“ Brand: Superdrug / Dosage Form: Drops „
My eyes and me tend not to see eye to eye. I've required glasses since the age of 13 (I probably could have done with them from a younger age, but I didn't notice till I tried on a friends glasses and realised everything was clear!) and I've had hayfever for as long as I can remember. Recently my allergies have been playing up as well as my glasses prescription changing wildly so I've had terribly tired feeling eyes for the last month or so while I put off buying another set of glasses. Throw in that I drive to work in an air-conditioned car, live in a warm and dry house and sit right under the air-con vents at my work desk, it's quite easy to see why my eyes would quite happily pack up their bags and stick a for sale sign through my eye sockets. Comfy! Yesterday was particularly hellish with allergies meaning I had a feeling like I had a blurry contact lens in my eye. Given that the last time I've worn contact lenses was about eight years ago, I'm certain I would have noticed that before now. The rest of the day my eyes became progressively more irritated. I have eye drops in the house, but luck would have it that I wasn't going to be home at any normal time (I will insist on having a social life, much to the distaste of my eyes!) so I decided to pop into boots to get some eye drops and an eye bath for later. I was quickly reminded how crap boots are sometimes (not one eyebath kit in sight and eye drops with a price that made my eyes water) and quickly popped along to Superdrug with the hopes that their eye drops wouldn't have to come with a mortgage.
===Worst Superhero Ever===
Superdrug are, rather fortunately, not a superhero whose only super power is being ultra thin and really talkative and/or being so chilled out you could probably eat their hand without them complaining. The possibilities for a septum that doubles as a ninja-star weapon and a utility belt full of teaspoons and citrus fruits do, however, tickle me. Superdrug are, in fact, a high street shop similar to boots who sell as much as they can really fit into their store under the guise of health and beauty (not quite sure where the crisps and mars bars come into that other than being an add-on/money spinner) and you'll usually find a chemist in there too. Superdrug opened their first store in 1966 and have grown quite a smidge since then to become the second biggest health and beauty retailer in the UK (behind boots, despite boots never having anything I need!). They battled the government to reduce VAT on condoms and have a few partnerships with other places like The Perfume Shop that mean they can sell you all kinds of junk below their symbol of a white star. Huzzah! If you want to contact them you can either leave feedback on their website (www.superdrug.com/feedback) or you can write to them with a genuine pen and bit of paper; their address is as follows:
Superdrug Stores PLC
Their "Superdrug's own" range comes in a bit cheaper than the competition in some areas and thankfully eye drops were one of these areas. Their eye drop range is manufactured by an Italian company called Omisan Farmaceutici who specialise in eye care, contact lenses, nasal sprays, ear drops and dietary supplements. If you want to get in contact with them the details are as follows:
Via Tossicia 15,
Phone: +3964130370 / +39064130370
The box for this stuff is about three inches tall and an inch and a half wide. It is dark blue with a little green "New" circle on the front. The text "Irritated eye drops" sits in white below the Superdrug star. The rest of the text is in a blood red colour, probably to indicate that it's for irritated eyes as the other drops they have are all in different colours. The red against the dark blue background can be a little uncomfortable to wrap your eyes around (thanks to an effect called chromostereopsis that produces a weird depth of field effect) and could possibly cause annoyance with designers everywhere who probably know that it's one of the worst colour combinations for text you can use, stop it, you shouldn't do it. Other than that, it's quite small and well put together so it's not going to take up a lot of space anywhere. The bottle inside is made of plastic with a pointed top and a screw off lid. I've found that my bottle always tends to have a bit of the liquid escape into the lid just before I fully screw it off which is a bit annoying and wasteful.
The side of the box lets you know that the box and the bottle are entirely recyclable which is fantastic for those eco warriors among us. I know my recycle bin will be ever so happy that I'm using it properly.
Flip the box round and you'll see the directions for use. You should wash your hands first before twisting off the top (generally good advice there) and applying two drops to each eye as often as you feel like you need to. Mostly because people are complete idiots at the best of times, there are warnings to make sure you don't touch your eyeball with the tip of the dropper so as not to scratch your eye. No scratchy eyeball fun for me then.
I've found that the bottle is fairly standard for eye drops. It's a bit hard to squeeze the drops out so it might be a bit difficult for those with limited grip in their hands to use them but most people won't have too much difficulty with them.
My first surprise with this stuff was that the stuff inside the bottle is a translucent yellowy-brown colour. It looks dirty and this is the first time I've ever seen eye drops solution that made me wonder what was actually in it. By the time I managed to sit down to put in the eye drops, my eyes were both stinging, probably from all the rubbing with dirty (by which I mean not washed in the last half hour) hands I'd been guilty of doing. The best way to apply these is to tip your head back and (assuming your eyelids are as flinchy as mine are) hold one finger on your eyelid to keep it open. Hold the bottle ominously above your head as if you are carefully measuring out just one drop of poison into a drink about to be served to Katie Hopkins. Once it hits your eye, jump back like a dog who has just had someone blow in their face and then pull an "oh my God, what just happened" look with only your mouth, all the while continuing to hold the eyelid and blinking like a horny schoolgirl who hasn't quite figured out winking yet. When you tip your head forward (especially if you've went for the recommended two drops) expect the entire contents of your eye to dribble down your face making you look like you are peeing from your eyeballs (the colour helps here). It might be an idea to have a clean tissue to hand to dry your face.
