This cleanser contains a small amount of jojoba beads for a mild scrub action. It is supposed to fight skin pigmentation (discoloration) issues, but dark spots cannot be scrubbed away. You need to treat dark spots with leave-on products and proven ingredients like vitamin C, hydroquinone, or niacinamide (among others); purchasing a special (and expensive) cleanser to improve dark spots isn’t the answer. And, of course, fighting dark spots is a losing battle if you’re not diligent (if not neurotic) about daily use of a sunscreen rated SPF 15 or greater (and greater is better).
In terms of using this as a cleanser, the formula contains soap-like ingredients, which make it too drying and irritating for all skin types. Of particular concern is the amount of potassium hydroxide (that’s lye), an alkaline ingredient that is very drying. Adding to this problem is a high amount of fragrance and fragrance ingredients known to cause irritation. All told, this cleanser is absolutely not recommended. See More Info for details on why irritation is a problem for all skin types.
One more point, Biotherm’s claims and advertised ingredients would lead you to believe their products are all about natural formulations, and that is absolutely not the case. These products are steeped in synthetics, some that are great for skin, but also some that are definitely problematic.
- Contains drying soap-like ingredients that can impair skin’s barrier function.
- Dark spots cannot be scrubbed away.
- Highly fragrant, and the fragrance ingredients cause irritation.
Why Irritating Ingredients Are a Problem for Everyone’s Skin
Irritation, whether you see it on the surface of your skin or not, causes inflammation and as a result impairs healing, damages collagen, and depletes the vital substances your skin needs to stay young. For these reasons, it is best to eliminate, or minimize as much as possible, your exposure to known skin irritants, especially when there are brilliant formulas available that do not include these types of problematic ingredients (Sources: Inflammation Research, December 2008, pages 558–563; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135, and November-December 2000, pages 358–371; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, April 2008, pages 15–19; Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, March 2008, pages 78–82; Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, January 2007, pages 92–105; and British Journal of Dermatology, December 2005, pages S13–S22.)
Irritation From Fragrance and Fragrant Oils
Daily use of products that contain a high amount of fragrance, whether the fragrant ingredients are synthetic or natural, causes chronic irritation that can damage healthy collagen production, lead to or worsen dryness, and impair your skin’s ability to heal. Fragrance-free is the best way to go for all skin types. If fragrance in your skin-care products is important to you, it should be a very low amount to minimize the risk to your skin (Sources: Inflammation Research, December 2008, pages 558–563; Skin Pharmacology and Physiology, June 2008, pages 124–135, and November-December 2000, pages 358–371; Journal of Investigative Dermatology, April 2008, pages 15–19; Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, March 2008, pages 78–82; Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, January 2007, pages 92–105; and British Journal of Dermatology, December 2005, pages S13–S22).