Shu Uemura Skincare

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oils

August 10, 2017

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Review | The Beauty Look Book

I’ve rediscovered cleansing oils from Shu Uemura and they’ve become a regular part of my daily skincare routine this summer. With the heat, sunshine and humidity I have multiple layers products on my face in order to prep, moisturize, protect the skin and also and make my base last. I’ve switched up my skincare routine over the past few months since moving to Florida because I found the water dried out my skin. At the same time the increasing humidity levels cause me to sweat while I’m outside. I’ve finally re-balanced my skin and will share my full skincare routine soon – but today I have a review on all six cleansing oils from Shu Uemura. This year marks their 50th Anniversary.

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Review | The Beauty Look Book

I’m fairly certain that every one of my readers are already familiar with cleansing oils. In case you are not these are cleansers in oil format where you apply to a dry face then massage into the skin. You can use them on bare skin or as a makeup remover. Simply add warm water to emulsify afterwards and rinse. It’s a skincare product that allows you to remove makeup and cleanse the skin effectively in a single step. With these I only need 2 pumps to cover the entire face although they recommend 3 to 4.

For a bit of background on my skin type, I have normal skin that is on the sensitive side. I tend to double cleanse with cleansing oils or cleansing waters because I like to have my skin squeaky clean. With the Shu Uemura oils they have enough power to do a single cleanse to remove all of my face makeup. With eye makeup or lipstick I still prefer to remove that separately first with a cotton pad and bi-phase makeup remover. It’s just easier and less messy for me. Also with waterproof mascaras and long-wear shadows most cleansing oils simply don’t take it off 100%.

There are currently 7 Shu Uemura cleansing oils – I have 6 of them that I put to the test. Each one has a different formula designed to be suited to certain skin types or preferences. I found they all performed similar in terms of how well they emulsified with water and also how they removed face makeup. Some are better suited for oily skin vs. normal/dry skin and there is a noticeable difference in texture between them. Most of these come in various size options – I have the 150 ml options shown in this post.

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Review | The Beauty Look Book

Thoughts on each one shown above from left to right. Up first is the one I’d consider the classic which is the High Performance Balancing Cleansing Oil Advanced Formula. It’s actually “an evolved” formula of the classic with ingredients designed for waterproof make-up. This one is designed for sensitive skin and it has the most emollient medium-weight smooth feel out of the ones I tested. It leaves the skin completely clean and soft. In terms of mascara removal it didn’t take off 100% of my mascara but it was a very good first pass to remove most of it. For the face it will remove sunscreen, foundation, powder and concealer nicely without stripping the skin.

Shu Uemura High Performance Balancing Advanced Cleansing Oil

POREfinist is designed for acne-prone/oily skin but is the lightest weight option in terms of texture. This has a floral petal scent and is designed to remove excess oil and dirt from pores. For my skin it felt the strongest in terms of cleansing power. It was a bit too strong for daily use for me, but if you have oily skin this is probably the best option. This was the second best in terms of waterproof mascara removal.

Shu Uemura POREfinist Cleansing Oil

Anti/Oxi+ is designed for those with aging concerns. It has moringa and green tea extracts to remove pollutants and balance the skin. This one has a fairly strong scent which my nose was a bit sensitive to. In terms of cleansing this removed all traces of makeup, mascara included without stripping the skin. The scent is a relaxing spa-like scent which is nice – but I preferred the unscented/fresh options. It does leave the skin looking completely refreshed with a smooth feel and the scent did not irritate my skin.

Shu Uemura Anti-Oxi+ Cleansing Oil

Blanc:Chroma is my favorite. It’s a lightweight oil with a brightening effect. On me it was the most gentle and it’s designed for combination skin. I have yet to see noticeable results for brightening with this one – I suspect it’s one that will take months and months of regular use to see visible results. I like this one for the way it makes my skin feel clean and soft.

Shu Uemura Blanc Chroma Cleansing Oil

Nutri:nectar is the newest cleansing oil from Shu Uemura and the most unique. It has a thick almost gel-like texture so it won’t slide into the eyes as easily as fluid options. It is designed for delicate skin and for me was definitely one of the most gentle feeling. It has calming Acai, magnolia to replenish and mushroom to improve resilience.

Shu Uemura NutriNectar Cleansing Oil

Ultime8 Sublime is the option best suited for normal/dry skin. On me this was the richest feeling option without any film. It removes all traces of face makeup and leaves the skin feeling plump and soft.

Shu Uemura Ultime8 Sublime Cleansing Oil

Ingredients on each of the boxes, left to right is blanc:chroma, high performance balancing cleansing oil advanced formula, nutri:nectar:

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Ingredients

Left to right: anti/oxi+, POREfinist, ultime8 sublime

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Ingredients

Out of all of the cleansing oils I found that Blanc:chroma worked best for me. It has a lightweight texture and soft scent that I really liked. Anti/Oxi+ was the best for makeup removal including waterproof mascara and liner. The new nutri:nectar was the most gentle. If you have any favorites from the line let me know in the comments!

You can find all the cleansing oils online at Shu Uemura. They are also offering Beauty Look Book readers a special promo 15% off + free shipping on orders with code BLBXSHU. Valid online at both Shu Uemura US and Shu Uemura Canada.

Do you have any Shu Uemura favorites? Let me know what you recommend in the comments!

Cleansing oils provided courtesy of Shu Uemura.

