Your Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Makeup Remover
Makeup can instantly elevate your look and even your mood. But after a long day, removing makeup can seem like a chore. No matter how tired you are, you simply can’t afford to miss this first step in your daily skincare routine. Bringing your skin back to its original state will preserve it as a fresh canvas the next day!
A good makeup remover is essential to help you get rid of all traces of makeup, as well as all the dirt, oil and sweat that have built up on your face during the day. It can also set you up to achieve beautiful and clear skin.
With many options out there, it can get confusing navigating the world of make-up removers. The best choice is one that’s not only effective but also gentle on your skin.
Not sure where to start? Read on to discover the different types of makeup removers and when to use them. Plus, check out our tips on how to choose the best make-up remover depending on your skin type, choice of makeup and other lifestyle factors!
What Are the Different Types of Makeup Removers?
There’s a good reason why you’re bound to find a bottle of micellar water in the vanity cabinets of beauty enthusiasts. This water-based cleanser contains tiny molecules called micelles that can gently lift off makeup, sebum and dirt from your face without leaving any residue. Regular use can even improve your skin texture!
All you need to do is to soak a cotton pad with a generous amount of micellar cleansing water and swipe itacross your face. It’s simple, effective and convenient! You can do this even while watching TV or relaxing on your sofa. Thanks to the no-rinse formula, you can even skip that trip to the bathroom.
This skin-friendly product usually comes in different formulations, so you can easily find a suitable option for you!
When to use: Micellar water works best for removing light-to-medium coverage make-up or to remove dirt or sunblock even when you have no makeup on.
Makeup Remover Wipes
Looking for a no-fuss, no-rinse solution to get rid of your make-up? Then you’ll love the convenience of makeup remover wipes. Soaked in micellar water solution, these towelettes can wipe away traces of makeup and dirt in a flash.
Ultra-easy to use and dispose, they also come tucked neatly in travel-sized packs. If you’re headed to the gym or always on-the-go, keep a pack handy so you can hit the skin-refresh button whenever you want. Just like micellar water, these “anytime, anywhere” cleansing sheets suit busy individuals who need a quick cleansing fix.
When to use: Wipes are great for removing light-to-medium coverage makeup or lifting away impurities on a makeup-free face.
Eye & Lip Makeup Remover
Long-lasting makeup like waterproof eyeliner and mascara, as well as smudge-proof matte lipsticks can keep you flawless. But these stay-all-day formulations can also be notoriously difficult to remove.
An eye & lip makeup remover can remove stubborn make-up effectively without damaging your skin. They are gentle on eyelashes (no tugging required!) and won’t hurt the delicate skin around the eye contours.
Most come in a bi-phase formula made up of aqueous and oily layers. Shake well and apply onto cotton pads, before gently wiping over your eyes or lips.
Tip: Hold the cotton pads against your eyes and lips for a few seconds before wiping to give the product time to break down the makeup.
When to use: As eye & lip makeup remover is oil-based and designed for specific areas, use it only when you need to remove waterproof or heavy makeup. For best results, use together with makeup removing wipes or micellar water to remove your base makeup thoroughly.
As the name suggests, a cleansing oil is oil-based and it does the job of removing waterproof or stubborn makeup effectively. A cleansing oil emulsifies with water when you rub it into your skin. With its deep-cleansing properties, it can dissolve even the most stubborn makeup easily.
Cleansing oil works as part of a double-cleansing regime. Gently massage a small amount onto damp skin before rinsing off. Complete the routine with a facial cleanser.
Tip: Cleansing oils can be drying on skin so choose one with a formulation and ingredients that are suitable for your skin.
When to use: A cleansing oil will break down waterproof or heavy-duty makeup like eye glitter. As you will need to rinse it off, it’s best to use it at home since you’ll need access to a sink.
A cleansing balm works just like a cleansing oil, except that it starts off in a solid formbefore melting into an oily structure after you apply it.
Rub a dollop of cleansing balm onto your face, add water and work up a gentle lather. After thoroughly massaging it into your skin, rinse with water and your makeup should glide right off.Asa cleansing balm is oil-based, it’s best to follow up with a facial cleanser to decongest your pores.
When to use: If you have more time to spend on your skincare routine and tend to wear waterproof makeup, use a cleansing balm as part of a double-cleanse regime.
