Lush/Hate relationship....Lush Skincare Review

Ok, so I've made it a little over a week with my new skincare routine. Sadly, I've got to say that I was a little disappointed. I wanted to LOVE everything, I really did. But unfortunately, it just didn't work for me. Staying true to my commitment issues with skincare (other than my old trusty Proactiv), I didn't even make it the full 2 weeks. Read on for the full reviews of each product and why I stopped using these products.
**Please keep in mind that what works/doesn't work for me, may do the total opposite for you. These are just my honest opinions.

Lush Coal Face Cleanser:
At first I LOVED this stuff. If you're like me and you're used to a really deep cleanser that makes your face feel super clean, this is probably the best Lush cleanser for you. It has small exfoliating bits in it as well, which was important to me because I pretty much have to have an exfoliating cleanser after being used to using the Proactiv cleanser for 8 years. Unfortunately, the little bits are few and far between in the soap and while you can feel them in the lather, it really doesn't do a thorough job of exfoliating. It's just kind of scratchy. The soap lathers beautifully into a rich grey lather. The smell, which was kind of weird at first, really grew on me. It rinses very clean and easily. The downfall of this cleanser is that it's very drying. I felt like it wasn't really doing anything for my skin, just cleansing it and making it very dry. Not really putting anything back. I felt like I could have gotten the same cleansing effect with a bar of dial soap.

Tea Tree Water Toner:
The best part about this stuff is the packaging. I love how you can spray it directly onto your face or onto a cotton pad. I really didn't care for the scent. It reminded me of bathroom cleaner. I really didn't find it to do anything really. After washing my face, it really didn't make my skin feel any more comfortable or like it had truly "toned" it and put anything back that my skin needed. I know this stuff claims to be pretty effective, but it just wasn't for me.

Vanishing Cream:
This is supposed to be the least oily moisturizer Lush has. That being said, it still contains oils. I had been using this in place of my Benefit Dear John cream that I LOVE and really found that it didn't hold a candle to it when my skin was really uncomfortable. The Benefit Dear John however, is not completely oil free and I find it to do a better job of moisturizing without feeling as oily as the Vanishing Cream. Something that kind of freaked me out about it was the Johnson's Baby Oil-ish after scent. That, I did not like. At $35 for the small container, I just wasn't as impressed as I thought I would be after using it consistently.

Mask of Magnaminty:
This cleanser/mask feels really nice on the skin and has a really strong minty/tingling sensation as it dries on the skin. I actually found the sweet mint scent to be kind of nauseating. Like mint and something else I couldn't quite put my finger on. However, it's a little difficult to rinse. When I would rinse the mask, I would rinse it to begin with with my hands and warm water so I could get all the exfoliating benefits of the mask (which I really didn't find to be all that exfoliating), then to get the rest of it off, I would have to really work at it with a washcloth and warm water. Then, my washcloths would get stained and that was no fun. I actually really prefer the Love Lettuce mask by Lush. It's actually exfoliating, cleansing, and easy to rinse off. It just seems to work better with my skin. I also LOVE the Cupcake mask for when I need less exfoliation. I guess I shouldn't have tried to find something new when I already had found two masks by Lush that were working perfectly.

Philosophy On a Clear Day Retinol Treatment:
This was the only keeper out of the bunch. I found that during the course of using all of this new stuff, I didn't get any acne-like blemishes or anything like that. Just clogged pores (ew). Which I think the other products were more to blame for. I felt like this stuff kept most areas of my face acne free and really smooth. I also feel that when I use a retinol treatment, my pores are less noticeable. The only downfall to this stuff is the price. At $40 for such a small tube, that's a little much in my opinion. My biggest piece of advice would be to head to the drugstore and pick up some of the Neutrogena Anti-Wrinkle Cream with Spf. That one comes in a much larger tube, is 1/4 of the price and adds the spf protection which is crucial for retinol treatments since sunlight breaks down the active ingredients in any retinol treatment. Also, never pair a retinol with a leave-on benzoyl peroxide treatment (like a cream). They kind of cancel each other out and renders both uneffective. At least that's what the derm. says!

Ok, so the main reason I stopped using these products were because of the clogged pores that resulted. Not blemishes or acne or anything like that, but my skin just looked bumpy. Just on my forehead and chin. Something I've never really experienced before. Needless to say, I wasn't too happy about that. I feel like it was a combination of two things. Not enough exfoliation and not using any type of acne treatment (other than the retinol). While I've never had any real acne issues, I've always needed to use skincare aimed toward treating acne to prevent it since my skin can break out easily.
So, I've decided to go back to my old faithful Proactiv. It was good to me for 8 years. It really has everything I need: An exfoliating, medicated cleanser, a toner with glycolic acid (which will help smooth the appearance of my skin and fade any acne scarring), and a benzoyl peroxide acne treatment lotion. Since I stopped using this because it had become a little harsh on my skin, I'm planning on using the benzoyl peroxide lotion much less often. For moisturizer, I'm going to use my MAC Lightful Deep Ultramoisture cream day and night and the Benefit Dear John Cream when my skin feels like it needs some extra moisture. As for the retinol treatment, I'll use that at night if I feel I need it.

