Karin Herzog is Swiss range that began in 1975 when scientist Dr Paul Herzog and his beautician wife Karin decided to put their complementary skills together to create a spa brand. Dr Herzog’s research was focused on oxygen and respiration and his research in this area remains a core part of the brand. I however has been testing a cleanser from the smaller chocolate sub range. Chocolate is not a new ingredient in skincare. Cacao is full of flavonoids, which as well as providing pigment to certain parts of the plant also have a role in UV filtration in the plant and as chemical messengers. In terms of skincare the main benefit of including cacao is that flavonoids are anti oxidants which means that they help to prevent free radical damage. I find the chocolate fragrance in this cleanser quite heady.
This cleanser also contains fatty acids derived from wheat germ which have a moisturising and soothing benefit for the skin. Unfortunately, this cleanser also contains two grades of mineral oil. Petrolatum which is a semi solid (think Vaseline), gives the cleanser it’s texture and Paraffinium Liquidium which is a liquid (think baby oil). I try avoid mineral oil in my skincare – especially for my face. Mineral oil is inert which is why it is used in so many products, but it is very inexpensive compared to vegetable oils. The main reason for my confusion for it being include in a spa range cleanser is that one of the main properties mineral oil is that it forms an occlusive layer on the skin – a barrier, which keeps the moisture in and the air out. It sits on the skin and has no nutritional value so whilst it effectively emulsifies your make up, it does nothing else for the skin. After cleansing with this product I follow with a wash off cleanser to remove any mineral oil residue before applying my serum and moisturiser.
Despite being called a gel, this is actually a balm, and I am a fan of balm textures in tubes, which makes it more hygenic and you do not need to deep your fingers in a big tub. Applied to dry skin, the texture allows for plenty of facial massage, but this product does not emulsify with water. It is recommended to remove it with cotton wool but I prefer to use a flannel. This is an effective make up remover and deals with mascara (not the waterproof kind) easily.
Finest Chocolate Cleansing Gel is available from the Karin Herzog website and look fantastic and retails for forty two pounds.