Sophie's Choice

Product Review: Lancôme’s Bi-Facil takes the day away. 

I recently started to realise that make up wipes no matter how good they were, were bringing tears to my eyes when removing make up. I wear water proof intense black mascara and I would always wake up with classic case of “Panda eye”, I would then use another make up wipe to get rid of this. I always thought eye make up remover was a bit of a mumsy thing to do, and that I wasn’t at the age where I had to worry about how to look after my skin “properly”. However I am 26 this year and I am actually at that stage now (shit). 

I recently came across a tiny little sample of Lancôme Bi-Facil and gave it a go. The product specification on their website reads… 

Bi-Facil make up remover removes traces of the day, simply and beautifully. With a formula that’s suitable for even sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers, Bi-Facil gently removes make up including waterproof mascara. 

Now when I decided to do this I did it properly – no rubbing and a cotton pad for each eye. Now I have to agree with the product specification it absolutely does gently take the make up off, it’s got an almost dry feel to the liquid and isn’t greasy at all. It absorbs into the skin quickly and doesn’t leave the face feeling dry. 

This product has been around since 2000, and is still a popular purchase today. So it has definitely stood the test of time. It’s two tone blue colour layers give the impression it’s going to be heavy duty, but it feels almost like water on the eyes. It doesn’t sting if you get it into your eyes. Bi-Facil took away all my eye make up with two cotton pads, and I woke up with no panda eye HURRAY! 

My only issues with this product are firstly it’s not fragrance free (it doesn’t smell but on the ingredients it contains it) and finally is the price; for a 125ml it was 21.50. I can’t say if it’s worth the price yet but I’ve had it for a month and there’s still half left. There are definitely better all in one products out there, but if you’re feeling rich and sassy it’s a good purchase. 

Review: Hacksaw Ridge packs a punch. 

After 10 years of a shamed exile from Hollywood, Mel Gibson returns with 8 oscar nods following the true story of Desmond Doss – the first conscientious objector to be awarded a medal of honour. 

The film opens 16 years previous, the Doss brothers are play fighting, Desmond hits his brothers head with a brick nearly killing him. In floods of tears Desmond helplessly stares at the 10 commandments “Though shall not kill”. 16 years later, Doss has a untameable desire to join the army, he wants to join as a medic, there is one problem; Doss is a pacifist and his beliefs don’t allow him to touch a gun. Obviously this is not going to go down well in the military. 

The first half of the film is Desmond Doss fighting his way through the joining process to allow him to fight without using arms – he gets bullied by his fellow soldiers who think he is a coward. His Sergeant even attempts to force him to leave. However after a court ruling – Doss can go to war without arms and he is sent to fight for Okinawa in Japan. 


This is when Gibson brings true form into action. His take on frontline warfare packs a punch – it’s extremely violent and graphic. There’s rats eating decaying bodies (gross). My heart was racing throughout the entire first battle scene – I honestly thought I was having a mild anxiety attack. It’s gorey, grim and grisely, exactly what it would of been like in real life. Doss helplessly runs from wounded soldier to wounded soldier attempting to administer medical treatment, obviously with guns firing and flame torches blazing that would be difficult. However it is when the US are forced to retreat that Doss works his pacifist magic. Alone on Hacksaw, Doss saves the lives of 70 injured soldiers by lowering them down the cliff edge, he looks to God “Please God let me save one more”, he saves a few Japanese soldiers (this guy?!). This brought complete admiration to my eyes for this man. 

Andrew Garfield played the part magnificently, he has this Forrest Gump feel to him – he’s a little bit geeky, a painfully awkward demeanour and a goofy smile, I warmed to him instantly. The supporting acts were brilliant, Hugo Weaving as his pained father suffering from survivors guilt. Theresa Palmer as his wife who stuck through him throughout. I was also impressed with Vince Vaughn, obviously he brought along some comedic substance. 


My only issue with the film was how the Japanese were portrayed. They were painted as evil soldiers, the bad guys and the Americans were the heroes. The Japanese soldiers were simply fighting for their own country and their beliefs just as much as the US. I feel the patriotic Americans would be thinking “WE RULE”. Sigh.  

Aside from that the morals were beautifully drawn. Always stick by what you believe in, and don’t let anybody tell you otherwise. The clips of the real life Desmond Doss were an excellent touch, this really brought it home that this man was a true hero who we should all look up to. 

Review: Taboo – A period drama with Hard(y) force.

GONE are the days of sparkly, glitzy reality TV… well at least for 8 weeks that is. Steven Knight teams up with Tom Hardy again for this swaggering moody drama set in 1814 London.

Hardy stars as James Delaney, returning to London for his father funeral after spending 10 years in Africa after a slavery ship he was on board sank leaving him presumably dead. Delaney is now the proud owner of a tiny island on the American-Canadian border which he has inherited, however he faces a grisly battle with Her Majesties Government who wish to buy it for a small fortune, obviously he isn’t playing ball.

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Hardy glares and snarls his way through the first episode, making his fellow cast seem like fluttering moths in the background. This is what I love about Hardy, he has the ability to make the sweetest nursery rhyme sound like an invitation to murder.

I love the setting on 1814 London, there was no sign of fluttering eyelashes and posh sun brollies which period settings tend to indulge in, it was doom, gloom and grey skies. The looming of the foggy factory smoke in the background made me think, is that what London was really like back then?

Delaney is set to keep his private island from the greedy, corrupt and dishonest politicians and will probably do some serious damage to those who cross him. Complimented with some harsh flash backs from his dark past aboard the slavery ship, Hardy is definitely our anti-hero here to save us from the despair of shit Saturday night TV.

N.B. Edward Fox plays a corpse damn it, it’s gotta be good if HE played a dead person. Seriously.