So needless to say, I haven't had the best of luck with Lush's skincare. In the past, I have also tried their Fresh Farmacy, Herbalism, and Angels on Bare Skin cleansers. I honestly didn't care much for those either. Yeah they were fun to use and different, but they just didn't deliver any real results. Out of all the cleansers by Lush, I actually like the Angels on Bare Skin the best, but I've realized that I need something with more cleansing, active ingredients. So as far as Lush skincare goes, the Love Lettuce mask and Cupcake masks are really all that works for me.
**EDIT** Also, the Ocean Salt Scrub. I actually like that a lot. Probably won't use it as much now that I'm back on Proactiv, but it's still awesome.

I LOVE Lush. Their skincare....umnotsomuch.


  1. The exact same thing happened to me when I used Mask of Magnaminty! I didn't get any real pimples but I had a ton of little pink bumps all over my chin and forehead! I have a friend that I gave it away to and he didn't have any problems with it so maybe it's just that some people are sensitive to an ingredient in it.

    I've found that the LUSH toners don't do very much aside from making me feel refreshed and getting rid of that squeaky residue that some of the cleansers leave behind.

  2. I was actually recommended the same exact products as you. I bought Coal Face, Magnaminty, Tea Tree Water, and Vanishing Cream.

    The Magnaminty is giving me little bumps on my forehead and chin also! And it is a PAIN to get off. I bought the Love Lettuce as well and I'm trying it tonight.

    The toner doesn't seem to do anything besides take off what the cleanser didn't.

    And my Cetaphil moisturizer I like over the Vanishing Cream. It's not bad, it's just not as good. I have skin that is very used to salicylic acid and now that I'm not using it, I think it's freaking out a little bit!

    I had such high hopes for these products, and I'm feeling pretty let down. With all the raves over these products on the website, I really thought they were gonna do better!

  3. Bummer :( Since you liked angels on bare skin, i think you should get a sample of herbalism cleanser next time you're at lush. it's really helped me out and i'm constantly battling acne.

  4. So how do you feel about the Ocean salt? I think I've seen you with it on you tube. I love Ocean salt because it makes my skin SUPER DUPER soft after cleansing. How ironic, my friend LOVES coal face and tea tree oil toner. I guess it's different for everyone. This was a great break/down review! :)

  5. For my moisturizer I bought Enzymion and I love it. Its made for oily skin and I notice that after putting on my makeup there is a decrease of oilyness throughout the day!

  6. Oooh I love my Dear John moisturizer too. If it had spf I'd start a religion over it.

  7. I agree on the Lush skincare unfortunately... Coal Face and Fresh Pharmacy both made my skin WORSE, not to mention they both smell like garbage. Sucks because many others seemed to have great luck with them but not me!!

    Also, this is going to sound utterly stupid, but is that what those 'bumps that aren't pimples' are, clogged pores? I've always had the bumps on my forehead and had no idea what it was. Interestingggg.....

  8. Coal bar + tea tree oil? It must have dried out your skin like crazy!

    I never use Lush products on my face.. they are filled with fragrance and irritant ingredients.

  9. I tried Proactiv and it didnt work for me at all, made my skin all red, dry, and itchy. I actually tried it on 3 different occasions, that's how effective there commericals are lol. I thought, well, maybe I did something wrong, I'll try it again lol. But now I'm using this stuff called "Murad", it's similar to Proactiv but it's actually working and doesnt give me side effects. The only thing that I have found with these types of face wash is that you use so little that it doesn't take off all your makeup. Do you use a makeup remover before you wash? Do you have this probelm with Proactiv?

  10. Have you tried Dermalogica? If your still looking for a new product I totally recomment these products! Each individual skin type is diagnosed and products specifically for you are reccomended. I love Dermalogica!

    p.s Love your Blog and Vids!

  11. My daughter was on proativ for several years and then it stopped working for her.We then tried the clean and clean kit (it has to be the one that comes as a kit) because it was being comparied to and said to be better than the proacitv.She loves it and it has worked great for her.

  12. I love LUSH!! Great review of the products. Right now I am using the Mask of Magnaminty and Eu Rosa Water toner (in addition to my Cetaphil moisturizer and cleansers). I actually LOVE the Mask of Magnaminty. Its made my skin super smooth and acne free, and it also hasn't made my combination skin any drier. I've noticed a definite improvement...so I guess that just showed that products may not have the same results on different people haha. I noticed the toner doesn't really do a whole lot either, but the smell is amazing. I'm interested in trying out the Ocean Salt cleanser...it would be great if you could review it if you have it =)

  13. I've recently heard aboout mychelle products and am going to give those a try. They are all natural and cruelty free, and they have sample kits you can buy YAY!
    There is a small review here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rlpdkKGp1A4
    I am always searching for a HG skin care line.

