Let’s cut to the chase: it’s time to stop using makeup removing wipes. We’ve been saying it for years, and we’ve also been telling ourselves we’d stop using them for about the same amount of time. We get it, it’s hard to break away from the convenience of them. But for real though, it’s time to stop using them.
Here’s the short version of why it’s beyond time to phase them out of your skincare routine: they’re bad for your skin and they’re bad for the environment. For anyone who still needs a bit more convincing, here’s the why.
While makeup wipes may seem like a great option in a pinch, they can actually irritate the skin because they are actually full of fragrance and preservatives. The reason they smell so nice and stay moist without harboring bacteria for so long? Preservatives and chemicals, sadly. Some of these include formaldehyde-releasing chemicals, surfactants, emulsifiers, and other ingredients that don’t naturally belong on the skin. Unless you quickly follow up with a cleanser, these ingredients can increase your risk of inflammation and other skin issues.
They also can cause micro-tears in the skin. When you’re aggressively rubbing that mascara and foundation off, it’s actually tearing and manipulating the skin which can promote wrinkles and more inflammation or even pigmentation problems. While wrinkles are a natural part of aging, it’s not natural to speed up the process more.
It also turns out that makeup wipes are kind of scamming you. When you use them, it feels like you’ve just cleaned your skin really well… But unfortunately, you haven’t. The wipes just move everything around without cleaning the skin, and on top of that, they have just left a bunch of chemicals on the skin too. Sad. They often don’t truly and completely clean the skin, leaving excess oil or makeup on the face. This can lead to clogged pores and eventually, breakouts.
Unfortunately things don’t get much better for makeup wipes from here. They also aren’t sustainable or very good for the environment. Most makeup wipes are single-use and non-biodegradable, and it can take up to 100 years for a single wipe to decompose. Think about all the wipes we’ve used since we started removing our makeup.
These wipes are often made of polyester, polypropylene, cotton, wood pulp, or rayon fibers, many of which aren’t biodegradable and end up piling up in landfills. This doesn’t even begin to consider the plastic packaging that many makeup removing wipes are sold in as well.
But note, using a makeup wipe is still better than not washing your face at all. So if it’s really, truly the only option, then go for the face wipe. But try a bamboo face wipe so it’s at least biodegradable (though this can be unclear, as sometimes the chemicals that the wipes are soaked in make them non-biodegradable). With the lack of regulation in the clean beauty industry around wording like “clean” and “green,” there can be a lot of greenwashing. But Nudestix and Public Goods both do make eco-friendly bamboo makeup wipe options.
If there’s a laundry list of issues with makeup wipes, then why do we keep using them? They’re convenient, we have a long history of using them (we can be creatures of habit most of the time), and let’s be honest, they’re really good at removing waterproof mascara. But it’s time to move on and try to remove makeup differently.
Instead, try using micellar water and reusable cotton pads or bamboo pads. Micellar water cleans the face just as well, if not better, than a makeup wipe, and it’s environmentally friendly. Cleansing balms and milky face washes are also becoming popular as a makeup removal option, including cleansing balms from Drunk Elephant, Then I Met You, Naturopathica, Clinique, BeautyCounter, Versed, Chantecaille, and more.
Options are available outside of balms as well, like gel cleansers from Honest Beauty or Summer Fridays, jelly cleansers from Glossier or Biossance, oil cleansers from Tula, or foaming cleansers from Avene or SkinCeuticals. Don’t forget to double cleanse!
While makeup wipes may seem like the quick and easy fix, it’s better in the long run for both yourself and the environment to try a new option.
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createdAt:Thu, 29 Jul 2021 18:37:39 +0000
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