I started with one mission, to make the gentlest cleanser possible. And the tricky bit- it had to feel great and work too.
When Harborist launched in 2017, the few similar products - and actually most nice-to-use skincare - had things like fragrance added and weren't made for those with ultra-sensitive skin who preferred to avoid that. Meanwhile, standard sensitive options felt bland and boring.
In 2018 we launched into Victoria Health and sold out almost instantly - over 400 units of our remaining stock. For a tiny brand, it was quite the shock!
A year or so later, the Ordinary launched their fantastic squalane cleanser, and oil/gel cleansers exploded in popularity. What was quite a niche type of cleansing formulation was suddenly everywhere. And for good reason - they provide a lovely combination of efficacy and ritual.
But here's why the Balm-Gel Cleanser remains unique.
There's a standard way of making gelled/oil cleansers. Some brands change this to shift the texture, we changed it to optimise gentleness and the soft after-feel. Finding the breaking point in the formulation means more experiments in the lab, with better results for you.
And while you can't tell this from the ingredient list, the results of a mildness test confirmed it to be completely non-irritating. In fact, no cleanser ever tested with this ultra-sensitive method has ever achieved a better score. Meanwhile, one of the words most used to describe the after-feel? 'Soft'.
So it might be 5 years old, but I wouldn't change a thing. Good products stay good.
Thanks to all of you who bought it over the past 5 years, or told your friends about it, or introduced it to your social media community. It means the world.
It was featured in the national press twice yesterday too.
Here's to the next 5.