Makeup removal is an integral part of a skincare routine, as the consequences of leaving it on longer than necessary – such as when it is left on and slept in overnight – include the potential for developing blemishes, marks, and even wrinkles. When removing makeup, especially plant-based cosmetics, keeping the natural theme consistent by choosing pure, mild, whole, and easily obtainable cleansing ingredients may help improve skin health and quality with their innate hydrating properties. Those who suffer from skin conditions, such as acne, may find that prioritizing natural cleansers over synthetic ones prevents the symptoms from worsening while enhancing the complexion’s suppleness and radiance.
Another benefit of cleansing the skin with natural moisturizers is that they are simpler, faster, and more affordable to make at home than the synthetic varieties, which are often laden with ingredients that can cause a build-up of pollutants on the skin. Natural makeup removers require no more than common and kitchen items and, even with gentle application, can often produce safer and healthier results than many synthetic removers that sometimes work best with excessive rubbing and wiping, an exertion that can cause dryness, fine lines, and irritation.
HOW CAN I REMOVE MAKEUP AT HOME NATURALLY?
1. THE OIL CLEANSING METHOD
As its name suggests, this method involves applying oil to the face in order to cleanse it, and this humble method is suitable for all skin types. While it sounds counterintuitive that applying oil can help eliminate excess oil on the skin – especially because of the longstanding advice to avoid all oil-infused cosmetics and cleansers for clear skin as well as the myth that cleansers need to produce a foamy lather in order to be effective – some oils are reputed to help balance the amount of natural oil on the skin by helping to maintain the appropriate amount of hydration needed to prevent both dryness and oiliness without stripping natural lipids. The use of oils in skincare can also help maintain the skin’s protective bacteria, whereas traditional cleansers with harsh detergents can often wash away both the lipids and the protective bacteria. Traditional makeup cleansers are commonly composed of oils, due to the ‘like dissolves like’ principle, which highlights the ability of the oil to eliminate oil (and other like substances to dissolve each other) due to the naturally compatible solubility. These cleansers work to remove makeup that is both water- and oil-based as well as waterproof.
WHICH OILS ARE BEST FOR THE OIL CLEANSING METHOD?
There are various Carrier Oils that are known to be ideal for the Oil Cleansing Method and the following chart helps depict the ideal ones for each skin type. This method works best when oils are suited to the skin type of the individual user and applied in the appropriate amounts.
|SKIN TYPE & NEEDS||RECOMMENDED CARRIER OIL||SUGGESTED RATIOS|
Coffee – Green
|1 part Astringent oil
2 parts Conditioning oils
|1 part Astringent oil
2 parts Conditioning oils
|1 part Astringent oil
4 parts Conditioning oils
SHOULD YOU OIL CLEANSE EVERY DAY?
Oil cleansing can be done each night to ensure that all the build-up of impurities and pollutants accumulated on the skin throughout the day will be removed. If the oils being used seem to deliver extremely profound cleaning benefits, oil cleansing can be done every couple of days or weekly. Nightly cleansing also keeps the skin moisturized before bed, as the skin’s moisture content is said to decrease during sleep. It can take one or several weeks for the skin to adjust to oil cleansing, and, as it works to “purge” the pores of impurities, some individuals might experience breakouts; however, this is often temporary. If this continues, a change in oils might be all that is needed. If the breakouts persist beyond this, oil cleansing should not be continued.
DOES OIL CLEANSING CLOG PORES?
For some, the oil cleansing method can potentially lead to clogged pores, breakouts, irritation, or an allergic reaction. For this reason, patch tests are recommended; before full application of oil to the skin, test it on a small area of insensitive skin and, if there are no negative reactions in 24 hours, the oil is likely safe to use.
HOW DO YOU DO OIL CLEANSING?
Apply the chosen Carrier Oil/blend of Carrier Oils directly to a made-up, dry face. It is not necessary to wet or wash the skin prior to applying the oil. With the fingertips, delicately massage the oil(s) into any areas of the face that have makeup. Massage the face for about 1 minute until the makeup dissolves. Soak a soft, clean face towel in lukewarm water. Wring out excess water and lightly drape the towel over the face for 1 minute or until the towel is no longer warm. Using the same towel, wipe off the oil. A thin trace of oil can remain on the skin, as this will continue to hydrate and nourish the skin.
WHICH MOISTURIZER SHOULD BE USED AFTER OIL CLEANSING?
Oil cleaning is often sufficient for moisturizing the skin, but if an additional moisturizer is required afterward, any preferred cream, serum, or even lightweight butter can be used.
