If it has been one of these days – Clinique Take the day off Cleansing Balm

Sometimes, the day is not your friend.
The alarm goes off way to early, someone finished your favorite tea without bothering to tell you (or let alone go get some more) and after running errands all day long you notice the top you choose to wear as a pick-me-up has peanut butter stains all over the back (don’t ask…)

Clinique Take the day off Cleansing Balm

Now think about your skin.
All day long it is harassed by fumes and UV-Rays, covered in makeup and the grime from little touching hands, stripped by wind and air-condition.

Imagine that happening to you, and then imagine someone slowly massaging a balm on your back, gently removing the dirt while smelling pleasantly, uttering soft, soothing sounds to prepare you for the night?
Sounds lovely, hm?

This is what I like to think my Balm Cleansers do for my skin.
Maybe except the soothing sounds, although I may or may not have been secretly humming the last time I applied Cliniques „Take the day off“ Cleansing Balm.

What Clinique claims:
Lightweight makeup remover quickly dissolves tenacious eye and face makeups, sunscreens. Transforms from a solid balm into a silky oil upon application. Cleans thoroughly, rinses off completely. Non-greasy. Non-drying. Ophthalmologist Tested. For all skin types.

The balm comes in a pot containing 125 ml, retailing for 29,99 € here.
On the Clinique website a rebuy-cycle of eight weeks is recommended, but after using it once daily for three months, I still have about half of the product left.

The consistency is thick, but the balm easily melts when massaged onto your dry face, turning into an oily texture. If I just rinse with warm water, a little oiliness stays on my face, but if you are using a wash cloth for removal, there is no residue.
No smell, neither pleasant nor unpleasant can be detected.

Clinique Take the day off Cleansing Balm

I use mine as a second cleanse, not as a makeup remover, and I would recommend doing so to save some money.

Favorable ingredients:
– Carmathus Tinctorius (Seed Oil): contains Vitamin E (antioxidant) and lipids
– Tocopherol (Vitamin E): antioxidant

Unfavorable Ingredients:
– Sorbeth-30, PEG-5 Glyceryl Triisostearate:
PEG are used as emulsifier in many skin- and haircare products. They are not used in true organic skincare, as there is concern that some of them make the skin more permeable for other unfavorable things like preservatives.

The main ingredient is Ethylhexyl Palmitate (palm oil). This is unproblematic skincarewise, but is associated with the destruction of indonesian rain forest. It is highly requested, so rain forest is burned down to increase the cultivation area of palm trees, leading to an increase in CO2-emission and extinction of Sumatra Orang-Utans.
There is no way to stop buying products containing palm oil if you don’t want to stop buying products in general, as it is in our food, hair- and skincare, even in our washing detergents. The only way to go is to put pressure on the companies to use certified palm oil by requesting it.

You can read Estée Lauders Statement on Palm Oil here. If you can’t be bothered clicking the link: They use certified palm oil.

Does it live up to its claims?
It is fragrance free, suited for all skin types and cleanses thoroughly without stinging my eyes.

Will I rebuy?
It is affordable and effective while feeling like a proper treat. The PEGs don’t worry me too much as I don’t leave the product sitting on my skin, but take it off.
Regarding the palm oil, I have not found an alternative balm cleanser using sustainable palm oil yet. Through the Greenpeace website, dropping companies a line asking them to start using sustainable palm oil is possible, which I did (Clinique belongs to Estée Lauder, in case you were wondering). Sadly I can’t seem to find the link at the moment.
This may not be much and just silencing my conscience, but it is all I can offer at the moment.
You can read Estée Lauders Statement on Palm Oil here. If you can’t be bothered clicking the link: They use certified palm oil.

Who do I recommend it to?

Cleansing may be the most important step in your routine, and a balm cleanser really is suitable even for oily skins, even though it took me years to wrap my head around that.
What do you do to unwind after a rough day?
And what do you use to show your skin some love everyday?

