L'Oreal Pure Clay Exfoliating Scrub - review


I reviewed a L'Oreal cleanser not long ago that comes from the same 'pure clay' range as this one does. It was the Charcoal Gel Wash (reviewed here), and while I started off liking it, I began to realise that it was drying out my skin and when I saw the ingredients list and measured its pH (which was high), I understood why.

This product is a bit better but unfortunately it's still not as kind to skin as I would like - it dries me out, for starters - but I don't think it's terrible and of the two products, this is the better one. More on that below.

L'Oreal claims/product details:

  • A clay cleanser enriched with red algae extract, known for its brightening properties
  • Finely milled apricot seeds gently exfoliate dull, uneven skin to reveal skin’s natural glow
  • The beaded, creamy texture illuminates by exfoliating skin, without drying it out
  • Contains micro-grains to smooth skin and refine pores
  • Kaolin absorbs impurities and excess oil
  • Montmorillonite purifies and re-balances the skin, reducing imperfections
  • Ghassoul absorbs impurities and oil without causing irritation, leaving skin smooth, fresh and radiant
  • Red algae exfoliates the skin and refines pores
  • Instant and visible results
  • Pores are tightened and irregularities are reduced
  • RRP $14.95 for 150ml, but do shop around

I've tried testing the pH of this product, and as with the L'Oreal black cleanser mentioned above, I'm struggling to get a reading. That's obviously because both cleansers have strong colours so they're mucking with the results (because every pH number is assigned a particular colour).

I will say, though, that the four tests I've done indicate that this product lies at around a six on the pH scale. While I'm not willing to say that's a definite (normally my pH strips are really clear, so it worries me when they're not), I'm prepared to believe this is roughly accurate because the product isn't as astringent as the L'Oreal black cleanser, which read as between an eight and a nine.


This is an ok product, although I'm not sure how kind to skin it is so that's something to keep in mind. 

It's a pale red, cream cleanser that contains little exfoliating grains. It smells like clay and eucalyptus to me (and eucalyptus is included in the ingredients), and I don't mind the scent but do note that the product contains both artificial fragrance and dye.

The other thing to note is that it contains Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES), which is meant to be slightly less irritating to skin than its relative, Sodium Laurel Sulphate (SLS), but it's still a potential irritant and I was sad to see it included.

I've been using this perhaps twice a week and it offers a gentle polish without feeling too harsh on my skin. The grains it includes are finely milled so they don't feel too scratchy, and there's enough of them in the formula that they do a good job of resurfacing and removing dead skin.

Since I haven't been using the product that often, I reckon that's why I haven't noticed so much whether it's been drying out my skin. I did however use it this morning and it was rather drying, which could partly be because it's winter and my already dry skin is drier than usual, but I also think the formula isn't as gentle as I would like.

Overall I think this product is ok but the ingredients list concerns me, and once again L'Oreal has demonstrated that it's prepared to put potential irritants in its skincare - whether fragrance, dyes or SLES etc - and I reckon that's just not good enough. If you want to be taken seriously in the skincare game, then you need to be more careful than that.

Oh, the product claims are rather tall too.

Time to start using this as a body scrub, methinks. I have other exfoliants that do the job and contain better ingredients.

Look elsewhere.

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