If you lurk around beauty forums and discussion channels, chances are you have come across this hack: removing makeup with baby wipes.

It may sound a little peculiar yet so tempting for you to try. So the question is, can baby wipes take off makeup completely? Or is it just another beauty myth? 

If this is something you’ve been wondering about, read on for the lowdown.

Can baby wipes take off makeup? How did this discussion even come from?


This appears to have appeared on Reddit threads many years ago, created by Redditors who swear by baby wipes as a makeup remover.

In particular, beauty enthusiasts swore by the Pampers Sensitive baby wipes, saying that they work well in makeup removal.

However, the camps have been quite divided on whether you can really use baby wipes to take off makeup.

Many who have tried it said that baby wipes are made for sensitive skin and are typically fragrance-free and alcohol-free, making it a great option for those who have sensitive or dry skin.

Those on this camp says that they have made the switch from makeup wipes to baby wipes completely and have been standing by this choice.

A Glamour writer has tried it and declared that this is the best secret tip ever.

On the other camp sits those who say that baby wipes aren’t made for makeup removal and can dry out your skin if you use it too often.

In one case, a Redditor even says that her dermatologist attributes her skin irritation to the use of baby wipes (she has been using them for makeup removal for a few years).

So, should you use baby wipes to take off makeup?

Sure, baby wipes sound like a convenient option (especially if you’re already a mum and have packets of them lying around at home) and since they’re made for babies, they must be gentle, right?

Unfortunately, we may have to burst your bubble here.

The reason? Baby wipes and makeup wipes are made differently. 

Baby wipes

Baby wipes are formulated for sensitive baby skin, so you can be sure that most of them are gentle enough to use on the face. However, you have to keep in mind that baby and adult skin are different in structure, so they are not strong enough to take off makeup completely. 

Baby wipes are are made for baby’s poop, pee, and snot. So while baby wipes may serve as an easy clean up tool for removing some grime and grit off your face, it can’t remove most makeup, such as foundation, eyeliner, and waterproof mascara, which typically contain waxes and oils. 

So, in essence, baby wipes can take off makeup, but not completely. 

Facial wipes

On the other hand, facial wipes are made to efficiently break down the silicone, wax, and oil found in makeup products. They can handle waterproof mascara and eyeliner, dissolve the heaviest foundation and concealer, and even eye makeup. 

Makeup wipes also have a bad rep in the beauty space


While we may be digressing from the question of “can baby wipes take off makeup?”, it is just as important to note that makeup wipes aren’t your best friend for makeup removal in the long run.

The action of rubbing wipes on your skin is harsh, and can be considered a form of mechanical exfoliation. Of course, we all need some exfoliating in our routine, but usually the recommendation is to do it no more than two times a week. Using a makeup wipe every day may be too harsh on your delicate skin, destroying your skin barrier, causing sensitivity in the long run.

At the same time, the tugging action can also drag on your skin, causing it to slack after a while. This is when you’ll start seeing sagginess, fine lines, and even wrinkles setting in.

Finally, most people who use a makeup wipe hardly follow up with a cleanser. While makeup wipes may contain ingredients that can help break down makeup, they don’t necessarily help to cleanse your skin.  

You need to double-cleanse even if you’re already using a cleansing oil or makeup removal gel, you can probably imagine why it’s such a bad habit to go straight to bed after taking off your makeup with a wipe.

We’re definitely not demonising makeup wipes; they’re great for the occasional times when we really want to hit the sack immediately or prefer to pack lighter. They’re also great for a quick refreshing.

And if you use it once in a while, it’s not going to present a significant damage to your skin. It’s only worrying if you use it regularly for an extended period of time.

How to use baby wipes to take off makeup

remove makeup 3

Let’s say you’ve read this article but still wants to try to use baby wipes to take off makeup, here are some great tips to help you out:

1. Wipe outwards

When using baby wipes to take off your makeup, start in the middle of your face and work your way outwards. This way, you ensure that all the dirt and makeup are getting wiped away from your face. Don’t forget to clean your jawline and hairline!

2. Follow up with an oil cleanser

As mentioned, baby wipes are not formulated to remove heavy makeup; thus, it’s not a replacement for your micellar water or oil cleanser. Always follow up with a gentle cleanser after using baby wipes to help remove the oil and wax buildup from your face. 

3. Don’t mind the fragrance

Most of the time, using baby wipes on your skin will leave a baby lotion-like fragrance behind, but that’s okay!

Since baby wipes are made with light, gentle formulas, the fragrance won’t hurt your skin. If you can, just buy the unscented variety. 

4. Don’t wipe around the eyes

Eye makeup products tend to have more potent formulation, so don’t try to wipe your eye makeup off with a baby wipe because it wouldn’t budge! What will happen is that the eye makeup products will just move around your face, resulting in a longer makeup wipe-off. 

Only use micellar water or oil cleanser to remove eye makeup. 

Can baby wipes burn your face?

Unless you are allergic to the compounds found in baby wipes, they won’t cause chemical burns. If you have sensitive skin, they can cause rashes when used repeatedly and abrasion rash if you’re too harsh in applying it on your skin. 

Alternatives to baby wipes for taking off makeup

baby wipes makeup

So you’re looking for a makeup remover that can effectively get rid of makeup without being too harsh on your skin. Here are some great alternatives.

1. Micellar water

Micellar water is one of the best breakthroughs in the beauty industry. It looks like water and has the same consistency, but has a superpower: it is great at breaking down and removing makeup. 

The technology works because micellar water contains magnet-like molecules called micelles to stick onto grime, makeup, oil, and dirt and lift them straight from your skin. 

What makes this makeup remover so popular is that you don’t need to cleanse again after using it and your skin feels fresh and hydrated after cleansing.

2. Virgin coconut oil

Coconut oil is a natural and organic makeup remover that melts even the most waterproof makeup, leaving your face soft and clean.

Just warm a little bit of product on your hands, massage it gently on your face, and wipe away with a damp, hot cloth. 

3. Cleansing balms

Cleansing balms are quickly gaining traction in the beauty industry, and with good reason. Cleansing balms effectively remove makeup and dirt from the skin without leaving the skin tight and dry. 

After massaging onto your skin, remove the product using a damp muslin cloth for best results! 

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