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These gentle wipes effectively remove every trace of makeup, sunscreen, and grime without stripping skin.
Let’s be honest: Taking your makeup off at the end of the day can sometimes feel like a major hurdle. When you can't be bothered to double cleanse, there’s something undeniably easy about using makeup remover wipes.
While they might not be the most sustainable option out there, makeup remover wipes are certainly the most convenient. Today’s options are more effective and gentle than ever before, too, so you can sub them in for your facial cleanser without feeling any remorse. Ahead, find 12 foolproof makeup removing wipes that not only effectively cleanse away all traces of dirt, oil, and makeup, but do so without the risk of irritation.
Best Overall: Neutrogena Makeup Remover Ultra-Soft Cleansing Towelettes
What We Love: These wipes effectively cut through SPF and makeup with a fragrance-free formula.
What We Don’t Love: This product was recently reformulated and now slightly tugs at skin.
Neutrogena’s beloved Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes have been a skincare staple for years. You’ll find these trusty wipes everywhere, from your favorite makeup artist’s kit to your teenage cousin’s bedside table. The brand offers several iterations of these makeup wipes, but we’re particularly fond of the fragrance-free version thanks to its non-irritating formula and simple ingredient list.
The micellar-infused wipes dissolves dirt, bacteria, makeup, sunscreen, and sweat with just a few swipes, making them extremely effective for low-effort makeup removal. And while single-use makeup wipes aren’t the most sustainable option, these are biodegradable and compostable.
Though these wipes have been around for years, Neutrogena recently reformulated them and we find that they’re not quite as saturated as they used to be. This has led to a bit of skin tugging, though not enough to cause any irritation.
Price at time of publish: $9
Wipes per pack: 25 | Key Ingredients: Water, capric glycerides | Biodegradable: Yes
Best Budget: CeraVe Hydrating Makeup Removing Plant-Based Wipes
What We Love: CeraVe’s hydrating wipes are ultra-gentle on skin and don’t leave behind a greasy film like some makeup remover wipes are wont to do.
What We Don’t Love: Despite the fragrance-free formula, the wipes have a chemical-like scent.
Infused with ceramides and glycerin, CeraVe’s makeup removing wipes leave skin feeling clean and refreshed — with none of the tightness or greasy residue other makeup remover wipes often cause. The formula is alcohol-free, oil-free, and non-comedogenic, not to mention sensitive skin-, allergy-, and ophthalmologist-tested for a gentle cleanse that leaves the skin barrier intact and irritation-free. We also appreciate that the wipes are plant-based and biodegradable, which helps to minimize any negative implications on the environment.
It’s worth noting that though the formula is fragrance-free, the wipes have a chemical-like scent. It isn’t overpowering in any way, but we’d be lying if we said it wasn’t a little off-putting.
Price at time of publish: $10
Wipes per pack: 25 | Key Ingredients: Ceramides, glycerin | Biodegradable: Yes
Best Splurge: Cle de Peau Makeup Cleansing Towelettes
What We Love: From the packaging and formulation to the plush texture, everything about these wipes is downright luxurious.
What We Don’t Love: Similar to the Neutrogena wipes, these were recently reformulated and aren’t as saturated as they used to be.
At $1 a wipe ($50 for a pack of 50 wipes), we expect quite the experience, and Cle de Peau’s Makeup Cleansing Towelettes really do deliver. The formula is unlike any makeup remover wipe we’ve come across: It’s packed with superfoods and plant-based ingredients (like mangosteen extract, hyaluronic acid, and peppermint extract) that are rich in antioxidants to guard against environmental aggressors; as well as camellia and argan oils to hydrate and repair the skin barrier (and help strengthen lashes, too!). We’re also fans of the packaging, which features a snap closure to ensure unused towelettes stay moist.
Just like the Neutrogena wipes, Cle de Peau recently reformulated these towelettes. Though they’re not quite as saturated as they used to be, we find that they still effectively cleanse our face without any tugging or irritation.
Price at time of publish: $50
Wipes per pack: 50 | Key Ingredients: Hyaluronic acid, mangosteen extract, peppermint extract, camellia and argan oil | Biodegradable: Yes
Best for Sensitive Skin: Paula's Choice Gentle Cleansing Cloths
What We Love: These three-in-one wipes function as a makeup remover, cleanser, and toner ultimately simplifying your routine.
What We Don’t Love: The sealant on the packaging becomes less effective over time, rendering the wipes dry.
The Paula’s Choice Gentle Cleansing Cloths combine cleansing agents with hydrating and soothing ingredients to quickly remove even the most stubborn makeup without compromising skin. The durable, non-abrasive towelettes are infused with glycerin and panthenol, which actively hydrate the skin, while chamomile, oat, and pomegranate work to soothe and calm irritation at the source.
Rather than tugging or pulling like many wipes are known to do, these glide, making them perfect for sensitive, irritation-prone skin. Plus, you can knock out three steps of your routine with these towelettes, as they effectively remove makeup, cleanse skin, and function as a toner.
As is the case with most cleansing wipes, the sealant on the packaging seems to get less effective over time. This can cause the wipes to dry up, making them virtually unusable. That said, pressing out any excess air before resealing the package can help with this issue.
