Review: Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel (Sensitive Daily Wash)

Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleansing Gel was a product that recently kept popping up on all of my email lists, social media marketing suggestion lists, and “if you like this product, you might try this out…” lists.

While I’m not even sure how the last form of creative marketing finally broke me down, it worked, because for its price point and considering the reviews, I had no hesitation in trying it out right away.

While there are mixed reviews on a lot of the other products sold by the brand, this one seemed to have pretty solid reviews for those with sensitive skin, and at under $15 for 8oz, it is almost comparable to a drugstore brand product but with much cleaner ingredients used.

With a gel texture designed to treat all skin types (including sensitive and acne-prone), it also helps soften the skin and promote a more even texture and tone.

Before we begin, make sure you’re ordering Mario Badescu from a legitimate retailer, NOT from a counterfeit seller. For your convenience, here is the Amazon link to an authentic Mario Badescu retailer.

We’re all seeking a daily go-to cleanser that won’t break the bank that will actually work in solving problems and helping our skin at the same time, so I wanted to see if Mario Badescu’s new Enzyme Cleanser could beat my favorite sensitive skin daily cleanser for its price point.

We reviewed first so you wouldn’t have to.

Review: Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel (Sensitive Daily Wash) 1

Review: Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel

Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleansing Gel is an 8oz gentle gel cleanser and a relatively new product that is already booming in popularity with fans and those who have never tried the brand before.

Made for the most sensitive skin, acne-prone skin, and all skin types, the cleanser works for day and night, and helps to treat signs of dullness, control oil product (for those with combination or oily skin), and even out tone and texture.

Considering the ingredients used are so fresh and clean the the price point is very reasonable in comparison the the name brand and luxury type product, I had high hopes for the Enzyme Cleansing Gel even as a first-time Mario Badescu user.

I had heard mixed comments about other products (like the Rose Water Spray) but gave this one a fair objective shot.

Overall, this works quite well, especially for sensitive skin, as a basic daily cleanser, and is extremely soothing. It clears up acne quite well, better than a lot of cleansers marketed as anti-acne washes available.

My only issue with this product, and the reason it did not ultimately win out over my favorite daily go to cleanser, is most would need to use a daily toner with this product, especially if you use makeup (eye makeup and mascara in particular).

Bonus tip? I used Thayers Witch Hazel Rose Petal Toner (also very moderately priced) as a great toner to pair with this. I followed with Valjean Labs Facial Serum for brightening and glow, also at a modest price point.

While it does a great job as a deep cleanse in the AM and gets rid of all dirt, oil and debris, it simply doesn’t seem to get rid of every bit of makeup with a single wash and provide a deep cleanse (it’s almost too gentle).

For that, I’d have to mark it down a notch. But if you’re OK with using a daily toner or cleansing twice at night, this cleanser is excellent otherwise.

Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel and products
Image Credit: Mario Badescu

How Do I Use Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel?

  1. On damp skin, gently massage product in circular motions on to the skin
  2. Rinse off with warm water or remove with a warm or hot towel
  3. Follow with the use of a toner, especially if using layers of makeup and eye makeup
  4. Can be used daily (in the AM and PM)

Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel Ingredients & Benefits

Especially if you have very sensitive and acne-prone skin, paying attention to ingredients in the skincare products you use can be as important as reading the ingredients on the foods you consume or groceries you purchase (or buy from meal delivery subscription services trending).

Here is a look at a couple of key ingredients contained in the Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel and some benefits with use for the skin:

Papaya Extract

  • Vitamin C contained in Papaya extract helps protect against sun damage, while smoothening and softening the skin
  • Brightening benefits: helps restore visible brightness to the complexion and lightens the skin by exfoliating the surface layers and removing dead skin cells
  • Helps detoxify impurities in the skin and provides deep exfoliating benefits, gets rid of unwanted dirt, oils, acne, blackheads, and helps to unclog pores
  • Anti-aging benefits: helps improve skin elasticity and the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, sun damage, and sun spots
  • Antioxidant benefits help support overall skin health and skin circulation
  • Helps to fully hydrate and moisturize the skin, keeping it soft and smooth
  • Excellent for fading acne scar marks and skin spots
  • Anti-acne benefits: helps rid the skin of acne and pimples and prevents future breakouts

