When Not To Wear Makeup

When Not To Wear Makeup

We love a bitta slap. When you've got a breakout, dark circles or you just want to look fly, there's no better feeling than getting all your (clean) brushes together, cracking open a few palettes and setting to creating your masterpiece. 

Makeup can make you feel like the supermodel you've always thought you are on the inside, like Our Qween Beyoncé herself. But bearing that in mind, there are some occasions where you shouldn't be wearing makeup, end of. 

While exercising 

We've all heard this but maybe you don't realise how serious this is. Wearing cosmetic (AKA non-mineral) makeup while exercising is a skin sin beyond all others - to be honest, you might as well hand-fill your pores. 

Why? Cosmetic makeup sits in the pore, creating congestion. When you exercise, your skin secretes sweat and excess sebum. When these fluids mix with makeup, they can cause irritation and pustules (spots). Yikes. 

At the beach

Holiday season may be over for most of us but it still rings true. If you're lying out in the sweltering heat of Gran Canaria, sweating buckets, the sweat will mix with the makeup you're wearing and clog your pores. On top of that, most people are less likely to properly apply SPF when it means they'll have to touch pre-existing makeup - ain't nobody want sun damage!

To sleep 

When you sleep in your makeup, you're essentially mixing a face-cocktail of old makeup, oils, bacteria from your pillow and sweat. Does that sound like it's good for your skin?! Because it's not! It'll transform your face into breakout central. 

To the spa 

Nerd HQ is full of seasoned skincare professionals who've worked in spas and salons in the past - apparently, plenty of people show up to bask in steam rooms and saunas with a full face on. Everyone has insecurities, and for some people, having skin problems can be so debilitating that it's difficult to be in public without makeup on. But seeing as the purpose of saunas and steam rooms is to refresh the skin and draw impurities out, wearing cosmetic makeup (as it sits inside the pore) is like putting a plastic cover over your skin and it traps everything you're trying to get out in the pore. 

To the pool

Unless you're a synchronised swimmer, your face will be submerged most of the time anyway. Even the most waterproofed of waterproof makeup has a maximum water submersion wear time so save yourself the application and go without. 

When you don't want to 

This is the most important time to not wear makeup. Sometimes you want to walk out into the world barefaced and brave, fearless and foundationless, triumphant and sans topcoat!! Nothing should truly stop you from doing that (although, we see the point if you are a makeup artist as your own face is like a walking portfolio). Your face is your face and your skin is your skin, with its own ecosystem and landscape and we will always encourage everyone to embrace the beauty of nature. So what if the sides of your nose are red or you've got a spot that should have its own passport? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - be your own beholder. 

For all of your makeup removal needs, whether for before the beach or before the bed, reach for your Cleanse Off Mitt - the skin-friendly and affordable makeup wipe alternative! 

Get your mitts on our mitt here!


Nerd HQ's Back To School Tips For Owning This School Year

Nerd HQ's Back To School Tips For Owning This School Year

The teenage years are tough. Everyone's telling you that these are the best years of your life. Let us fill you in on a little secret: they're lying! You're probably dealing with spots, your first romantic encounters and your family breathing down your neck 24/7 and on top of all that, now school's starting again.... ugh. Mega ugh. 

Well, here at Nerd HQ, we've already been through it all (and trust us, after school, it feels like you age by the second) and feel like we're in the best position to offer you our tips for getting through the school year with minimum stress.

Actually using your school journal

Your parents fork out money for you to have the privilege of the hardback journal with the school's crest, you little.... To be honest, we all know that you're just going to Tippex-graffiti the front of it and write down homework in front of the teacher who demands you to write it in the journal.

We hate to be Debbie Downers but organisational skills are essential for your life after school, so buy yourself a 12 pack of coloured pens (Staedtler Triplus Rollers are the favourites in Nerd HQ) and make sure to use the journal to your best advantage.

Colour code which essays are for tomorrow and which are for next week, put in the days that you have Gaelic football and jot in when you'll be walking home instead of getting a lift - we never remember our umbrellas until it's too late.

