Review: L’Oreal Pure-Sugar Face Scrub

I love, love, love a good facial exfoliant.

I also have been burned — lit. er. al. ly. — by L’Oréal skincare in the past, along with Olay and Revlon, which is why I will never again touch a drugstore anti-aging product.

BUT. When I got a sample of L’Oréal’s new Pure-Sugar Nourish & Soften Face Scrub and reading the ingredients, I was game to try. For one thing, I didn’t see anything that looked like it was going to strip away the years and instead strip away the layers of skin. For another, I really can’t resist a scrub, and my free time for making DIY home exfoliants is limited these days.

L'Oreal Pure-Sugar Face Scrub | Below Freezing Beauty

If you watched this live video I made last fall, you might remember that Skinfood’s Black Sugar Scrub Foam is one of my favorites, so I was pleasantly surprised when I cracked open the sample packet of Pure-Sugar and found it has a very similar fragrance. It smells citrusy to me, but this must be what sugar is supposed to smell like, or at least what cosmetics companies think it should smell like, because it’s also similar to the fragrance of those Fresh Sugar lip treatments.

I documented my test run with Pure-Sugar in an IGTV video (follow @belowfreezingbeauty!). If you missed it (or don’t need to watch me wash my face in real time), here’s a quick recap: It feels good, the sugar is fine, and the exfoliation was just enough without being too much. My skin has felt smooth all day with no irritation, so I’d say it’s just the right amount of scrubby even if you use just a small amount. (I was dubious about the size of the sample they sent, but it got the job done.) All in all, a great scrub.

Now, how does it compare to my favorite Skinfood scrub foam? Well, there’s not a lot of overlap in ingredients, actually, and they both have a mix of natural oils, sugars, and chemicals the names of which I don’t recognize. Skinfood’s scrub comes in a plastic tube and L’Oréal’s in a jar, and as someone who usually exfoliates in the shower, I prefer the tube; however, as someone who likes to get every single drop of product out of the package, I also appreciate a jar. The Skinfood scrub, as the name would suggest, is foamy and has some lather to it, while Pure-Sugar is an oil-based scrub that doesn’t lather; I like both.

At $12.99 for a 1.7-oz jar, the L’Oréal scrub is more expensive than my Skinfood fave ($14 for 3.6 oz), so I’ll probably stick with the scrub foam, but if you’re in the market for something that scrubs without lather, Pure-Sugar is worth a look. (And don’t forget you can earn those L’Oréal Worth It Rewards when you buy it.)


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