2. WITCH HAZEL DISTILLATE
With anti-bacterial properties, Witch Hazel Distillate is usually added to formulations for its natural preservative properties, but this gentle, nourishing, popular plant extract obtained from the Witch Hazel shrub can also effectively remove makeup and excess oil while moisturizing dry, irritated skin. The recommended variety is alcohol-free, which will prevent dryness and burning, especially if used around the eye area.
HOW DO YOU USE WITCH HAZEL ON YOUR FACE?
To use Witch Hazel as a cleanser, combine it with equal parts water, then soak a cotton ball or cotton pad with this solution and rub it into the face using gentle circular motions to remove makeup.
For a Witch Hazel cleanser that is specifically intended for use around the eyes, add extra moisture by combining Witch Hazel with equal parts of a preferred Carrier Oil and water. Simply mix all the ingredients thoroughly and apply with a cotton swab/ball/pad.
3. ALOE VERA JUICE
Extracted from the leaves of the Aloe Vera plant, Aloe Vera Juice is a liquid that cleanses, hydrates, exfoliates, nourishes, and revitalizes the skin. It moisturizes without leaving a greasy residue and helps to promote a smoother appearance for the complexion, which helps to diminish the look of wrinkles and blemishes.
For a natural makeup remover blend that is gentle enough to apply to the sensitive eye area, begin by pouring ½ cup of Aloe Vera Juice, 1 cup filtered water, and ¼ or ½ cup Organic Extra Virgin Olive Carrier Oil into a blender and thoroughly blending all the ingredients together. Strain the resultant blend with a sieve, then transfer the filtered blend to a clean bottle that will make it easy to dispense the cleanser onto a cotton pad. As the mixture settles inside the bottle, it is normal for the oil to float to the top. To use this cleanser, shake it well to incorporate the floating oil, then pour a small amount onto a clean cotton pad and swipe it across the entire face. Areas of skin with more tenacious makeup, such as waterproof mascara, may require extra swipes of the saturated pad. Alternatively, the blend may be massaged into the skin with the fingers then rinsed off with cool water.
4. SHEA BUTTER
This “skin superfood” nourishes the skin to promote its purity, balance, hydration, radiance, and smoothness without clogging pores. This outstanding conditioner is reputed to support skin elasticity and suppleness and to help reveal new skin. To use Shea Butter as a makeup remover, simply rub a quarter-size amount of Shea Butter between the palms or fingertips to melt it until it reaches an oily consistency, then gently massage it into the skin using circular motions until the makeup begins to dissolve. Soak a soft, clean face towel in lukewarm water. Wring out excess water and lightly drape the towel over the face for 1 minute or until the towel is no longer warm. Using the same towel, wipe off the oil.
HOW DO YOU MAKE MAKEUP REMOVER WIPES?
To make all-natural, gentle, travel-friendly makeup cleansing towelettes with the skin-loving benefits of the various moisturizers listed above, begin by adding the following ingredients to a clean air-tight glass container/jar:
- 2 Tbsp. Aloe Vera Juice
- 6 tsp. Alcohol-Free Witch Hazel Distillate
- 2 tsp. Liquid Soap 105N
- 2 tsp. a preferred Carrier Oil
- 1 tsp. Liquid Vitamin E (USP Cosmetic Grade) to preserve the blend
- 10 drops a preferred Essential Oil that is reputed to have skin-comforting properties
Once all the ingredients have been thoroughly combined, place the stack of cotton pads inside the container/jar. Cap and shake the jar to ensure that the pads are evenly covered with the blend. With the addition of an exfoliant, this mixture can also function as an effective facial scrub.
POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS
Those listed in this article are for external use only. It is imperative to consult a medical practitioner before using them for therapeutic purposes. Pregnant and nursing women are especially advised not to use any of the aforementioned skincare products without the medical advice of a physician/dermatologist, as they may have effects on certain hormone secretions and it is unclear whether these effects are transferable to babies at these stages of development. These products should always be stored in areas that are inaccessible to children.
Prior to using any product, a skin test is recommended. This can be done by applying a dime-size amount of each chosen product to a small area of skin that is not sensitive. Individuals that are taking prescription drugs, undergoing major surgery, or who are at a greater risk of experiencing strokes, heart attacks, or atherosclerosis are also advised to seek medical consultation prior to use. In the event of an allergic reaction, discontinue use of the products and see a doctor, pharmacist, or allergist immediately for a health assessment and appropriate remedial action.