Price at time of publish: $7
Wipes per pack: 30 | Key Ingredients: Glycerin, panthenol, chamomile, oat, pomegranate | Biodegradable: No
Best for Eye Makeup: Clinique Take the Day Off Micellar Cleansing Towelettes
What We Love: These ready-to-go towelettes are saturated with a gentle micellar cleansing liquid that whisks away waterproof makeup without needing to scrub.
What We Don’t Love: The packaging dispenses several wipes at a time and it’s difficult to shove the excess ones back in.
Eye makeup can be notoriously stubborn to remove (even non-waterproof formulas). Though using a cleansing balm is the easiest way to dissolve eye makeup, when you’re in a pinch, Clinique Take The Day Off Micellar Cleansing Towelettes come to the rescue. Infused with a micellar cleansing liquid that effectively cuts through dirt, grime, sunscreen, and even waterproof mascara, these wipes quickly remove all kinds of makeup without intense scrubbing — a majorly impressive feat.
Beyond the wipes themselves, we love the resealable packaging with its click-into-place top. Unfortunately, several wipes tend to come out at once, and it’s less-than-ideal shoving the extras back in.
Price at time of publish: $19
Wipes per pack: 50 | Key Ingredients: Micellar cleansing liquid | Biodegradable: No
Best for Acne-Prone Skin: Shiseido Refreshing Cleansing Sheets
What We Love: Shiseido’s lightweight cleansing sheets boast a pH-balancing formula with acne-friendly ingredients like witch hazel and benzoic acid.
What We Don’t Love: They’re technically cleansing sheets — not makeup removing wipes — so you’ll probably need to double cleanse.
Shiseido’s ultra-soft, 100-percent cotton cleansing sheets are the perfect refresh when you need a quick cleanse on the go. Ingredients like witch hazel and benzoic acid make these ideal for acne-prone skin as they whisk away oils, impurities, and grime that would otherwise clog pores and lead to blemishes.
It’s important to note that these are technically cleansing sheets, not makeup removing wipes. While they can remove some makeup, they might not be the best choice for those looking to remove full-coverage foundation and waterproof makeup products.
Price at time of publish: $20
Wipes per pack: 30 | Key Ingredients: Witch hazel, benzoic acid | Biodegradable: No
Best for Oily Skin: Ursa Major 4-in-1 Essential Face Wipes
What We Love: With ingredients like aloe vera, witch hazel, and green tea, these wipes gently exfoliate and unclog pores while removing excess oil and impurities.
What We Don’t Love: The single-use packets aren’t the most environmentally friendly.
For those with oily skin, toner-infused face wipes — like these from Ursa Major — are a great option for keeping skin refreshed and revived. A three-percent AHA/BHA complex exfoliates dead skin cells and unclogs pores, while anti-inflammatory ingredients, like green tea and aloe vera, soothe irritation and calm skin, ultimately leaving complexions feeling plump and hydrated rather than stripped. The single-use packets also make the wipes easy to take on the road (and though we applaud the wipes themselves for being biodegradable, the packaging itself isn’t recyclable, which is a major bummer).
Price at time of publish: $26
Wipes per pack: 20 | Key Ingredients: Aloe vera, witch hazel, green tea, sugarcane, willow bark | Biodegradable: Yes
Best for Dry Skin: Colorescience Hydrating Cleansing Cloths
What We Love: These remove makeup and grime without that dreaded burning sensation that comes with some makeup removing wipes.
What We Don’t Love: They aren’t great at removing particularly finicky makeup, like mascara.
Colorescience’s Hydrating Cleansing Cloths differ from other makeup removing wipes on our list because they feature a dual-textured design: One side of the towelette is pillowy soft to gently wipe away impurities and light makeup, while the other is textured to lightly exfoliate. Regardless of which side you use, the entire wipe is soaked in a hydrating, calming formula and ultimately results in a reviving facial cleanse.
We particularly like these for dry skin because each towelette is infused with hyaluronic acid and coconut extract to deeply moisturize, while antioxidant-rich white and green tea leaf extracts provide protection from environmental aggressors.
Price at time of publish: $19
Wipes per pack: 30 | Key Ingredients: Hyaluronic acid, coconut extract, white and green tea leaf extracts | Biodegradable: Yes
Best Micellar: Bioderma Sensibio H20 Wipes
What We Love: These wipes are infused with the brand’s cult-classic micellar water, making for a gentle yet effective cleanse.
What We Don’t Love: The wipes can feel dry at times and we wish they were better-saturated.
Bioderma’s Sensibio H2O Micellar Wipes are everything you love about the brand’s famous micellar water in an easy-to-use, on-the-go wipe. The soap-free towelettes effectively remove makeup, sunscreen, and daily grime without irritating the skin, thanks to the inclusion of soothing ingredients like allantoin. Plus, they’re ideal for all skin types. When using these, we do like to keep the original micellar water on hand because the wipes themselves aren’t as saturated as we'd like.
