SKIN | Napoleon Perdis Balm Voyage vs. black smokey eye


I feel like this picture sums me up at the moment: lots of makeup but a sloppy top-knot and bags that aren’t quite hidden under my eyes. We did black smokey eyes and extreme cream contouring at school one day this week. This eye look is pretty intense but I think the glasses kind of tone it down a bit, don’t you? Regardless, once I got home and stopped wanting to have kohl in my waterline and a drag contour, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to try out the latest makeup remover in my arsenal: the Napoleon Perdis Balm Voyage Moisture Complex Cleanser and Makeup Remover*. I haven’t been game enough to put a balm cleanser on my face since one broke me out a couple years ago, but I knew this black smoke wasn’t going to get taken out with a sweep of micellar water.


This isn’t a super cheap product, but it comes with the fancy extras one would expect when dropping upwards of sixty dollars on a makeup remover. The nice packaging is one thing, and the free muslin cloth is a nice bonus. I bought a buuunch of them ages back from eBay which is the best way to get a ton for cheap, but a clean face cloth is pretty much essential with a product like this, so the more the better.


If this tub was supplied on a breakfast table with a knife and some kind of toasted carbohydrate, I wouldn’t hesitate to spread it on my food. I mean, if I didn’t know it was skincare. It has the exact same colour and texture as butter, which I love, because I love butter.

The instructions are to warm a bit of balm up between your fingers and then massage it on to your face. Let’s do this.


Let me just explain exactly what we’re working with here. This smokey eye isn’t messing around. The first layer is black gel liner, followed by kohl pencil, followed by black eyeshadow and waterproof mascara. There’s a lot to break down, or break up, or break through, or something.

I massaged the shit out of my face (shoutout to Lisa Eldridge, although she’d never be so vulgar) then went in with the warm wet cloth.

hyacinth-girl-np-balm-voyage-cloth-s hyacinth-girl-np-balm-voyage-face-s

For one fingerful of balm and one muslin, I’m pretty dang impressed. Seriously. Everything is gone except for the eyeliner where I was too scared to get right in close for. The box says you can do a double cleanse for serious makeup removal, but I didn’t really need to. I chucked a little bit of balm onto the cloth and then got right in to around my eyes.


If you’ve got dry or normal skin, this cleanser will definitely do on its own. I’ve posted the ingredients list below if you’re curious. Because I have oily and acne-prone skin, I know there are a few oils in here that my skin won’t agree with, namely coconut oil and shea butter, so I’ll always follow up using this with my ordinary facial cleanser. Just to avoid any potential breakouts. Better safe than sorry and all that.


I know I’ve been slack as hell with blogging lately but it’s a long weekend this weekend (well, regular weekend for me because I am at work right now) and I am hoping to get some good stuff done and get back on top of my game.

Side-note too while we’re talking about Napoleon Perdis: the brand won’t be available in Farmers after this month so if you want to get your fix, get it now! They’ll still be available in retail stores in New Zealand but I don’t know where just yet. Just a heads up!

Side-side-note: you can tell I shot these photos on two different occasions bc I have two different nail colours. Gaddamn fingernails giving me away.

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  • Big fan of balm and hot cloth cleansers! I’ve tried quite a few now and to be honest they’re all fairly similar. I tend to remove makeup first with something like a micellar water, or do a double cleanse with the balm cleanser. The Body Shop camomile one is really good, although it’s more similar to an oil cleanser than the creamier ones I’ve tried.

    I think even if you use regular cleansers, using a face cloth is still beneficial. This one looks nice and substantial too.

    • Yet to try the body shop ones, but I’ve been really enjoying lots of their other releases lately so I might need to get on it!

  • this reminds me of coming home with intense eye makeup after makeup school and giving my stepmum a fright. I love it! This stuff looks like a good makeup remover – those heavy smoky eyes usually need some heavy duty remover! I was pretty loyal to the Innisfree apple juicy liip&eye remover throughout makeup school because it smells like apple juice!

    • Um that sounds amazing, where do you get your Innisfree stuff?

      • beautynetkorea! So cheap and shipping is always faster than I expect, like a week or so. Always get a mysterious discount from rewards points too (?) Have ordered from them 3-4 times and they always send like 999999999999 cute little samples too. A++ recommend.

      •! Sorry for super late reply beb <3 I'm putting off buying Skincare bc of the US dollar conversion rate but I think I'm going to have to do it soon! xx

  • Arrabella Bolter

    Much cheaper ($18) and more gentle, Ultra bland from Lush. Same principle, very oily and needs a cloth to remove residue – but uses beeswax because waxy makeup comes off easier with wax.
    Promise I’m not a lush pr :p

    • I have heard good things about Ultrabland, although I don’t know about “more gentle” – that’s a pretty vague term and although it has more ingredients, the Napoleon cleanser doesn’t have any that are known irritants. Plus Ultrabland is based on almond oil which is not recommended for people with acne-prone skin!

  • Unpaletteable

    This looks like it could be a dupe for the Eve Lom cleanser….don’t know if that’s much of a money-saver though!

  • I really want to try this after reading your post!