In 2005, my skin-care routine went a little something like this: Wash face with a super-sudsy, skin-scraping scrub; apply an astringent while wincing at the burning pain and then slap on some acne-clearing moisturizer that I swore I needed for the one pimple on my chin. If it hurt that meant it was working, right? I’m currently cringing at the thought of this, BTW.
Flash-forward 14 years, and I would never wish that regimen on anyone. No wonder my skin was always out of whack. Thankfully, I’ve gotten over the thought that oil is bad and that my products should hurt, because both of those things couldn’t be further from the truth. Now I feel like I’m making up for lost time, slathering on any oil I can find looking for the glow I had pre-terrifying skin-care routine.
Which brings me to my next point: I’ve tried a lot of cleansing oils and hated almost all of them for the greasy film they left on my skin. But there was no way I was going back to the stripping cleansers of my teenage years. “Oh, but you just have to double cleanse,” my beauty editor friends would say. Um, who has time for two cleansing steps when the snooze button is so close? Not to mention the fact that they made my eyes sting so badly if even the slightest bit snuck in. How else are you supposed to take off mascara if not by aggressively rubbing the oily cleanser nearly into your eyeballs?
Enter: Pai Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil, aka my Holy Grail cleanser that offers all the benefits of an oil without the greasy after-feel (think: super-clean skin without that dry, tight feeling). The glass bottle feels beyond elegant in my medicine cabinet, making it a pleasant experience from the moment I pick it up. I apply two pumps of the all-natural oil to dry skin (this is key), before wetting my hands and working the oil into a light, milky lather. (It’s like double cleansing, without the extra step.) My mascara and CC cream slide right off, without dirtying a washcloth or any harsh scrubbing, and there isn’t even the slightest feeling of discomfort on my skin or in my eyes à la my high school cleanser. All that’s left after rinsing is hydrated, glowy skin without a stitch of makeup. It’s the closest thing to magic I’ve ever witnessed.
As with the rest of my beauty products, I love that Pai's rosehip cleanser is made with clean, natural ingredients that actually work. Besides the obvious (rosehip extract), it also includes castor and sunflower seed oils, which are rich in fatty acids and antioxidants to keep skin soft, smooth and deeply moisturized, hence the lack of that overly tight feeling. So much so that I can sometimes follow up with my moisturizer or facial oil, effectively cutting down my routine to approximately three minutes (take that, double cleanse). Oh, and the scent? It's like running through a field of orange blossoms and jasmine. See? Magic.