  14. Sorry to hear you did not like the products. I too am (was) a fan of proactiv but I live in the Desert and get really really dry skin from proactiv. About a year ago I switched to Acne Free which is the same type of thing (only $17 in Walmart for cleanser, toner and cream, all BP). I really like this and can use it without getting a dry face :)

  15. Did it take anyone else FOREVER to get their order from Lush? I ordered last sunday and mine still isn't here...(tear)!

  16. wow, really great honest review, thanks!

  17. great review Tiff! I tried going in the store again but the scent is just soo overwhelming. I did look through some of them especially the mask stuff but the scent of those products just turns me off. ah well, they are unique to look at. =)

  18. I was reading on Lush.com that some people have been using the skin care products and getting the same result. They decreased using the Tea Tree Water from 2 times to once a day and they notice the redness going away. I dont know if that would help or if you have given up entirely. :)

  19. Hi Tiffany !

    I heard fabulous reviews about Body Bakery's Whipped Cream with Aloe. It's moisturizing without that greasy shine on your body.

    So you can give that a try =)

  20. So after reading your initial post I bought the same products as my skin has stopped responding to proactiv (like you said-hormonal breakouts). And guess what?!! After two days I woke up with a MASSIVE breakout EVERYWHERE! Needless to say, not very impressed. I dumped the whole lot in the garbage this morning. I ordered the Philosophy on a Clear Day regiment from Sephora so hopefully I'll some better results. Thanks so much for your reviews and tutorials-they are AMAZING!!!

  21. I absolutely HATED the coalface cleanser. I had the same reactions to it as you did. I also hated the enormous mess it left on and in my sink! I wanted to give Lush another try, so I bought the Herbalism cleanser. It doesn't lather, but I feel like it really did help improve my skin. It smells weird, but for me it works. I've been using it for 3 weeks now and my skin has improved immensely. I also have oily/combination. I use the Love Lettuce mask, then the Herbalism cleanser, then the Tea Tree Toner which I love, and then Neutrogena moisturizer for combination skin which I really like. I tried the Angels on Bare Skin cleanser from Lush. It was okay. It smelled like catnip, but I prefer the Herbalism. I think you should give it a try. As far as Lush's moisturizers go I would never use them! I looked at all of them and they either use shea butter or cocoa butter!

  22. As a former Lush employee, I think you definitely got the wrong products. I love Lush products, and hate the company, which is why I no longer work for them . . . but that's a whole other story for another time. ;)

    Anyway, I would definitely recommend using a combination of Ultrabland and Tea Tree Water to remove your makeup. Highly effective.

    After that, if you have oily skin, use Herbalism for your cleanser - Coal Face is more for blackheads on target areas. For instance, I use it solely on my nose.

    Then mist lightly with Tea Tree water, and for your moisturizer, I'd probably use Enzymion. AWESOME for oily or acne prone skin. If you're not crazy about Enzymion, use Celestial. I'm really not sure who told you to use Vanishing cream, but it's one of Lushest richest moisturizers, so I'd say they were pretty confused.

    Go into the store, tell them what you've tried, and then ask them for samples of UltraBland, Herbalism, and Enzymion and/or Celestial.

    Go home and try it in the order that I mentioned above, and let me know if that doesn't change your mind. I used some Lush products that I absolutely hated . . . they weren't the right ones for me. ;)

  23. I have your skincare solution. In a word Kiehl's. Its fantastic for oily skin with minor blemishes every now and again. I use the Yerba Mate Tea Cleanser, Toner and Mosturizer. All their products are amazing though. I only switched back to Clinque when I moved here to Europe and it was too much of a pain to get them anymore.

  24. I've tried a lot of moisturizing creams, cheap and expensive ones but nothing really worked for me, until I discovered a new line of anti aging products. This is definitely one of the best. Purity12’s moisturizer truly addressed my dry skin problems that I’ve had for years. It definitely made my skin softer and kept it moisturized throughout the day and even helped with some uneven spots. I used to wear dark and bigger shades to cover some dark spot on my face but now, I’ve saved so much from layering tons of products on my face! This product is really worth sharing. http://if1s.com?106

  25. You may have seen on twitter that I'm cutting my skincare down and using products which are natural and fragrance free. I wrote a blog post about my new updated skincare routine, day & night and then remembered i forgot to add these two new products in there! I've been using Ultrabland on and off and then using Full Of Grace as a night time treatment.

  26. A positively stimulating facial that will leave your skin glowing, detoxified, and firm! First, fresh apple and grape pulp are used to infuse natural fruit acids into the skin. Paprika is then used to stimulate circulation and detoxify; with this two-step process, a fantastic organic exfoliation is achieved. This facial is finished with a cooling application of chilled organic masques and creams lightly whipped to suit your skin type. best skincare products


  27. That's interesting! Can you please share more about it? Thank you.

    Best Facial Cleansers for Sensitive Skin