6 Sustainable Ways to Take Off Your Makeup That’s Not With a Wipe

Published by Emily on

Wipes are wasteful — and expensive. One pack of makeup wipes are typically around $7-$15 and are one of many ways we as humans contribute to the massive amounts of trash we dispose of every day. 

As we move away from single-use products and toward a reusable and sustainable direction, it’s important to look at the little parts of your life that still create excess waste — such as what products you use to remove your makeup everyday.

While makeup wipes are super handy (I’ll admit I used to use them quite a bit in high school and early college), all they do is remove dirt and makeup. In 2021, single-purpose products are not handy. We’re moving toward multi-purpose (and sustainable) products that allow us to multitask and give us back the number one thing we all look for: time. 

Listed below are methods that are sustainable and healthy — whether it’s working to improve your skin or decrease fine lines, these makeup removal methods are mutually beneficial to you, and the environment. 

Jojoba Oil

Photo from Amazon.

I’m placing this in the number one spot because it’s what I use most often. Jojoba oil, created from the extraction of the seeds of a jojoba plant, is extremely beneficial for the skin. It can reduce inflammation and stimulate wound healing, in addition to a plethora of other skin benefits. Linked above is the exact brand I use. Another easy Amazon purchase — but this can also be found at your local grocery store or convenience store. 

How to use: Apply 3-4 drops onto your hands and apply to your face, adding more when needed. Gently move your fingers in circles and watch as your makeup dissolves. With a clean, wet cloth, wipe off the makeup from your face. You may have to rub some areas, so add more oil when needed and make sure to rub gently. Your makeup will melt right off. 

Micellar Water

Photo from Amazon.

Micellar water is arguably one of the most popular, easy and non-wasteful ways to take off makeup in the beauty community. The one linked above is a bigger bottle, which will likely last you over a year. Simple, the brand above is natural, so you know it’s trusty. 

How to use: While many use a cotton ball or wipe, I recommend also using a clean, breathable face cloth to take off makeup using micellar water. Dampen the cloth with the water and gently wipe the makeup off your face. 

Olive Oil

Photo from Amazon.

Head down to your kitchen and grab some olive oil. It works in the exact same way as the jojoba oil (mentioned above) to remove makeup and is also filled with vitamin A, D, E, and K. It’s also loaded with antioxidants, so it’s no wonder that people use it for cooking, and for their skin! If you don’t currently have any in your pantry’s stock, this one is a trusty Moroccan olive oil brand, which is high in polyphenols. 

How to use: exactly the same application method as the jojoba oil. 

The Makeup Eraser

Photo from Amazon.

I was given the Makeup Eraser as a gift for my birthday about a year ago. It’s made of a unique, furry fabric that takes off makeup seamlessly — with only water! Personally, I prefer to take off my makeup with jojoba oil, but when I’m traveling, the eraser is always a good product to carry along. According to their site, this sustainable product is designed to last “3-5 years or 1,000 machine washes.” Linked above is a pink one, and other color options include black, purple and blue.

How to use: Simply wet the fabric and wipe it over your face. If it’s not getting out some of the stronger makeup (such as waterproof makeup), opt for using the fabric with a cleanser to get everything fully off. 

Coconut Oil

Photo from Amazon.

Another oil! See the trend here? Oils are amazing for your skin. Specifically, coconut oil is smooths, deeply hydrates and is even antimicrobial, meaning it destroys microorganisms. Personally, coconut oil is pretty thick for my skin type, so I don’t use it as often — but definitely try it and see if it works for you and your skin. Everyone is different!

How to use: same as jojoba and olive oil. However, above room temp coconut oil does change to a solid state, so make sure you rub it together to warm it up before applying it to your skin.

Facial Cleansers

Photo from Amazon.

You may already have your own trusty cleanser, but if you don’t, I’ve used the Facial Micellar Cleanser from Alba Botanica and it rocks. Specifically, this product is micellar water + cleanser — and you all know how much I love a good 2-in-1. If you’re in search of the foamy-cleanser-feel, this product creates a fluffy foam to swirl on your skin. 

How to use: pump some cleanser into your hand and gently rub it into your skin. Depending on the cleanser’s ingredients, the makeup should rub/wash off. Wash off the foam and begin your nightly skincare routine!

Remember: our largest organ is our skin! So, whatever you put on will be absorbed into your body. Chemicals? Thank you, next. 

If you try out one of these methods, tell me how you liked it! DM me @theexploringemily on Instagram to tell me how it went. Healthy skin, happy life!


Sunset chasing, travel dreaming, coffee sipping, moment seeker, literature lover & wanderlust enthusiast.

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