Biologique Recherche Lait U Vegetal Cleansing Milk Review
Of all the products I named in my recent skincare routine posts, the Biologique Recherche Lait U Cleansing Milk is the product I surprisingly received the most questions about. Actually, I guess it’s not that surprising – once I got hooked on BR’s Lotion P50, I myself fell down a full-on Biologique Recherche shopping spiral. Early on in the spiral, as part of my quest to find the best low pH cleansers I could get my hands on (and at the suggestion of one of the Biologique Recherche product specialists at Rescue Spa) I decided to give the Lait U Cleansing Milk a chance.
What is it?
Biologique Recherche Lait U Vegetal Cleansing Milk is a moisturizing cream cleanser and makeup remover. It’s made for normal, combination, and seborrheic skin types, and promises to cleanse without dehydrating.
Water (Aqua), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Squalane, Propylene Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, Corylus Avellana (Hazel) Seed Oil, Pentylene Glycol, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Retinyl Palmitate, Ethyl Oleate Ethyl Linoleate, Peanut Oil (Arachis Hypogaea), Ethyl Linolenate, Tocopherol, Caprylyl Glycol, P-Anisic Acid, BHA, BHT, Polyacrylamide, Cetearyl Isononanoate, Glyceryl Stearate, C13-14 Isoparaffin, P-20 Glyceryl Stearate, Ceteareth 20, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Palmitate, Laureth-7.
This ingredient list for Lait U is an excellent example of why objective skincare product rating systems are so difficult to create. The reason this list is complicated is because objectively speaking, it doesn’t do very well in the ingredient category by my own rating standards due to having multiple ingredients that rank as potential acne triggers on CosDNA. The risk for them is low (almost all of them are a 2 out of 5), but there are enough of them to really bring down the ingredient score. You can see the full breakdown of the CosDNA ingredient ratings here. Additionally, because this is a cleanser, ingredients flagged as acne triggers carry even less of a risk because it’s on the skin for such a short period of time. Nonetheless, I’ll be scoring this product by the same rating standard I always use – just don’t be too alarmed by the score for the ingredient category.
Despite all the complications, there is actually a lot to love about this formula, especially if you have dry, sensitive skin. There is no added fragrance, lots of moisturizing ingredients, and it has a wonderfully low pH (read more about why that’s important here). Some of my favorite ingredients include:
Squalane is the hydrogenated form of squalene, and unlike squalene, squalane is a very shelf stable ingredient. The skin naturally produces squalane in our younger years – it’s one of the major constituents of human sebum. Squalane production diminishes drastically after the age of 30 though, which can contribute to dry skin for many adults. Squalane is a lightly textured oil, absorbs easily, and possesses moisturizing, antioxidant, and anti-bacterial properties. It can either be sourced from either olives or shark liver. I’m not sure where the squalane in this cleanser is sourced from – but if I had to guess, my money is on olives based on the word “vegetal” in the product name, and the fact that olive-sourced squalane is dominant in the West (shark liver-derived squalane is more common in Japan where shark fishing as an industry is still big business).
Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil
Sweet almond oil is a light but rich emollient oil that contains a high number of essential fatty acids including oleic, linoleic, and palmitic acid. It has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects as well as moisturizing benefits. Sweet almond oil is rich in vitamins A, E, and a wide range of B vitamins.
Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Extract
Wheat germ extract is an extract from the wheat plant, and contains vitamins D and E in addition to B vitamins. It has antioxidant benefits, and possesses both emollient and humectant moisturizing properties.
Tocopheryl Acetate is a stable form of vitamin E. It’s an ester of Tocopherol and acetic acid, and is less acidic and more stable than just Tocopherol (which this cleanser also contains, and is also a form of vitamin E). It’s highly bioavailable, even when applied topically, and has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and moisturizing benefits.
Biologique Recherche Lait U Vegetal Cleansing Milk comes packaged in a white plastic bottle with a plain label, very similar to that of the Lotion P50. The dispenser is just a small opening in a piece of plastic – basic but functional. I do wish it had a pump, though.
The cleanser itself is more like a cream than a milk. It’s bright white, and has a thick, lotion-like consistency.
I like my cleanser to have an acidic pH of 6.0 or lower. The pH for Lait U is a nice, low, 5.0.
Lait U doesn’t have much of a smell. If you close your eyes and concentrate really hard, you can smell something vaguely plant like.
I use this cleanser most often in the morning, though I do sometimes use it in the evening as well. Although this cleanser can be used as a makeup remover, I prefer to use it as my second step cleanser after my makeup has already been removed. To use it, I dispense a little less than a cherry-sized amount into my hands, then gently massage the Lait U over my dry or slightly damp face for about a minute. Then I wet my hands, and massage again, letting the water emulsify the cleanser before rinsing it away.
This is the cleanser that made me rethink my stance on milk and cream style cleansers. For a long time, I was under the mistaken impression that I just didn’t like them. I tried Cerave Hydrating Cleanser a couple of years back, which has a lotion like consistency, and I really didn’t enjoy it. My face never really felt clean when I used it, and I felt like there was always a film on my face after using it. I assumed that this was just a trait of all lotion/cream cleansers, so I spent a long time ignoring them. Lait U completely turned me around – this cleanser does a really impressive job moisturizing as I cleanse, but when I rinse it off, my skin feels clean and smooth, not filmy. Although it rinses cleans, I think Lait U is definitely best suited for normal, dry, and combination skin types. Those with oily skin may find it to be a bit too moisturizing.
I find the texture of Lait U to be rich and luxurious, making it really pleasurable to use. I also appreciate how non-irritating it is, as well as the fact that it absolutely does not strip my skin. The low pH ensures that my moisture barrier is never compromised by the cleansing process.
As a makeup remover, it does work, though not as quickly as a cleansing oil or some other makeup-removing creams I’ve tried. I found I had to massage it in a little harder and a little longer than other makeup removal products. Because it removes makeup and also functions magnificently as a morning cleanser and a second cleanser for the double cleansing process, it’s a really great product for travel, or for someone who has limited space for multiple cleansers.
I’ve been using Lait U intermittently for the past 4 months, and I’ve never experienced any breakouts or irritation as a result of this cleanser. It’s become a staple in my cleansing lineup – I’ve already purchased two backup bottles. Biologique Recherche Lait U Vegetal Cleansing Milk is one cleanser I don’t want to be without.
Pros & Cons
Skin & Tonics Rating
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Where to Buy
|$26 - $33
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