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Everything About Make-Up Cleansing

Updated: Sep 1, 2023

Why cleansing is essential for make-up?

Cleansing is an essential step in skincare and makeup routines for several reasons, particularly when it comes to makeup application and removal. Here's why cleansing is important for makeup:

  1. Prepares the Skin: Cleansing your face before applying makeup helps create a clean canvas. By removing dirt, excess oils, and impurities, you provide a smooth surface for makeup application. This allows makeup products to adhere better and look more even.

  2. Prevents Breakouts: Wearing makeup for extended periods can clog pores and potentially lead to breakouts. Cleansing helps remove makeup, dirt, and bacteria that can accumulate on the skin's surface and in the pores. This can help prevent acne and other skin irritations.

  3. Promotes Skin Health: Leaving makeup on overnight can hinder the skin's natural renewal and repair processes. Proper cleansing ensures that your skin can breathe and regenerate while you sleep, contributing to overall skin health.

  4. Avoids Irritation: Makeup products, especially those with strong pigments or chemicals, can be harsh on the skin. Cleansing helps remove these products, reducing the risk of skin irritation and allergic reactions.

  5. Maintains Makeup Performance: Cleansing at the end of the day is crucial to remove makeup, oil, and sweat that can accumulate throughout the day. If you apply makeup on top of a day's worth of grime, it can lead to patchiness, uneven application, and diminished makeup performance.

  6. Prevents Stains: Certain makeup products, like long-lasting lipsticks or waterproof mascara, can leave stains if not properly removed. Cleansing effectively removes these products, preventing residual staining on the skin.

  7. Allows Skin to Breathe: Makeup can create a barrier on the skin, inhibiting its ability to breathe. Cleansing removes this layer, allowing the skin to function optimally and maintain its natural balance.

  8. Avoids Premature Aging: Leaving makeup on for extended periods can contribute to premature aging by exposing the skin to pollutants and chemicals. Proper cleansing helps reduce the risk of oxidative stress and damage to the skin.

  9. Promotes Makeup Removal: Some makeup products, especially long-wearing or waterproof formulas, can be challenging to remove. Using a suitable makeup remover or cleansing method ensures that makeup is thoroughly removed without excessive rubbing or tugging on the skin.

  10. Prepares for Skincare: Cleansing not only removes makeup but also prepares the skin for subsequent skincare steps. After cleansing, you can apply moisturizers, serums, and other products more effectively, as they can penetrate the skin better when it's clean.

In summary, cleansing is a vital step before and after makeup application. It sets the foundation for flawless makeup application and ensures that your skin remains healthy and vibrant. Proper cleansing habits contribute to both short-term makeup performance and long-term skin well-being.

Cleansing for Light vs Heavy make-up?

Cleansing routines can vary depending on whether you're wearing light or heavy makeup. Here's how to tailor your cleansing routine for each type of makeup:




​- Tinted moisturizer

- Light foundation

- Minimal eye make up

- A bit of lip color

​- Full-coverage foundation

- Waterproof mascara

- Bold eye makeup

- Long-lasting lipstick


Cotton Pad / Soft Cloth

- Gently swipe over your face, eyes, and lips

Gentle Cleanser

- Omits common irritants like dyes, soap, essential oils, fragrances, lanolin and parabens

- Ideal for people who have sensitive, dry or allergy- or eczema-prone skin

Massage & Emulsify

- Once the "right" cleanser is applied, take time until heavy make-up turn into a milky texture that can easily be rinsed away

Oil Base + Water Base

- While oil-based cleansers are excellent for makeup removal, it's a good idea to follow up with a gentle water-based cleanser to remove any remaining residue and ensure your skin is thoroughly clean

Suitable Products

1) Cleansing Foam

- Pro:

  • Most effective among cleansing products for light makeup

- Con:

  • May cause stripping and drying

2) Cleansing gel & Bubble Cleanser

- Pro:

  • Suitable for dry, oily, sensitive skin

- Con:

  • Not as effective as cleansing foam

3) Micellar Water

- Pro:

  • Water based solution containing tiny oil molecules that attract and lift away makeup and impurities without the need for harsh scrubbing


  • Cotton pad used may cause physical irritation

1) Cleansing Oil & Balm

- Pro:

  • Most effective in removing heavy makeup residue (even water proof make up)

- Con:

  • May cause skin breakouts especially if not properly rinsed off

  • Balm does not emulsify well

2) Cleansing Milk

- Pro:

  • Less likely to cause skin breakouts

  • Less likely to disrupt PH

  • Contains moisturizing ingredients such as oils, fatty acids, and humectants

- Con:

  • Less effective at removing makeup residue

  • Inconvenience caused during the process of mixing powder with water and creating a paste

3) Cleansing Powder

- Pro:

  • Contain exfoliating ingredients, such as enzymes or micro-particles, which can help remove dead skin cells and leave your skin feeling smoother and more radiant

- Con:

  • May cause skin breakouts especially if not properly rinsed off

Regardless of whether you're wearing light or heavy makeup, it's important to be "gentle" while cleansing to avoid irritating your skin. Harsh scrubbing or excessive rubbing can lead to redness, sensitivity, or even micro tears in the skin.

Choose products that are suitable for your skin type and makeup preferences, and always follow up with proper skincare to keep your skin healthy and balanced.

Hope this helps and answers some of your questions. For any further questions, please leave us any comments!

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