Disclaimer: Ok I realise my title is appalling but just go with it for now and all will soon become clear...
My very first 'proper' makeup item (and I mean 'proper' in that I wore it everyday rather than smeared across my face to dress up as Cinderella or something) was a double ended black and white mascara that I got free out of a Shout magazine when I was about 13. We were on holiday in France at the time (where we used to go quite often) and my mum insisted that I bought some makeup remover before I used it. We went to the super market and she bought me a pack of Demak Up face wipes and then I rushed home to experiment with this strange new product ( and yes I am almost 100% sure I ended up stabbing myself in the eye).
The thing is that although my makeup use expanded and changed (if I remember that mascara made me look really bizarre because the combination of white and black made my eyelashes grey) my makeup removal didn't. Every time we visited France I'd stock up on the same makeup wipes. I have to admit they were soft and didn't irritate my sensitive skin and were practically perfect in every way (casual Mary Poppins reference) but the honeymoon period couldn't last forever. Unfortunately although Demak Up products are available in most European countries including Ireland they don't sell to the UK which meant that eventually once we stopped visiting France I had to find a solution that was more sustainable.
At first I tried Simple's face wipes but I always felt like 90% of my makeup was still there and the wipes aren't the softest (especially the exfoliating ones which I kept accidentally buying) which made taking off my eye makeup painful. Then I briefly tried cleansers but it just seemed such a chore after the ease of the humble face wipe. Then I tried cleansing waters but I always felt like they left a sticky feeling on my face afterwards. I began to feel like maybe I'd just been spoilt and I was going to have to settle for less and then I found this...
|The Body Shop Nutriganics Softening Cleansing Gel Oil|
I'd been hearing about cleansing balms and they sounded really cool; a solid balm that turns to an oil on your face! It's like magic! Plus the oil part sounded good for my often dry skin (though I'm told they're great for all skin types). However cleansing balms are often very expensive with even the cheapest ones coming in at about £20 so I figured I'd find a cheaper solution and I stumbled across The Body Shop Nutriganics Softening Cleansing Gel Oil.
|It comes out like a gel/lotion|
Now this isn't strictly a cleansing balm. It comes out in as a gel/lotion (see what I did with the title now??) which is why it is available in a tube rather than a pot. It has a nice rich consistency and works a lot like a cleansing balm. You apply it to dry skin and massage it in and the gel turns to a smooth oil which feels lovely and silky smooth on the skin.
Personally I love this! Since coming to uni I've been feeling like I've slowly been turning into a Spotty McGee (really spotty) and since switching to this I feel like my face is clear as day! Also I can use this around my eyes to take my eye makeup off which (yes I am sad) I find so fun because it does make you look like a panda! Once you've properly massaged this in you take off the oil with a damp cloth and I like to then use a gentle toner to finish before I apply moisturiser (partly to get rid of some excess oil, partly to get rid of any makeup there may be remaining). Plus if you are thinking of entering into that exciting world of cleansing balms but maybe are unsure about it this could be a much more affordable solution as I think it cost around £10.