review clarins cleansing milk with gentian

Clarins Cleansing Milk with Gentian is one of those products that has been around forever. Must be something special about it, right?

Not really. Here’s what I mean:

What’s In Clarins Cleansing Milk With Gentian?


Don’t let the complicated name fool you. Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride is a highly purified grade of coconut oil.

It usually acts as an emollient, making skin softer and smoother. But in Clarins Cleansing Milk with Gentian, it has another important role to play, too: it cleanses skin.

It works thanks to the “like attracts like” principle. Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride attaches to the oils on your face (sebum and makeup + sunscreen ingredients) and rinses them off down the drain.

Related: The Complete Guide To Coconut Oil In Skincare


Glycerin is a moisture magnet. Literally.

Its job is to attract moisture from the air into the skin and bind it there. It’s a way to make the cleansing process gentler. If your skin retains moisture while it’s scrubbed clean, it won’t feel tight and dry afterwards.

Related: Why Is Glycerin In All My Skincare Products?


This cleanser has a creamy and rich texture that’s more moisturizing than cleansing.


Old-fashioned floral scent. Not a fan, really.

How To Use It

It’s the first step of your skincare routine, both in the morning and at night. If you double cleanse, this is your 2nd-step cleaner.

Need help creating the best skincare routine for you oily skin? Sign up to the newsletter below to receive the “Oily Skincare Routine Cheatsheet” (it includes product recommendations, too!).

Performance & Personal Opinion

Clarins Cleansing Milk with Gentian has a bit of an identity crisis. It claims to be the perfect cleanser for oily skin, but truth is, it’s way more suitable for dry skin. Here’s why:

It’s more moisturising than cleansing. Both during and after the cleansing process, my skin stays soft and smooth, a clear sign the cleanser didn’t strip it bare of moisture.

Problem is, it didn’t strip much else, either. While it can remove dirt and grime easily, it struggles with makeup – especially the waterproof and long-lasting kind.

I had to use a lot of product and elbow grease to get every last bit of foundation off… and it wasn’t even a full coverage foundation!

I guess this would make a nice morning cleanser for dry skin. But don’t expect it to do more than that…

Clarins Cleansing Milk with gentian review

Who Is This For?

Women with dry skin who wear very little makeup.

Who Is This Not For?

Everyone else.


Clarins Cleansing Milk with Gentian is packaged in a sleek white bottle that evokes feeling of cleanliness. It dispenses just the right amount of product you need, so that none gets wasted.

Does Clarins Cleansing Milk With Gentian Live Up To Its Claims?

Skin Type: Oily, Combination. I find it more suitable for dry skin.
Soothing cleansing milk smoothes away make-up and impurities with spa-like efficiency. Hardly. It struggles to remove makeup.
Clarins’ blend of purifying plant extracts—including Gentian, Hawthorn and Sage—helps rebalance oily-prone skin. Maybe if they were left on the skin. In a cleanser, they’re rinsed off down the drain before they can do anything for you.
Leaves skin feeling soft, supple and perfectly refreshed from excess oil. Yes, it leaves skin soft.

Price & Availability

£21.00 at Escentual and Nordstrom

Do You Need It?

Nope. If you hardly wear makeup and only need a very basic, gentler cleanser, this will do. But you can find hundreds of cleansers that work better – and at a fraction of the cost, too!

Dupes & Alternatives

Have you tried Clarins Cleansing Milk With Gentian? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Aqua/Water/Eau, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Octyldodecanol, Glycerin, Pentylene Glycol, Polysorbate 60, Phenoxyethanol, Alpha-Glucan Oligosaccharide, Parfum/Fragrance, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Cetearyl Alcohol, Tromethamine, Disodium EDTA, Ethylexylglycerin, Cetearyl Glucoside, Tocopheryl Acetate, Propylene Glycol, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Linalool, Moringa Oleifera Seed Extract, Citronellol, Benzyl Alcohol, Amyl Cinnamal, Coumarin, Disodium Phosphate, Geraniol, Anise Alcohol, Benzyl Salicylate, Citric Acid, Eugenol, Psidium Guajava Fruit Extract, Limonene, Glucose, Crataegus Monogyna Flower Extract, Iris Florentina Root Extract, Gentiana Luted Root Extract, Zinc Sulfate, CI 19140/Yellow 5, Sorbic Acid, CI 15985/Yellow 6, Silica [V0001O1]