Saturday, August 9, 2014

Review: Befine Exfoliating Cleanser

If you be looking for a serious physical exfoliator, have I found a scrub for you.

I've been using the Befine Exfoliating Cleanser for about a year on and off now. I ordered it online after doing some research for a new exfoliator that was well suited for dry and sensitive skin.

First off, let's take a moment to appreciate its simple packaging. The minimalist in me hearts this mucho. I no longer have the box it came in, but you can take my word on that being pretty and minimalist too (and cardboard for easy recycling). Why am I such a sucker for packaging? Marketing peeps must love consumers like me. But I digress.

Let's talk about this scrub. It comes in a 4 oz tube, which was enough for me to use once or twice a week for roughly a year, as I only used a little bit at a time (more on that in a minute). The smell isn't what I was expecting; I thought it would be sweet and sugary smelling, sort of like the vanilla scented sugar scrubs a la Bath and Body Works. It really doesn't have a sweet smell at all. It's more...earthy. It actually kind of reminds me of mushrooms with some herbs and a hint of lavender. That probably sounds horrendous, but it's really not that bad. Just don't expect sweet, because sweet it is not.

Now let's talk about texture. This is the. grittiest. scrub. ever. Like ever in the history of ever. When I read some reviews ahead of time and people commented on its scratchiness, I just thought, "Man, none of these people have ever used an exfoliator before. What a bunch of sissy-weenies!" But then I got it and when I smeared the first round on my face and went to work, I actually had to stop mid-wash to figure out what the heck was going on. This feels like sharp sandy bits scraping over your skin if you don't give the water a few seconds to chill everything out. That sounds terrible, I know. The key is getting your face nice and wet ahead of time, putting only a small amount on your face (hence, lasting me a year), and then gently spreading it out slightly. Then wait about 30 seconds. I'm guessing this allows the water to start to break down some of the sugar granules to soften those harsh edges, because it's so much better after a short wait. Depending on how scrubby you want your scrub to be, you can wait more or less time. Thirty seconds seemed just right to to me to still get that "dude I am so cleaning my face right now" feel without worrying I was scraping off a million layers of precious skin cells. Once it starts to get dissolvy (word?), it becomes more of a creamy texture that feels really nice; after about 15 seconds of massaging, the granules disappear altogether and you're left with a milky wash. Because of this wait time, and for the fact that I like to bring it on my neck and chest (scrub all the places!), I only use this bad boy in the shower. 'Cause...mess.

Overall, I like the way this makes my skin first. This scrub leaves my face nice and smooth. But despite my search for something really gentle on my dry skin, I still find this to leave my face feeling tight and parched, especially in the winter time. Its harsh texture means I only use it roughly (har har) once a week, though summer time may be closer to two times a week. It definitely doesn't do anything for acne (maybe scrape it off your face?), though keep in mind that it doesn't claim to. I give it props for mentally making me feel like I'm doing some serious cleaning duty.

All in all, as much as I love the packaging and its mostly natural ingredients, I won't be repurchasing this scrub. There are too many other things to try, and the $13 price tag (at least when I bought it) seems a little too high to me for something that is just average. If you like really scrubby scrubs though, I would give this a go--I've never found anything that comes even close to being so gritty!

What scrubs are you loving lately? Any recommendations on exfoliators to try next?

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