Review: Beautycounter

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Beautycounter. I was provided with all of the following products in exchange for this review. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review are my own.

A couple of weeks ago, friend of the blog, Vanessa, got in touch with me to offer a few Beautycounter products to test out. In the last year, I have recently been thinking a lot more about what products I’m using from shampoo and deodorant to face wash and makeup, and how they affect my skin and body as a whole. I’ve struggled with acne-prone skin for my entire life, so I’m not one to switch up my routine at the drop of a hat. However, once Vanessa talked me through the basics of Beautycounter (and sent this video over, which is both inspirational and informational), I decided to give it a shot. I wholeheartedly agree with the company’s mission to get safer products out into the market. I was surprised at a lot of the facts surrounding beauty regulation in the United States (or lack thereof) and just how many chemicals that means can be making their way into our bodies. I appreciate that Beautycounter recognizes that this is not an easy market to break into, made even harder with their ‘Never List‘ of harmful or questionable chemicals that they have committed to never using in their products.

Vanessa also introduced me to two new apps that have seriously changed the way I peruse beauty products (and, actually, any household products!). Environmental Working Group’s Healthy Living and Think Dirty — Shop Clean are both aimed at helping consumers learn exactly what ingredients are in the products they’re buying. Both apps come with barcode scanners that give you a quick and easy way to get right into the (dirty) details. The app then shows you that products’ rating from 0 (the best, with no known evidence that finds any ingredients harmful) to 10 (strong and conclusive evidence that ingredients have long term health effects, the worst). I was shocked to find out that some of the things I was putting on my skin every. single. day. were rated 4s, 5s, and even an 8! In this vein, I challenged myself to solely use Beautycounter products for at least a week without any others from my usual routine. I swapped out some seriously harsh contenders for Beautycounter’s products, all of which rated under a 3. (Caveat: I continued to use my regular shampoo (rated a 3) and body wash (rated a 1) for the week!) I succeeded in the week and, spoiler alert, some of them have stuck for the days and weeks beyond! Here are my thoughts on everything I’ve tried from Beautycounter thus far:

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Charcoal Cleansing Bar

Right off the bat, I was hooked on this bar! Even after my very first face wash using it, my skin felt cleaner, smoother, and clearer than it did with my old cleanser (which has now left my life). I was a bit apprehensive at first of using a bar on my face, as I’ve only used cream- and gel-based cleansers for the last decade or so, but Beautycounter’s formula is anything but drying. The charcoal powder detoxifies and absorbs impurities, while the other ingredients in the bar (green tea, coconut oil, and witch hazel) do an amazing job of cleansing while keeping my skin balanced without dulling, drying, or wicking away too much moisture. I have become a total convert to using this bar on my face every morning and evening.

Balancing + Ylang Ylang Facial Oil

Beautycounter’s facial oils come in three main, skin-impacting formulas: brightening, plumping, and balancing. After chatting with Vanessa about my dry combination skin in the winter/spring and add in an oily t-zone in the summer, she recommended the balancing formula. This one took me the whole dedicated only-Beautycounter products week to really come around to it. I have used facial oils before and they usually work well for me for a couple of days, and then I have to rotate in my old lotion to give my skin a break. For the week, I did notice that on days 3 and 4 my skin seemed a little dry while just using the oil, but after powering through it was even clearer than usual on days 5 and beyond! I think the trick for me was definitely the dedicated combination of Beautycounter’s charcoal cleanser bar with this oil, as those were the two products I was sure to use hyper diligently and together every single day.

Balancing + Charcoal Facial Mist

Facial mists have always kind of alluded me in their benefits. After receiving the balancing + charcoal mist along with my Beautycounter package, I decided to give it a shot even though I wasn’t sure I really believed a mist had a place on my vanity. At first I used it alongside the cleanser and oil, lightly spritzing my face after each wash. I loved the scent, the rose hip and rosemary oils are immediately present with a deliciously cooling peppermint undertone. The mist left my skin feeling luxuriously moisturized, but wasn’t a sensation I felt like I needed twice every day. I ended up skipping the mist most mornings, but letting myself really enjoy it as a right-before-bed treat! Going along with the oils, Beautycounter offers matching mists in brightening, plumping, and balancing formulas.

Balancing + Charcoal Facial Mask

I’m a sucker for a great mask, and this is a GREAT mask! With familiar notes of peppermint and green tea, leaving this one on for the recommended ten minutes is beyond easy. It’s definitely a little jarring to use such a dark mask if you haven’t before (most of mine previously have been white, yellow, or translucent), and my fiancé was super psyched to make fun of me, but it was 100% worth it. The mask goes on cool, thick, and creamy, and drys into a slightly lighter shade. Beware though, when washing this off it will definitely turn your sink black for a minute. It washes away fine with water but I was diligent about making sure I removed any trace because it could definitely dry in black flecks or stain any grout it comes in contact with too much.

