For about a year now, I have been using this Made-in-Japan sponge cleaner to wash my makeup sponges (mainly the Beautyblender), powder puffs and micro fibre cloths with which I use to clean my brushes in between thorough washes. I sometimes also use it to clean my brushes. This 80 ml bottle is extremely affordable (only S$2, as with all Daiso items in Singapore) and more importantly, effective.
Some Chinese characters on the bottle reveal that it gets rid of bacteria and odour and that it does not contain fragrance and colouring. However, I had to rely on the lovely Iris of Rouge Deluxe to translate the Japanese text on the bottle for me. According to her, the bottle label states that the cleanser removes foundation easily. It also states that the directions for usage are to pour the cleanser onto the sponge after you have dampened it and then to use your fingers to massage the sponge, before rinsing it thoroughly. In addition, the cleanser is gentle on both sponge and skin. Grateful waves to Iris for the clear translation! :)
Before I learnt of the true instructions, I would use the cleanser in two ways, both of which work well. At times I would squirt some of the cleanser directly onto my beauty accessories (dry or wet), rub/squeeze them and then rinse them under running water. Other times I would dilute a squirt or two of the cleanser with a fair amount of water and submerge the items in that for a while, before massaging and rinsing them off. The latter method works especially well on heavily soiled items.
I appreciate the fact that the bottle is pliable, allowing the liquid to squirt out easily. A simple squeeze emits a generous amount, usually enough to clean more than one item.
Although the liquid is supposedly scentless, it does give off a smell – a waft that is slightly synthetic and reminiscent of alcohol and detergent. This scent does linger on your items, so if you are completely averse to scents, this may not be something for you. The scent does not bother me though and it seems to fade away over time.
Although it has the ability to clean well, two new MAC compact powder puffs have disintegrated after I used this on them. Interestingly enough, another MAC one from a long time ago has remained stolidly intact, even though I used the same cleanser to wash it. I believe this has more to do with the quality of the glue used on the puffs than the cleanser itself.
Nevertheless, I believe the scent of this cleanser is indicative of its strength and I would not recommend it for fragile items. Sturdy sponges and cloths seem to hold up well enough but it is likely to be abrasive on delicate materials. As such, proceed with caution.