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  • Candice Petersen August 10, 2017 at 6:20 am

    These sound ideal for my dry skin!

    Candice | Beauty Candy Loves

  • Ana Céline August 10, 2017 at 6:32 am

    These sound really lovely! Thank you for sharing this post xx

  • Amy Theodore August 10, 2017 at 7:05 am

    I’d never heard of this brand before, but they look and sound so nice. Also photos on point!

    Amy //

  • Gail August 10, 2017 at 7:43 am

    Thank you very much for posting the ingredients. Such a big help! <3

  • Frances Kayleigh August 10, 2017 at 8:37 am

    Wow thankyou for testing all of these out for us! Ultimate8 sounds like the one for me! xx

    Frances Kayleigh | Style Travel Beauty

    • BeautyLookBook August 16, 2017 at 9:01 pm

      You’re welcome Frances 🙂 Had fun testing these!

  • Eileen August 10, 2017 at 9:05 am

    On my dry, mature, sensitive skin there is nothing that beats a top quality cleansing oil for gently, but thoroughly, removing the day’s makeup and grime. Although I’ve been devoted to Tatcha’s first in class cleansing oil for many years now (it perfectly suits my needs), I would not hesitate to recommend Shu’s collection as they are of excellent quality and offer a number of different options.

    For those of you who aren’t familiar with Shu Uemura, he was an internationally renowned makeup artist who worked primarily in the entertainment industry. He was highly honored and celebrated for his artistry and innovation. I was sad to see his eponymous line pulled from the US with only an online presence left behind.

    • Jennifer Jones August 10, 2017 at 1:00 pm

      Why we’re they pulled?

      • Eileen August 10, 2017 at 1:39 pm

        There was nothing wrong with the products, etc. It was strictly a marketing decision on the part of Shu Uemura/L’Oréal. In the US, it was regarded as a Japanese cult brand. Despite some wonderful products, it never gained strong traction in the US amongst the average customer. It was a bit too “niche” to make it economically wise to have counters in the US.

        • Christina August 10, 2017 at 4:21 pm

          I completely agree with you, Eileen. It wouldn’t be so bad if the online store carried the full line, but it only carries a fraction of what the other countries have access to. Nowadays, I just ask my sister in Canada or my friends going to Asia to get me what i need, which is really sad.

          I have heard from another blogger in Asia that Shu will be making a comeback to the U.S. sometime in the future. If that’s true, my guess would be they’d sell on Sephora because the line is currently available on

          • Jennifer Jones August 10, 2017 at 4:58 pm

            I hope so. K beauty is taking off. I would love more Japanese products.

        • BeautyLookBook August 16, 2017 at 8:58 pm

          Thanks again for chiming in!

    • BeautyLookBook August 16, 2017 at 8:58 pm

      Love that you’re such a devoted Tatcha fan!

  • Laurie M. August 10, 2017 at 10:57 am

    I have tried many oil and balm cleansers but I always come back to Ultime8!

    • BeautyLookBook August 16, 2017 at 9:01 pm

      Yay for another Ultime8 fan 🙂

  • MK August 10, 2017 at 11:03 am

    I love Shu Uemura’s products and I need to try these ASAP! Thanks for reviewing each one!

    – MK

    • BeautyLookBook August 16, 2017 at 8:59 pm

      You are very welcome! Was happy to test them all 🙂

  • Jennifer Jones August 10, 2017 at 12:59 pm

    Sabrina, I would love if you did a post on skin care creams for eye/face. I’m in my 30s and would love some help preventing wrinkles and dark spots.

    • BeautyLookBook August 16, 2017 at 9:01 pm

      Hi Jennifer! Hope to have it up in a couple weeks 🙂

  • Julia Gladstone August 10, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    Love makeup and live in NYC? We want your thoughts on a new service and are offering cash! Interested? Tell us more:

  • hicharbo August 10, 2017 at 4:09 pm

    I love FANCL Mild Cleansing Oil. It is very gentle and light yet removes makeup and does not leave your skin dry.

  • Christina August 10, 2017 at 4:19 pm

    Many thanks for posting the ingredients of these cleansers. It’s so helpful when you have reactive skin like mine. I’ve used the Shu on and off for years and do consider it one of the best oil cleanser on the market. I can’t say I liked the Tatcha ones, but I do like Shu’s!

  • Amalia August 11, 2017 at 6:11 am

    I’m wondering how safe they are, according to beautypedia standards/reviews.

  • DRTVrMoi August 12, 2017 at 7:00 am

    As a Retin-A user for over 25 years, nothing has calmed my skin like Ultime8. My skin type is oily, sensitive and Shu’s cleansing oils leave my skin calm and makeup free. No double cleanse needed. I have tried all but the newest and Ultime8 remains my favorite.

    • BeautyLookBook August 16, 2017 at 8:59 pm

      Ahhh good to know! Glad you have a tried and true favorite.

  • Roni Dez September 28, 2017 at 11:23 pm

    I haven’t used a Shu Uemura cleansing oil in almost 10 years, back when the brand was sold in the States. I need to get my hands on the Ultime8 since that one seems more up my alley. Thanks for this informative post Sabrina.

  • Merve Aslan November 4, 2017 at 1:13 pm

    Im an henna artist.Some may costumer have dry skin.Its hatd apply henna on dry skin.I hope product help me.By the way Nice post Sabrina.Thnaks for the sharing 🙂
    Henna Designs Artist From London

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