Obligé Gel Crème Cleanser and Plant Hydrolate 4.0 oz
Reviewed by Stephanie T.

I was given both the Obligé by Nature Gel Crème Cleanser and Obligé by Nature Vitamin Infused Plant Hydrolate (a toner) to test. Here are my findings.

Cleanser – first impressions

I am inexperienced with cream cleansers, only because the concept of a cleanser that leaves any portion of itself on the skin seemed counter-intuitive to me. Then again, oil works as a brilliant cleanser and that’s fine to leave on the skin, so why not?

When I found myself with an opportunity to trial Obligé Gel Crème Cleanser ($24.95) the first thing I did was look up the ingredients. They are entirely natural, making this a great product with which to make my first foray into properly formulated cream cleansers.

After a few uses, the thing that stood out for me with Obligé was the scent. I really, really like it. It smells both fresh and real. For those who prefer a bit of flowery perfume this may not be the product for you, but for those who appreciate a natural “botanical” scent this is a real treat.  There is something very well judged about this scent.

Going onto the skin, the cleanser feels cool and comfortable. After rinsing off, a slight residue remains, rather like a light moisturiser. I don’t mind the feel of this at all, but it did make me question how much actual makeup might still be there with it. So I tested that by wiping my face down with a witch hazel and aloe toner on a cotton pad. Sure enough, some makeup remnants came off, revealing the inevitable limitations (but still net benefit) of a detergent-free natural product.

On another occasion late at night, very tired but still with a full face of makeup, I lazily grabbed the Obligé – splodge, swirl, splash, wipe – that will do! I was grateful to have something on hand that I could use to improve the situation, the remnants of which could be left on my skin safely and perhaps beneficially overnight.  Sure enough, my skin was quite happy in the morning.

Cleanser  conclusion

For overall feel, formulation and scent, Obligé cleanser scores extremely well. For cleansing efficacy, it’s not bad but not perfect. I do love having it on hand though, for those can’t-be-bothered-to-wash-my-face late nights, as well as for days when my skin feels dry or a bit unhappy, as Obligé is slightly soothing and moisturising.

Vitamin Infused Plant Hydrolate first impressions

Just like the cleanser, the scent of the Obligé Plant Hydrolate with B vitamins ($19.95) has been very well chosen. It’s very natural and botanical – mostly woody, with a little “green” and a touch of sweetness. It’s lavender, of course, but there are many types of lavender and this one, to my nose, is very tasteful. It is likely to be enjoyed by those who appreciate natural products especially.

Applied to the skin, it provides a subtle moisturization, slight smoothing and a soft perfume.

Vitamin Infused Plant Hydrolate conclusion

I can see two applications for this: As a great in-flight spritzer for long, dry flights, and as a classic everyday natural perfume. OK, I just thought of a third one  use it as a luxurious way to wipe off any residue from the Gel Crème Cleanser, for a very fresh and clean final result.

Ingredients in cleanser: Distilled water, Coco polyglucosides, French Kaolin White Clay, Organic Coconut Oil (cocos nucifera), Vegetable Glycerin, Organic Sunflower Oil ( Helianthus annuus), Organic Soy Lecithin, Organic Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis); Organic Hydrolates: Geranium (Pelargonium asperum), Witch Hazel (Hamamelis virginiana), Algae Extract, Xanthan Gum; Organic Plant Extracts: Calendula off., Gotu Kola (Centella asiatica), Comfrey (Symphytum off.), Soap Bark (Quillaja saponaria), Hops (Humulus lupulus), Horse Chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum), Organic Rosehip Seed Oil (Rosa mosqueta); Organic Essential Oils: Lavender (Lavandula off.), Blue Chamomile (Matricaria camomilla); Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid

Ingredients in hydrolate: Organic Lavender (lavandula off.) Hydrolate, B-Vitamin Complex, Glycerin