Today's review is of the popular Clarins Gentle Exfoliator Brightening Toner which is described by the brand as a fresh, fluid exfoliating lotion to brighten, smooth & soften skin.
The minimalist packaging is in keeping with the Clarins brand image. The directions are clear and easy to follow and I appreciated the responsible (& I believe, legally required) inclusion of a safe sun warning, which is particularly important when using chemical exfoliators such as this. The plastic bottle is sufficiently transparent so as to be able to tell how much product was remaining, which I appreciated. What's more, the hole in the top of the bottle allows for controlled dispensing without wastage.
Although described as a "fresh, fluid exfoliating lotion", the toner's texture is a clear liquid. It was quick and easy to apply onto skin using a cotton pad and felt cooling & refreshing. A little goes a long way and given that I only exfoliate my acne-prone, combination skin once or twice a week, the 125ml bottle will last a long time.
Clarins Gentle Exfoliator Brightening Toner has a floral scent but I could clearly detect alcohol too, which is unsurprising given that this is one of the ingredients. Whilst I'm not strict in my approach, I generally try to avoid alcohol in toners as they can aggravate the skin & cause it to overproduce oil. However, it is my understanding that its inclusion helps the Tamarind derived glycolic acid (which, along with salicylic acid acts as the exfoliant) to penetrate more effectively into skin.
I feel that Clarins Gentle Exfoliator Brightening Toner lives up to the name. It exfoliates skin gently & effectively, leaving it smooth and looking radiant. I was impressed that despite the inclusion of alcohol, this didn't leave my skin feeling dry or tight following use, which may possibly be owing to the inclusion of hydrating glycerin. I really enjoy using this and whilst I don't love it quite as much as my beloved Alpha H Liquid Gold, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it as a good choice for the majority of skin types.
I feel that the £25 price tag is reasonable considering the high quality of Clarins products.