Tips on Choosing the Right Makeup Removers
Tip #1: Choose Based On Your Skin Type
You’re unlikely to find a one-size-fits-all makeup remover, so knowing the type of texture you prefer is a good place to start. Do you favour the refreshing, light sensation of micellar water, the swipe-off convenience of makeup wipes or oil-based cleansing oil or balms? From there, you can choose a formulation for your skin type.
But if you’re still unsure of what type of makeup remover you prefer, we’ll walk you through how to choose one based on your skin type. Let’s dive in!
If sensitive skin is your concern, we recommend picking a water-based makeup remover like micellar water that comes in an ultra-gentle formula. Remember to hold the soaked cotton pads against make-up heavy areas for 3-5 seconds before wiping – this gives the micellar water more time to break down the impurities. Doing so also means you can use fewer number of wipes to cleanse your skin, protecting your delicate skin against friction. Steer clear of oil-based cleansers as these contain oil and require double cleansing, which can dry out and aggravate sensitive skin.
Dry to Combination Skin
If you have dry-to-combination skin, it’s best to skip oil-based makeup removers as these can dry out your skin due to double cleansing. Instead, go for lighter no-rinse formulas such as micellar water or wipes soaked with hydration-boosting ingredients to keep your skin supple and smooth. Should you still prefer to use an oil-based makeup remover, choose one that has moisturising ingredients and follow up with a hydrating facial cleanser to lock in moisture.
Oily to Combination Skin
Do you have oil glands that tend to go into overdrive? If you have oily-to-combination skin, that’s a sign that you may have a compromised skin barrier function. Your skin may have difficulty retaining moisture because of excess sebum production. In this case, you’re better off with water-based micellar water or wipes which will not clog your pores. These makeup removers also contain hydrating ingredients which can help regulate your sebum production.
Dull Skin with Clogged Pores
An inconsistent skincare or makeup removing regime can leave you with dull skin and clogged pores. For deep cleansing, opt for a cleansing oil or balm to thoroughly melt and remove the impurities and dirt within your pores. Be sure to focus on congested areas like your T-zone when massaging the product in, but don’t rub too hard to avoid aggravating your skin. Follow with a brightening facial wash.
If you prefer water-based makeup removers, keep an eye out for formulas which contain brightening ingredients such as Vitamin C or Lactic Acid. Micelles in micellar water and wipes can also help to attract dirt and unclog pores, which leads to clearer skin in the long run.
Acne Prone Skin
Prone to breakouts? A gentle water-based makeup remover such as micellar water will be your best bet. Look for one in an anti-bacterial formulation designed for acne-prone skin. This will remove makeup effortlessly and reduce flare-ups at the same time.
Tip #2: Use a Separate Makeup Remover for Waterproof Eye Makeup
These days, you may want to stand out from the mask-wearing crowd by playing up your eyes while keeping base makeup to a minimum. If so, it’d be a good idea to add a separate eye & lip makeup remover to your beauty arsenal. This is designed to effectively remove your waterproof or heavy-duty eye makeup without tugging on your eyelashes and harming the fragile skin around the eyes.
Tip #3: Consider Your Lifestyle Factors
Sometimes, you may need to switch up your makeup removers depending on your lifestyle. Consider when and where you remove your makeup. Do you also need to use cotton pads or would you need access to a sink to rinse your face?
If you need to quickly wipe off your make-up on-the-go before a gym session, then makeup remover wipes are the most obvious and convenient, use-and-discard choice for you.
At home but feeling a tad lazy? Then we suggest using micellar water or wipes as an effortless and efficient way to remove your makeup.
What if you have time to indulge in a full-blown skincare regime at home? On days when you have a face full of high-coverage makeup, a cleansing oil or balm will do the trick. Otherwise, opt for a mix of micellar water or wipes for your regular base and an eye & lip makeup remover for heavier formulas.
Let’s not forget about eyelash extensions – removing eye makeup while having them can get a little tricky. If you have extensions, remember this general rule of thumb: avoid using oil-based removers such as an eye & lip makeup remover, balm and oil cleanser as they can cause your extensions to fall out. Opt for water-based cleansers such as micellar water or wipes instead.
We’ve covered everything you need to know about choosing the right makeup remover. With this sorted, you’re bound to find one that won’t leave any traces of makeup behind. Oh, and one last reminder: for clean and refreshed skin, don’t skip your make-up removing routine!