ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub Review
I don’t review or even use a lot of facial scrubs, but I’ve made an exception for ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub. See, my skin is a little bit like my dog, Callie. I adopted Callie years ago from a rescue – she was already an adult when she came to live with me, and I didn’t know a lot about her. One day I came home from work to find she’d pooped in the middle of the living room. I’d already had a pretty bad day, and coming home to a house that smelled like the animal shelter was just too much. As soon as I saw it I yelled a series of expletives and seethed in anger. It was clear that I was furious, and Callie, being the sensitive creature that she is, responded to this anger by cowering in fear, and then peeing. I couldn’t yell at her for it – she couldn’t help it for one thing, and for another thing, I realized in that moment that yelling at her would probably just make her pee more. Since that moment, I’ve had to get creative when it comes to disciplining her, finding the careful balance in my voice between stern and angry. Just titch too far into an angry pitch, and I would have to contend with dog urine.
I’ve had to handle my skin with the same finesse – if I go in too forcefully when I break out or get dull, my skin responds by producing a horrid array of cystic pimples and patches of dry, irritated skin. For this reason, instead of facial scrubs, I usually opt to exfoliate with small amounts of chemical exfoliators such as BHA or AHA, or a washcloth when I need physical exfoliation. However, the allure of ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub ($13) was just too great. How could I pass up putting chocolate on my face? Plus, sugar is one of the safer scrubbing agents since the crystals are less jagged than salt, and unlike the sharp, unyielding shards of walnut shell found in scrubs like St.Ives Apricot Scrub, sugar melts into wet skin.
What is it?
ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub is an exfoliating facial scrub from South Korean beauty brand, ElishaCoy. It promises to exfoliate, help remove blackheads, and provide nourishment for the skin.
Water, Glycerin, Dipropylene Glycol, Polyglyceryl-6 Stearate, Disodium EDTA, Methylparaben, Theobroma Cacao (cocoa) Fruit Powder, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate / PEG100 Stearate Mineral Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Macadamia Nut Oil, Milk, Hyaluronic Acid, Oryza Sativa Extract, Glycine Soja Seed Extract, Sesamum Indicum Seed Extract, Apium Graveolens (celery), Brassica Oleracea Capitata (cabbage) Leaf, Oryza Sativa (rice), Solanum Lycopersicum (tomato) Fruit, Brassica Rapa (turnip) Leaf Daucus Carota Sativa (carrot) Root, Brassica Oleracea Italica (broccoli) Extract, Butylene Glycol, Water, Honey Extract, Royal Jelly Extract, Sucrose, Perfume
Some of the ingredients I was excited about include:
Theobroma Cacao (cocoa) Fruit Powder – In addition to being rich in antioxidants, cocoa also contains a constituent called theobromin, which acts as a vasodilator, increasing the blood flow to the skin. Increased blood flow helps prevent dryness and promotes healing. Fun fact: According to this study, eating chocolate rich in flavanols helps protect skin from UV rays. This makes me feel much better about the dark chocolate bar I’m shoving into my face as I type this!
Macadamia Nut Oil – This oil is rich in antioxidants, Vitamin E, and palmitoleic acid, which helps retain elasticity.
Milk – In addition to lactic acid, which gently exfoliates and softens skin, milk also contains variety of skin-healthy nutrients such as zinc, and Vitamins A, D, and B12.
Oryza Sativa Extract – Rich in antioxidants and essential fatty acids, Oryza Sativa (AKA rice) Extract also has anti-inflammatory properties and contains a significant amount of Vitamin E. It’s also rich in silica. Silica (not to be confused with silicone, which is an entirely different substance) is naturally produced by the human body and helps keep our skin, hair, and nails healthy. As we age, we produce less of it, but using it as a topical treatment helps keep skin moist, healthy, and bright.
I was not so excited to see my old foe Cetearyl Alcohol in there. I’ve been sporadically trying products that contain the ingredient (which is very hard to avoid!), and it seems that some affect me more than others. My suspicion is that it has to do with how much the formula contains. In a wash-off product like this one, it doesn’t seem to cause any problems for me. Aside from Cetearyl Alcohol, this ingredient list didn’t raise any major red flags in COSDNA.
I use ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub once a week, max. I use a daily BHA, and the occasional washcloth, so I don’t need to physically exfoliate very often. It’s probably best to use it at night, but Saturday morning is my favorite time of week to do extra facial treatments like this one. To use, I take a nickel-sized blob and very gently massage it over my clean, wet face. I find it works better when my fingers are wet as well. The instructions say to massage until the sugar has completely dissolved. However, it actually take a while for all the sugar dissolve, and the one time I did this, it was definitely too much. Instead, I massage gently until about half the sugar is dissolved, avoiding the eye area.
The process of massaging it in is extremely luxurious. The mixture starts off as a deep reddish brown, but as it’s emulsified on the face it looks more like milk chocolate. Something about the color change is highly satisfying. Once I’m done, it rinses away easily with warm water.
ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub comes in a frosted glass tub. I personally don’t mind tub packaging, but I know a lot of people don’t like tub packaging because it’s less hygienic than a tube or a pump. This product does come with a spatula, but I prefer to use clean fingers instead.
I will say, this can get a bit messy when applying. The consistency is thick but can be drippy. I inevitably have clean a few little chocolate blobs off my counter when I’m done using this.
ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub smells amazing – like straight up cocoa butter. It smells fantastic in the jar, but the chocolate scent gets even more divine as I massage it into my face. The scent disappears as soon as it’s rinsed away, which, I must admit, bums me out a little.
I’ve been using ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub sporadically for a couple of months, and I really like it! It does a good job sloughing away dead skin cells, and as long as I don’t scrub too long or hard, I don’t experience any irritation as a result. My face is soft and visibly smoother for days after I use it. It has not broken me out at all.
I’m fortunate not to have any blackheads, so I can’t speak from experience about this product’s efficacy at removing them, but I can say that in theory, it should help with their appearance.
My dry, sensitive skin isn’t usually a fan of scrubs, but this one is gentle enough that it doesn’t cause any problems, and I love the results I get from using it. The chocolate scent and the creamy texture make it an absolute pleasure to use. The fact that it’s so affordable makes it just about perfect!
I think this product would work beautifully for dry or oily skin, as it’s neither greasy nor drying.
+ Effective exfoliator
+ Smooths, subtly brightens
+ Smells amazing
+ Not overly abrasive
+ Great for dry or oily skin types
– Can be irritating if you scrub until all the sugar is dissolved
– Can be a bit messy
– Contains Cetearyl Alcohol
Skin & Tonics Rating:
Performance: 5/5 – Fantastic exfoliation, smells amazing, pleasant to use
Quality: 4/5 – Good ingredient list, lovely, sturdy packaging
Value: 5/5 – $13 is a steal for such a lovely scrub!
Where to Buy
I bought mine from Bring Bring Shop on eBay, where it sells for $13 + free shipping. It ships from South Korea, but the shipping is pretty speedy. It arrived on my doorstep in North Carolina 12 days after I ordered it.
ElishaCoy Milk Cacao Black Sugar Scrub is also available from the following Skin & Tonics approved sellers:
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