It’s coming up to four months since I started this blog and my Infatuated by Beauty Instagram feed. Not that I would say I am inundated by requests for my opinions on products, but the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel is the one product I have been asked about the most.
Beloved by lots of the British YouTubers and a firm favourite among many of the IG skincare community, this gel-to-oil cleanser is fairly well priced at £29.50 (as far as luxury skincare goes) and I can totally understand the high-levels of interest in it.
But for me, it is highly overrated.
What do they say?
Oskia say their cleanser is “a new generation non-foaming cleansing gel-to-oil that melts into skin to quickly and gently remove impurities and makeup while actively illuminating and nourishing to reveal balanced, clean, fresh, radiant skin that feels soft and smooth. Wonderfully rich in vitamins and enzymes”.
Packaged in a very sleek white bottle, with a pump, the cleanser is an amazing pink gel which apparently smells of rose and chamomile – I love the scent and it reminds me so much of rose flavoured Turkish Delight (my absolute favourite!).
While the packaging is excellent for maintaining the integrity of the ingredients during its shelf life (9 months by the way), it’s pretty bulky, so not ideal for travelling, and there is no way of telling how much product is left.
Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glycerin, Aqua, Cetearyl Olivate, Sucrose Laurate, Benzyl Alcohol, Sorbitan Olivate, Sucrose Palmitate, Parfum (Natural), Geraniol, Dimethyl Sulfone (MSM), Citronellol, Dehydroacetic Acid, Lactobacillus/Cucurbita Pepo Fruit Ferment Extract, Borago Officinalis Seed Oil, Sucrose Stearate, Linalool, Retinyl Palmitate, CI77491 (natural iron oxide), Jojoba Esters, Tocopherol, Ascorbyl Palmitate
The key ingredients in the Renaissance Cleansing Gel are designed to give it exfoliating and brightening properties – most notably pumpkin enzyme and Oskia’s signature ingredient MSM.
MSM (Methyl Sulphonyl Methane) “is a natural form of organic sulphur compound that is found in all living organisms”. Oskia says that MSM, traditionally taken orally as a supplement, is known to be effective in treating numerous skin conditions including acne and eczema, and in its skincare products can improve skin by protecting collagen, promoting the regeneration of skin and providing anti-inflammatory properties.
I do find it interesting when a brand builds itself on a core ingredient – it can prove useful in helping products stand out from the crowd. I’ve yet to try any other Oskia products so can’t really speak to the efficacy of MSM, but if you want to read more about it you can do so here.
How do I use it?
This is definitely a morning/second cleanse product. I would say it could remove make-up (maybe not stubborn eye make-up), but if you wanted to use it for that I would suggest double cleansing with it.
I primarily used it in the morning as I love something luxurious in the evening and, for me, the Oskia is not that.
What do I think?
Firstly, I will clarify that this is my opinion. So many people love this cleanser, but I honestly believe its because they don’t know better. If you really, really want to try it you may well like it because it’s not a horrible product, but for me it is hugely overrated and there is a cleanser out there that is like this, but better.
The problem I have with this is how I feel it cleans my skin. I love the smell, the texture, the way it turns from gel to oil. Even the colour is beautiful. But when I cleanse my skin I want to feel like the product is really getting into my skin – deep into the pores and lifting out all the excess oils and dirt. Obviously balms and oils are the best for this, but as a gel-to-oil, I really expected this of the Oskia too. But for me, it just feels like it’s cleaning the surface of my skin, moving around on the top layer, but never deep cleaning or nourishing.
For those who have tried the Ole Henriksen Pure Truth Melting Cleanser, it’s a similar feeling to that. I threw that away half-way through the pot because I just couldn’t deal with it. The Oskia was at least allowed to stick around until it was finished (well nearly).
Would I repurchase?
I’m writing this review as I have just thrown away my second bottle of the Oskia. It’s not quite empty but it’s past its shelf life and trying to finish it was just driving me mad.
I did actually finish my first bottle and wasn’t wowed by it then either, so I really don’t know why I bought a second bottle. I think I was desperate for a morning cleanse, because I had finished the Tata Harper Purifying and didn’t want to use the Emma Hardie balm in the morning. I couldn’t afford another Tata Harper cleanser at the time so decided to give Oskia another whirl as it’s slightly more affordable.
In August last year, another gel-to-oil cleanser came into my life and blew the Oskia out of the water. Anyone who follows my Instagram will know what I’m talking about. I’m addicted!
Jordan Samuel’s Plie has an almost identical sales pitch to the Oskia, with its fruit enzymes designed to gently exfoliate and give glow. Similar in texture (I would say the Oskia is actually silkier), Plie is cheaper and far far more effective – it’s truly outstanding and I can safely say I will never be tempted to buy the Oskia cleanser again. It obliterates make-up and gives that really deep cleaning feeling that I love. You can read me rave about it some more here.
If you are really keen on a gel-to-oil cleanser I would nudge you in the direction of Jordan Samuel. However it is a little trickier to get hold of, especially in the UK because you get whacked with customs fees when you ship from the US. So, if you do end up buying the Oskia I’m sure you’ll find yourself in the majority who love it.
Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel is £29.50 and is available from lots of retailers including Space NK and Cult Beauty.