After the very fruitful 3-day Organic Skincare Workshop over at Skin Dewi last year, which you can read here, here and here, I got to try several of the skincare offerings. I kept hearing about this particular product being one of the best sellers during the workshop (thanks, Steven!). Naturally, I was intrigued because apparently, this product isn’t what I thought it was.
Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk* is the one product that changes the way I think about cleansing and how it can make such a huge difference to the skin. Curious? Read on.
I’m sure when we hear the term “cleansing milk“, we’d automatically think about the type of product that we use to remove makeup using cotton pads. Swipe it over and over until there’s no makeup residue left. Cleansing milk is usually targeted for sensitive skin, to remove makeup and cleanse the skin at the same time. But, I personally cringe at the idea of the excessive use of cotton pads (which is usually in the how-to description) – it is a form of physical exfoliation.
What makes Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk different is that it’s created for daily facial cleanser; be it a second cleanser or morning cleanser. The formula is soapless and free of direct surfactants, which is interesting since the majority of facial cleansers out there has a type of surfactant. Dewi, the founder, explained to me that surfactant has become a necessity out of marketing. There’s an illusion where bigger foam equals to better cleansing when it’s not like that. That “squeaky clean” feel after cleansing is actually not good for the skin. Not in the long run anyway. The skin does need sebum otherwise, it’ll become imbalanced and that’s usually where the problem arises.
After the whole SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) issue and news being the bad surfactant, more brands are using a milder type of surfactants. FYI, the products might still produce foam even though there’s no SLS present. While this cleaner approach seems to serve good to a lot of people, some individuals are extremely sensitive to any kind of surfactant and they can’t tolerate it. This is where Skin Dewi formulated Hazelnut Cleansing Milk to answer that need.
Let me just copy-paste Dewi’s excerpt:
“I need something super strong!” is a common misconception people with oily skin-types have. The fact is, using harsh products will over-strip the skin of its natural oil and damage the protective barrier, immediately triggering a compensation for the dehydration with excess oil production, which just end up clogging your pores. To stop this vicious cycle, the Hazelnut Cleansing Milk works like a gentle giant, combatting oily-skin issues effectively whilst nurturing and repairing the damaged mantle. Say hello to the brand new, beautiful and normalized skin you never thought you’d have!
Aqua, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Corylus Avellana (Hazelnut) Seed Oil, Glycerine, Cetearyl Glucoside, D-alpha-Tocopherol, Benzyl Alcohol, Amorphophallus Konjac Root Powder, Epilobium Fleischeri Extract, Salvia Sclarea (Clary) Oil, Benzoic Acid, Soybean (Glycine Soja) Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Pelargonium Graveolens (Geranium) Oil, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Oil, Dehydroacetic Acid, Boswellia Carterii (Frankincense) Oil, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Oil, Citric Acid, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate. Citronellol*, Geraniol*, Limonene*, Linalool*. *from natural essential oils.
Bold = organic
The second ingredient in line, Witch Hazel Water, is a natural astringent that can help control oil production, reduces inflammation, and promotes skin healing. Hazelnut Seed Oil is also an astringent oil that is known to balance the oil production. Because of these alone, Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk is more suitable for combination to oily skin types. The rest of the ingredients are beautiful plant-based oils (Castor, Jojoba, Soybean), essential oils (Clary, Lavender, Geranium, Tea Tree, Frankincense, Rosemary), emulsifiers and preservatives.
The first thing that I noticed is the scent. There’s no way to escape that from my nose. It has a herbal scent, quite pungent and Jamu-like. I was taken aback a little bit at first because it’s rather strong. But it truly adds to the experience. I get accustomed to it pretty quickly and actually miss it when I don’t use it! I think ever since I use green products, my scent’s library has grown exponentially.
How do I use Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk? As a second and morning cleanser.
I use a dollop, slightly smaller than a quarter size, about 5-6 pumps, onto wet face. The lotion/emulsion’s consistency isn’t as runny as the usual conventional cleansing milk. One might need time to get used to it considering it kind of feels like applying a cream cleanser or a moisturizer instead of a regular cleanser. But soldier on, the magic is about to happen. Once I wash off the milk with water (no cotton pads here!), I am left with not only non-stripped skin but also suppler. Err, what? Is that even possible? It is with this product. All the lovely oils are doing that to the skin.
