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I’ve been using the E’Shee Clinical Esthetic Elegance Soapless Cleanser ($54) for approximately a month now. I’m in my mid-40s with oily skin prone to hormonal breakouts and dead skin buildup. After reading the label, I was hoping this particular product would remove dead skin cells as promised and would leave my skin feeling gently cleansed.
The minute I received this cleanser for testing, I read the label to check out the full ingredients list and immediately noticed some discrepancies, as well as a whole host of undesirable/dangerous ingredients. This, of course, led me to check out their website. The company claims this product is a soapless cleanser but neglects to mention that it contains detergent. Technically, I suppose the product is soapless, but in my opinion, this is a very sneaky way of misleading customers, especially those who have sensitive or dry skin. The particular detergent I’m referring to, cocamidopropyl betaine, is known to cause contact dermatitis. Quoted directly from EWG’s website: “Cocamidopropyl betaine is a synthetic surfactant; it has been associated with irritation and allergic contact dermatitis, reactions that could be due to the ingredient itself or to impurities present in it, such as 3-dimethylaminopropylamine.” The product also contains ammonium lauryl sulfate, which is another surfactant that commonly causes skin and eye irritation.
Another very concerning ingredient, cocamide DEA, was listed as a known carcinogen by the State of California in 2012 under their Prop 65 law. Then, we’ve got another skin irritant, polyquaternium 7, as well as the highly questionable (and totally unnecessary) coloring ingredients, yellow #5 and yellow #6.. Yellow #5 is outright banned in Norway, Austria and Germany, while yellow #6 is completely banned in Norway and Finland, and for very good reason. These ingredients are known to be toxic carcinogens as well as asthma triggers. Why would a company put ANY unnecessary coloring into a product, especially ones that are so toxic and dangerous? Then we’ve got the phenoxyethanol and unnecessary pearlizers. This list of useless, toxic ingredients goes on and on, with a few natural extracts thrown in at the end.
My first issue actually using this product: application. The directions state "squeeze a few drops of cleanser" out and to use on a wet face. The dispenser pumps out very little product. In order to have sufficient product to cleanse my entire face and neck, I had to use six pumps total. The cleanser is also one of those very low foaming ones, which I expected due to the ingredients, but I didn’t expect to require six pumps of it for one cleansing!
My second issue with using the product to wash my face is that it proved to be very drying and irritating, even to my oily skin. Every time I cleansed, my skin was left with little dead chunks peeling on my T-zone, the oiliest part of my face. My skin looked dry, felt tight and stripped, and it was left with what I can only describe as a residue. The company also says on the label that this product is an “ideal daily face wash for normal, sensitive, dry and dehydrated skin or as a gentle care after harsh facial procedures.” If this product stripped my oily skin, I’d hate to think what it would do to somebody after a harsh facial procedure or anybody with dry or sensitive skin.
The be all and end all is that this is a cleanser I couldn’t give away or even bathe my dog with. It unfortunately went straight into the garbage once my testing and reviewing was finished.