Price at time of publish: $12
Wipes per pack: 25 | Key Ingredients: Micellar solution, allantoin | Biodegradable: Yes
Best for On the Go: Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelette Singles
What We Love: It’s the classic Neutrogena makeup removing formula we all know and love, in the ultimate travel-friendly packaging.
What We Don’t Love: These individually packaged makeup wipes aren’t the most eco-conscious.
Yes, all makeup remover wipes technically work on the go, but these individually packaged wipes take convenience and packing light to the next level. The wipes themselves really are a skincare classic thanks to their ability to swiftly remove makeup without any of the dreaded skin dragging, stinging, or drying that can come with other towelettes. And the ingenious singles iterations work just as well — all while taking up minimal space in your carry-on. These definitely aren’t great for the environment, but they’re the best option if you’re looking to conserve space during quick weekends away.
Price at time of publish: $10
Wipes per pack: 20 | Key Ingredients: Water, capric glycerides | Biodegradable: Yes
Best Natural: Honest Beauty Makeup Remover Wipes
What We Love: These plant-based wipes are tough on makeup and dirt, but gentle on skin.
What We Don’t Love: Though fragrance-free, the wipes have an odd scent.
Featuring a sugar-derived surfactant, these hypoallergenic plant-based wipes are soft on skin, but tough on makeup to leave all skin types feeling fresh, comfortable, and renewed. Aside from removing makeup, they’re also great for quick refreshes to wick away sweat and excess oil throughout the day. With the National Eczema Association’s seal of approval, these wipes are also ideal for all skin types, even sensitive skin.
Though the towelettes are considered fragrance-free, we have experienced an odd chemical-like scent. This is very minor, though, and doesn’t linger on skin.
Price at time of publish: $8
Wipes per pack: 30 | Key Ingredients: Plant-based cloth, sugar-derived surfactant | Biodegradable: Yes
Best for Touch Ups: Makeup by Mario Gentle Makeup Remover Wipes
What We Love: Makeup by Mario’s makeup removing wipes are lightly infused with cucumber water to effectively remove makeup only where you want it.
What We Don’t Love: Because the wipes aren’t drenched in the formula, they might not be ideal for removing a full face of makeup.
When it comes to makeup, Mario Dedivanovic knows what he’s doing. And we have a sneaking suspicion that’s just what he made these wipes for — actually doing makeup. Infused with refreshing cucumber water, his wipes are lightly saturated with formula for ultra-precise makeup removal. This makes them perfect for wiping away any fallout under the eyes, removing failed cat-eye wings, and carving out the perfect contour. That being said they’re not super drenched in the formula, which means they can be slightly less effective at removing an entire face of makeup; that might require more than one wipe to get the job done.
Price at time of publish: $15
Wipes per pack: 25 | Key Ingredients: Cucumber water | Biodegradable: Yes
What to Keep in Mind
Take into consideration how much makeup you wear, as not all wipes are equipped to dissolve full-coverage or waterproof formulas. If you tend to wear glam or heavy makeup, opt for micellar-based wipes that are strong enough to cut through tough layers of makeup while preventing the dreaded burn that can oftentimes accompany other makeup wipes. We’re particularly fond of Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micellar Wipes. If you’re looking to remove light makeup or just need a quick refresh, just about any makeup wipe will do the trick.
Just like any other skincare product, it’s important to select makeup removing wipes that will work with your skin type to prevent any sort of irritation. Many wipes are naturally exfoliating, making just about any pick ideal for oily skin. On the other hand, when it comes to dry or sensitive skin you’ll want to ensure each towelette is infused with hydrating ingredients to soothe and moisturize skin. We particularly recommend Paula’s Choice Gentle Cleansing Cloths because they’re made with chamomile, oat, and pomegranate, which leave your complexion feeling soft and moisturized post-cleanse.
If sustainability is your primary concern, you might want to avoid makeup wipes altogether. While they’re more than fine on the skin, makeup removing wipes aren’t the best for the environment given their single-use nature. That being said, many brands now create wipes that are plant-based and biodegradable, including CeraVe Hydrating Makeup Removing Plant-Based Wipes and Colorescience Hydrating Cleansing Cloths.
Your Questions, Answered
Are makeup remover wipes TSA-friendly?
Yes! Since they’re not technically liquids, makeup remover wipes are TSA-friendly.
Are makeup remover wipes good for your skin?
“A lot of the speculation around makeup wipes is because they can sometimes have harsh ingredients, and sometimes folks go to town scrubbing their face, ultimately causing irritation,” says Boston-based board certified dermatologist Dr. Ranella Hirsch. But, “despite the ongoing panic on Instagram, they are fine for your skin.”
As long as you’re choosing a wipe with gentle ingredients and using care to not scrub or tug at the face, makeup removing wipes are a totally solid option for cleansing your face. Still, Dr. Hirsch suggest following up with a regular facial cleanser if possible, as you would with any sort of makeup remover.
Why Shop With Us
Danielle Cohen is a freelance beauty writer and editor with more than five years of experience reporting on the beauty industry and testing products. For this story, she spoke to Boston-based board-certified dermatologist Dr. Ranella Hirsch to learn more about makeup removing wipes, and what options are the best for all skin types.
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