As soon as the drops hit my eyes, the burning disappeared. What a relief! Rather annoyingly, it didn't clear the feeling of there being something in my eye but it did take away the itchy, sore feeling, leaving me with just the feeling that I needed to take something out of my eye. That being said, I didn't expect the drops to clear that feeling and that is why I also bought an eye bath at the same time. Essentially they cleared up the irritated feeling which is exactly what they were supposed to do so that's a thumbs up right there.
===Longevity and value===
The box also lets me know that I get a whole 15ml of the stuff and that it shouldn't be kept for more than 90 days from the date it's opened. If you are unlucky enough to have your eyes feel like they are on fire nearly every single day for three months then you probably need something better than this to solve your problems. That leads me to wonder if anyone would really get through this stuff in 90 days and if not, then perhaps it is a touch overpriced coming in at around £4 per bottle. Cheaper than boots, but still quite a lot for 15ml of something that will go off in 3 months time. 15Ml is going to be more than enough as most droplets are about 0.05ml. That would mean that you'd get about 300 drops from each bottle which is 150 sets of two drops which means you could do both of your eyes 75 times with the recommended dose. It's unlikely you'd need to, but think of the possibilities. I think I'd be happier for them to drop the amount in the bottle and the price along with it to reduce wastage. So, my thoughts in short there: it's a bit pricey and won't last past 90 days, at which point you'll have to throw it out probably having used only half of the stuff. That is a shame and loses it a star.
The warnings on the box rather sensibly tell you not to use it if you are allergic to any of the ingredients. I wonder how many law suits have encouraged them to have this printed? That being the case, you might want to know what the ingredients are. I'm not a qualified scientist (unless you could that higher in physics from secondary school; I wouldn't) so it's up to you to decide which each ingredient means to you. Hopefully it tells a love story to your eyes:
Calendula Extract, Hamamelis extract, disodium edentate, sodium chloride, hydroxmethylglycinate, borate buffer, water.
That rather simple list probably means there can't be anything too terrible in there, but I direct you to the above statements. Plant extracts surely can't do terrible things? I smile and glance sideways at many well known "plant extracts". The box informs me that, whatever is in it, it's friendly to your contact lenses, so don't be surprised if you hear it inviting your contacts round for tea. Oh, also, you shouldn't swallow the stuff. You might start hearing things. Just saying.
It made my eyes feel a lot better when I really needed it. It didn't clear whatever junk was in my eye out of it, but I didn't think it would. The price is a bit high for what you get and the fact you'll probably end up throwing half of it out at its "use by" is a bit of a waste. That being said, it works. Four stars out of five from me!
I have been suffering with dry eyes lately, which is most probably made all the worse because I work at a laptop for most of the day throughout the week. I had previously tried using an Optrex spray for tired eyes as I'm not a big fan of eye drops and had hoped to get around this via the spray. Unfortunately, I felt that my eyes needed better lubrication than this spray could offer so I set about finding some eye drops instead. I will confess that I predominantly chose these drops because they were the cheapest that I could find.
USING THE EYE DROPS
These are standard for eye drops, and you can use two drops in each eye. A word of warning: when you start to tip the bottle upside down, the drops come out very quickly and if you're not absolutely ready, they will start dropping all over the place so I have found that you really do have to be careful with these. We have used various eye drops in our house over the years and these seem to be a lot worse in this respect.
On the flip side, once you are ready to use them, the drops will come out easily and you won't have to shake the bottle to encourage drops to come out. My mother uses prescription eye drops and I am usually the one to put them in. We find that the drops do not come out easily all of the time and she tends to start closing her eye while she's waiting, which makes application difficult so in that respect, these drops are easier to use as long as you're prepared for just how easy!
Unfortunately I have not found these drops to be particularly lubricating and while they provide some relief, I quickly find my eyes going back to being very dry and irritated, sometimes even more so than before. From my experiences, I feel that they are fine for people whose eyes are not overly dry but just a bit irritated and they do deal with the itching associated with my hayfever so I can recommend them on that front. However, for chronic dry eye, I clearly need something else and I intend to try a different product to see if it makes any difference.
These cost £3.19, which was one of the most affordable of the eye drops on offer in Superdrug when I went to the store. They are cheaper than the bigger names but I have decided that I will be trying Optrex or similar to see if they can do a better job as I don't feel that these eye drops are lubricating enough for me so not great value for money!
I don't recommend for eyes that are dry and/or irritated on more than an occasional basis as the lubricating effect does not last very long. I can recommend for stopping hayfever-related itching though, and they have been quite good on that front.