The beauty community has its own version of the chicken vs. the egg debate, and in face cleansers, this debate is between the Eve Lom Cleanser and the Liz Earle Hot Cleanse & Polish. There are celebrity fans of both cleansers including Kate Hudson (left) and even Orlando Bloom (below) who both have enviable skin glows. We have featured both cleansers on our site before, with a review of the Liz Earle products here and an interview with Eve Lom herself and took on the challenge of testing out both of these cleansers to determine the differences and similarities between the two, and most importantly, find the one that will come out on top.
EVE LOM CLEANSER
Awards: Dubbed the “best cleanser in the WORLD” by Vogue, no less, the Eve Lom cleanser has some lofty expectations to fulfill. Historically, this was the first product that I tried from Space NK on that fateful day that I first met Carolyn (a.k.a perfumed) for brunch. At the time, my skin was going through some teenage rebellion. It was disobedient, unruly, and not responding to any of the usual products, even though I lavished it with lots of TLC in the form of facials, new lotions and cleansers. While walking that day in Soho, I ventured into Space NK and had intended only to browse, but instead was caught by the Eve Lom cleanser.
Method: I had read the original Vogue article lauding its magnificence, and decided to make the Eve Lom cleanser the final gift to my skin before making a decision to sit out its misbehaving period. As the saleslady explained to me, the Eve Lom cleanser works differently from other cleansers, in that it was founded in the belief that impurities from the skin arose from improper lymphatic drainage. Uniquely, it is also a miraculous 4-in-1 product, replacing the need for a moisturizer, exfoliator, toner, and cleanser (and makeup remover, to boot!).
Process for Washing: Each Eve Lom cleanser comes with an Indian muslin cloth, a small washcloth size of porous, gauzy, thin cotton fabric. This is also only one cleanser where you actually need to study the directions, as washing your face with this one is a multi step process. The process begins first with a 5 minute lymphatic massage that you are instructed to perform after slathering the cleanser over your face.
The cleanser itself is a light lemon yellow colored paste housed in a small circular tub; I would describe it as a paste because it isn’t liquid and doesn’t foam. Instead, the paste has a non-sticky, melty texture that sinks into your skin. It smells like fresh herbs – of what kind I can’t describe, but it is a pungent and fragrant smell that envelops all of your senses. As you follow the directions for the lymphatic massage (that targets all of your classic pulse points ranging from your forehead, sides of the neck, cheekbones, and temples), you are directed to breathe in deeply as the aromatic herbs from the cleanser soak into the face. After wetting the muslin cloth in warm water and then rinsing it out, you are to press the cloth over your face, and deeply inhale and exhale three times. I couldn’t help but think Namaste and om yoga chants to myself every time I performed this breathing portion of the process.
You then rinse the muslin cloth in hot water and wring it out, and using circular motions, slowly rub the cleanser off your face. Repeating this previous step as needed, the last step is to rinse and wring out the cloth in cold water and lay it over your face to close your pores.
Due to all of the steps, the Eve Lom cleanser can be a bit laborious when you need to wash your face quickly (as I found out, when I tried to wash my face with the cleanser after drinking. I couldn’t quite master all of the directions of the lymphatic massage in my state of uncoordination.) After a few tries of using the cleanser, I began to get the hang of it and reduced the length of the process down to two minutes. Not bad for all of those steps, right? The process is therapeutic, since it engages more than just your face and incorporates facets of breathing, massage, and your lymph nodes. It was the first time I actually looked forward to washing my face.
Result: After my first try at using the cleanser, I was amazed at the condition of my skin. It felt moisturized and complete, in the sense that my skin felt renewed and refreshed after using this one product. Normally, it takes me four separate products for my skin to feel this way. My skin was smooth and silky to the touch, which I attributed to the usage of the muslin cloth; it does double duty also as an exfoliator. My skin felt tighter, my pores looked smaller, and that ultra-clean feeling that I normally felt only after getting a facial was repeated everyday after using this cleanser.
Cost: $95. That’s right – the only downfall to this miraculous cleanser is the price, which is definitely an investment. Definitely a little hurtful to the budget, but if you need a little rationalization for buying this, remember that it is actually four products in one, so you are actually getting more for your money! As a more wallet-friendly alternative, check out this Eve Lom Starter Kit, which contains a 2×7 ml size of the cleanser, muslin cloth, 15 ml Rescue Mask, and 15 ml Moisturizer – the perfect trial size to test out the effects of the cleanser on your skin before deciding to make it an investment.
LIZ EARLE HOT CLEANSE & POLISH
Awards: Although fairly new Stateside, this cleanser has won its own share of awards on the other side of the pond, ranging from the Prima Beauty Awards 2008 to the Eve Beauty Hero Awards 2007.
Method: Using all natural ingredients, the cleanser is in line with the ideology of Liz Earle Natural Skincare, featuring safe and healthy ingredients. The cleanser is fitting for all types of skin. This product is not designed to fit an all-in-one usage, as Liz Earle has a separate toner and moisturizer to use after completing the cleanse. However, it does double duty as a cleanser and makeup remover.
Process for Washing: Much of the comparison between these two cleanser heavyweights derides from its usage of cloths to wash the skin. In the case of Liz Earle, the cloth that is distributed with the cleanser is thicker and less gauzy then the one included with Eve Lom.
It is also distributed in a pump format, and the resulting cleanser itself is white and thick – similar to a Pond’s Cold Cream consistency, but not cold. As you apply the cleanser to a dry face, you wet the cloth in warm water, rinse, and then begin to remove the cleanser with the cloth. Repeating as needed, the final step is to rinse the cloth in cold water and to rub your face with it.
As with the Eve Lom cleanser, I saw a thoroughness with the Liz Earle that I hadn’t ever seen before with other non-cloth based cleansers. Everything came off upon washing my face onto the cloth: the toughest mascara, eyeliner, blush, all of my foundation, or anything I had put on my skin that day.
Result: After using this cleanser, my skin felt the way it does after I get a hot steam – pure, velvety, and poreless. The biggest difference in results between the Liz Earle and Eve Lom that gave Eve Lom the extra edge was that I felt like the Eve Lom cleanser involved my whole body, and not just my face. The notion of a cleanse that can actually affect your whole body might seem preposterous to those that haven’t tried it before; and I don’t know if it is due to all the om chants I would do to myself while breathing or because of the lymphatic massage, but after washing my face with Eve Lom, I began to feel the stress from my day immediately melt away from my body. I was in a zen state after cleansing and would feel immediately relaxed and ready for bed.
Price: The biggest and probably best difference between these two cleansers is that the Liz Earle cleanser retails at a very friendly price of $24.50, which includes the cleanser and two cloths.
Conclusion: Both of these cleansers do amazing things for your skin, so it is hard to pick a clear cut winner between the two. Although the Eve Lom cleanser gives a thorough overall experience with a higher price point, the Liz Earle cleanser also delivers a great, comprehensive cleanser at an easier price. My thought is this: choose whichever one fits better with budget as both deliver fantastic results!