Cleansing Milk, for All Skin Conditions
4.9 fl. oz. for $36.95
Last Updated:03.25.2015
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

Cleansing Milk, for All Skin Conditions lists alcohol as the second ingredient, which is hardly gentle. Also problematic is the inclusion of essential-oil fragrance, as it contains fragrance chemicals research has shown are damaging to skin.


A gentle make-up remover for all skin conditions. This velvety smooth, remarkably gentle cleanser leaves skin hydrated and supple. Fermented grain extract breaks down impurities.


Water (Aqua), Alcohol, Anthyllis Vulneraria Extract, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Glycerin, Fermented Grain Extract, Cetearyl Alcohol, Bentonite, Lecithin, Xanthan Gum, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Fragrance (Parfum), Limonene, Geraniol, Linalool, Citronellol

Brand Overview

Dr. Hauschka At-A-Glance

Strengths: None for skin care; one good lipstick.

Weaknesses: Every skin-care product contains at least one volatile fragrance component or plant ingredient that can be irritating to skin as well as causing increased sensitivity when skin is exposed to sunlight; no sunscreens; the moisturizers are mostly redundant and easily replaced by plain, non-fragrant oils; no products to address even the most basic skin-care concerns; several hokey products with absolutely zero research attesting to their effectiveness.

Dr. Rudolf Hauschka is no longer around, although the Germany-based cosmetics company bearing his name definitely is. Sold primarily at health food stores, the products are a standout for their high prices alone.

If plants are your thing, these formulations, according to the ingredient lists, are some of the most "pure" there are. However, the formulas are a frustrating mix of good and bad natural ingredients, and there are no suitable options for those with  oily, combination, or sensitive skin (especially for sensitive skin, as everything, and we mean every product, in this line contains fragrance).

As for the products themselves, despite the inclusion of lots of natural ingredients sure to pique consumer interest, Dr. Hauschka's development team seemingly ignored copious research on skin-care ingredients from the last 20 years or so. For example, almost every product has plant extracts that have irritation potential, and most of the problematic ones have no known benefit for skin, so you're risking irritation without a reward. Instead, the company literature goes on and on about how the products are rhythmically mixed and the spiritual connection between nature and people. It all sounds tempting and quite Zen until you realize such back-to-nature philosophies aren't necessarily the key to a healthy complexion. We have little doubt that most consumers using these products will experience some amount of skin irritation, and the textures of many items are inelegant at best; "silky" is s not a  word that comes mind!

We're skeptical about the disclosure of the ingredients in the products because preservatives are not listed. If that is truly the case, the risk of contamination after just a couple of weeks of use is significant, especially considering how many plant extracts these products contain. The company insists that the ingredient lists are accurate and that the natural extracts and essential oils chosen have self-preserving properties—but cosmeti chemistry research doesn't support this; such ingredients don't have the same preservation track records as those (such as the parabens and phenoxyethanol) that show up in thousands of other products.

From a modern, research-supported perspective, this is one of the most ineffective, potentially irritating lines around and a classic example of why natural isn't automatically the best way to go for intelligent skin care. The moisturizers have their share of helpful ingredients for dry skin, but are about as state-of-the-art as a console television.

In early 2009 the company announced that they discontinued all of their sunscreens. This decision was in response to new European Union regulations governing labeling for products with UVA-protecting ingredients. Dr. Hauschka will not formulate a sunscreen with synthetic active ingredients, and from everything we've read and from all of the discussions we've had with cosmetic chemists about this issue, there is no way a sunscreen can meet the EU's new UVA standards without including a synthetic active.

 For more information about Dr. Hauschka, call (800) 247-9907 or visit www.drhauschka.com.

Dr. Hauschka Makeup

Termed Decorative Cosmetics, the collection doesn't much reason to give this makeup more than a passing glance, as the products are downright ordinary to inadequate, and the prices should snap even the most meditative soul back to reality. Sadly, every color cosmetic product from this brand, even those meant for use around the eyes, contains one or more problematic fragrance ingredients.

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
Sort by:
amazing cleanser

This in an amazing cleanser, very silky, gentle and efficient. I use it for 2 years now and wouldn't change it for anything in the world, in fact, when it runs low i panic!! It leaves the skin soft and clean w/o feeling dry. Completely disagree with beautypedia's review ( but nothing new,they always give poor rating for products that are not "paula's choice")

Reviewed by
Beautypedia Team Response

Hi there!  Thank you for sharing your feedback with us!  We're happy you've found a product that you love.  We apologize -- this is a very old review and thus, is lacking the details included in our newer reviews (such as citations).  Unfortunately, between the alcohol, fragrance, and the fragrant essential oils, we cannot recommend this product.  Research has consistently shown that alcohol causes free-radical damage and cell death which can lead to inflammation, weakening of the skin's protective barrier, and can actually advance the signs of aging (sources:  Biochimica et Biophysica Acta, 2012, Alcohol, 2002, Aging, 2012, and Chemical Immunology and Allergy, 2012.)   Both the added fragrance and the fragrant essential oils (limonene, linalool, geraniol, and citronellol) host their own set of problems such as chronic irritation (which leads to damaging healthy collagen production), increased dryness, and impaired skin-healing ability.  (sources:  Food & Chemical Toxicology, 2008 and American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2003.)  If you have some new peer-reviewed, published research proving otherwise, please send it our way!  We'd love to take a look :)

If you are interested in looking for a cleanser that has better ingredients, we'd encourage you to take a look at the 521 cleansers that we've rated better that this one - 99% of which are from brands other than Paula's Choice.  Also, you may be interested in knowing that The Paula’s Choice Research Team no longer reviews products for Beautypedia, and while The Beautypedia Team is still a part of Paula’s Choice Skincare, what’s new—and you may not yet have known—is that now we have two teams working independently to bring you the best quality reviews, products, and  research-supported expert advice you know and love. One team is dedicated to Beautypedia and product reviews from other brands; the other is dedicated to Paula’s Choice skincare and its unique combination of expertly formulated products and advice on a wide range of beauty-related topics.

And if you are specifically looking for an oil cleanser, we'd strongly recommend First Aid Beauty's Milk Oil Conditioning Cleanser.  It's one of the best ones we've tried yet!  Have a nice day :)

Wonderful cleanser!

I'm also a little baffled by the "poor" rating given by Beautypedia. I have normal to combination skin which is also very sensitive and I have never had an issue with this product. I have been using this for around a year and I love its silky texture (yes it is actually silky!), it's super light and my skin feels lovely afterwards - not stripped of everything. I've had issues with acne but this seems to keep my skin clear. Compared to other cleansers this is gentle and effective. Recommend!

Reviewed by
Ebony K
Great cleanser!

I completely disagree with Beautypedia's "poor" rating. I have normal to dry, sensitive skin. I've used this cleansing milk every night for years and it has never, ever irritated my skin. Takes off makeup beautifully. It gets a Best rating from me and from many friends who've also used it for years.

Reviewed by
Enter a title for your review
First Name, Last Initial
Email Address
How would you rate this product on the following:
500 characters left

Terms of Use

585633-IIS5 v1.0.0.411 8/30/2015 1:25:32 PM