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  • You are always so knowledgeable about skincare ingredients, I learn so much from you. I have heard good things about this balm but I have never tried it. I wonder how effective it is in removing makeup and waterproof makeup. I have been using Garnier Cleansing Oil for removing makeup and Nude Skincare Omega Cleansing Jelly for second cleansing after my makeup is removed. I alternate it with Vichy Normaderm gel though.

  • I was THIS close to ordering it this week! But I didn't. Solely because I still have a lot of cleansers that I should finish first.

  • OOO I love this one, too! I use it as a first cleanse tho, because it removes makeup so well! Would definitely love to repurchase. I do dislike how high the price is here in Europe tho. In the US, it's like 30 bucks!

  • Well, given the current Euro exchange rate, it is about 30 bucks here in Germany, too, as 1 € is at 1,05 $ at the moment. I alternate it with Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm, which is pricier, and I just got the Chamomile one from The Body Shop, which may be a cheaper alternative.
    For first cleanse I use Bioderma, it does the job well enough.
    What is your second cleanse?

  • Yes, I try to apply a one-in, one-out policy, too, but sometimes I get carried away. Or it is my birthday. Or Christmas. Or a full moon. Whatever.

  • It is very effective in removing makeup, although I can't vouch for waterproof mascara, as I rarely wear one.
    I have to admit, i learn a lot about skincare ingredients, too. Makes me more hesitant to slather my face in samples, but i think it is worth it.

  • OK so if I'm wearing a full face of makeup, I usually do Bioderma/bi-phase cleaner to take the makeup off, then I use either this one or the Emma Hardie one, and then the Pai cleansing milk. If I'm not wearing makeup then I skip the first step.

  • Maireem Maneje

    Good review 🙂 I like how you looked at all components of the product 🙂


  • Mimi Flys

    Brilliant review, and beautiful photographs! I love using a cleansing balm. After years of using Liz Earles hot cloth cleanser, I've just switched to Elemis pro collagen balm – which I love but is super expensive. I think il try this one out when my current one is empty 🙂 thank you x
    Mimi Flys

  • I love Cleansing gels and this one is definitely on my list of the ones I want to try, as I keep hearing good things about it. x

    Renata | Speaking Beauty UK

  • Great review – this sounds lovely! I do like a good gel/balm cleanser 🙂 xx

    Brenda BusyBee

  • The first time I heard of this was while watching Ruth Crilly (A Model Recommends) and she loves it. I tried looking for this back in Malaysia but the sale assistant hasn't even heard of it, weird. I have completely forgotten about this until now so thank you for reminding me, will need to pick this up to try.

    Shireen | Reflection of Sanity

  • Thank you for sharing these. I am avid Clinique user and cheerleader. I love that their products are actually healthy for the skin and don't just promote looking great. Please read about my cosmetic obsessions and application methods on BeautyBiche.blogspot.com. I swear it is a must read.

  • LOL 🙂 That made me lol…

  • Naomi

    Incredible review! Very easy to read and super informative. Thanks for sharing! -xo Naomi in Wonderland

  • I had the Emma Hardie one but stopped using it because I couldn't bear the smell during pregnancy. Rediscovering it I am almost through my pot and love the smell.

  • valeriesdays

    This brand is really great ! I use the night cream and it's perfect ! I'd like to try this product too… kisses ! http://valeriesdays.blogspot.fr/

  • Swati Sharma
  • Thank you, Maireem.
    Do you use balm cleansers?

  • You won´t be disappointed.
    What are your favorite products so far? I am always in the market for new ones…

  • Thank you, it really is a great product.
    Which one do you use at the moment?

  • Yes, the downside of watching YT and reading a ton of blogs is that you end up knowing more than the person behind the counter. Takes the magic out of shopping…
    Give it a go and let me know if it lived up to your expectations.

  • Thank you, Naomi.
    What do you use as evening cleanse?

  • Which night cream is it? I am curious to try more of Clinique soon.

  • Thank you.

  • Thanks for stopping by, Mimi.
    I was intrigued by the Liz Earle one, but I read it contains mineral oil, which made me hesitant. Did you have any problems?

