Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser
6.77 fl. oz. for $5.99
Category:Skin Care > Sensitive Skin Products
Last Updated:12.19.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

This cleanser is black due to the charcoal powder it contains. There's not much charcoal in here, but it's enough to make this cleanser look different than the rest—and there's the off-putting notion that it's counter-intuitive to wash with something that tends to stain skin and make it look dirty! Still, charcoal has absorbent properties when left on skin (such as in a mask) but in a rinse-off cleanser it's really just a waste.

The reason this water-soluble cleanser is rated poorly is because it contains skin irritant menthol. Although menthol's tingle may feel refreshing, that's just your skin letting you know it's being irritated. We're also not thrilled that this cleanser contains a moderate amount of fragrance, because that only adds to the irritation from the menthol.

As for the Japanese Skin Purifying Technology supposedly infused into this cleanser, that makes for interesting marketing copy, but that's about it! This cleanser contains commonplace ingredients that aren't unique to any country.

  • Water-soluble formula cleanses thoroughly.
  • Charcoal powder is a good absorbent ingredient for oily skin when used in a product meant to stay on skin longer than a cleanser should be.
  • Contains skin irritant menthol.
  • The amount of fragrance adds to the irritation from the menthol; fragrance isn't skin care.
  • Despite the claims, this cleanser isn't indicative of what the Japanese or any other country knows about cleansing.

The new secret weapon from the Bioré® Skincare Experts. Draw out and trap 2x more dirt and impurities than a basic cleanser with this innovative black cleanser that foams white and rinses clean. Infused with Japanese Skin Purifying Technology, this facial cleanser gives you results after just one use!


Water, Glycerin, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sorbitol, Laureth-¬4 Carboxylic Acid, Ethylhexylglycerin, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Methylparaben, Fragrance, Sodium Hydroxide, Menthol, Polyquaternium-¬39, Disodium EDTA, Propylparaben, Charcoal Powder, Mannitol, Cellulose, Iron Oxides, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Methylisothiazolinone, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose

Brand Overview

Biore At-A-Glance

Strengths: Provides complete ingredient lists for every product on the company Web sit; improved cleansers.

Weaknesses: Known for their pore strips, which aren't as helpful as they seem; lots of products that contain alcohol and/or menthol, neither of which improve the look or function of pores; the sole sunscreen option lacks the proper UVA-protecting ingredients.

This drugstore line wants you to know it is serious about keeping your pores unclogged. They pledge that their products will rid your pores of the dirt, oil, and grime that can cause them to enlarge to "manhole-sized proportions." Although that size is clearly an exaggeration, most of the claims Biore makes also stretch what's possible. For example, neither their products nor the manner in which they function take into account the fact that pore size is more often than not genetic and controlled to a large extent by the oil glands that lie beneath the skin, which are themselves controlled by hormone activity, and none of that can be affected from the outside in.

None of the Biore products can shrink the oil gland or help keep it unblocked, and that is the only surefire way to reduce pore size. One of the bonuses of taking prescription Accutane for acne is that in most cases the patient's pore size becomes remarkably smaller due to the manner in which this potent drug works internally. We are not suggesting anyone should take Accutane simply to shrink large pores. But we do suggest it would be better to stop believing that skin-care products that claim to do so are the answer. Effective skin-care products (including some items in the Biore line) can remove or absorb excess oil, which makes pores less noticeable, and a well-formulated cleanser will remove grime and surface oils without drying skin, which temporarily makes pores look slightly smaller. And believe it or not, sun protection plays a role in pore size. As skin becomes more sun damaged, it becomes thicker and unable to exfoliate normally. The buildup of dead skin cells coupled with thickened skin can make pores expand. This can be remedied by using a well-formulated AHA or BHA product along with daily application of a broad-spectrum sunscreen—products that Biore lacks.

That's the extent of it, which is why to a large extent (no pun intended) pore size is something that you must learn to live with, because beyond avoiding sun damage and trying Accutane, there is little that can be done to change it. However, the outlook isn't as bleak as it may seem. With conscientious skin care and proper use of makeup, you can successfully minimize the appearance of pores and prevent them from enlarging any further.

For more information about Biore, call (888) BIORE-11 or visit www.biore.com.

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!

The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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Irritated skin

Was good at first, could see results but after the 3rd day it caused an allergic reaction on my skin. It caused a breakout basically all over my face and my skin was really irritated and sensitive I don't know if it was from the other products I use or the makeup remover I use? all together it just didn't work for me.

Reviewed by
Hannah w
Great!!! Just moderation

I this product in my magazine along with a free sample. I tried it and it worked like magic! just be sure to use in moderation. I use it 2 times a week. :) good luck!

Reviewed by
Rebecka M.
Works for me

I was surprised to see this got a poor rating, as this product has actually cleared my acne, and has even cleared out the blackheads on the sides of my nose so much that I no longer use blackhead strips. The tingling feeling doesn't irritate my face, as it feels more refreshing and clean. For makeup removal, I usually use Target's up and up brand eye makeup remover after drying my face, so makeup removal isn't an issue for me. I guess it's to each their own!

Reviewed by
It's good!

It works really good! But if you have sensitive skin DONT buy it. It is a little rough and sting like on the skin, But I don't mind it. (Kinda like the feeling, lol) It doesn't leave me irritated or red, it leaves my skin super soft and it gets rid of my pimples!

Reviewed by
briana g.
Bioré deep pore charcoal eraser

This is a great product! It cleans my skin and softens my skin at the same time it's great! It got rid of all my pimples and blackheads so fast! I recommend this product to anyone!

Reviewed by
Jenny C
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