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Cleansers - Mario Badescu - Enzyme Cleansing Gel



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rated 3.9(451 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 3.9
  • 70% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 3.8
  • Price: $$

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 4/9/2011 8:06:00 PM More reviews by PaperAlias

Age: 19-24 Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium Eyes: Brown

I recently finished a sample bottle of this cleanser and have just bought the 8 oz. bottle. I have oily acne-prone skin. A couple of months ago, I decided to give up on facial scrubs and decided to use chemical exfoliants instead.


My skin feels so refreshed after using this cleanser. It's a green pearlescent gel that contains papaya fruit extracts, a natural AHA that helps slough off dead skin cells. I've tried other AHA/BHA products in the past that often made my skin feel very sensitive and caused redness, but this cleanser was very gentle. Surprisingly, it wasn't too over-drying. I use it once a day in the evening (I use a more basic cleanser during the day) and it does a great job of prepping my face for my nighttime treatments. It does not foam or lather, but it does rinse very clean (I can sometimes hear my fingers squeak against my skin). It's like a cleanser and exfoliant in one.


The packaging is very simple. It comes in a plastic bottle with a nozzle at the cap that you pull up and push down (I was expecting a twist-off cap, but this is much better). And I love the short ingredients list.


I do like the smell. It smells very natural and refreshing and clean. After several uses, I find that this cleanser not only helps in removing dead skin, but also in evening out my skin tone and texture in general. It hasn't caused me to break out. I had annoying dry patches on my nostrils and a random area on my forehead, and this cleanser has gotten rid of it all. Sometimes I'll even let the cleanser sit on my skin for a minute before rinsing so that the enzymes can work a little harder.


As a drugstore shopper, I thought it was a tad on the pricier side (USD$12 for 8 oz.). But for how well it has worked for me, it's totally worth it. Once I'm done with the 8 oz. bottle, I think I might even go and get the big 16 oz. bottle($22).


Even if you're just curious about MB, I suggest signing up with their website and doing the questionnaire thing -- they're very generous with free samples! And you'll get a gift certificate on your birthday :)


This is a great cleanser/exfoliant. Highly recommended!

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rated 1 of 5 on 4/2/2011 11:45:00 AM More reviews by wysiwyg

Age: 44-55 Skin: Very Dry, Fair, Cool Hair: Blond, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Blue

I don't think of my skin as sensitive, but it behaves like it is every time I use this cleanser. I picked up a sample size at Ulta as a spur of the moment purchase (read -- didn't consult you all here at MA) in the little sample bins they have near the register. A poor impulse purchase. I've tried to use it off and on for the last 2-3 weeks. Before finally relegating it to File 13, I used it to cleanse my face after exercising late yesterday. Its fate was sealed when my husband leaned in, about three hours later, feeling my cheeks and forehead for a fever -- my face was bright red. I've gone red for prolonged periods each time I've used this. If you even THINK you have slightly sensitive skin, I'd steer clear of this. For reference, my skin is dry/very dry, in good condition. not particularly temperamental, fair.

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rated 5 of 5 on 4/1/2011 2:42:00 AM More reviews by Maddieo87

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool Hair: Brown, Straight, Medium Eyes: Blue

I got this as a sample the other day, because I have congestion on my chin, forehead, and medium sized pores on my noes. No gigantic, but enough to notice and have to wear makeup. This stuff is great. It's an odd feeling using a non foaming gel cleanser, but I like it. It feels nice and smooth. Smells lovely. I like that it cleans deep without drying out my skin. I've used it 4 times now, and my skin is far smoother due to the exfoliating properties of it, and it's just... nice and glowy. This doesn't break me out, because I'd know after a day at least. I break out easily. I do think my skin is purging though, which apparently is normal for things like this. I have a lot of congestion and gunk in my skin ... so hopefully this is the cure for it and it will go away in time. I'm also going to purchase the glycolic cleanser as an exfoliant, instead of using a granular one. Nice job Mario Badescu. This stuff is great! :) I might be a convert yet ;)

Edit: Um, ok. Where has this been all my life? Seriously! My skin is smoother. Glowing. I have far less congestion. My pores are smaller. Though, my skin is not drying out. This is insanely great! I'm buying some on Wednesday, and also asking for samples of the Glycolic Foaming Cleanser to use as an exfoliant and perhaps a mask or something else. I do have 2 or 3 pimples at the moment, due to my skin still purging from the AHA's. But, everything else is perfect. Plus, pimples aren't gigantic and are clearing quicker than usual. WOW! FULL OF WIN! I hope this is my HG cleanser... because so far there is no fault with it :)

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rated 5 of 5 on 3/24/2011 1:45:00 PM More reviews by swtladyy

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

I was introduced to the Mario Badescu skincare line by a friend of mine almost four years ago. Before using this cleanser, I would always break out and I would use your basic cleansers from the drugstore which would always dry out and/or irritate my skin. When I tried this cleanser out, it made my skin feel so smooth and soft! My blemishes are now gone. Most of the pigmentation on my face is gone and I've notice my skin tone evening out. The product lasts you for a long time! It is not cheap, but it's not very expensive either. You definitely get your money's worth! I love this product so much that now even my boyfriend has started using it upon my recommendation!

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rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 3/19/2011 9:34:00 PM More reviews by Angeldoll

Age: 30-35 Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Neutral Hair: Brunette, Curly, Fine Eyes: Hazel

Perfect any time of day cleanser for me. (im sensitive, combo and acne prone) it feels soothing, cleans well and is non-drying. Does not help dry out acne, but definitely is calming and does not aggravate my acne or sensitive skin either. I will definitely re-purchase this! Im also using the seaweed cleansing soap, and I like the enzyme gel better for my combo skin.

