Please Stop Using Makeup Wipes--Double Cleanse Instead!

Yesterday on instagram I shared a meme from one of my favorite skincare experts, Caroline Hirons, beseeching everyone to stop using makeup wipes, and you all were not having it. And I discovered that an alarming number of you sweet baby angels are using baby wipes to remove your makeup.

This makes sense: makeup wipe are convenient, and they appear effective. Baby wipes are made for literal babies, so they seem gentle. Effective + gentle = happy skin, right…? Not this time. I’m so sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but makeup wipes are not your friend. They’re fine for occasional use (camping, traveling, illness, etc) but if you are using a makeup wipe, baby wipe, or water wipe as your primary mechanism for removing your makeup or cleansing your face, you are doing long-term damage to your face. You’re also not doing the environment any favors—that’s a lot of unnecessary waste! There are environmentally friendly options available that are just as convenient and much more friendly to your face.

why

  • Makeup wipes destroy your acid mantle, which is a delicate and important layer on the surface of your skin that keeps moisture in and junk out. Your acid mantle is how your skin protects itself from viruses, bacteria, and other nasty things that want in. Your acid mantle deserves love and protection. Throw away your makeup wipes.

  • The texture of 99.9% of makeup wipes is harsh enough to be considered a mechanical exfoliant. Most people use some kind of exfoliating product in their skincare routine, so for most people this is just a little bit too much for your skin to handle. Over exfoliating will destroy your acid mantle.

  • Most of the people who responded to my story about makeup wipes expressed dismay because they use makeup wipes to remove their mascara, and ya’ll, you do NOT want to exfoliate your delicate eye tissue. Makeup wipes can cause micro-tears in your skin that can advance the aging process (this is also why skin pros don’t want you to use harsh facial scrubs like St. Ives Apricot Scrub—hands and feet only!) so using them on your delicate eye tissue is essentially inviting fine lines and wrinkles to join the party much earlier than they would otherwise.

  • Baby wipes are not formulated to keep pores clear or break down waxes or oils (makeup), they are formulated to remove organic material from the surface of the skin. Using a baby wipe to clean your face means you are leaving a LOT of makeup and environmental debris behind.

  • Makeup wipes are not formulated to actually clean your skin. They are formulated to break down makeup. Your face might look makeup free when you’re done, but these wipes don’t actually cleanse your skin and tend to leave behind a residue that isn’t doing your skin any favors. They just suck.

skin and environmentally friendly alternatives

  • If you simply must use a makeup remover, consider switching to reusable bamboo pads or bamboo wash clothes rather than disposable cotton rounds. (note: daily use of a wash cloth is still going to be a mild exfoliant. If you struggle with dry skin, lay off!)

  • D O U B L E C L E A N S E! Ya’ll, a double cleanse is the nicest way to wash your face and is as effective at removing makeup as a makeup wipe. Double cleansing is the method of using an oil cleanser first to break down makeup and get things movin’, and then following up with a traditional cleanser. My favorite cleansers for step one are:

why should you double cleanse?

Double cleansing is infinitely more gentle. Using a cleansing oil rather than a makeup remover or a makeup wipe has multiple benefits. For starters, it is a way to cleanse your face WITHOUT exfoliating, which is pretty important for those of us who use chemical exfoliants. Massaging your face is a fantastic way to stimulate lymphatic drainage (will make you less puffy,) and can hep gently stimulate collagen production in your face. Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies and it keeps our skin firm and tight! I know you oily and acne prone babes are probably side-eyeing the shit out of me suggesting you lather your face in oil, but please, trust me.

how do you double cleanse?

Simply massage 1-2 pumps of your preferred cleansing oil onto your dry skin as if you were washing your face. This gentle facial massage breaks down makeup and helps lift makeup, dirt, and other debris off the surface of your skin. Rinse and massage with warm water. Follow up with a regular cleanser. Easy!