Sunday, 28 June 2009

Avène Gentle Purifying Scrub

RRP: £8.50/50ml from

--What does the promo say?--
"Avene's Gentle Exfoliating Scrub is specially formulated to cleanse sensitive skin in depth by gently eliminating all impurities. Avene's Gentle Purifying Scrub is very rich in Avene Thermal Spring water, and acts by releasing all the water's soothing and anti-irritant properties. The mild and gel-like texture prevents cutaneous dryness and leaves a pleasant feeling of comfort."

Charmingly and fashionably decorated with a large coral swirl and simple coral writing. While this more evokes shells on a white tropical beach than springs in the heart of France, it is nevertheless pleasing to the eye and somehow still seems appropriate for the brand. The lid is a white stand-alone screw-top, decorated with a coral band.

Squeeze out a pea-sized amount of the exfoliator onto the fingers and massage onto damp facial skin (either alone or mixed with your usual cleanser). Rinse off using a warm damp flannel.

A clear gel with almost neon artificial beads in the same coral shade as on the tube and box. While Avène claims that these artificial beads have been selected for their durability, I have never understood why brands opt for these instead of natural exfoliants (such as shell, salt, or sugar) - not only are they harder to wash away from the face but they are also generally less effective. Apart from the occasional bead that you'll find on your skin even after washing off, there is no other visible residue after use.


--Texture, consistency and sensation--
The gel is smooth, mild, cooling and non-greasy. The beads are palpable, but they too are very mild and don't seem to exert any significant effects on the skin. The gel is a little runny, but nothing too serious.

--Effects over time--
Skin is minimally smoothened in the immediate time after use, but some dry patches still remain. Annoyingly, there appear to be no positive effects over time either - dry patches continue to recur and remain on the skin over weeks.

--Value for money--
While this isn't the most expensive stuff in the world at under a tenner, I was still disappointed. With all that natural stuff in the exfoliator, even despite the artificial exfoliating beads, I really expected more from Avène, which appears to be quite well-known and well-respected in France. In fact, it's just turned out to be the most useless exfoliator I've ever used, which is a bit of a shame.
However, I won't be writing Avène off completely - I have a tube of their cold cream for lips which is fantastic (review forthcoming). It does occasionally happen with some brands that they veer from the amazingly good to the amazingly rubbish in the space of a few products - even if the exfoliator did not make a brilliant first impression for me as a first-time user of the brand, I'm willing to accept that this might be the case with Avène.

perfect partners
Avène Thermal Spring Water Spray, £5.25/150ml
Avène Cleanance Anti-Shine Regulating Emulsion, £9.50/40ml
Avène Cleanance Soapless Gel Cleanser, £7.95/200ml

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