I have mixed feelings about this cleanser. I do feel that it was an error on C.O. Bigelow's part to call this a "gentle" cleanser. As others have commented, this cleanser DOES sting and dare I say "burn". Its a very active cleanser. I have deduced, based on my experience with other products, that the ingredient in here that is causing this to occur is primarily the rosemary and perhaps even the bentonite. I have a Jonathan clay mask that I love that also has Rosemary in it and it produces a similar sensation.
This definately is not to be used in the eye area or even near the eye area. And I probably would not recommend this cleanser for someone with very sensitive skin.
The cleanser does separate and you need to shake it well before using it or you will get a bunch of watery cleanser when you take it out into your hand. At first the, ahem, slightly burning sensation was off-putting to me and I immediately was planning to return it. However, after using this over a half dozen times, I can leave this on my face for several minutes before rinsing and I am fine. The sensation seems to last a couple minutes after rinsing, but it dissipates. I am very fair and I did not have any red or irritated skin after using it.
I would not suggest you use this cleanser unless you are truly an oily person. I happen to be, on a scale from one to ten, about an 8 on the oiliness scale. I would not use this in the winter months, and even in the summer, I would reserve this for days when its been particularly sticky and humid outside and I feel like I need to "detox" my face.
I have stated "no" that I would not buy this again. I'm actually not sure if I would or not. I have gotten used to the tingly sensation and its not nearly as severe feeling as when I first used it. My suggestion is that if you ARE very oily, don't give up on it the first couple of uses. In theory, this cleanser DOES have some great properties to it that would benefit an oily skin type. If you are not that oily, extremely sensitive, dry or even combination, I would say this is NOT the cleanser for you.
I would liken this cleanser most to the old Philosophy sulfur cleanser. If you liked that one, try this one.