Pack your Cleanse Off Mitt for P.E. and after school activities

Your P.E. teacher is a fully-fledged adult and even if they pretend they don't, they know that you don't always have a headache/that time of the month. Sometimes you gotta go for it and get your face sweaty. You know what happens to your skin when you sweat under makeup? Bad, bad things. Pull out the trusty blue hero and swipe off that concealer before that beep test.

Choose subjects you find interesting

We're a bunch of dream chasers here in Nerd HQ - we are the people who listened to our parents tell us not to study cosmetology, English literature, history or media studies and made the choice to go against them. Now, we're not saying explicitly to say no to your parents as they tend to be right in the end.

But if Pops is pushing you to do business studies and you don't have space in your schedule to pursue something you're really good at and enjoy, sit down and have a chat with him. Emphasis on chat, NOT shout. Seriously - don't shout. 

School discos require long term prep

So, hypothetically, you've got a broken door. You can either have a registered professional fix the door for you or you can paint over the crack everyday so that you can't see it. The real solution is fairly obvious, right? 

Rather than frantically trying to plaster over spots with thick foundation when it comes to the day of the ball, get a simple skincare routine to fight the cause. We recommend the Acne Out range from Biofresh Skincare, probiotics and switching to fully mineral makeup like Bellàpierre. 

Unfortunately for you, we can't be with you every step of the way. But the Cleanse Off Mitt can, for all of your skin needs - whether it's the post disco cleanse or the speedy swipe after school.


The Cleanse Off Mitt Back To School Skin Quiz

The Cleanse Off Mitt Back To School Skin Quiz

With schools returning this week (subject to individual school, sadly), we thought it was time to see if you're skinformed on the science-y bits and the world of skincare. Take your brain out from its Summer holiday home of under the bed and blow off the dust because it's time to get quizzy!

We hope you know your dermis from your epidermis, when you should be wearing sunscreen and why baby wipes are harmful. 

You have three minutes to answer 13 questions... fingers at the ready!

Let us know how you got on on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram

Nerd HQ's Festival Must Haves

Nerd HQ's Festival Must Haves

It's that time of year again! With under two weeks left until Electric Picnic, it's time to shake the old socks out of your tent and start getting organised... well, maybe not organised, but prepared. Festivals are mucky, dirty and sticky affairs and that's what we all love about them! They allow even the most high maintenance of us to let loose and proudly parade around without having showered in days. When it comes to festivals, you obviously want to bring as little as physically possible whilst still being comfortable... showing off your wild side doesn't mean you have to be a complete cavehooman. 

Here at Nerd HQ, we've put together our list of things that you need to have (and might forget) for Electric Picnic (and any other festival, for that matter)...


Wellies are the obvious one and they're what everyone thinks of when they think festival. But we mean a real, solid pair of wellies, none of those flimsy, half-length fashion wellies. Of course, being stylish and on-trend is important but what's also important is not going home with pneumonia or gangrene!!! 


In the last few years, you shouldn't ever be caught dead at a festival without the obligatory silver-speckled cheekbones. Just be careful it doesn't get absolutely everywhere because you'll be picking it off your jeans for the next seven years - trust us, we know. We adore Wet'N'Wild's Color Icon Glitter Single in Spiked because it's not gritty little bits of pigment, it's more like a soft paste meaning it won't scratch your skin!!!


Floor Mat

People who don't bring floor mats when camping are mad people who should not be trusted. Having enough blankets and a sleeping bag are givens but the key to not waking up with a creaky back is the humble floor mat. It doesn't even have to be a real floor mat, it can be a yoga mat or a pilates mat - anything that separates your back from the cold, hard ground!


Dry Shampoo 

Who cares about hair looking greasy? It's the feeling of stringy, oily locks that ruins your festival buzz. Who has time to queue two hours for the shower though? Make sure to stock up on more than enough dry shampoo. Kevin Murphy's FRESH.HAIR Cleaning Spray is perfect as it doesn't weigh down the hair like other dry shampoos tend to. 


