I find it fascinating that one of the most important steps in having a flawless makeup look is missed by many and it is one of the simplest! Yes using a great primer can help, as well as having a good foundation. The step I’m referring to is the one in which you properly cleanse your skin and remove your makeup at night! There are many other steps like exfoliating and toning, but those aren’t being discussed right now since so many don’t even bother doing the first step. Believe me; I have been guilty of not​ taking my makeup off in the past, so there is no judgment coming from me. However, when we know better, we do better! And missing this step is no longer an option for me.

Nowadays the first step in my morning and evening routine starts with me double cleansing my face, and I always get things started with a cleansing balm! For those that aren’t familiar with what double cleansing is, it is a 2-step process in which you remove all the makeup, grime, and build up (step 1) from you face by using a cleansing balm or oil. Then you can move on (step 2) to actually cleaning the face with a cream or makeup remover.

The thing I love about balms is they don’t dry out your skin, but in fact hydrate and leave the skin very supple! They are also packed with good stuff for the skin so that in itself is even more reason not to miss this step.

I’ve tried about ten different balms in the last 16 months ranging from “they need to be ashamed of themselves” expensive to “there has to be a catch” cheap. Below are the three that I keep purchasing over and over, and that are always in the rotation…

Farmacy Green Clean Makeup Meltaway Cleansing Balm with Echinacea GreenEnvy

I was not going to pick a favorite, but I love this one so much! Not only is it removing my makeup without being harsh, but it is also refining my skin’s surface. If your skin is on the sensitive side, be mindful that this product is full of essential oils. My skin loves the oils because it leaves my skin feeling incredibly hydrated and smooth. Another thing I like about it, and many of my other favorite Farmacy products, is the addition of their patented Echinacea GreenEnvy which is a potent antioxidant that promotes an evenly toned complexion. It also has Sunflower Oil and Ginger Root Oil that gently cleanses and nourishes the skin. Papaya extract acts as an exfoliator to get rid of the dead skin cells.

Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm

This one I call the worker because it dissolves and removes everything! A little goes a long way, so I use a little product spatula to scoop it out (this one does not include a spatula). This one works best for dry and sensitive; if you have sensitive skin, this will likely become one of your holy grail products since it has no mineral oil, fragrances, or essential oils.

I love the way my skin feels and looks after I use it. This product uses Safflower Seed Oil as it’s primary oil source which contains about 75% linoleic acid. Hence making it great for acne prone skin types as well.

Pixi by Petra + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse

I knew nothing about this product except that it was a 2 in 1 double cleanser by Pixi by Petra and Caroline Hirons. When one of the top skincare experts joins forces with top beauty provider Pixi you know it’s going to be good!

What makes this different from the other two products mentioned above is the addition of the cream. This comes with a solid cleansing oil (step 1) and a cleansing cream (step 2), which gives you everything you need and makes the double cleansing process effortless. The skin-loving ingredients in the cleansing oil are: Vitamin E (protect & conditions), Camellia Oil (nourishes), and Evening Primrose Oil (heals & moisture).


Hope this helps and let me know what cleansing balms you use and why. If this is something new for you, I’d also love to hear your thoughts on these or any cleansing balms you decide to give a try!

Until soon…Toodles

~Felice “Swanky Girl” Sloan

Felice "Swanky Girl" Sloan

Felice is the co-founder and editor of Urban Swank. She focuses on food, beauty, and fashion.


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