|Around $11, I believe?|
Makeup wipes are convenient and all, but I've been waiting for a commercial drugstore brand to launch a cleansing oil or cream, and here we are.
It's not an oil like I'd hoped for (hopefully that'll be the next big drugstore trend!), but it's a lotion that functions similarly. Dry hands, dry face (with makeup on, presumably), massage in some of the product and watch it break down all your war paint. It's not as tidy as wipes, but it's a hell of a lot more thorough.
Lotion is definitely the best word to describe the consistency of the product, and it even looks a lot like regular old body lotion, with maybe even a lighter texture. Lotions aren't as popular as the cleansing balms, creams, and heavier cream makeup removing products that are all the rage these days, but I think Maybelline picked a great place to start.
The beauty of this lotion is that it's a great middle-of-the-road consistency that could really suit all skin types, which is exactly what a drugstore brand aims to do. When you first massage The Flash Clean into the skin, it starts off as basically the same consistency of your average lotion, but as you keep working with it, it sort of emulsifies and turns into an oily water. You almost don't feel like it's heavy duty enough to properly do its job, but it definitely is--you can actually see the separation of the makeup on your skin. Even on days when I wear more makeup, I don't feel the need to go through this makeup removal process twice. I might add more product if there's some liner that's particularly stubborn, but one round has consistently been enough to get it all off.
While it does a surprisingly efficient job at getting rid of my liner and mascara, I get occasional stinging when the product gets into my eyes. I say occasional because some days my eyes prick, and some days (with the exact same process) they don't. I'm a contact lens wearer which may have something do with it, but as it's only fairly mild stinging, I'm going to keep using it on my eye makeup. [AHEM. I am an idiot. Upon further research (reading the back of the bottle) Maybelline does not specifically recommend this for use around the eye and recommends keeping the eyes closed while using it. But it does such a good job on my eye makeup and I like to to live on the edge, so I will continue using this on my eyes. But please don't be like me--use a separate eye makeup remover instead!]
Apart from how thoroughly cleansed I feel after using this and other products like it, it's the moisturizing factor that I really love. While rinsing The Flash Clean off, my face feels a little oily when it mixes with the water, but after that, it settles into a comfortable state. I have oily skin, so dry-skinned girls may feel differently and want to moisturize afterwards, but for me, it's the perfect state of equilibrium.
If you tend to remove your makeup and then go straight into your skincare routine (always wash again after makeup removal!), that's probably not an issue. But sometimes if the important part of my day is over and I just feel like getting familiar with my couch, I can use this hours before my nighttime skincare routine and my face never feels dry. Sometimes I'll do a spray with a face mist (I like Skyn Iceland's) or a bit of eye cream just to feel a little more taken care of, but that's it.
For some reason, Maybelline recommends putting the product on a cotton pad, sweeping it around, and then not rinsing. That's disgusting. You'll definitely want to rinse afterwards, and I completely disagree with the cotton pad thing--the product is too thick to be easily spread around that way. This is the kind of thing you could pair up with a muslin cloth if you like, or you can
I know some other people are enjoying the other Clean Express items and I might give them a try, but for now, I'm perfectly content with having The Flash Clean in my bathroom cabinet.
Hope you're well!