Favourite Five: Make-up Removers

I get bored quickly, especially when it comes to products I use every day. I like to switch up my routine and try different types of makeup removers, especially since it’s a relatively tedious task to begin with and if I’m using something new then I tend to have a little more patience with the process. I firmly believe in always taking ALL your makeup off before bed so I can’t be bothered with cleansers that don’t do the job properly. Here are my top picks of the ones that do.

Favourite Five: Make-up Removers

Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing Lotion

This is actually my standard daily face wash that I keep in the shower, but it’s so gentle that it can be used to remove make-up, even around your eyes to get rid of stubborn mascara. It’s suitable for all skin types, including the more sensitive ones, and isn’t at all drying. It doesn’t foam up and can even be wiped over dry skin without being rinsed to add an extra layer of moisture if necessary.

MAC Cleanse Off Oil

Sounds weird, right – a cleansing OIL?! Intended for use on dry skin, the logic is that oil attracts oil i.e. this product will cling to and dissolve the make-up on your face and then be washed away without leaving any greasy residue on your skin. I find it’s very effective, and even more so when washed off with a facecloth instead of your hands. Even those of you with oily skin can use it – it won’t make you more oily at all, as it emulsifies into a lotion-type liquid when it comes into contact with water. Most importantly, it’s 100% mineral oil free which is very good news as mineral oils can be very bad for your skin (this article explains why).

Elizabeth Anne’s & Purity Special Baby Shampoo

Huge props to Camilla’s mom who turned me onto this miracle product years and years ago. Not only is this a fantastic shaving gel when you’re in a pinch but it might actually be the most effective eye make-up remover I’ve ever used – it even dissolves tubing mascaras which usually only come off with warm water. It smells absolutely beautiful, is soap-free and because it’s made for babies is extremely gentle and won’t sting you eyes one bit. Just squeeze some onto a cotton pad and hold it over your eyes for a few seconds – it works like a dream.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O

The no. 1 choice of beauty bloggers and YouTubers everywhere! I was first introduced to this wonderful stuff after watching the inimitable Lisa Eldridge sing its praises in a video. I was then completely gobsmacked to learn that you could buy it in Dischem (and now in Clicks) when can barely find it in the UK and the States. It’s a “micellar solution” i.e. cleansing water and is famous for being super gentle and never irritating the skin. It dissolves makeup in a flash plus you don’t have to rinse it off afterwards. It’s bloody amazing ok – just go out and buy some!

Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes

Now, just to be clear – I don’t recommend the use of facial wipes for removing makeup. They’re way too harsh for regular use on your eyes and skin, and never contain enough moisture to do your face any good. Having said that, we’ve all stumbled home from a night out and collapsed bleary-eyed into bed before washing our faces. To try and discourage that kind of naughty behaviour I would suggest keeping an emergency pack of facial wipes next to the bed so that you can at least attempt to take off your mascara before passing out. And if you absolutely must use facial wipes then at least use these ones – they’re gentle, have more moisture than most and contain no colour, perfume or other nasties that should never be on your face.

4 comments on Favourite Five: Make-up Removers

  • The Trend Studio

    Great post. My mom used to use Elizabeth Anne’s on our skin to sooth any sunburn as kids. Mom’s always know best, don’t they 🙂 Keen to try the Bioderma as I’ve heard very good things about it. What is the price like?

    • Jules (author)

      Hi Ingrid! The Bioderma cleansing water is around R130 and it’s cheapest at Dischem although also available at Clicks and some pharmacies. I find that a bottle lasts me about 2-3 months and I use it every day. P.S. Great tip about using EA’s as after sun!

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  • Kaye Johnson

    My favorite one recently is Cetaphil since it’s really gentle on my skin. I have really dry and sensitive skin and most of the face washes that I have tried really dried out my face, Cetaphil though never dried out my face.

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