  • Dressed With Soul

    Oh, das klingt aber nach keinem so allzu guten Tag … wie schön, dass Du das dennoch so gelassen siehst! Mich entspannt es nach einem solchen Tag am meisten lange spazierenzugehen, natürlich mit meinem Mann darüber zu reden und auch wenn ich blogge, sehe ich schnell wieder die schönen Seiten des Lebens 🙂 Wenn ich meiner Haut etwas Gutes tun möchte, dann gibt es für sie sogar eine Maske oder eine Sonderbehandlung. Und der Cleansing Balm, den Du hier vorstellst, der klingt auch wieder so gut, dass ich ihn gerne ebenfalls mal ausprobieren möchte. Ich wünsche Dir eine schöne Woche mit ausschließlich angenehmen Tagen.

    Liebe Grüße von Rena


  • Jaa

    I just choked on my green tea pocky reading your comment. Hahahahahahahahaahahahahahahahaah man everyone's so funny today!!!!

    Anyway, I LOVE this cleansing balm! I salute you for using it for 3 months and still have more than a half left! I think I go through it one tub a month! I'm crazy… I know I know…

    Thanks for the extra information. I learn something new every time I read your post! 🙂

  • Alison Hutchinson

    I've actually been looking at trying a cleansing balm for a while. Not sure why I haven;t made the switch yet, but I think you've just convinced me!

    xoxo Alison

  • Hm, you make it sound amazing. I'm all curious now xD and a rebuy cycle of 8 weeks.. boy.. that's some money spending 😛 good to read you haven't finished it yet! I must keep this in mind next time I visit a beauty store 🙂 I shall test it on my hand.. after testing out loads of makeup on it 😛

  • I haven't gotten into cleansing balms yet but am so curious about them, and I love Clinique in general. Such a great and thorough review! Thank you for sharing this. 🙂

  • Ich habe schon recht viele Sachen von Clinique probiert und war auch meistens super zufrieden, weil die Produkte nie zu Hautirritationen oder anderen unschönen Dingen bei mir geführt haben. Vor allem finde ich auch, dass deren Preise im Gegensatz zu vielen anderern Herstellern noch relativ moderat sind. Den Cleansing Balm habe ich tatsächlich noch nicht gehabt, aber nach deiner tollen Review spiele ich auf jeden Fall mit dem Gedanken, den auch einmal auszuprobieren! ♥


  • currently im using clarins cleansing oil
    but this is in my wishlist and i love clinique as a brand and their product always works on me
    beautifully reviewed ,especially the ingredients list

  • I like the sound of this. I just use a Garnier facial scrub in the morning and the same at night, but I could definitely use a product like this at the end of the day.

  • Do you use the scrub to remove you eye makeup, too, or do you use a designated eye makeup remover?

  • Thank you, Krithi.
    Do you like the Clarins Cleansing Oil?

  • Dancing your problems away is a great tip! Any candle or do you have a special, soothing scented candle you use?
    And thanks for asking, my day finished awesome.

  • Was waren denn Deine Lieblingsprodukte bisher?
    Ausser dem Balm habe ich noch nicht so viel probiert.

  • A great way to start without spending too much money is The Body Shop Chamomile Cleansing Balm. Affordable, easy to get, a great way to give in to a new obsession!
    What do you use for cleansing?

  • Putting it to the test right there, I like that. It takes my makeup off really well, but I need more product if I use it for this purpose, so I use the cheaper Bioderma instead.
    I think you would get along with this one quite well, as it has no added fragrances and is great for sensitive skin.

  • I love to enable people!
    If you want a cheaper alternative to try, go for The Body Shop Chamomile Cleansing Balm. It is a nice product, too (I will be reviewing it someday soon), and if you end up disliking the feel of a balm, you haven't spend that much money.

