One of the things about testing skincare products is the commitment it takes. I can't review an item without spending weeks upon weeks consistently using it while keeping everything else in my routine exactly the same. It's not as easy as it may sound, and need to be in the right mood for that. When a specific product or a new brand makes the rounds among many bloggers at the same time, chances are that I'm going to get bored before doing much (or any) testing. Which is why despite having and using samples of Tatcha One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil sporadically over the last couple of years, I never got around to doing the actual testing. It was more of a "oh, yes, it's nice. Look... here's something shiny!". Silly me.
It was only after several other camellia oil products-- the ones by Aroma M-- became indispensable to me (I've gone through several bottles of the hair oil over the last year, but also the glorious body/bath oil), that I decided it was time to see what this Tatcha oil can do. I've read quite a bit about Japanese skincare principles, which are also behind Tatcha's approach. It makes a lot of sense, and camellia oil is, indeed, a fabulous ingredient, even if it's not the only thing in this specific product (see below). But the major thing for me was the fact that it is, indeed, a one step cleanser. I've used many wonderful cleansing oils and balms over the years, but have found that as much as I love them for a gentle but thorough makeup and grime removal, I still needed a second step of washing the face with a mild cleanser to make sure no residue is left.
I was a bit hesitant to trust Tatcha Camellia Oil at first, but even my occasional dabbling proved that it really works as a single step cleanser. Once I started using it daily it became clear that this thing doesn't only deliver on this promise, but that my skin was happier, balanced and stable, without any off days of capricious behavior. The oil removes makeup and dirt while thoroughly cleaning and de-congesting pores (the final test was taking the bottle with me on vacation, and using it to remove a full day of muck from walking around Naples). It's scarily efficient, yet incredibly gentle. After rinsing and/or using a warm washcloth my skin is clearly refreshed and clean, but it doesn't feel stripped or dry in any way. Only fresh and ready to go, with no sign that it was just coated in oil. I'm not making any promises, but it looks like I'll be using this oil for a very long time, since at this point I think it's the best cleanser I know.
Ingredients: Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Oil, Polyglyceryl-10 Dioleate, Polyglyceryl-2 Sesquicaprylate, Camellia Japonica Seed Oil, Glyceryl Behenate/eicosadioate, Water, Algae Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Glycerin, Ethylhexylglycerin, Alcohol, Fragrance (Natural), Phenoxyethanol.
Tatcha- One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil ($48, 150ml) is available from tatcha.com. The original samples and travel size product were press samples, but I've since purchased the full size.