Kiehl’s Has Every Skincare Base Covered With the Facial Fuel LineJuly 07, 2023
In our column, New to Me, writer and editor Stephen Rubino puts the newest and buzziest beauty products to the test, offering up his honest thoughts on how they perform and if they’re really worth adding to your shopping cart.
If you’re a guy just getting into skincare, (or perhaps are helping a guy who desperately needs it), it’s common to start with a starter set. The basic options typically include a cleanser (You can’t just use any bar soap on your face? Who knew!) and a moisturizer, but kits range from the minimalist to the monstrous. In my oh-so-arduous journey to find what works for me, I tried out the Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Power Pack set, which was gifted to me by the brand and combines a face wash, energizing scrub, facial moisturizer and lip balm. Along the way, I thought “why not go big” and also picked up some other tidbits from the Facial Fuel line: the brand’s Eye Fuel, the SPF 20 Moisturizer, the Body Fuel Hair-and-Body Cleanser and the Energizing Tonic. I even threw in the Body Fuel Antiperspirant and Deodorant for good measure. Needless to say, I have a lot of thoughts.
One thing is for certain: If you like the smell of one Kiehl’s facial product (and I do), you’ll like them all. They’re sort of coordinated to all mesh nicely, mostly sharing the same scent notes of menthol and a slightly herbal, sage-y fragrance. It’s nice to feel like your products aren’t going to clash scent-wise, and I especially loved the fragrance of the deodorant.
A lot of the Kiehl’s “Facial Fuel” products like their toner, eye cream and face wash included caffeine, which perked up my skin nicely. The eye cream, in particular, was such a success that a friend staying with me for a week promptly stole it. However, if you’re sensitive to caffeine in particular, you may want to use these products sparingly (or talk to your dermatologist!) until you get a sense for how your skin reacts. The other common ingredient across several products, menthol, was a bit more mixed on my end. While it definitely woke me up in the morning, the tonic was a bit tingly for my usual before-bed skincare routine. However, the Facial Fuel moisturizer soothed my face nicely and had such a luscious liquid texture that it felt completely light and un-greasy after applying — a rare feat for a moisturizer. The gel cleanser also had a great texture and did wonders for my blackheads.
I was a big fan of the deodorant scent and, although I’m not usually one to use antiperspirants, I have to admit it worked exceptionally well to cut down on sweat. It made for an easy addition to my gym bag, although the liquid formula did take a second to try.
Another favorite: the hair-and-body cleanser. Normally, a shampoo-body wash combo is a cardinal sin for men’s skincare, but this stuff felt premium and made for a helpful option when bringing multiple products didn’t make sense. I took it on a recent spa trip and it simplified my post-sauna cleanup and left my hair feeling great.
As a skincare reviewer, I love to try new things and experiment to see what I like, but that’s admittedly not for everyone. So as a final verdict, I’d say that the Kiehl’s Facial Fuel line is a great place to start your journey. Just don’t be shocked if you find yourself wanting to try even more.