It's 2015 and the charcoal trend has proven that it's not just a passing phase and is here to stay, and drug store brands are trying their hardest to play catch-up. But do they pass muster? We'll see!
Bioré is a one of the mainstream brands that really glomped onto the charcoal trend, hard. They were promoting these products in 2014 rather heavily but I didn't grab any of their products until earlier this year. Their product line offers charcoal nose strips, a gel cleanser, an exfoliating scrub, a heating mask and a charcoal soap bar. Today I'm just reviewing the nose strip and the cleanser.
(As a note, I've been actively eliminating microbeads from my products and at first I was worried that this product had microbeads (it doesn't, but their charcoal SCRUB does) and if you're curious about why microbeads are bad for the environment, please read here.)
Bioré Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser
To begin, I'm the kind of person who is always working on my skincare regime. I have multiple cleansers, exfoliants, masks, creams, serums and moisturizers and rotate constantly. I've started settling down and have locked-in with a few products, but I'm still figuring out my favourite regime. That said, I TEND to avoid overly-harsh drug store brands because I find that in their attempt to banish oil, they dry my skin out. So I was hesitant to try this product at first.
And initially? It wasn't so bad! I tend to use this cleanser 2-3x a week when my skin is feeling overly oily (I have combination skin) and it does a good job at controlling oil and shine on those days. It's too strong for daily use, unless you are an overly oily person.
However, it DOES rely too heavily on that tingle of menthol, and while I'm a HUGE fan of wake-me-up facial cleansers, I know that this can irritate your skin as much as it can awaken. Menthol is highly irritating for some, and combined with charcoal it can be pretty aggressive for those with skin sensitivity.
Overall? I probably won't be purchasing this again. It's not a bad addition to a cleansing regime if you need a little variety and want some oil/shine control, but personally it's too abrasive to be used daily, and there are better products out there.
Bioré Deep Cleansing Charcoal Pore Strips
Confession timme! Ever since I was a teen, I've had a huuuuuge obsession with nose strips. I love putting them on and grossing myself out with the dirt and oil I pull from my skin afterwards. But after discovering my nutmeg and milk scrub and how easily it reduces my blackheads, I've really stopped purchasing them. That said, I found a sample of Bioré's newest charcoal pore strips in LouLou magazine and decided to give it a whirl for old time's sake.
While the regular pore strips are pretty strong and can occasionally stick a bit to your skin, the ENTIRE charcoal strip clung to the skin on my nose! When I removed it, I was simply tearing adhesive from my skin, and not pulling oil or impurities out FROM my skin. My nose was SWOLLEN and highly irritated because the adhesive was so much stronger than the average pore strip!
Cut to 24 hours later, and my nose is still red and sore and it barely removed any oil or dirt at all. After over a decade of being a pore-strip advocate, I've never had this experience before! I think these strips have ended my 14+ year love-affair with pore strips and I'm going back to my masks.
Overall? Skip the pore strips and get yourself some nutmeg and milk!
Do you have any favourite charcoal products? Let me know in the commments!