Review | TonyMoly Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser | Hello Pretty Bird! - A beauty and not-so-glamorous lifestyle blog

20 January, 2015

Review | TonyMoly Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser

Affiliate Links Bought It

Oil-based cleansers have been one of the biggest skincare game-changers for me. Prior to using them, I felt like I could never get all of my makeup off... wipes and foaming washes always left residue behind. Blech. The latest craze seems to be oil cleanser in balm or "sherbet" form—more akin to cold cream, but harder initially and more melty at the end. I picked up a jar of TonyMoly's Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser last month and have already used up most of it, so I think it's probably about time I share my thoughts!

Tony Moly TonyMoly Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser

TonyMoly AquaPorin Sherbet Cleanser comes in two sizes: 90g and 150g, which cost 9,500원 (US ~$8.73) and 14,000원 (US ~$12.87) respectively at full Korean retail prices. It's currently possible to get this product off the internet for around $12 shipped if you're in the US—I'll include some shopping links at the end of this post. I'm sure the few physical TonyMoly retail outlets in the US carry this too (though probably at a markup).

Ingredients (source):
미네랄오일, 세틸에칠헥사노에이트, 피이지-20글리세릴트리이소스테아레이트, 폴리에칠렌, 피이지-8이소스테아레이트, 바바수씨오일, 화이트윌로우껍질수, 스피룰리나추출물, 클로렐라추출물, 하이드롤라이즈드하이알루로닉애씨드, 자일리틸글루코사이드, 무수자일리톨, 자일리톨, 글루코오스, 퉁퉁마디추출물, 글라이콜릭애씨드, 슈도알테로모나스발효추출물, 오렌지오일, 라벤더오일, 제라늄오일, 베르가모트열매오일, 백단향오일, 장미꽃오일, 캐모마일꽃오일, 벤조인나무검, 몰약오일, 토코페릴아세테이트, 정제수, 페녹시에탄올, 카프릴릴글라이콜, 에칠헥실글리세린, 1,2-헥산디올, 향료, 황색4호, 청색1호

English translation:
Mineral Oil, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, PEG-20  Glyceryl Triisostearate, Polyethylene, PEG-8 Isostearate, Babassu Oil, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract, Spirulina Extract, Chlorella Extract, Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid, Xylitylglucoside, Anhydroxylitol, Xylitol, Glucose, Salicornia Herbacea Extract, Glycolic Acid, Pseudoalteromonas Ferment Extract,  Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Geranium Maculatum Oil, Bergamot Fruit Oil, Sandalwood Oil, Rose Flower Oil, Chamomile Flower Oil, Benzoin Tree Gum, Myrrh Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Water, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, 1,2-Hexanediol, Fragrance, CI 19140 (Yellow 5), CI 42090 (Blue 1)

(Note: I translated some of the ingredients using this list, so if you spot any errors please let me know.)

"Sherbet cleanser" basically means a semi-solid oily balm that liquefies when rubbed into the skin. This is what it looks like in the tub:

Tony Moly TonyMoly Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser english ingredients

Mmm, creamy. To use, scoop out a little hunk with your fingers:

Tony Moly Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser cleansing balm

Maybe not quite that much. I went a little overboard while taking the photos. Anyway, the instructions say to massage it into dry skin, then tissue or rinse off. Pretty standard business for an oily cleanser. Here's what it looks like after it's been rubbed in a bit:

It's worth noting that this cleanser takes a bit of rubbing to completely liquefy (at normal room temperature, anyway). Personally I consider that a plus, because it means the stuff won't be running down your arms the second you try to apply it to your face.

So how does it perform? I thought that it removed foundation extremely well and quickly, and even stubborn eye makeup came off with a bit of massaging. It does leave behind a teensy bit of residue on the skin, which isn't a dealbreaker for me because I always follow up with a foaming cleanser, but it's something to keep in mind if you're considering using it solo.

Other thoughts... the scent isn't too overpowering. It smells a little like lemon candy and generic "aqua" candle scent, for lack of a better explanation. I feel neither love or hate for this smell, and find it easy to ignore.

