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The 10 Toughest Makeup Removing Products

by @alexis-gaskin
Oct 18, 2021


I'm pretty sure I can count on one hand the number of times I've gone to sleep without taking my makeup off. Now does that make me better than everybody...yes, yes it does. But don't worry, I'm here to help.

At Supergreat we proudly say that there are no rules in beauty, and that’s true—but there is one cardinal rule with makeup and that is to remove it! Whether you are playing around with glitter and fun eyeliners (👀 SUVA Beauty), or you opt for a simple mascara/lipstick combo, you should always be removing your makeup to give your skin a chance to breathe and repair itself.

With that mini PSA over, let's break down your options: the most used removers come in the form of a cleansing balm, cleansing oil, micellar water, wipes, or a designated cloth.

If your makeup looks usually involve a lot of waterproof products and layers, reach for a cleansing balm or oil to massage away buildup until you see the makeup starting to break apart and melt away. Micellar water and wipes are perfect for eye makeup heavy creations, especially if wearing lashes or waterproof mascara, for a gental removal that won't irritate your eyes.

With the help of Supergreat Staff and community members, we're listing below the best makeup removers to get off every ounce of makeup. No residue here.

The Beauty Spy Seoul Cleansing Balm

The first thing you’ll notice about this balm is its amazing citrus scent that user @Debbs loves. If your skin irritates easily or you’re allergic to fragrance maybe skip this one, but it is formulated without alcohol, parabens, or silicones so it won’t clog your pores or dry you out.

OTZI Crystal Nova Gentle Makeup Removing Cleanser

User @pressedflowersss is all for this swirly and pearlescent magic from Korean brand Otzi and it's easy to see why. Inspired by the northern lights, they mention in their review that, “It does not strip the skin and feels very moisturized afterwards”. Also if you decide to skip double cleansing that is totally okay the lightweight formula won't leave behind any greasy residue.

Juno Skin Cleansing Balm

If you’re laying on your makeup thick for a night out or maybe an extravagant Halloween look, you need a cleansing balm that penetrates. Youtube Beauty Extraordinaire, NikkieTutorials praised this balm's magic of going from balm to oil that is ideal for colorful makeup looks that are made to last. There are only 10 ingredients in this balm—mostly technical ingredients that preserve the formula and keep skin safe—and at $15 it’s too good to pass up on.

Boscia Makeup-BreakUp Cool Cleansing Oil

When I asked in the Supergreat Slack group chat for everyone’s favorite makeup removers this cleansing oil was recommended numerous times. The combination of Green Tea, Avocado,Rosehip, and Olive Fruit Oil are a match made in Vitamin E heaven that puts moisture back into your skin while cleansing away dirt and makeup. Oh and because oils attract oils, it makes for a nice oil cleanser to work out sebum in pores.

Garnier Skinactive Micellar Cleansing Water

If for some reason you’ve never used the Garnier Micellar water I’m going to need you to immediately go to your local Ulta and pick one up. This is an iconic remover to gently remove makeup (yes even waterproof mascara) in one swipe. For effective removal, especially around the eye area, reach for a reusable cotton round instead of disposable ones.

Clinique Take The Day Off Makeup Remover

Another OG—Clinique’s Take The Day Off line is a cult classic in the beauty world amongst makeup artists, beauty gurus, and influencers alike. Pro Tip: Use the light-weight oil cleanser as a first step in your removal process, and then using the liquid remover and a cotton round lightly remove your eye makeup to make sure every lash is mascara free.

Elemis Cleansing Balm

I have very oily skin, always have and probably always will. So the thought of using a balm or oil on my face was an instant no. However, this balm contains coconut, grape seed, and jojoba oil that nourish my skin without disrupting my pores or acne. While it is a little on the pricey side, it’s worth every penny.

Bubble Wipe Out Makeup Remover

Supergreat is no stranger to Bubble, we even had a whole week dedicated to them, and the Wipe Out Makeup Remover is a favorite in the community. While user @Zameena did add that she needed to wash her face twice with the remover, she highlighted the sulfate free formula and the fact that it removed all her self-described “clown makeup.”

Paula’s Choice Omega+ Complex Cleansing Balm

User @ourskincarediaries offers the perfect advice for using this balm. Simply apply a dollop amount and gently massage the balm into your skin. They note how the product helps hydrate skin and break up impurities—perfect for everyday makeup removal. Finally add water to help it emulsify and rinse. You’ll notice how smooth your skin feels instantly, and it’s fragrance free!

Freck On Repeat

Last, but not least—Supergreat's own editor Savannah is a big fan of this cleanser for it’s equally non-abrasive makeup removing powers and skin nourishment. “What I like the most about this product, but also Freck skincare products in general, is that they're super gentle," she says. "So when I have to do my makeup for work several days in a row (and we're talking crazy stuff with lots of layers, glitter, and color) it doesn't trigger my dermatitis or eczema—and most cleansers do. I also like a clear bottle for some reason...I like knowing how much is left and psychologically it makes it feel like nothing is being hidden from me. It's a super thick jelly-like cleanser and it's nice to use too.”

Okay, now everyone say it with me: I will NOT go to bed without taking my makeup off. We’ve already established so many iconic options ranging from luxe level to drug-store so there is no excuse for waking up with mascara smudges on your pillow. Oh and that reminds me, wash your pillowcases too!

Did we forget your favorite?

Let us know if we didn't include your go-to-makeup remover and show us how you take it all off! *You know what to do, sound off below on your favorite makeup removal product.

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