I had used Cetaphil and Spectro Jel for Dry Skin (green bottle) before switching to this orange bottle. At first I was thrilled that it left my face more matte. And then I noticed I was getting a lot of pimples (and I don't usually get acne). I attributed it to my diet before I remembered I had changed my facial cleanser. I bought a bottle of Cera Ve cleanser and my skin cleared up immediately. I won't be re-purchasing this Spectro Jel as the combination skin formula doesn't agree with my skin.
I have oily, acne-prone, acne-scarred, skin. Now you may be thinking "why the heck did you buy a cleanser for combination skin?" The answer to that is because I needed something that won't strip all the oil from my face. Let me explain.
I started doing chemical peels, and using a mandelic acid cleanser/toner from MUAC, and my skin for once in my life actually got so dry! I didn't know this would happen after the peels though. I had originally purchased this Spectro because I needed a soap free, gentle, cleanser to use before doing my peels. I am so grateful I picked this! I was too afraid of getting the one for dry skin, because I didn't want it to clog me even more (I'm not sure if it would or not).
Although its unscented, it has a horrible smell. I am not one to usually complain from scents, but I just want to add that its not the most pleasant smell. Its still worth it, in my opinion, plus you'll get used to it. Another thing, as other reviews have mentioned, it has no lather at all. Of course, because its soap free. Honestly, I don't mind it since its MUCH better than stripping the oils from your face. I rub it into my skin for one to two minutes before washing it off with water. * I highly recommend rubbing it in for more than 30 seconds *
It didn't make me break out, and it is super gentle. My face doesn't feel so tight after washing it off, like it does with other cleansers.
I highly recommend this product to those doing chemical peels, or using harsh chemicals to treat their acne. I use it once a day, in the morning.
There's a lot to like about spectro jel. There's a few things that bother me.
I prefer this formula to the blemish prone formula, I have text book combo skin, which is sensitive and pigmented.
I was using a product by Marcelle (ultra gentle cleansing gel- it's a new product and I've reviewed it under "unlisted" as I'm the only one who's reviewed it yet)
But the combination of cetyl alcohol and stearic acid clog pores over time :( I really like the new Marcelle cleanser as it's cheap and doesn't irritate my skin.
However, the clogged pores I cannot abide. So I switched back to spectro jel. It's never had caused me facial skin issues, but I have problems with the skin on the palms of my hands. I was sure the formaldehyde releasing chemicals. I've tried going chemical free-using just honey, just oatmeal, just red clay...The greenwashing doesn't work for me. I am beginning to think it's all bunk.
I do not have active acne, when I get a pimple it's due or either diet or cosmetic irritation. When I try and new product and I get a pimple I do think "purge" I think "crap" because I've learned skin doesn't purge. That's a myth. Sorry kids :j
I'll update in one month to report how this and my Clinique Mild Clarifying lotion do for my skin.
June 2014-I've gone back to spectro because
A) it's what my dermatologist had originally recommended (in 1997)
B) I'm too afraid of Dove
C) I'm tired of spending $$$ on cleansers.
It's not HG, but I doubt I'll ever find an HG facial cleanser /:
October 2014-I have tried a few times to use this again. I was really struggling with this "bumpy chin" skin, which I'd assumed was either clogged pores or PD.
So I went to the dermatologist. He said I have a *sensitivity* to fatty alcohols, such as cetyl alcohol. What I had was dermatitis indeed, but NOT perioral. It was contact dermatitis. He said to use Dove and Impruv cream.
I did that until I repaired the damage, and Ive moved on.
I have sensitive reactive skin that will breakout frequently. This is gentle and cleanses thouroughly. Helps keep my skin clear but not dry.
I foolishly stepped away from this cleanser and have two huge pimples to pay for it!
I've had troublesome skin for over ten years and I've been using it ever since my doctor recommended it. I like the consistency of the jel. I find it to be somewhat thicker so when you're using it against your face, it's not dripping off. It does its job by washing away impurities and oil from your skin, does not irritate your eyes and is good to remove non-waterproof mascara with. When it comes to removing foundation, I would suggest using an exfoliating brush (I use a manual one I purchased at Sephora for cheap) to help, since the circular motions on your skin I don't find to be enough. I like to use it at bed time, before I use a toner and my moisturizer.
Also, I know people complain about the scent, but I hardly notice it - not to mention this is a product you use on your skin less than a minute as a cleaner. It's not meant to make your olfactory go "omg wow". I think people should appreciate how Spectro has made this product fragrance-free, saving you from potentially irritating fragrances.
Unfortunately this cleanser is not for me. After only a couple days of using it, my face broke out in terribly painful acne (and in places on my face I'd never had acne before!). I used it for a total of a week before giving up and buying something else that I knew had worked for me in the past.
Also unfortunately, my face still hasn't gone back to the way it used to be before using Spectro Jel. I've never had sensitive skin issues before but I must be allergic to something in this cleanser (which is sort of odd considering this cleanser is supposed to be made for people with sensitive skin, is fragrance free, sulphate free, paraben free, soap free and pH balanced).
other things I noted when I used it:
-it had a fairly strong smell
-needed more than I typically do for other cleansers
-good price for the amount you get
Just because it didn't work for me, doesn't mean it won't work for others.
I got this product for free and noticed that it was from the pharmaceutical company GSK. I have combination/dry skin so I was interested to find a product that didn't strip away the moisture especially with the winter season coming. First impressions: Opaque white liquid with gel like consistency. One of the main things I noticed was the smell. There is a scent of medicine/rubbing alcohol and it becomes more obvious when you put it on your face. Lather: The cleanser doesn't lather and I had to use a bit more product than usual (more than dime sized). I didn't really feel anything significant. However when I went to wash the cleanser off, I felt as if there was a layer of moisture over my skin. After: Skin felt cleaned but still retained moisture and did not get the tight feeling which was good. The smell was also gone. Verdict: It is a gentle cleanser for me but I didn't like the rubbing alcohol smell.
Spectro Jel does not get the attention it deserves. My doctor recommended me to use this brand 8 years ago to treat my acne-prone skin during junior high school, and I have never turned to another cleanser since.
This gel is a smooth, no-nonsense cleanser that gets you CLEAN. No foaming and bubbles to irritate any sores or other problems on the skin - it is incredibly gentle. Though I've used this cleanser as part of a rigorous routine, it is the foundation of what I do twice everyday, and is gentle enough for whenever I feel oily. Make sure to massage it well into your skin for about a minute to feel really refreshed - the gel-based cleanser makes it so it's not such a chore :)
Fairly-priced and gentle for nearly any skin type. DEFINITELY will repurchase again. It's a staple cleanser that should be a part of any daily routine.
I have VERY sensitive oily & dry skin.
This product doesn't strip my skin of moisture like alot of products for oily skin do to me. It has no smell, and is not irritating AT ALL! Very gentle.
I definitely recommend this brand for people with intolerant skin such as mine.
This did nothing to help my acne, though it didn't make it worse. I thinks it's great for sensitive skin, it's gentle and non-drying and skin feels clean after but not tight.