Overall I would say that TonyMoly Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser is a decent buy for the price. Innisfree Apple Juicy is still my favorite budget-friendly cleansing oil because it smells better and rinses away cleaner, but this stuff exceeded my expectations in terms of its makeup removal abilities, so I give it a solid "Not Bad!"

Shopping links:
  • eBay: Available from various sellers from $11+ shipped
  • TesterKorea: 9,500원 6,650원 + 5,770원 shipping (log in to see the sale price)
  • Amazon: Available from $11.50 + $4.40 shipping  
  • KoreaDepart: $8.59 $8.16 + $8.62 shipping

What do you think of TonyMoly Aquaporin Sherbet Cleanser? What's your favorite oil-based cleanser?

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. For more information, check out my full disclosure policy.


  1. I just bought the Banila Co version, and I'm super excited to try it! I haven't tried cleansing oils yet, but that's next on the list.

  2. This looks like a pretty nice cleanser, especially for its price. However, I have to say the Banila Co Clean It Zero is definitely my favorite oil-based cleanser! The only con though is its price, but one jar lasts me a good 4+ months, so it's not too bad. After trying these "sherbet" or balm-type cleansers, I find it a bit difficult to return to cleansing oils :P

  3. Interesting stuff. I have to admit, though, I'm so lazy now I use makeup wipes. Haha. >_> I've tried oil-based removers before and they tend to leave me feeling really greasy, though.

  4. Yay! I like cleansing oils too. They work similarly to balms in how they cleanse, but they each have their pros and cons in terms of convenience.

  5. I feel like balms and oils each have their pros and cons. On one hand the balms are less messy, but on the other there's something more "tidy" about oil that comes in a pump bottle. But if the Banilo Co sherbet cleanser is working for you then... yay!

  6. I actually haven't! I know it's insanely popular. I have some samples on their way to me from Korea, but shipping takes so long sometimes...

  7. I highly recommend Innisfree Apple Juicy then, because of all the oily cleansers I've tried it leaves behind the least amount of residue. I think maybe because it doesn't contain mineral oil. Mineral oil is a great ingredient for dissolving makeup, but I feel like it can be kind of hard to rinse off completely.

  8. I really like Tony Moly products. I wish there was a store locally that sold it. I love my Cappuccino scrub and would like to try the pore pack that is also like a little coffee mug. This product seems interesting. I have never tired any oil based cleanser before.

  9. Hmm I've yet to try any solid/oil cleansers! They sound interesting :)

  10. A TonyMoly store opened up here in NYC last year, so who knows, maybe they'll expand to other cities. Urban Outfitters actually sells some of their products now, but the prices are a bit marked up.

  11. Ohh that's right, you're going to IMATS! The NYC TonyMoly store is very centrally located, thankfully. Here's their website:

  12. Balms definitely win in the travel-friendliness department! You can actually buy mini jars of the Banila Co. one if you want to test it out. RoseRoseShop has them:

  13. omg the concept of this sounds awesome :D definitely gotta buy it when i'm in korea this summer, i'm always looking for good cleansers ^-^

  14. You should be able to find tons of sherbet cleansers in Korea! They're really popular now. Pretty sure The Face Shop has some inexpensive ones as well!

  15. I haven't tried this kind of cleanser but it looks fantastic! I'll definitely add it to my must-try list. #kbeautybloghop

  16. Ah, I was just going to ask how it compared to the Banila Co. Clean it Zero but see you haven't tried it yet. I was very skeptical of oil cleansers but I tried the Clean it Zero and it seems similar to the one you used in this review. I haven't used enough to make an informed opinion, though :P Now I want to check out this Innisfree one you recommend. #kbeautybloghop

  17. If you wear a lot of foundation or sunscreen it really is great! Definitely worth a try.

  18. The Innisfree Apple Juicy Oil is my faaaaavorite. Functionally it's similar to a lot of other oils, but it just smells so darn good. Anyway, I'm curious to see how this compares to Clean It Zero too. It's about twice the price of this one so my expectations are high!

  19. Never heard of this product before but I really like the look of it. Just put it on my wishlist at TesterKorea #kbeautybloghop

  20. It's definitely worth a try if you find the messiness of regular oil cleansers bothersome! Certainly gets the job done in terms of makeup removal too.