  • Danke, liebe Rena.
    Mit Kind lernt man schnell, sich von solchen Dingen nicht runter ziehen zu lassen, sondern durch zu atmen, darüber zu lachen, und sich zuhause richtig zu verwöhnen. Man ist ja sowieso viel zuhause abends 😉
    Bloggen oder vor allem Blogs zu lesen erinnert mich auch wieder an all die schönen Dinge, die ich habe oder noch ausprobieren möchte. Zum Beispiel ein so schöner Farbtupfer wie die gelbe Jacke aus Deinem letzten Post.

  • Wow this sounds fantabulous!! I have the take the day off makeup remover but this takes the cake!! On my wishlist now!



  • Just wait for my next haul post while I am on a spending ban to see I am not joking.

  • I loveeee this balm cleanser! I'm currently using the chamomile balm by the Body Shop which is a similar concept.

    Erin | Erin and Katherine Talk Beauty

  • I just got it for my birthday, as it has been on my wishlist for ages. Cant wait to try it, but I vowed not to have too many cleansers open at once, so I need patience…
    Have you tried any other balm cleansers you could recommend?

  • I have never tried the makeup remover. Is it oil based?

  • Also mein absolutes Lieblingsprodukt dürfte wohl die Redness Solutions Daily Relief Cream sein. Die macht natürlich nur Sinn, wenn man auch ein Problem mit Rötungen hat und das habe ich immer mal ganz gerne .. Die Creme ist zwar nicht gerade günstig, aber hilft dafür absolut top 🙂

  • I've actually got a post coming up this week on 3 gel cleansers that I use – nspa, Clarins & Eve Lom xx

  • Marta // The Glow Lab

    Yes! I love "Loves me, loves me not" from Yankee Candle. If you close your eyes it smells like a field of grass 🙂 I'm glad your day finished awesome!

  • I've had it on my wish list for a long time so when my current cleanser runs out, I'll definitely go out and get that one! I've been using Clinique's liquid facial soap forever and think it might be fun to switch things up a little.

  • How do you like the Liquid Soap? Does it foam up?

  • I burned my first ever Yankee Candle through this autumn winter, and really liked it, so I will be back for some more and take a look at "loves me, loves me not."

  • Cant wait to read it.

  • Probleme mit Rötungen habe ich im Augenblick nicht, also wohl eher nicht für mich.
    Klar sind die Produkte nicht ganz günstig, aber ich finde, bei Hautpflege sollte man nicht sparen.

  • I have heard a lot about this cleansing water. Do you use it as makeup remover or as cleanse?

  • Nope just the ones by Clinique and The Body Shop. I'd love to try more though, so I'm sure I'll be investigating 🙂

  • Yeah, exactly 🙂 it's definitely worth checking out!

  • I love Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish & The Body Shop Cleansing oil. I'm now in doubt whether I should get Emma Hardie or Oskia, that everyone seems to love so much. Any suggestion? 🙂

  • Love your review! I used to find cleansing very tedious but now it's a part of the day I look forward to! I suppose it's something that would have never happened if I wasn't blogging. :p
    This sounds perfect though, I'm still using up my cleansing oils but I'm definitely giving this a go at some point.

  • I started thorough cleansing when I got into reading blogs, and I have seen such an improvement in my skin.
    Which oils are you using?

  • I tried the Emma Hardie Mooring Cleansing Balm, too, and really loved it. Maybe give this one a go. It is scented, though.

  • I'll check it out! Thanks.

  • You´re welcome.

  • I can only vote for the Emma Hardie one, as I haven't tried Oskia. I loved my Emma Hardie Mooring Balm, it is a little richer than Cliniques, feels lovely, but is scented. If you are sensitive to fragrances, this might not be for you. I loved the scent, but oddly enough couldn't stand it during pregnancy. But it is one I will rebuy.

  • It's great for dry and sensitive skin as it's very gentle and mild but definitely cleanses your skin of impurities. It doesn't foam up!

  • Sounds intriguing.

  • For the longest time it was Shu Uemura but right now I'm using the Shiseido Aqualabel cleansing oil. I generally also use a milk/cream cleanser for the second cleanse. 🙂

  • I was tempted by the Shue Uemura one, but it is incredibly pricey. Recently L´Oreal have launched one I will take a closer look at.