By Annabel Rivkin

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You beauty!

Annabel Rivkin
cleans up herself and the planet

Splashy rugs, witty art, plush sofas… they all seem more interesting, don’t they, than the foundations of a house? But, without those earnest foundations, the house will fall down. Iridescent highlighters, miracle eye creams, clever contouring kits… they all seem more interesting than a worthy old cleanser.

But your cleanser is the foundation of your make-up and skincare situation. Get it right and there is everything to play for. Fudge it and you might as well not bother with the rest.

deally a cleanser will leave your skin squeaky clean but not dry; it will remove make-up and slough off dead skin cells that cause dullness and blockages. And it will do all this without stinging your eyes, breaking the bank or hurting the planet.

Neighbourhood Botanicals is an east London brand (Leyton, actually) with admirable sustainability credentials and ambitions. In fact it’s the UK’s first carbon negative beauty brand, offsetting twice the carbon it emits in making and shipping its products. So you can feel good about that.

You can also feel good about its oil-to-milk cleanser, Face Off, which might be the best cleanser I have ever used. A little puddle of avocado-scented oil turns milky once you add water and can dissolve even the most brutal eye make-up and face-filth with a cursory massage and a hot cloth.

The raw, cold-pressed oils do the heavy lifting and the milky texture makes for a mild, soothing cleanse. A lovely, local luminary that leaves no residue on either your skin or your conscience.

Neighbourhood Botanicals Face Off, £27

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