Grapefruit Extract

  • Vitamin C and antioxidants contained in grapefruit extract benefit the skin by protecting from environmental damage, such as pollution, and sun damage (preventative anti-aging and free radical damage protection)
  • Grapefruit extract contains a high amount of antioxidants and Vitamin C, which protect, nurture, and hydrate the skin- suitable for all skin types and gentle
  • Anti-aging benefits: stimulates collagen production, which helps with decreasing the appearance of fine lines, sun damage, sun spots, pigmentation, deeper set lines (over time), and wrinkles
  • Softens and smoothens the appearance, both with respect to texture and surface aesthetic
  • Potassium found in grapefruit extract helps treat wrinkles and UV damage, as well as sun spots and hyper-pigmentation
  • Refreshes the skin and provides a gentle cleanse that is still deep and nourishing
  • Improves and restores texture and balance to the skin
Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel and prods
Image Credit: Mario Badescu

Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel Pros & Cons

Overall, this is a great daily cleanser for a good price considering the ingredients and benefits with everyday use. With that said, the main letdown with this product was the need for a toner a feeling of the skin not being fully cleansed without one (especially with the use of heavy makeup or eye makeup). With that said, if you are comfortable with twice daily washes, you can still eliminate the toning step. And it is extremely gentle and safe for those with all skin types.

Here are a look at some main pros and cons to bear in mind prior to purchase with Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleansing Gel:


  • For those with dull skin, dry skin, or sallow skin: after using the facial cleanser, skin is immediately brighter and more clear, with improved radiance
  • Helps restore texture and tone while leaving the skin feeling soft
  • Helps with oil control for those with oily/combination complexions but does not strip the skin for those who are dry or leave any feelings of pulling or tightness
  • Safe for all skin types including those with sensitive, acne prone, or combination skin (extremely gentle and nourishing on the skin)
  • Vegan and cruelty-free company: company does not test their products on any animals, does not use any animal product in any formulations, and does not use any animal product during any manufacturing processes (click on the link to check out some other vegan companies while you’re here)
  • Great for those with acne prone skin, as it helps decrease breakouts, blackheads and pimples, and the formation of new breakouts in the future
  • Does not burn the eyes at all even upon accidents
  • Has a refreshing and gentle smell, free of any chemical or perfume type odors
  • Even with sensitive and acne-prone skin, I did not experience any allergy, irritation or breakouts from using this cleanser, if anything, there was a decrease in the amount of breakouts I experienced during use
  • My skin was left feeling much softer, smoother, and restored (and more radiant) after washing


  • While the cleanse was fairly deep, I felt I either needed two washes or the use of a good toner to fully remove all makeup, especially eye makeup, and dirt, debris and oil from the face, so if you’re looking for a cleanser and toner product in one, this may not be the way to go (if not, I would recommend two washes and removal with a hot towel, especially around the eyes or if you are wearing heavier makeup)
Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel and facial prods
Image Credit: Mario Badescu

Mario Badescu Money-Back Guarantee Policy

If you have very sensitive skin or have not used Mario Badescu products in the past, the return and exchange policy in this case may be a highly important factor for you.

The manufacturer, Mario Badescu, has a strong return and exchange policy that honors full refunds upon dissatisfaction or allergy, and this policy favors the consumer, both new and returning.

If you are dissatisfied with the use of Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleansing Gel, or if it does not work for your skin to provide suitable skincare benefits, or you experience any product allergy or reaction to the formulation, you may elect to return it at any time.

In this case, you will receive a full refund equal to the entire purchase price of the item (if purchased via Amazon, the policy may not apply to other individual merchants).

Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel in hand
Image Credit: Mario Badescu

Review: Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel (Sensitive Daily Wash) 1

Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel: Worth It Winner?

Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleansing Gel definitely met my expectations for a really good product in general, especially considering the price point.

It was soothing, made my skin feel supple and soft after use, and brightened my complexion up. It also restored tone and texture and left my skin feeling hydrated rather than dry or tight.

As mentioned before, the only issue is the need for a good toner if you’re going to be using a heavier makeup routine, as it is extremely gentle.

I was surprised to find the anti-acne benefits the cleanser provided, as it seems to clear up signs of breakouts quite well and prevent them from coming back (at least this was my experience, and shared among other reviewers).

When you’re looking for a gentle and hassle-free cleanser that’s perfect for a sensitive complexion and won’t irritate your skin at all or break the bank, this definitely tops the list of options, and I was not at all disappointed.

Skin is left soothed, nourished, and refreshed.

While you’re here, be sure to check out our other reviews on Sun Basket (for beauty and health from within to without), and Stitch Fix (for stylish looks and more beauty from head to toe)!


Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel



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Beverly Friedmann

NYC Native. Photographer/writer; focused on fashion, street style, and architecture. Lover of human beings, equality, and animals!

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