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Line of Duty Finale Review: Who killed The Caddy?

Line of Duty series 3 finally delivered its secrets (well most of them) with two incredibly intense interrogations scenes (which I swear had my heart rate doubled), then followed by a cop-on-cop foot chase, which even DC Fleming breathes “I’m too knackered to run”.

The first of those eyeballing scenes was a 23 minute interview with DS Arnott who was arrested for the murder of DI Denton (who made one final blood soaked reprisal), Arnott starts off with the confidence of an innocent man who is gradually degraded by the lies and strategic calculations of our favourite villain DS “Dot” Cotton. It’s a brutal mental cage fighting match, that also tears at your heart strings for the innocence ripped away from DS Arnott.

However, we start to see some hope in the form of DC Fleming, who quietly scribbles away and makes some intense eyebrow movements, a seed of doubt is planted. The tables finally turn (literally) for DI Cotton, who is then brought in for another 20+ minute interrogation. Does this come across boring? Absolutely not, I have never been so captivated from watching a “ping pong” style interrogation, with body language and eye glaces that filled my living room with such intensity. The walls finally seem to be caving in on DI Cotton, and finally the actions kicks off – DI Cotton makes his final plea, with a text “Urgent exit required” and then we’re faced with an armed DC Fleming in hot pursuit of “The Caddy”. 

Kate came into her own in the finale as she played the action heroine

I think we all knew it was time for The Caddy to get his comeuppance, and he did in true gentry style taking multiple bullets for his soft spot DC Fleming. But not with one last act of honesty, in his dying declaration, he gave up the act and indicated former Chief Superintendent Patrick Fairbank’s involvement with the pedophile ring. But we were left with so many burning questions… who was driving the getaway car? Who was the masked gunman that shot The Caddy? I really hope we don’t have to wait another two years, I just don’t have the patience.

The acting has been impeccable and you can see why it has been crowned BBC2 most succesful drama in 15 years. Line of Duty captivates you, envelopes you and is plausible to the point of reality and that is completely down to the main cast; Vicky McClure, Adrian Dunbar, Martin Compston, alongside Daniel Mays short lived performance and of course Keeley Hawes harrowing and domineering class act. A major thank you to Jed Mercurio’s astonishing story telling and John Sticklands direction. It really has been the pinnacle of police drama.

As the credits rolled, the nation was left wondering, what now? But fear not, did you watch post credits… ?

 

Oh boy…

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I feel like we are all on a constant search for a gloss or lipstick that actually stays put, so that we don’t have to live in fear of the dreaded smudge (or lipstick turning into liner after an hour, does anyone else get this!?) whenever we tuck into a romantic meal or have a […]

Rise of The Midlands – Raised by Wolves returns!

Imagine a lower class mother of 6 children, unplugging the £29.99 a month internet followed by 3…2…1 a haul of teenagers in horror to which she replies “Are you questioning my austerity policies?” “Are you Corbyning me?”.

For those who are already fans of the show, you should know exactly what I’m talking about. Yes, Wednesday night we saw the return of Raised by Wolves, the hit comedy penned by sisters Caitlin and Caz Moran. For those who haven’t seen the show, Raised by Wolves is a loose account of the Moran sisters youth in Wolverhampton transcended into modern day. The show focuses on sisters (based on the Moran sisters), Germaine and Aretha Garry with their younger siblings led by unconventional “matriarch” mother ‘Della’.

So with the internet unplugged, Della’s children are decamped to the local library to use the communal computers manned by a sleeping OAP security guard what followed, left me in fits of laughter. Germaine dancing and sexually teasing a young school boy with a book about chlamydia in her hand, who then subsequently asks her out on a date (they stand at a bus stop where Germaine rubs his nipples and ferociously kisses him).

This is why I love Raised by Wolves, there aren’t many sit-coms that approach poverty so matter-of-factly (it’s no Shameles), i.e. Della going to the “poor woman’s Ikea” (which is a rich woman’s skip). Credit to the Moran sisters, the dialogue is so fantastically written, sounding true to life, it really feels like this was important to them when writing the show.

Della is the winner for me in the episode (and properly for the entire of the first series), she is so subtly funny with her one liners; “I’m incredibly even tempered, am I not?” she says so deadpan to ‘Grampy’ when he questions her anger outbursts. Big appreciation for her character. (NOTE: The Moran sisters said she is a combination of Linda Hamilton and Clint Eastwood)

Series 1 was very funny, unusual and absorbing. It was something that as an audience we hadn’t seen, well, since Shameless. However, this episode the characters feel more human and better formed. It was an excellent introduction to the series, which I cannot wait for. It’s great to have the well-scripted, hilarious, true to life series back.

This has strengthened my love for my favourite funny lady; Caitlin Moran.

 

 

A Sunday walk in Arnside Knott 

I have lived in The North West for majority of my life, and I have recently realised that whenever I go hiking and exploring it’s always in a different county.

I’ve decided that from now on, I should spend more time exploring the beautiful landscapes of The North West. I mean, it’s home to the extraordinary Lake District, one the most beautiful parts of the country, and I’m so lucky that’s it’s on my door step!

So here are a few snaps from my walk at Arnside Knott, Arnside, Cumbria.

The walk took approximately two hours (this includes stopping for pictures and looking for crabs), and the weather was absolutely beautiful. It was very windy but the sun was shining throughout the whole walk.


The one thing that I loved about Arnside Knott is that it is pretty low key. It’s not touristy and is only really known to the local dog walkers on Arnside. Considering it was a Sunday, I could count on one hand the people we crossed!

If you haven’t visited before I would definitely recommend going. I was with a friend who was from the local area and was very familiar with all the “off track” routes. So I would do a bit of research on the best route to take, the woods huge and can imagine it is very easy to get lost!