With thousands of beauty brands crowding virtual shelves and influencers touting a new product every day, how do you decide what's actually worth a shot? You leave the trial and error to the pros. In Elite Daily's new beauty review series, What's The Deal With..., we'll sift through and test the buzziest products to give you an honest, no-bullsh*t look at how it works IRL, from the price and packaging all the way to the actual results. From there, you can decide which ones deserve a coveted spot in your beauty arsenal.
Before a literal global pandemic, currently still rearing its butt-ugly head, came along, meditating, journaling, and lengthy skin-care routines were the things I told myself I would do whenever I had free time — so never. A year later, and these practices are the only things keeping me remotely tethered to reality. Judging from the public's warm reception to Alicia Keys' lifestyle beauty brand Keys Soulcare, which prioritizes a soulful approach to skin care and mindful rituals, I'd say the same is true for many others. If you aren't convinced, this Keys Soulcare Golden Cleanser review might just do the trick.
The Golden Cleanser ($20, Keys Soulcare) is a gentle, slightly foaming cleanser that strikes a nice balance of purifying ingredients, like activated charcoal, and nourishing ones, like hydrating manuka honey and calming chamomile extract. Each Keys Soulcare product includes an affirmation to help you take hold of whatever moment you're spending on your skin-care routine — however short — and think positively. Fittingly, the Golden Cleanser carries the following mantra: "I am devoted to this moment."
After using the Golden Cleanser for more than a week, here's how I scored it in the following areas:
I know, I know. That's a lot of fives for someone who claims to be so picky, right? Maybe it's the ingredients. Maybe it's my newfound zen. All I know is, I really do love this cleanser, from picking it up to patting my face dry. Right off the bat, the packaging feels intentional. It's relatively minimal, but the bottle is heavy and feels quality. As a result, I think the $20 price tag matches that quality and the amount of cleanser you're getting. Call me hokey or a product of global emotional distress, but I do love the affirmation on the bottle, too, if only as a reminder to focus on this moment for at least 30 seconds.
Initially, the cleanser's fragrance was a tiny red flag for me, as someone who has a sensitive nose and skin. That said, I love the smell of sandalwood, so perhaps I'm biased in my love of the cleanser's smell, which, I felt, contributed to the overall relaxing experience. In full transparency, though, if you're sensitive to scents in general, proceed with caution.
The Golden Cleanser feels luxurious and soft on the skin. The lather isn't overwhelming, and as a result, it doesn't leave your skin feeling stripped or tight. Although, I tend to gravitate toward a creamier cleanser because my skin is a desert. Still, it appears the manuka honey and chamomile calmed my skin enough to prevent it from feeling dry or irritated as it normally does after using charcoal-based products. Below, toggle the divider to see my skin pre-Golden Cleanser and post-Golden Cleanser. (Do not even think about roasting me for wearing the same top. I have a washing machine.)
Overall, I believe — and I think it's relatively clear in the photos — that the Golden Cleanser provided a noticeable difference in my skin in terms of the look of my pores, the overall evenness of tone, and the level of hydration. It's consistently left my skin soft to the touch and meshes easily with my other skin-care products. Even better, I do feel it's helped me look forward to carving out some me time — again, even if it's for a literal minute — to close my eyes, focus, and do something good for my skin.
If you're ready to devote a moment (or several) to your own skin, shop the Keys Soulcare Golden Cleanser below:
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