REVIEW: Pixi + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse

by - February 21, 2018

I have to admit, I'm not a huge fan of collaborations with influencers in the beauty community and I've basically decided that I won't buy them, though there are a couple of exceptions to that. The most glaring exception, which is a product that I knew I absolutely HAD. TO. HAVE. as soon as it was announced was the Pixi + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse. It took forever to come to Canada, and I was about ready to beg someone to pick me up one in the UK and ship to it to me, but I finally found it on the shelf in my local drugstore, so I picked it up immediately and got to testing.

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If you're unfamiliar with Caroline Hirons - which I honestly can't imagine that you are - let me tell you why I'm 100% on board with anything she recommends that would suit my needs and skin type. Caroline has been a professional in the beauty industry for years, having started out on counters and moved into working directly with brands, and she just knows her shit. She approaches skin care in an evidence based way, which is really important to me personally, and is phenomenal at communicating about products and ingredients in a way that makes sense. I've really learned a ton from her since I've been reading her blog and watching her videos. She's also a no B.S. kind of a person, telling it like it is, which is always appreciated. I honestly think her blog and YouTube channel are some of the absolute best and I genuinely take her advice and knowledge to heart, but also she's just a bad ass woman and I want to support bad ass women. So yeah, I was absolutely always going to buy this.

Double cleansing has been something I've been doing consistently for about 4 years now and I can honestly tell you that it has changed my skin. I always struggled with troublesome skin that was dehydrated and oily, prone to pretty intense breakouts, and generally pretty sensitized. Ultimately I figured out that it was significantly caused by a lack of routine combined with harsh cleansers that stripped my skin and damaged my moisture barrier. Using an oil based cleanser to take off my makeup and following up with a gentle skin cleanser has made a huge difference for me. My skin is much more balanced these days and I chalk up a significant portion of that to a cleansing routine that works for me.

If you're new to double cleansing, here are the basics. For your evening routine, particularly if you wear makeup, it's best to start your routine with an oil based cleanser. Using dry hands, apply your oil or balm to a dry face and massage in to break up whatever is on your skin. Some people will go in and emulsify with water at this point to create a milky texture and then rinse, but I personally prefer to just go straight in with a warm wash cloth and remove the cleanser that way. Next, you're going to use a cleanser to actually clean the skin. I prefer to use a cream, lotion, or milk cleanser for this step because it's more gentle and calming on my skin. I simply massage that into the skin for about a minute and then also remove that with a wash cloth. Adding a second cleansing step may seem like a lot, but I actually find that once you get the hang of it, it's quick and easy. And with this product, you get both products in one jar, making it kind of a no brainer.

Now let's talk about this product, starting logically with the first step. The Step 1 Solid Cleansing Oil contains Vitamin E to protect and condition, Camellia Oil to nourish, and Evening Primrose Oil to heal and moisturize. It doesn't contain any fragrance, which is never a bad thing. Initially, it's quite thick, but it melts down and spreads easily so you really don't need much for your entire face, I would say about a dime sized amount. I find that this cleansing oil works really well to break down makeup without having to add too much pressure or pulling on the skin, including my waterproof mascara. It also rinses away really easily, so I don't end up with a heavy residue on the skin and leaves the skin feeling clean without a heavy residue left behind on the skin. I had no doubt that this cleansing oil was going to be really good and it 100% lived up to my expectations.

The Step 2 Cleansing Cream contains Vitamin C to promote collagen and protect, Peptide Complex to relax lines and plump, and Arginine to improve cell renewal and elasticity. When it comes to those ingredients, I have to admit that I don't put a ton of stock into them doing much for the skin, since they are going down the drain for the most part, but I suppose I could be wrong. When applied, this cleanser has a really smooth texture that massages into the skin quite nicely. Once rinsed, which is what's important in my opinion, the skin feels clean and fresh without any tightness or discomfort. It's a really nourishing, pampering cleanser that does the job without damaging or sensitizing my skin. What more can you say about a cleanser other than it works and doesn't have any negative effects?

Recently I read a review of some higher end cleansers that claimed they didn't do anything because they didn't foam up and leave the skin feeling "clean". For the person writing the review, this was clearly a strike against the products, but for me it was a positive. I think that a lot of us have come up in a time when foaming cleansers that gave that tight, squeaky clean feeling were just what we knew and we've come to think of that feeling as being clean. What I've absolutely learned is that nothing good comes from that feeling. It's really only been since I've been using more gentle cleansers that don't leave my skin feeling tight and dry that I've really noticed improvement in my skin. I know that cleanser can seem like a throwaway in a skin care routine when compared to transformative serums and acids, but I firmly believe that those things only work as well as they can when you have a good cleansing routine that keeps your skin balanced.

Overall, I really quite enjoy this product and will 100% continue using it and purchase it again. I kind of do wish that the two sides were sold separately, because I won't go through them at the same rate, so it would be nice to be able to reup on one at a time, especially since most people aren't insane like me with a whole shelf full of cleansers in their bathrooms. That said, that one complaint definitely isn't a deal breaker for me because the products are genuinely good. Another thing that I will say is that both of these products are designed and intended to be removed with a wash cloth, so I would highly recommend using them that way if you want to get the most out of them.

The Pixi + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse is finally available here in Canada at Shoppers Drug Mart locations and retails for $34CAD.

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