How to Remove Makeup

Here’s another Reader Request!

“Hi Wycee! I use a make up remover from Victoria’s Secret and it works just fine. Just wanted to know if you have a favorite make remover or any recommendation? BTW, great job with the site. Very informative and helpful.”

I use Olay Daily Facials hydrating cleansing cloths, because they’re cheap (I buy them in bulk at Costco) and I think they work well for my needs. Here’s how they look like at Costco (I was trying to be slick and took the picture on my cell phone yesterday haha):

For $17.79, you get 5 packs of 30 cloths (that’s 150 cloths total) in one box. That makes each cloth only 11 cents (compared to MAC Wipes that come out to 40 cents each), and the box lasts me 5 months!

The steps below show how I remove my makeup every night. There’s really no right or wrong way of doing this, as long as you’re using safe products and are gentle on your face (especially around your eye area). This is a routine that works well for me.


Gather your makeup remover supplies. I’m just using an Olay Daily Facials cloth, which is initially dry. If you don’t use these cloths, you can do similar steps with your makeup remover and cotton balls, rounds, or squares.

Note: I also like using Lancome Bi-Facil Eye Makeup Remover with cotton balls, because I usually get a travel-size bottle during free gift with purchase promotions at Macy’s and Nordstrom. Maybelline 100% Eye Makeup Remover is another one of my favorites that I keep in my makeup kit.


Wet the cloth with lukewarm water (or soak some of your makeup remover in a cotton ball/round/square).


Start with gently pressing the cloth (or cotton) around your eye lid area with your eyes closed. This will begin dissolving your eyeshadow. Then softly wipe around your eye area and lightly on your lashes if you’re wearing mascara.

The cloth has two sides — a smooth one and a textured one. Use the smooth side around your eyes and any other delicate or sensitive areas of your face.


Now use the textured side to lightly exfoliate and clean up foundation and blush on the rest of your face, neck, and behind your ears.

If you’re using makeup remover with some type of cotton, you can apply more pressure on these areas than you did around your eye area.


Rinse your face with water, and finish with a splash of cold water. Pat your face dry with a towel, and apply any nighttime moisturizer if desired.


If you still have leftover eye liner or mascara (especially waterproof ones) on or around your eye area, get a Q-tip and place a small amount of your everyday face moisturizer (or your eye makeup remover) on your finger. Roll one end of your Q-tip on the moisturizer.


Gently rub the end of the Q-tip to remove the remaining makeup.

Be careful not to get any moisturizer in your eye — if you don’t completely soak your Q-tip with moisturizer, then it will be less likely that you will get any in your eye.

That’s it! :)

I also recommend exfoliating your face 1 to 3 times a week (depending on your skin type) with a separate facial scrub product on a clean face. I usually exfoliate with Clean & Clear Morning Burst Scrub every 2 days in the morning while in the shower, since my face is free of the makeup I washed away the night before. Exfoliating helps remove dead skin cells from the surface of your skin and helps your skincare products work more effectively.


LollyJune 10th, 2010 at 3:22 am

Love that yellow-gold nail varnish you’re wearing in the pics! :-)

BrendaJune 13th, 2010 at 9:08 pm

Once in awhile maybe, but I dont think daily use of abrasive paper tugging and pulling on your face is good. washcloths are bad, toilet paper with cream makeup remover is a horrible idea. cotton balls arent even good, but the squares or circles are ok. (100% cotton)

BrendaJune 13th, 2010 at 9:12 pm

Im soory, my comment was geared more towards aging skincare. those wipes are probally ok for teens with oily skin. research japenese skincare, they spend Way more money on research and products than we Americans do.

WyceeJune 17th, 2010 at 2:19 am

Thanks Lolly! I’m using Sally Hansen Hi-Definition Nail Color in “05 Lite”. :)

Brenda, there are definitely a lot of ways to remove makeup. I just wrote about how I remove my makeup, since that’s what I was asked (I also mentioned my other favorite makeup remover products in my note in Step 1). When I use these cloths, I do not rub hard on my skin or pull on my face — I press gently to dissolve the makeup and lightly wipe to exfoliate. I’ve been using these wipes for over a year now, and I haven’t experienced anything negative on my skin. They are also inexpensive, which is another plus. But as I said in the post, there are definitely many products and ways to remove makeup — this is just what I happen to use.

ShelleyDecember 9th, 2010 at 5:11 pm

Great website! Check out DHC Skincare. They have these really awesome olive oil Q-tips (and they are pretty cheap too). They are great for removing the stubborn eyeliner and for removing mistakes. LOVE them. And, the clarisonic is amazing, it actually makes me want to wash my face at night – but it is NOT cheap.

WyceeDecember 9th, 2010 at 6:09 pm

Thanks Shelley! I haven’t tried DHC Skincare or Clarisonic before, but those olive oil Q-tips sound fantastic! :)

Makeup Tips & Products I LoveDecember 28th, 2011 at 6:45 pm

[…] says on her post, “If you still have leftover eye liner or mascara (especially waterproof ones) on or around […]

CourtneyJanuary 19th, 2012 at 6:59 am


I have used DHC skincare and love it. Their pricing is about medium (more than drugstore, less than department store), but their products are GREAT. I have used their olive oil q-tips as well and they do work rather well for removing eye makeup AND as cuticle wipes too!

Their primer, however, called Velvet Skincoat is AMAZING. BUT- you only get about 1/2 oz for about $22, so it’s a little pricy- still; in the summertime, it keeps the shine down from any oils ALL day!

WyceeJanuary 20th, 2012 at 2:18 am

Hi Courtney,

I haven’t tried anything from DHC — I’ll have to check out their website! Thanks for the info! :)

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