Skin & Tonics : Skincare Guides & Product Reviews

Skincare guides & product reviews for hydration lovers & the moisture barrier obsessed

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M (Moist Type) Review

My hormonal acne finally has an explanation – my dermatologist believes I have PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), which causes all kinds of exciting symptoms, including acne, hair growth, anxiety, pelvic pain, weight gain, irregular periods…you get the idea. I have most of the symptoms; thankfully, increased hair growth is not one of them. The last thing I need is a real beard to go with my occasional zit beard. My acne and sensitive skin have been extra acne-y and extra sensitive lately, which makes trying new products a riskier endeavor than usual. All I want to do is slather my face in Benton products and let them handle this hardship, but my editorial calendar stops for no zit. Instead, I’m trying out the A.C. Care Line, which I’ll be reviewing in a few weeks. New skincare line aside, I figured new oil cleansers are about the most risk-free product I could possibly try, so I decided to pick up a bottle of Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M.

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

What is it?

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M (the “M” stands for moist) is a cleansing oil by Korean brand Leaders Clinic. I learned about this brand from Alice of W2Beauty, who cites their sheet masks as some of her all-time favorites. The Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M ($35) is for normal to dry skin types, and promises to remove makeup, deep clean, and moisturize.

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

I love the label design on this tube packaging!

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

Inside the tube is a bottle with a plain old cap. The dropper for dispensing the product is packaged separately.

The packaging for the dropper that comes with this oil seems to indicate that there are custom ingredients that can be added to this oil. It looks as though that might be one of the selling points of the Private L. range – that you can choose an extra active and a fragrance to add to the oil, making it your own custom blend. I only purchased the base oil, but if I could find the Private L. additions, I think customizing an oil would be a pretty good time.  Alas, the whole Private L. range is extremely difficult to find online. As of now, I only know of one online shop that carries any of the Private L. products (W2Beauty), but the custom ingredients don’t seem to be available anywhere.

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

The packaging for the dropper seems to indicate that this product can be customized with an extra active and choice of fragrance.

Mineral Oil, Cetyl Captylate, Peg-20 Glyceryl Triisostearate, Polysorbate 20, Water, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Citrus Medica Limonus (lemon) Peel Oil, Aloe Arborescens Leaf Extract, Bambusa Arundinacea Stem Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Fruit Extract, Lilium Candidum Bulb Extract, Polyglutamic Acid, Prunus Mume Fruit Extract, Salix Nigra (Willow) Bark Extract, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Exract, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Opuntia Tuna Fruit Extract, Malt Extract

Before I get into my ingredient breakdown, I’d like to talk about ingredient lists in general for a minute. I’ve always wondered why some of the scientific names of these extracts include the common names in parentheses and some don’t. Are the people transcribing these labels assuming that I already know what an Opuntia Tuna Fruit is? Because I didn’t, not until I looked it up. Turns out Opuntia Tuna Fruit is a cactus pear, and not a fruit that smells like canned cat food, as one might have assumed.

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

The box for the dropper

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

Annnnd the actual dropper

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

Anyway, on to the ingredient breakdown – this product is comprised of a multitude of oils, some extracts, and a few emulsifiers. Here are some standouts for me:

Mineral Oil – The primary oil is mineral oil, which might be a turn off for some people. I’ve noticed an anti-mineral oil sentiment over the past few years, mostly fueled (haha, get it?!) by a misunderstanding of how mineral oil works and negative feelings about petroleum-based products in general. I’m personally a huge a fan of mineral oil because it’s an amazing cleansing ingredient, especially for blackheads. Contrary to popular belief, mineral oil molecules are too large to enter pores, so it is noncomedogenic. Massaging mineral oil into the skin as a daily cleansing agent actually helps dislodge blackheads over time. It also provides emollient benefits, even when used in a wash-off product.

If you’re interested in reading more about the efficacy of mineral oil, check out this spectacularly detailed review from the International Journal of Cosmetic Science: A Review on the Extensive Skin Benefits of Mineral Oil (Rawlings, A. V. and Lombard, K. J.)

Aloe Arborescens Leaf Extract – A wonderful anti-inflammatory ingredient with anti-microbial properties. It’s been shown in numerous studies to effectively facilitate wound healing. For more information, check out this 2008 abstract showing the effects of Aloe Arboscens on wound healing.

Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract – Better known as green tea extract, this ingredient has a multitude of studies showing its benefit in the skincare world. Green tea’s active, skin-friendly component is polyphenols, which possesses anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. This study from June of 2013 showed green tea extract to have a prolonged moisturizing effect, reduce skin roughness, and improve skin microrelief (wrinkles).

Salix Nigra (Willow) Bark Extract – This ingredient is better known as salicylic acid. Salicylic Acid is a beta hydroxy acid (BHA) that is often used as an acne treatment. It is a naturally occurring ingredient, usually derived from willow bark, but also occurs in other sources, such as Aloe. It’s antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and an exfoliant. Salicylic Acid has been shown in multiple studies to improve barrier function and collagen production.

According to COSDNA, this ingredient list contains no potential acne triggers or irritants.

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M



I love the look of the packaging for the Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M. It comes in an apothecary style bottle, complete with a glass dropper (which is packaged separately). The long dropper is very effective as far as droppers go, and at first I found the dropper to be a fun, play-sciency way to dispense this product. After a couple of uses, I found the dropper to be an extremely cumbersome way to dispense this product. I really would have rather had a pump. It’s a bit messy and awkward to screw the dropper back onto the bottle and put it away with my oil covered hands every time I wash my face. In theory, I could probably wait until I’m done washing my face and my hands are dry to put it away, but with my small bathroom and complete lack of grace, that’s a recipe for shattered glass and oil-covered floor tile.

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

I thought Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M would have a citrusy smell based on the ingredients, but it doesn’t. It barely has any fragrance at all. What little smell it does have is ambiguously pleasant – it’s vaguely plant-like, and barely detectable.

I apply two droppers-full of the Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M just after removing my eye makeup (I prefer to remove my eye makeup as a separate step). One dropper-full is probably sufficient, but I’m a woman of excess, so I usually go for two – sometimes three, if I’m feeling crazy.

I massage the oil around my face for approximately a minute, then add a little water and massage some more. I rinse the Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M off with a few splashes of lukewarm water.

I really like Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M! It removes makeup very well – even my more tenacious BB creams are no match for this stuff. It does not leave my face feeling greasy, nor does make my face dry or tight after cleansing.

I’ve been using Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M for a little over a month, and it has not caused any irritation or breakouts. If anything, I find it soothing when I’m having an active breakout. I haven’t noticed any significant antiaging or brightening effects, but I didn’t expect any – this cleansing oil promises only to remove makeup, deep clean, and provide moisture. It delivered on all three counts.

I am only halfway through my bottle of Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M, which means by the time I’ve finished this bottle, I’ll have gotten 8 weeks of daily use out of it, even with my excessive ways.

The only criticism I have for the Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M is that I find the dropper dispenser to be a pain in the bum. If this cleansing oil had a pump, it would be perfect!

Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M

I used Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eyeliner in Perversion for this demo.

+ Effectively removes makeup
+ Non-drying
+ No greasy residue – rinses clean
+ No strong fragrance
+ Non-irritating

– Dropper dispenser is a bit inconvenient

Skin & Tonics Rating:
Performance: 5/5 – Delivers on all promises without being irritating

Quality: 4/5 – Good ingredient list, beautiful packaging – I only wish the dispenser was a pump instead of a dropper

Value: 4/5 – It’s a little on the pricey side at $35, but it’s a good quality cleanser and it contains a generous amount of product.

Overall: 4.4/5

Where to Buy

I bought my Leaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M from W2Beauty for $35. As far as I know, W2Beauty is the only online shop that carries this product. If you’re new to W2Beauty, you can get an instant $5 voucher by entering my sponsor code when registering your new account: 025605


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6 comments onLeaders Clinic Private. L Vol.1 Cleansing Oil-M (Moist Type) Review

  1. “I think customizing an oil would be a pretty good time.” Hell yes! 😀 Maybe W2Beauty will start carrying the mix-ins if there’s demand? I’ve been curious about the Leaders sheet masks… have you tried any of them?

    • Kerry

      Mix-ins! Thank you! That’s the word I was looking for! As I was writing this post, I knew there was a better name for them, but I just couldn’t conjure the word for the life of me! But yeah, I think I’ll write Alice and ask her what the chances are of getting some mix-ins. I’d love to customize an oil.

  2. try to check the ingredients lists in beautypedia, the ingredient lists quite complete with scientific research.. hope it helps :))

  3. This is no longer listed on her website and is no where to be found! NOOOOO!!!!

    • I feel your pain! Almost finished with my oil cleanser and was looking forward to trying this product! Maybe Kerry and her connections can help us out here.. 😉