PSA: Makeup Wipes Don’t Actually Cleanse Your Skin

by | 22 November 2019

I think most of us have been there – falling into bed after a huge day (or night!) and realising we still have our makeup on. Makeup wipes seem too good to be true at this point – they’ll remove your makeup and cleanse your skin, all without leaving the comfort of your bed. But not all that sparkles is gold, so we turned to skin expert and Derma Aesthetics’ Education Manager, Steph Christou, to get the lowdown on makeup wipes to see if they’re all they’re cracked up to be because this girl knows skin!


Do makeup wipes clean my skin properly?

“Unfortunately, makeup wipes don’t actually remove your makeup or clean your skin properly. They mostly just move or smear makeup and dirt around your face!”


Why is that?

“They don’t contain the right ingredients to effectively cleanse your skin. They do not have the ability to break down makeup, excessive oil or potential irritants that are sitting on the skin’s surface after a long day. Our skin, just like the gut, has a microbiome that resides in and around it and it’s super important that we don’t disrupt it with non-physiological ingredients/stripping agents such as those that are found in makeup wipes. It’s vital to maintain the balance and preserve the microbiome & acid mantle whilst removing excess oils and dirt. Makeup wipes can also be quite harsh, not only due to the ingredients listed but the excessive pressure one uses to remove their makeup. Excessive touching, pushing and pulling on the skin can easily lead to inflammation, which is undeniably a huge contributor to most skin conditions we come across.”


You mentioned that makeup wipes don’t contain the right to effectively cleanse skin. What sort of ingredients are actually in makeup wipes?

“Makeup wipes can cause irritation and inflammation due to the preservatives that are put in to prevent micro-organisms from contaminating the wipes – some include formaldehyde-releasing chemicals. Harsh surfactants included in makeup wipes’ compositions can lead to barrier damage, irritation and dryness. Emulsifiers are also a common ingredient – these bind to your skin’s natural oils and contribute to fast trans-epidermal water loss which will in-turn impair natural enzyme activity, preventing desquamation (your skin’s natural exfoliation process). Most wipes also contain fragrance which is known as the number one skin sensitiser; these will also lead to inflammation and potentially contribute to pigmentation, premature ageing & cells not communicating effectively. Of course, we all know that leaving makeup, oil and dirt behind will also lead to a congested skin fast!”


What’s an alternative that’s just as easy and actually good for our skin?

“As they say, you can never beat the original! We suggest using our physiological dermaviduals cleansers with skin-loving and caring substances. They not only have your skin type in mind but will help with skin conditions, protecting the natural balance of the skin, microbiome and acid mantle. If you love the feel of a convenient cloth or wipe, why not try our Essential Cleansing Cloths which are made from microfibre that attracts and removes makeup and unwanted dirt, simply and effectively without including any of the nasties listed above?! I also love this option as it’s another way to lessen our impact on the environment – did you know that most makeup wipes take 100 years to break down?”


To purchase a skin and environment loving Essential Cleansing Cloth, head into your favourite dermaviduals clinic today!

Do you have more questions about cleansing, makeup wipes or your skin? Ask them in the comments below!