells like it too.
But not just any honey…this has the slightly floral scent of the fancy kind harvested from bees that feed on wild flowers…you know the one.
For me this has the effect of making the cleanser both relaxing to use and also of reminding me of yummy breakfasts (making the urge to nibble quite strong).
On the Skin
Beyond the lovely scent, the other thing that really stands out (to me anyway) is that I really only need the tiniest amount of this to get an impressive foam going.
And while I’m not usually much of a foaming cleanser user, this is definitely a gentler alternative to some other harsher gels.
Unfortunately though, I still find it slightly drying on my (admittedly quite sensitive) skin. And I definitely need to moisturise straight after using, putting this more in the category of cleansers-to-use-when-my-skin-is-oily (also in this category: Drunk Elephant’s Beste No.9 Jelly Cleanser, £27 for 150 ml).
While I love the concept, scent and ingredients, sadly this just isn’t a gel cleanser I can use every day on my dry-ish skin.
Instead I save this for days when I’m a little oilier.
I also still love Fresh’s Soy Face Cleanser (from £11.50 for 50 ml, Cult Beauty), a non-stripping, low-foaming gel that leaves my skin cleansed and comfortable every time, whatever’s going on with it.
For another honey-based alternative I’m also a fan of Nuxe’s Reve de Miel Face & Body Cleansing Gel (£19.50 for 400 ml, Nuxe).
Not only does it leave my skin really comfortable (and is ridiculously good value), it also doubles as a really non-drying body wash so is great for throwing in gym bags or travel. Oh and it also contains 92 per cent naturally-derived ingredients; great for natural beauty fans like me.
Great for: Oilier types, who will probably find this hydrating enough. Double cleansing fans might also appreciate the gentle foaming action here after an oil or balm cleanse. Dry skin types may also like this during a breakout.
Not-so-great for: Really dry skin, which may not find this hydrating enough.
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The full list of ingredients:
Water, Sodium Lauroyl Methyl Isethionate, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Water, Decyl Glucoside, Maltooligosyl Glucoside, Lauryl Glucoside, Glycerin, Hydrogenated Starch Hydrolysate, Echinacea Purpurea Root Extract, Honey Extract, Propolis Extract, Royal Jelly Extract, Hydrolyzed Sodium Hyaluronate, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Melia Azadirachta Leaf Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Lavandula Hybrida Oil, Curcumin, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Betalne, Sodium Pca, Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Abies Sibirica Oil, Cymbopogon Martini Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens Oil, Pogostemon Cablin Oil, Caramel, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil, Ocimum Basilicum (Basil) Flower/Leaf Extract, Ocimum Sanctum Leaf Extract, Melia Azadirachta Flower Extract, Corallina Officinalis Extract, Flavor (Aroma)*, Potassium Sorbate, Maltodextrin, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Phytate, Propanediol, Linalool (*Natural Fragrance)