Clinique Cleansing Duo

It's no secret how much I adore the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm. I've been using it for a few months now and have fallen head over heels for what I now consider a holy grail product, I really can't sing its praises enough. One of the selling points for me is that the balm is completely fragrance free and doesn't contain any hidden nasties; in fact the ingredients list is easy enough for even me to read. It's a gentle, soothing balm-to-oil formula that removes all traces of makeup and dirt from the pores - nothing more, nothing less. 

Being an avid fan of the 'double cleanse', I was after a go-to product that I could use alongside the balm, especially as most of the other options in my collection are either too harsh on my skin or - dare I say it - 'foaming'. Enter the Take The Day Off Makeup Remover. Used alone they're damn good, but used together, these two become the ultimate cleansing dream team...

Described as a makeup remover 'for lids, lashes and lips', I tackle my skin with the liquid cleanser first to dissolve the main bulk of makeup. I wear some pretty heavy duty mascaras but this is a great match for any of them; I simply shake the two components up in the bottle and sweep a healthy dose of the stuff over my face to dislodge and dissolve as much as possible. Unlike the cleansing balm this does leave an oily film on the skin, but once I come in with a second cleanse it really isn't an issue. The balm is the perfect option for this; gently cleansing and purifying the skin. It leaves everything feeling squeaky clean and baby soft, but not at all stripped or dry. In fact it's the only cleanser I've ever used that actually seems to boost the moisture levels in my skin, not take them away. I remove any excess with a clean flannel (I picked up some lovely Egyptian cotton ones from Morrisons of all places - £1 each!) and pat my skin dry with a towel before toning and moisturising. After using these I feel comfortable in the knowledge that my skin is clean as a whistle and not irritated in any way, which is pretty much a first for me as my old cleansing routines could be a little harsh. I'd recommend giving either of these products a go any day, especially if you prefer something that's gentle and free of anything abrasive.

Essie 'Luxedo'

The Mind Changers