Cleansing Balm

Vanessa snuck a little sample of the cleansing balm into my Beautycounter package and I am oh so glad she did. This stuff is pretty close to liquid gold. Offered up as a cleanser, I’ve been more apt to use it as a little extra moisturizer where my face needs it most (under eyes, around any wrinkles that may or may not be coming in, down my neck). The thick, waxy formula stays put and is long-lasting throughout the day without feeling like you’ve caked on vaseline.

Also after reading this article on 6 ways to use Beautycounter’s Cleansing Balm, I highly recommend it as a highlighter and LOVE using any excess left on my fingers as a cuticle softener! It’s a floor wax, it’s a dessert topping… it is definitely magic in a jar!

Volumizing Mascara

Mascara is the one thing that has really bothered me for quite some time when it comes to potentially toxic ingredients and non-regulation surrounding the beauty industry. It’s the one part of my everyday routine that I insist on not leaving the house without and I try to “not think about” the most! I usually grab whatever is cheapest at the drug store because I haven’t found a brand or line I’m super loyal to and I am SO sure the ingredients would terrify me if I ever looked. Enter Beautycounter’s mascara made with cleaner, plant-derived ingredients that replace harmful emollients. I was super impressed at the visual of the volumizing mascara, I could barely tell a difference from my regular kind! The one drawback was that I 100% had to use Beautycounter’s eye makeup remover to get it all off. If I tried to just use my charcoal cleanser bar, something about the two products mixing made my eyes sting a lot. Definitely worth it to know that a product that goes so close to my eyes, such a valuable part of our lives, is a more natural and safer formula.

Instant Eye Makeup Remover

I’m not a huge fan of eye makeup remover as it feels like a dedicated product that maybe doesn’t need to be dedicated. That being said, Beautycounter’s coconut and macadamia oils-based formula is a lovely answer if you’re hooked on the specificity! The mixture gently removes makeup without over-drying the delicate skin around your eyes. I probably won’t be buying this one for myself, but could definitely see myself recommending it as a safer-ingredients alternative.

Tint Skin Hydrating Foundation

This is the one review where I’m personally going to have to give it a pass. Vanessa sent along a mini sample pack of this foundation and I used it for 6 days before I had to just give up. Something about the formula was way too cake-y compared to my normal product which is more along the lines of a BB cream. It certainly lived up to the name as far as hydrating goes, but was a little too much coverage for me, even only using a very small amount. I think I will order the Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer, as that sounds like it could be more up my alley.

All in all I am so pleased to have been able to try all of these amazing products. Beautycounter definitely delivers on safer ingredients without sacrificing great quality and impressive results. My skin is clearer than it has been in quite a few years and I feel great about what I’m using to make it look that way!

Also some big news: thanks to Vanessa, we’re hosting our very first giveaway today! Head on over to our Instagram account to get all the details.

Be sure to check out these products from Beautycounter, as well as the many others they have to offer! If you’re in the market to try something out, use Vanessa’s shop link and choose the “Are We Adults Yet” social!

Anyone else tried Beautycounter before? Have any other all-natural products you think I should check out?? Let me know in the comments!


  1. I just ordered from Beautycounter, but already have my eye on the entire charcoal line! Love that it’s a “no brainer” option to safe beauty. Thanks for the review!

  2. I loved this article Laura. Will you report back in a few weeks on how the products are working? I want to know more.

    • I’ve actually been using a charcoal exfoliator for a couple of years and love it! The Beautycounter ‘balancing’ line products all having some charcoal was definitely in my “pro” column from the get go!

  3. I’d love to try that charcoal cleansing bar! It seems like a really cool product –– I’d love to see how it goes longer term.

  4. The charcoal cleansing bar looks really good, I like that you pointed out how much cleaner your skin felt right from the start of using it!

  5. I have always wanted to know which are the product suit me and get to know more of new products in the market. Glad to read about this blog which offer so much details information on each product. I need to explore and experience and see if it is what you have described.

  6. After lots of past research, and reading your post, I might take the leap and buy some of these products that I keep reading about!

  7. Does charcoal really work? I have heard that it is wondrous but have been too skeptical to find out LOL

    • I loved the charcoal aspect, it definitely feels different than traditional cleansers. I’ve tried an exfoliator with activated charcoal before and it was a bit gritty, but the Beautycounter line is 100% smooth and just feels super clean!

  8. I’m so excited you did this review! I love BeautyCounter and hearing about your experience with the products is interesting. I really enjoy using the Nourishing Cream Cleanser and after your review I want to try the cleaning balm!

    • Crazy how many mask options there are out there right now! I loved the Beautycounter charcoal/balancing one and think it was definitely a little different than anything else I’ve ever tried!

  9. First of all: congrads on the collaboration! You’re off to a great start! And these products look really cool, I think I’ll try some of them!

  10. If you had to purchase these items with your own money would they be worth it? From reviewing the ingredients I just don’t know if the steep prices are justified. What sets these products apart from other like-minded brands with similar products?

Let us know what you think!