Gentle cleansing with balms and hot cloths


Maggie Gibbons

Are you a gel or lotion cleanser? Or are you still using wipes? Have you ever considered a cleansing balm or hot cloth? Maybe it’s time to ditch the eco-unfriendly wipes and the piles of single-use cotton pads and reconsider your regime. Balms and hot-cloth cleansers are brilliant for removing dirt and grime from the skin, while the oil component in balms breaks down make up and even helps with clogged pores.

Melt away
Trilogy Make-up Be Gone Cleansing Balm (80ml, €24) melts away make-up, leaving skin feeling clean and hydrated. Made with mango butter, rosehip oil and coconut oil, it gently removes foundation, lipstick, mascara – even waterproof mascara – brilliantly.
Packaged with an organic cotton cloth that is sustainably produced and unbleached, this new way to cleanse is the perfect night-time ritual. Scoop a quarter of a teaspoon of the balm onto your fingertips and massage it on to dry skin. Rinse the organic cloth with warm water, wring and gently wipe over the entire face.

Floral notes
Emma Hardie Amazing Face Moringa Cleansing Balm (100ml, €54) contains rose and jasmine extracts, which help to restore radiance, even in dull and tired looking skin, while rehydrating mature skin types. Indulgent and therapeutic, this cleansing balm is ideal for using on your face and neck both in the morning and evening, and it’s gentle enough for the eye area too. It locks in moisture and can be used on all skin types. It leaves skin wonderfully refreshed, and comes supplied with a reusable muslin cloth.

Glow forward
Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm – Super Cleansing Treatment Balm (105g, €52) is a powerful, deep-cleansing balm that dissolves make-up, daily grime and pollutants. The skin is intensely cleansed, nourished and renewed for a glowing complexion, while the oils help to gently eliminate impurities without stripping and drying the skin. The pack also contains a soft cotton cleansing cloth has been specially designed to work in conjunction with the product,  warming the to skin ensuring improved absorption.

Bargain dupe
I find that most people either love or hate ‘dupes’  (cheaper copies of more expensive products). I always try them for comparison, and hand on heart admit to loving most of the Aldi ones, so when they introduced their Lacura Hot Cloth Cleanser (200ml, €4.99) I was in like Flynn. I nearly missed out as it sold out instantly!
I’d been using the Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser (100ml, €21.50) previously, and honestly, I didn’t notice any difference … except of course the price. The muslin cloth in Liz Earle is a bit softer, but not enough softness to justify the huge price difference. I now buy in bulk when the Lacura comes in. Quick to remove makeup, its creamy formulation leaves skin feeling soft and purified of the day’s grime. Formulated with rosemary, chamomile, cocoa butter and eucalyptus oil, I’m sold!

Vegan virtues
Primark recently launched its first vegan skincare range, PS… Naturals. The range is a collection of four products each carrying The Vegan Society’s sunflower trademark.
The PS… Naturals Balm to Oil Cleanser (50ml, €3.50) has extracts of vitamin-C-rich Kakadu plum and it transforms from balm to oil to leaving skin soft and beautifully cleansed. It’s a beautiful product, well worth trying. In fact I’m going to stock up on all of the range. They also do biodegradable wipes, which I intend to try soon.
With more and more Primark customers looking for products made with more natural ingredients, the introduction of the PS… Naturals range provides more choice for affordable skincare on the high street.

Maggie Gibbons is an Image/Style Consultant based in Louisburgh. She can be contacted at