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Beauty | 06/09/2021

Aesop Hand Wash Review: Is It Worth the Cost?

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Congratulations on searching “Is Aesop Hand Wash worth it?” before spending a small fortune on them! I’d love to share my thoughts on this question with you.

I like a good hand soap. It’s a lovely treat, especially at a nice restaurant or in a fancy hotel. I’ve never splurged on an expensive hand soap or body wash to have at home until a few weeks ago when I bought two Aesop products.

I was first introduced to the brand through their retail store in New York a few years ago. It didn’t take long for me to start noticing these pretty minimalist bottles in the bathrooms of friends of mine.

 As someone who aspires to the philosophy of “fewer but better things”, I justified to myself that it was worth to give Aesop a try.

I went online and ordered directly from their website. The total for the Resurrection Aromatique Hand Wash and the Geranium Leaf Body Cleanser came out to a jaw-dropping $98.65 (including the $7.50 shipping fee, since I didn’t hit the minimum $100 free-shipping threshold).

The bottles looked quite large on the website, and by the looks of it, I estimated that it should last us about 3 months. By mentally amortizing this amount to a monthly cost of about $16 per bottle, I felt that this price tag was reasonable, especially given the expected quality of the products.

Aesop Resurrection Aromatique Hand Wash

I took a wild guess when ordering this hand soap online. This seemed to be their best seller based on some other blog posts I read. The product page describes the scent as Citrus, Woody and Herbaceous, with the hero ingredients being Mandarin Rind, Rosemary Leaf and Cedar Atlas. As an aside, these are all essential oils you can easily find in a health food store if you want to try to replicate your own DIY version of the Aesop Hand Wash!

Before commenting on the scent, I’ll caveat by saying that I would not describe myself as a fragrance connoisseur, so please take my observations as those of an average consumer.

The citrus of the Mandarin Grind is nice scent and much more elegant than the usual orange or lemon soaps I have used in the past. I like that it does not smell sweet or sugary. I can’t really detect the rosemary or cedar, but they could be adding balance and complexity to the overall scent. The lather is normal and washed off quite fast.

Overall, I like the scent, but I’m not mind blown. I think I would have preferred the exfoliating version of the hand soap that I had previously tried at my friend’s place (could not find it on Aesop’s website), as the exfoliation sensation made it feel like a little 10 second massage.

I have to say that I treat every hand-washing instance as a mini mindfulness moment. I’ll lather my hands and breath in the scent from my palms. I’m not sure if its the $39 that reminds me to not take this moment for granted, or if the soap is actually that unique. Either way the Aesop Hand Wash makes something of that routine feel pretty special.

Aesop Geranium Leaf Body Cleanser

I chose the Geranium Leaf Body Cleanser based on the description that it’s a green, citrus, fresh scent. The main essential oil in this is Bergamot, followed by the same previously mentioned Mandarin Orange. The body wash does smell a lot more herbal, and perhaps even a tad medicinal. My overall impression is that there are perhaps too many varying scents in the fragrance, and the resulting excess complexity makes it such that I can’t figure out what exactly I am smelling.

This body wash takes some getting used to because it does not lather as much as my regular body wash products. It has a pretty minimal ingredient list – which is by the way almost identical to the composition of the hand soap, with the addition of glycerin for the texture. So I’m not surprised that the lathering feels a bit more “natural” and doesn’t have the same foaming action that I’m used to. 

Here is a small peak into my shower collection! I’m glad that this bottle will last us for a while. The pump is a tremendous plus and makes it super easy to use in the shower.

So, was it worth the splurge?

In my opinion it’s not worth it. The bottle is beautiful and yes it screams “status” to all your friends who come visit… but unless your goal is to impress people, the products on their own won’t necessarily wow you enough to become a repeat purchase.

I think Aesop has amazing branding. The packaging esthetics, branding, website design & store design are all impeccable! I am very happy to support the brand as they truly created a one of a kind experience for their customers. The cost of the product just makes it unapproachable. This is definitely a treat, but think of it more as burning your Dyptique candle when you have special guests than the go-to hand soap or body wash.

I anticipate that I may shamelessly refill these beautiful bottles with more affordable soap when I finish them!

If you read more of my content, you will see that I am a huge proponent of buying very high quality things, as in general they last a lot longer. I love to invest in small luxuries, and then use and treasure them. It’s what mindful consumption means to me. So in order to afford $600 leather shoes I plan to wear for a decade, I will continue to buy $10 soap.

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