You can put all of your troubles aside for the weekend, but you can never stop the sun. Remember that SPF isn't just for heated sunlight, it's for all sunlight so pack factor 50 for your face and at least 30 for your body in case we get one of those nearly mythical sunny weekends. BrushOnBlock is a mineral-based, powdered SPF that comes in a very portable format making it easy for top ups when you're standing in even the largest of crowds. 


Waterproof Phone Cover

There's no point in bringing a portable phone charger if you end up getting water in your raincoat pocket and destroying it FOREVER! Get yourself one of those kind of nerdy waterproof phone pouches to protect your baby, besides, what's wrong with being nerdy?!


And, naturally....

Cleanse Off Mitt

You're realistically going to be wearing long-wear, military grade makeup all weekend. Instead of letting your skin suffer by wearing it all night or dehydrating the bejaysus out of it with baby wipes, take your Cleanse Off Mitt and a bottle of water with you. You can remove your makeup from the comfort of your tent with minimal effort, just give your Cleanse Off Mitt a quick scrub in the morning with antibacterial soap and hang it up to dry and it's ready to go again. 



Get your Weekend Pack here!

Why Makeup Wipes Are Bad For Your Skin

Why Makeup Wipes Are Bad For Your Skin


I cannot count how many times over the years people have asked me my opinion on using makeup wipes but I can tell you that every time, the answer is: “DON’T!!!”. The world of beauty has adapted so much over the last few decades, especially when it comes to the creation of products for the purpose of ease. Everyone wants to be able to take their makeup off as simply and effectively as possible but makeup wipes come with a price: that price is your skin health.

Makeup "remover" wipes are a bit of a misnomer, as they don't really remove a whole lot. Think of all of the places you are in throughout the day: on the street, in public bathrooms, at the gym, in nightclubs... the list goes on! When you use makeup wipes, all of the grime your skin has gathered from these places as well as your old makeup and natural facial oils are pushed around your face.

Yes, makeup wipes remove some of your makeup but they don't come close to removing all of it! When you leave residual makeup, oils and grime on your skin, all of the debris clogs your pores and prevents products like toners and exfoliators from properly penetrating the skin's upper layers. If you're starting your skincare routine with a wipe, everything that comes after is essentially pointless.

But makeup wipes have other very negative effects on your skin...

Time for the nerdy bit:


  • Makeup wipes strip the skin of its natural oil and protective layer (AKA the skin’s own ecosystem), allowing particles in and out of the skin that shouldn’t be going in or out. This severe stripping ages the skin, and as the skin is exposed, future problems with pigment are a likelihood.


  • Although not true of all makeup wipes, a lot of brands include alcohol or methylated spirits. These ingredients are far too drying and strip away your skin's acid mantle. When this happens, your skin will become dehydrated, meaning it will be itchy, tight and flaky - ouch!!


  • The fragrances and irritants found in many makeup wipe brands can sensitise your skin, leaving it red and sore. If you’ve ever felt a sting after using makeup wipes, this is due to the irritants and alcohol in them. 


  • Because makeup wipes leave residual oils and makeup on your skin, your cores become clogged and you may experience congested skin and breakouts which is probably the last thing you want. 


    If you’ve ever used a makeup wipe (let’s not lie, we all have at some stage), you’ll have noticed that using wipes can take a little bit of scrubbing and rubbing to get it all off. This friction irritates the skin even further!

    Just because makeup wipes are a no-go doesn’t mean that all quick fixes are bad for your skin. Our Cleanse Off Mitt is chemical-free, and quick and easy to use. The teeny-tiny microfibre loops gently scoop the debris from your pore. No need to worry if your skin is sensitive, dry, oily or combination, as the Cleanse Off Mitt is suitable for all skin types. For complete skin cleanliness, follow it up with your regular cleanser.

    If you want to prevent the signs of ageing on your skin and keep your skin hydrated and clear, keep the wipes for removing coffee stains from your blouses on your way into work and keep them away from your face!!!