Honestly, it’s life changing is a regular series where we talk about the weird and wonderful possessions we can’t imagine life without. Think of it as an ode to the mundane, bizarre and, sometimes, wholly unnecessary products in our lives.
What do my pillow case, eye mask and bath towel have in common? They’re all covered in eye makeup. Or used to be, at least. While I’m never going to ditch mascara and eyeliner (without them, I’m convinced my fair lashes make me look like an egg), I have spent years trying to find something that properly takes off my makeup before bed.
From oils and soaps to gels and waters, I’ve tried everything – I even went through a period of using wipes (before we knew how bad they were), but they left my eyes feeling scratchy and irritated. Always left disappointed, I’ve never bought the same eye makeup remover twice – after almost two decades you could say I’ve tried my fair share.
But no matter which product I tried – or how clean my lashes looked on close inspection – I almost invariably left an imprint of my face on my bed, much to my mother’s (and now my boyfriend’s) dismay. Most recently, I’ve practically ruined the underside of my beloved eye mask. It’s un-washable, meaning that unlike other items, coming into contact with my face can be fatal. RIP.
So when The Body Shop’s Camomile Gentle Eye Make-Up Remover landed on my desk (along with a recommendation from my colleague, who knows far more about beauty than I do), I thought I might as well give it a go. What do I have to lose? I thought. Reader: it did not disappoint.
All you need is a quick squirt on a cotton pad (I use the large oval ones), before sweeping it over your eyes and the surrounding area. I find one pad is enough to cleanse both eyes, while also taking my eyebrow pencil off, too. And that’s it.
The makeup’s gone. No more soiled pillow cases or towels (especially awkward if you’re staying at someone’s house and it looks like you’ve been sobbing all over their whiter than white linen).
The product has no added fragrance, colour or alcohol and I find it gentle enough to wiggle around underneath the eyelashes to remove that hard-to-reach mascara without irritating my eyes. I tend to do this right at the end, once I’ve made sure the rest of the mascara has been removed.
I’m not the only one singing its praises online. It’s scored an average of four stars out of five on The Body Shop website, with one happy customer saying: “I pray Body Shop never takes it off their shelf... I’ll just have to give up wearing eye make up if that happens.” I wouldn’t go that far, because of my aforementioned eggy resemblance, but I share her enthusiasm.
The product is recommended for those with sensitive skin and, while I can’t speak to this myself, many reviewers vouch for its non-irritating results.
The product comes in two sizes – 60ml for £3, and 250ml for £5 – with the bigger bottle working out much better value, especially as I’ve been using it every evening (and so I’m sure to get through it soon enough). The smaller one is great if you wear makeup less regularly, travel often or are looking for something to take to the gym.
There’s also a stronger version for waterproof mascara and lipstick, although it’s slightly more expensive than the one I’ve got. My only regret is that I didn’t discover it sooner.
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