Argan Cleansing Oil
6 fl. oz. for $32
Category:Skin Care > Cleansers (including Cleansing Cloths) > Cleansers/Soaps
Last Updated:12.17.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

This standard cleansing oil contains an emulsifier ingredient that, when mixed with water, makes the oils in the product become milky and easier to rinse.

Cleansing oils are an option to remove makeup if you have normal to dry skin, but this one is less desirable than many others because it contains grapefruit oil. Like all citrus oils, grapefruit can cause irritation and is especially problematic to use around the eyes. Its inclusion makes this cleansing oil a poor choice.

  • Removes makeup and doesn't leave a strong greasy residue.
  • Expensive.
  • Contains fragrant irritant grapefruit oil, which can cause collagen breakdown and is a problem for use around the eyes (getting any citrus oil in the eye is painful).

More Info:

The plant oils in this product cannot "renew every layer of skin," as claimed. Cleansers cannot penetrate to each layer of skin, nor would you want them to, because the lower layers of your skin don't need to be cleaned.

All of Josie Maran's products contain argan oil. Despite how they market this ingredient, it isn't a miracle or a must-have for your skin. Argan oil is merely a good, non-fragrant plant oil that's best for dry skin. Like all non-fragrant plant oils, it is a natural source of beneficial fatty acids (skin-repairing ingredients) and antioxidants. You can read more about the folklore and genuine benefits behind argan oil here.


This multitasking cleanser removes makeup and skin impurities while providing deep hydration. Almond, safflower seed, and grape seed oils cleanse the skin’s surface and renew every layer of the skin. The non-greasy texture leaves skin feeling moisturized, never tight or dry.


Argania Spinosa Kernel (Argan) Oil, Polysorbate-20, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis Oil, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Tocopherol

Brand Overview

Josie Maran At-A-Glance

Strengths: The sunscreens provide broad-spectrum protection; well-formulated daytime moisturizer with sunscreen; excellent tinted moisturizer for dry skin; smooth, natural-looking pressed powder; uniquely effective gel blush.

Weaknesses: Expensive; the cleansers contain irritating citrus oil; malodorous lip gloss; lackluster to poor mascaras; the Argan Matchmaker Serum Foundation is an epic fail.

The Josie Maran brand was founded by supermodel and former Maybelline spokeswoman Josie Maran. By almost any definition, Maran is an iconic beauty. Like Cindy Crawford before her, who launched a namesake product line, Maran used her notoriety from modeling to do the same thing.

Anytime a model with celebrity status launches a cosmetic line, the curiosity among consumers is intense. The question lingers: Is Maran so beautiful because of these products? Of course not! She was magnificent long before her products were launched, and being born beautiful is not a sign of skin-care knowledge.

Almost every Josie Maran product is centered around the allegedly miraculous argan oil. This non-fragrant plant oil is said to do everything from reduce wrinkles to heal acne, while giving you younger-looking skin. Argan oil isn't a bad ingredient, as it contains beneficial lipids and fatty acids for skin, as well as vitamin E and other antioxidants, but it isn't the only oil that has these kinds of properties. Even more to the point, no single ingredient does it all for skin. It's just like your diet: if you eat only one type of food, you'd soon be malnourished. Skin is the body's largest organ, and it requires a variety of useful ingredients to look and function at its best.

It's worth pointing out also that although argan oil does have benefit for skin, it's gimmicky at best to include it in products like eyeshadow and mascara, but that's what you'll find in Maran's line. Oil in a mascara and eyeshadow will make those products slip and slide off your face and lashes, but there is barely any in her makeup products so not to worry. Even if argan oil had benefit in makeup, it wouldn't remain stable—it would quickly turn rancid when exposed to air.

Despite some high points, the makeup fails overall because when compared to less expensive options at the drugstore, Maran's color options are more average than exceptional.

Although makeup comprises the bulk of this line's offerings, Maran has several skin-care products, too. None of them are must-haves, although a handful of them have decent formulas. Like most lines that use predominantly natural ingredients, there are some fragrant oils present that smell great, but they can irritate your skin and lead to collagen breakdown.

Many of Maran's products are labeled as having a "natural formula," which often is not the case; there are plenty of synthetic ingredients present, including silicones and a synthetic film-forming agent. Those are not bad for skin, but it just shows that you can't trust the company's claims.

For more information about Josie Maran, call (855) 461-6512 or visit www.josiemarancosmetics.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula Begoun herself.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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No Grapefruit Oil

Just wanted to point out that there isn't grapefruit oil in the ingredients listed. Only grapeSEED oil. Since that is what made the product have a low rating, I thought this should be pointed out.

Reviewed by
Paula's Choice Research Team Response

Hello, and thanks for your comments! While this cleansing oil does contain grape seed oil, it also contains grapefruit oil (which is listed on the ingredients list by its Latin name, citrus grandis peel oil).

—Paula's Choice Research Team

Totally removes makeup including waterproof mascara. Leaves skin soft and radiant.

Reviewed by
olive oil not for everyone!

This oil was hard to evenly distribute on a dry face to even start the ocm method. It did not feel as if it washed off completely and did not moisturize my face at all. After using it for 3 weeks I ended up with nicer skin as a result of ditching foaming harsh cleansers but also tons of bumpy pimples under a few layers of my skin just itching to surface and even tons of white heads which i never get that are also below the surface of my skin. Terrible ratio of ingredients...

Reviewed by
Narinee, K
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