I recently found myself at a loss when, after trying a popular brand of mascara known for its staying power, I discovered the hard way it had every intention of staying on my lashes for the rest of my life. None of my cleansers or makeup wipes did the trick, and even baby oil–a last resort for me–failed at dissolving the clumpy mess.
If only I had known the secret to removing stubborn mascara is something in the kitchen–coconut oil! Molly Leahy, bridal hair and makeup artist at Blushing Brides Boston, explains how to remove mascara using everyone’s favorite cure-all oil.
1. Remove false lashes first. “If you have any type of false lashes, remove those first if you plan on reusing them,” Leahy says. “If they were applied using a basic lash glue, they should pull off very gently. If you find them resistant, then dip a cotton bud in some eye makeup remover and run it against the lash line gently to help the removal process.”
2. Bring on the coconut oil. “My absolute favorite makeup remover is coconut oil,” Leahy says. “It’s hands down the most effective makeup remover I’ve ever used. Take some (preferably organic) coconut oil and rub it in your hands to make sure it’s melted since it will solidify in colder temperatures. Rub it all over your face in circular motions. Feel free to go over your closed eyes with the oil–it’s gentle and removes waterproof mascara like a dream.”
I have been using coconut oil ever since my horrific stubborn mascara experience and it removed makeup in seconds. I gently rubbed the oil on my lashes using just my fingers and the makeup just slid off.
3. Grab a washcloth. “Once you feel like the coconut oil has broken down your makeup, use a warm wet washcloth to remove everything from your face. Since oil and water repel each other you need the washcloth to rub the oil off your face,” Leahy says.
4. Cleanse your face. While some folks like to remove their makeup and call it a night, Leahy says she prefers to then go in with a cream face cleanser to make sure she doesn’t have too much leftover oil on her face. “Just wash your face as usual,” she says. “You shouldn’t need an exfoliating cleanser since you used a washcloth to remove the oil which would’ve already exfoliated.”
5. Tone and moisturize. Follow your cleansing routine with a toner and your favorite night cream and moisturizer.
For more beauty news and tips, check out 3 stunning eyeshadow looks that aren’t a smokey eye and a step-by-step guide to removing your makeup.