Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Is Eye Makeup Remover really essential? Nivea Double Effect review



Do you need eye makeup remover? Quickly ask yourself this and you will probably say no. For years I've been the same but as I get older and my eyes get tired easier I've been thinking that maybe I need to change. 

Last year I had a case of blocked eye ducts (that's a thing) which resulted in watery eyes, pain, swelling and, at its worst, light sensitivity. I went to my optician who advised applying a hot cloth and massaging the eyes in order to clear the blockage. Whilst the problem wasn't strictly related to my cleansing routine she advised that the risk of the blockages could be prevented by being a bit more… thorough. She was definitely being kind!

I had previously being using Micellar water for every day eye makeup removal, whilst effective at removing the large bulk of product I found that I needed to dig in and go over it a few times to fully remove mascara and liners. Micellar was not effective on gel or liquid liners so I moved on to alternating with The Balm Cosmetics Balms Away Eye Makeup Remover, a solid oil based cleanser which literally melted the makeup away! Balms Away is wonderful for heavy makeup days but too heavy for every day use. I then tried samples of Clinique Take The Day Off and Clarins Instant Eye Makeup Remover. Samples are great for testing out more expensive products. Both had a more effective cleanse than Micellar however I still had to dig in and occasionally noticed a stinging sensation if I was tired and my skin was sensitive. Not good!

Then my mum gave me a bottle of Nivea Double Effect Eye Make-Up Remover for Christmas. I was hesitant at first. My skin has never agreed with Nivea in the past and I have found that they can be too harsh leaving me quite raw. Putting a Nivea product near my eyes seemed like a risky gamble but I gave it a go anyway and was pleasantly surprised!

There was no need to dig in when removing heavy eyeliner and absolutely no stinging, even at my most tired. The two immiscible liquids emulsify (HIYA GCSE SCIENCE LINGO) when shaken. You shake it all up, soak a cotton pad and then you get the deep oil cleanse along with the "touch clean" feeling of a water based product. I was left with a soft and nourished feeling skin rather than dry and raw. No redness here!

So I stand before Nivea (figuratively) with my hat in hand and apologise for completely writing off their brand as a whole. It really does go to show that you have to try new things and that there is always something out there that will work for you.

Oh and you really do need to use eye make-up remover. Sorry. 

 



Saturday, 18 February 2017

Harry Potter and the family holiday to London!

 

I made a decision last year to travel more. That started off with my solo trip to Paris in the summer and followed up with a Harry Potter themed adventure in London last week with my brother. 

Having waited 16 months we were finally on our way to see Harry Potter And The Cursed Child at the Palace Theatre. We had a full week planned; trips to Camden to explore the markets, Leavesden to re-visit the Harry Potter Studio Tour and of course the two shows that make up The Cursed Child. 

Day One

We arrive at Gatwick and jump on the express at Crawley; my only regret is not booking our train tickets in advance to get the cheap prices. 
After dropping our bags off at the hotel we headed straight to Camden Market for a spot of shopping and a hot chocolate lunch at the infamous Chin Chin Labs

FYI: We were staying just off Oxford Street and Tottenham Court Road at the Hotel St Giles, if you're looking for a ridiculously central location then I do recommend it as we were 2 minutes from the tube and 5 minutes from soho. 

 

 

 

 

Never one resist the shopping in Camden I snapped up these beautiful tortoiseshell sunglasses for £6. I do love a butterfly wing frame!

 

 

 

 
A banana torch in Cyberdog.... definitely doesn't look like a magic dildo. Nope. 

 
Dinner was at East Street just off Oxford Street. If you're looking for a pan-Asian Hipster wagamamas then this is your choice. The service was lovely and the Singapore Noodles were yummy! 



 

 

Day Two

The nerdiness starts! 

 

 

Previously when I've visited the WB Studio Tour we have had a car and drove out from London. This time I decided to do something different and get one of the official Hogwarts Express tour buses. We got to watch the movies on the way and I was able to grab some Itsu sushi for lunch. Any excuse for sushi. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You might think it's unnecessary to visit the studio tour for a third time but with new exhibitions opening regularly there has always been something new. We were really excited to go on the hogwarts express and explore inside the Dursley's house! 

 

 

 
"Up!"

 

Another addition to the tour was the Dobby Experience. Multiple mini exhibits throughout the tour exploring the character from concept to creation and motivation! It was a nice wee bonus in what was clearly a transitional period between the winter wonderland ending in January and the new Forbidden Forest opening in March. 

 

 

 

 

 

My favourite part of the tour. Every time. This giant model of Hogwarts is mind blowing although it lost a bit of its impact with the scaffolding. It was interesting to see them working on the model and removing the snow from the winter display. If you want to see it at its prettiest though then I would suggest going during December and January!

 

 

On the way home I couldn't resist some more shopping. As well as our gift shop spoils I popped in to HEMA. Think of it as the Dutch version of Tiger (now known as Flying Tiger UK. A design chic, budget friendly dimestore perfect for those with a kitsch obsession. Of course I picked up some notebooks and stationary. Of course!

 

 

Dinner was Bodean's BBQ Smoke House in Soho. We chose the sharing platter with a side of poutine. You can take the girl out of Northern Ireland but you can't take the cheesy gravy chip out of the girl. 

 

Delicious!

 

Day Three

I went full Hufflepuff on wednesday in my new sparkly New Look sale trousers and official Quidditch Hufflepuff Scarf. Today was the day we saw both Part one and two of The Cursed Child. I knew I would be in good company by dressing for the occasion! I also made an effort with the makeup by wearing my Sleek Matte Me in Velvet Slipper, I have a renewed obsession with matte lip colours but I rarely wear bright lips anymore so it was a nice change. 

 

 

 

Lunch was Ed's Diner. It's only since coming home I've found out that their Boucher Road restaurant has closed down so I'm really glad we went. I'll miss those Baileys milkshakes. 

 

 

 

 

Of course I can't tell you what happens but I can tell you that both plays were brilliant and worth the sixteen month wait. I genuinely wasn't expecting them to be as funny as they were and the special effects and magic were crazy! I really hope this show runs for a long time because if you're a Harry Potter fan you need to see it!

 

Day Four

Our last day! This was no excuse to rest though. After checking out of the hotel we dragged our carryon to The O2 arena to see the Star Wars Indentities exhibit recommended to me by my friend Claire. If you read my Carrie Fisher post you'll know my feelings on Star Wars. To see the costumes and models in real life was a dream come true. Star Wars Indentities allows you to go through the universe and build your own character through a series of questions. It was good fun although the fairly harsh psych eval half way through was something I could have lived without. 

Disney gave us some psychotherapy realness that Thursday morning! 

 

 

 

 

BB8!

 
Han in Carbonite (Harrison Ford not included)

 
<3

 

 

 

A pretty bang on personality profile!

 

 

Can we do it again?