UPDATE: A few months later and I cant live without this cleanser, its perfect. Leaves me feeling clean and does not overdry my skin. I have since purchased another bottle. I have also used this on my body with great results.

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rated 3 of 5 on 3/16/2011 10:46:00 AM More reviews by DinaC

Age: 44-55 Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Neutral Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Blue

I thought this was a good, basic cleanser. It washed off a day's worth of makeup, mascara, foundation, sunscreen, etc. using warm water and a wash cloth. I didn't see any remarkable transformation, i.e. improvement in my hyperpigmentation, reduction in my fine lines and wrinkles, etc. After washing with this product, my skin felt soft and comfortable, not tight or itchy or burning. Pretty good for sensitive skin.

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rated 5 of 5 on 3/11/2011 2:41:00 AM More reviews by losangelesvintage

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair, Warm Hair: Brown, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Brown

Overall Rating: 4.7/5

Product Efficacy: 5/5
Quality: 5/5
Value: 4/5

I can honestly say that this product saved my skin. Last year I was breaking out for the first time in my life from stress caused by a 20-unit semester plus two jobs (probably not the smartest decision I ever made). I'd never had skin problems before and had no idea where to start repairing the damage. After several drugstore products - Neutrogena, Cetaphil, etc. - didn't work, I sent away for the Mario Badescu sample packet, which contained a small vial of this cleanser. LIterally, after four days of using this in conjunction with Mario Badescu's Glycolic Foaming Cleanser and my regular moisturizer, my skin was completely calm. We all know that breakouts aren't the worst thing in the world compared to REAL life problems, but everyone can relate to how icky it feels to have blemishes on the face you present to people every day. It was such a relief to be free of that worry!

This is a gel cleanser, but it's slightly creamy and a little thicker. It's a very thorough cleanser but doesn't strip your skin and leaves your face feeling soft. The fruit enzymes that help prevent acne by polishing away dead skin are very mild, and I've never had a problem with irritation. This is a great everyday cleanser - it does what it's supposed to do, and it does it exceptionally well. I'm not sure I would recommend it for very oily or breakout-prone complexions, which might need a stronger formula, but for slightly oily, normal, dry, and combo skin, the Enzyme Cleansing Gel is a godsend.

The smell is lightly floral, nothing exceptional but not offensive either. Price is $12 for 8 oz. or $20 for 20 oz. My eight oz. bottle lasted a year since so little product is needed. I love Mario Badescu packaging because it's simple and aesthetically pleasing but still functional.

Ingredients: Deionized Water (Aqua),Glycerin,Papaya (Carica Papaya Fruit) Extract,Grapefruit (Citrus Grandis Fruit) Extract,Monomide,Triethanolamine,Methylparaben

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rated 5 of 5 on 2/28/2011 10:02:00 AM More reviews by Andalucian

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Hazel

I've never been one to get overly excited about a cleanser. Philosophy's Purity was always a favorite for that deep-clean feel, but for the most part I've always used basic cleansers I've picked up at the grocery store (generally the Aveeno line, though I've tried several brands). It never would have occurred to me to purchase this, but I received a small bottle as a gift with purchase when I decided to try Mario Badescu's acne products. This ended up being my favorite thing about my order - not because the acne products didn't work as I'd hoped, but because once I started using this cleanser, I no longer needed them. It keeps my skin clean, clear, and fresh, and it's been gentle enough to use with my Clarisonic Mia. I've since purchased the full size bottle, and after several months, I'm still pleased with it. Packaging is very basic but functional - clear plastic bottle that lets you see how much is left and dispense as much (or as little!) product as you like, nothing fancy or upscale to add to the price. It's a bit more expensive than drugstore options, but it's lasted so much longer that overall I've saved money... even moreso when I figure in all the products I no longer need. I definitely think this one is worth trying.

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rated 3 of 5 on 2/25/2011 1:41:00 PM More reviews by ineffable

Age: 18 & Under Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Warm Hair: Red, Straight, Coarse Eyes: Brown

I had a sample of this forever before I ended up using it, and I loved it right off the bat so I went out and bought the huge 16oz container for about $20, which is a fantastic deal. The smell, oddly enough, reminds me of the conditioner my mother always used so it's comforting to me. (It smells a bit like grapefruit rind.) I like that it doesn't lather up and dry my skin out, I find it cleanses very well for being just a gel. I like to leave it on for a minute or two so that the AHAs can really do their job. I have strayed from this a few times but ended up with very irritated skin an come right back. I'm willing to say that this is my HG face wash! The 16oz bottle will last me forever, about 1/6th of it is gone with two people using it twice a day for four months but I definitely will re-purchase when I run out.

EDIT: I stopped using this and realized it was what was causing my super stripped/irritated skin. No wonder I couldn't even touch my forehead, I switched to Dove Beauty Bar for sensitive skin and my skin is already much less irritated.

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rated 5 of 5 on 2/7/2011 8:27:00 PM More reviews by varmintrifle

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral Hair: Black, Straight, Other Eyes: Blue

I have been using this cleanser for over a year now. I used to use acne cleansers as I broke out occasionally around that time of the month, but decided to start using this. It's not the best at removing makeup, and takes a lot of scrubbing because it doesn't lather, but it's really an excellent cleanser that doesn't leave my skin feeling stripped or too red right afterward. It has a gentle exfoliating effect that leaves my skin incredibly smooth.

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