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Dollars & Sense: Why This Moisturizing Bar Beats Out Bottled Water

The best skincare products may not be cheap, but trust us: they’re worth every penny. Every week, we’ll break down the math and show you exactly why our latest pick is a smart splurge. This week, we’re showing off one of our new April finds! 


Our pick of the week:  We first became intrigued by Erno Laszlo when we saw that the brand’s past and present client list was like a Who’s Who of Hollywood: Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, and Madonna, just to name a few. If so many iconic celebs swore by the brand’s signature cleansing bars, we figured we had to try it for ourselves. 

At first glance, Erno Laszlo’s Active pHelityl Soap looks like any bar of soap you’ll find on the drugstore shelves. But don’t be fooled, this bar is actually the exact opposite of regular bar soap: it adds moisture and balances out your skin’s pH levels with natural safflower seed oil and moisturizing glycerin. Use it with Erno Laszlo’s intensive (but worthwhile) face-splashing technique, and we think you’ll be as super-pleased with the results as we are. 

First, fill your sink with warm water. Next, dip the bar into the water, then rub it over your face and neck (it will create a rich lather). Now it’s time for the somewhat laborious part: splash your face 20 times with water from your sink, then 10 more times with running water. It might take an extra minute or two, but this ritual helps flush out toxins and encourage healthy cell turnover.  

We’ve been following this ritual instead of washing our faces as usual, and we’ve found that the bar leaves our skin perfectly clean and soft—a world away from the stripped, tight feeling we used to get back when we washed our faces with regular soap. 

How long it will last: Each deluxe-sized six ounce bar is good for hundreds of washes. We’ve been using the bar day and night for the past two weeks, and we’ve barely made a dent. Our best guess is that each bar will easily last you three-to-four months. 

Buy this, not that: Each Erno Laszlo bar comes with a $40 price tag, the equivalent of 40 bottles of water from the grocery store. We don’t know about you, but we’d much rather use (and drink) the free water from our sinks and lather up with this luxe bar, then end up with a pile of empty plastic bottles. 

—Mai 

Learn more about the history behind the legendary Erno Laszlo

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