One thing to note, in the beginning it might feel like it leaves a residue. You might feel the skin feels a little slippery or filmy. But this is a matter of adapting. Our skin is so used of surfactants and that clean feeling after cleansing. The way that I see it, it’s like replacing the dirty oils with new nourishing oils instead. Hence the unfamiliar sensation.
It’s the most perfect cleanser to use in the morning or if the skin is feeling dry and/or extra sensitive. By any means, the product itself is formulated with sensitive skin in mind. Washing my face with only water actually dries out my skin afterward – so that’s a no-go. As I mentioned, Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk will gently cleanse the skin with its silky, comforting texture, but still leaving it feeling supple and protected. It’s a win-win solution, really.
If I were only wearing sunscreen during the day, using Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk as a first cleanser might be enough. But, I personally stick to oil-based products for my first cleanser. It is still the most efficient in my book. It’s not suitable for removing makeup though. It’ll be a waste because you’re going to need a lot of it. And probably still not very clean afterward. Actually, Dewi recommends using a cleansing oil to remove the makeup first.
There’s another way I like to use it: as an add-on emulsifier for natural cleansing oils/balm. I’m putting the word ‘natural’ here because usually, they have little-to-no emulsifier in the formulation. When there’s no emulsifier present, water will not remove oil on its own. The emulsifier is the one that’s going to turn the oil into milky consistency once it touches the water. Thing is, with natural/green/organic formulations, the emulsifiers still aren’t as effective as the mainstream ones. They just don’t emulsify well. That’s why usually we have to use a separate face cloth to remove the product (and makeup) – which will ultimately stain the cloth.
The Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk acts as the emulsifier to this type of not-friendly-with-water cleansing oils. So once I massaged the oil, I take a dollop of the product and gently massage it into the skin. Instantly, the milk will pick up the oil, dirt, and makeup as well. It will turn into that icky, brown color. This way, it rinses off a lot easier with water. I still use a pre-soaked face cloth (I use the one from Pai Skincare) for good measure. The cloth doesn’t stain as bad either.
Then I’d still use Hazelnut Cleansing Milk again for the second cleanse. I know it sounds like wasting so much product but dayum, my skin feels amazingly soft and supple afterward. It feels like doing an exquisite facial on my own, where the cleansing step already makes me want to fall asleep. It’s a totally unique experience on its own. One must try.
After using this for months, I started noticing that my skin becomes more balanced and in control with lesser blemishes (apart from taking care of my lifestyle). I used it almost exclusively – meaning I only changed into regular cleanser once a while. It really does work like a gentle giant; clearing out the dirt without messing with the integrity of the skin. If any, it helps in repairing the protective skin barrier too. If there’s a short way of putting it, it’s like having a brand new skin. This is exactly why I’m calling Skin Dewi Hazelnut Cleansing Milk a game changer in my routine.
I’m telling you, cleansing with the right products will already make a world of a difference.
It actually makes me realize that we can be less dependent on surfactants.
Price-wise, Hazelnut Cleansing Milk is IDR 515,000 for 150 gr of product. If you’re going to compare Skin Dewi to other local brands, then you’d think it’s expensive. And I won’t argue with that it is on the higher price level. But based on the intricate formulation and ingredients that are used, you’ll understand why, hopefully. I don’t like that nonsense stereotyping where local brands should be cheap. For me, it comes down to the formula and how it’s presented. I think at this age, we should evolve from such notion and fully support the presence of newer, niche brands that are filling the massive gap in the growing local beauty industry.
There’s another version called Raspberry Cleansing Milk that is geared towards dry skin types. It has papaya extract (which my skin agrees with), raspberry oil and vitamin B3. I haven’t tried this one yet but I’m planning to. I’ve heard good things about it too.
There is no doubt that the Hazelnut Cleansing Milk is the number one recommendation that I’ll make for anyone who wants to try Skin Dewi. This product is singularly unique in terms of the approach and the idea behind it. The sophisticated formulation makes all of them come to life.
I am absolutely obsessed!
Disclosure: the product was originally gifted to me. As always, all opinions are mine, good and bad. Please read this for more details.