Rouge Reviews: Makeup Removers

Rouge Reviews: Makeup Removers

Bienvenue, mes chéries! It’s already been a week since the relaunch of Bouge & Rouge, and I could not be more grateful for all the support and kind comments I’ve been receiving. I’ve spent the week apartment hunting, getting back into my workout routine, spending time with friends, and vlogging. One of the biggest things I noticed this week was how bumpy my skin texture became after tiring days and not removing my makeup until much later in the night. I started experimenting with the different makeup removers I had laying around my bathroom and realized that the makeup remover was actually affecting my skin more than anything else. If my remover didn’t do the job well enough, my pores felt clogged the next day.

This past week, I decided to put then to the test. Each day, I let the makeup sit on my face for around the same time. I would use a different makeup remover every night. Now pardon my messy post-workout photo above: The last day, yesterday, I decided to test all four on different areas of my face after a long day of running errands, working out, and cleaning the house. I took the photo above the second I got back from the gym and untied my bun with the intentions of showing you how each product takes off makeup along with sweat and dirt and oil buildup from an entire day. It turns out that it was hard to see which area of my face was the cleanest in the photos, so instead I swatched an eyeshadow four times on my left hand and used four different removers for comparison before the sun set. Sorry about that, but I hope this suffices, mes amours.

The removers I’ve featured include Garnier Micellar Water, Neutrogena Oil-Free Makeup Remover, Banila Co. balm to oil remover, and makeup wipe by Yes To.

L to R: Garnier Micellar Water, Neutrogena Oil Free Remover, Banila Co balm, Yes To wipe

Micellar Cleansing Water

Let’s start with Garnier Micellar Water. Micellar water came into fashion about a year ago when it was advertised as water with nourishing micelles that are supposed to attract the dirt and oil in your pores without depleting your skin of moisture. Garnier and Simple have both sold popular micellar cleansing waters that are around the same price for a large bottle, ~$9.

As much as I love the idea of micellar cleansing water and believe that it works, it doesn’t work enough for me. This type of makeup remover is for people wear little to no makeup. I noticed it does a great job of cleaning my face after a day at the beach or running around in the park with my dog, but does not remove all traces of makeup if I was to use more than a CC cream and light layer of mascara. I have to really rub or press hard to get all the mascara and eyeliner off. That screams WRINKLES WRINKLES WRINKLES to me.

In the photo above with the swatches, you can see how the micellar water only removed some of the eyeshadow with one wipe and had the bigger streak of makeup leftover compared to the other removers. Overall, I would say you should only rely on this if you wear minimal to no makeup.

Oil-Free Makeup Remover

Neutrogena has been selling this oil-free makeup remover for who knows how long for about $7 or $8. It’s one of the original makeup removers that everyone loved and used. Over time, I started to dislike it as more options came along because of its residue. But this semester, I decided to revisit it seeing that I was wearing more makeup on a daily basis.

As you can see in the swatch photo, the makeup remover did a great job of removing most, if not almost all, of the makeup with one swipe. On my face, it has done a great job removing waterpoof mascara and heavy eye makeup, but still leaves behind this watery+oily residue despite its claims on the bottle. So, it creates a hot mess when you use it all over your face. Overall, I would say you should use this mainly for eye makeup, as it removes that the best.

Balm to Oil

Banila Co’s Clean It Zero balm is probably THE makeup remover of all time in Asia right now. It has received multiple beauty awards for how well it melts makeup off your face. It comes in the form of a balm which you scoop out using a little spoon they give you. Then, you rub it gently all over your face and watch it literally melt your makeup off. It does a phenomenal job with heavy eye makeup as well. Once you’re satisfied, you wash it off with warm water and pat dry. This cleanser does not leave behind a gross oily and sloppy residue but rather just feels like a balm on your face. After washing it off, it also doesn’t leave your skin feeling parched. This is the only makeup remover that truly erased all traces of makeup off my face.

Overall, this is my all-time favorite type of makeup remover. It retailed for around $22 USD in Seoul and $26 USD in Taiwan. You can order it online, but if you rather find something similar in stores, I would check Urban Decay’s Meltdown Makeup Remover or anything that has a similar balm/gel/cream texture.

Makeup Wipes

There are tons of makeup wipes out there: Neutrogena, Burt’s Bees, Simple, Garnier, Clean & Clear, Yes To, and so on. I normally use Simple, but they were out of it everywhere I went this week so I settled for trying a Yes To Tomatoes charcoal wipe. While this wipe is textured differently than regular makeup wipes, it still provided the same service so I included it in the post.

Wipes are the easiest to use, but expensive and often cause you to accidentally drag your skin too hard. From my experience, the best wipes are made by Simple. But, no wipe fully removed all traces of makeup from my experiences. In fact, they removed only a little more than micellar cleansing water did. As you can see in the swatches above, the wipes (rightmost swatch) removed only the top layer. You have to really go over that spot a few times for the wipe to fully remove makeup traces. The one pro about wipes is that they rarely suck the moisture out of your skin. Overall, I would only use wipes when traveling or when wearing a medium amount of makeup.

I hope this post helped you choose the type of makeup remover that best suits you! The overall conclusion I learned is that balms are the best for my skin (as it doesn’t deplete my skin of natural moisture), liquid makeup remover for those who use heavier amounts of makeup (especially around the eyes), and micellar water for those who wear minimal makeup. Wipes are kind of a free-for-all as they do the job pretty well all-around but require you to rub a little more.

What’s your favorite makeup remover? Let me know in the comments below! I’d love to try them out.

I’ll see you all again on Sunday. Bisou, bisou…







Erica Huang
Erica Huang

Based in New York City, Erica Huang is the creator and voice behind Bouge & Rouge. This blog is a playground of her thoughts where she invites you to join her on her journey through her 20s. Erica shares her lifestyle, fashion and beauty tips, adventures, and personal thoughts with the goal of inspiring others to always persevere and be unapologetically yourself.

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1 Comment

  1. October 5, 2017 / 5:47 AM

    Good info!I agree to your point of view on Overall, I would only use wipes when traveling or when wearing a medium amount of makeup is definitely true.Thanks for your suggestions.

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