I went to ye olde drugstore and picked up a few eye makeup removers. These are a couple of the tried-and-true perennial favorites. Wanted to see how they stacked up to what I'm used to using.
L'Oreal Clean Artiste Waterproof & Longwearing and Maybelline Expert Eyes Oil-Free go head-to-head with MAC's Gently-Off and Pro removers and MAC Wipes. Wanna know how it all turned out? Keep on reading...
L'Oreal Clean Artiste Waterproof and Longwearing
They say: Instantly dissolves and trace of makeup...removes long-wear and waterproof formulas...gently conditions the lashes...dermatologist- and opthalmalogist-tested...non-irritating...non-comedogenic...won't leave a filmy residue on the skin... dual-phase.
I say: Shake it before you use it to mix the two layers. Apply to eyelid and lashes with a cotton pad. Then, when you wake up, repeat to get the rest of it off. Or so you think. Then follow-up with another product to really get it all off. Boo!
Maybelline Expert Eyes 100% Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover
They say: 100% oil-free...gentle...effectively removes washable mascara and eye makeup without oily residue...fragrance-free...hypoallergenic...dermatologist-tested
I say: Ouch! This burned my admittedly sensitive eyes (a lot of products do). A quick swipe gets off 50% of eye makeup. Hold it against the eye to improve your odds. I found it would get 90% of the makeup up off with persistence, but I felt like that required some tugging of the skin. Not a fan.
MAC Gently Off Makeup Remover
They say: Dual-phase...sweeps off even tenacious waterproof mascara and lip colour...gentle...Cucumber extract soothes, Damascus Rose flower water refreshes...no need to rinse.
I say: AKA "the orange one" on-counter. One shake mixes the oil and water to effectively remove just about anything (sometimes I wonder if it will take off my tattoos!). But somehow, despite being such a powerhouse, it's really, really gentle. Even the Damascus Rose flower water doesn't irritate my eyes too badly (and I'm allergic to Damascus rose). I always keep this one around to get off waterproof mascara, tenacious liners, long-wear lipsticks (it's da bomb for this!), and even those darn Liquidlast liners. It does leave the slightest residue on the eye, so if you're reapplying makeup right away, I'd swipe with a Wipe or otherwise remove the remover.
MAC Pro Eye Makeup Remover
They say: Mega-effective...lifts off every look...no smudges, tears or aggression... pro-quality, yet decidedly gentle...calms, hydrates and soothes skin with cucumber extract...Makeup can be immediately reapplied...A favourite of busy models.
I say: AKA "the purple one" on-counter. This is truly mega-effective. I got hooked when I was working for MAC, where it was essential! The best part of this, besides it's efficacy, is that it leaves absolutely no cleanser behind, so you can put makeup right back on the recently-cleansed area. This means quick changes are a breeze, and you can use it to tidy up your liner or fix smudges quickly. Even good for removing that lipstick that just doesn't look right - so you can pretend that never happened! Slight stinging if it gets in the eyes, but it resolves more quickly than most removers on me. Not the best for long-wear or waterproof products. Nonetheless, I always have this on my vanity.
They say: Swipes away makeup, smudges, dirt and grime...Oversized, luxurious, super-saturated with special M·A·C cleanser...infused with protective vitamin E...Hydrates and nourishes...Extremely refreshing...re-sealable, ready to go!
I say: My favorite of the wipe genre, hands-down. Well, you still need your hands to use 'em; it's just a figure of speech, people. Don't screw around with the little pack - just get the "bulk". You'll love 'em!
A) They're not "wet-wet". I mean to say they're definitely moistened, but not dripping. I hate the ones that drip all over the place!
B) It does remove just about anything, though I find Liquidlast liners and the like need a bit of a boost from another product (o hai, Gently Off!).
3) Incredibly portable and no-leak, so a cinch to toss in an overnight bag or gym bag!
D) Gentle and tough- one wipe is plenty for a full face of makeup. Really.
I use my Wipes to remove any and all kinds of makeup. However, I do wash my face afterward. I don't consider this a cleanser, rather a makeup remover. If I don't clean my face after wiping the makeup off, I'll get clogged pores and breakouts. Otherwise, this stuff really, really works. No residue, but perhaps some tightness on some skins - easily remedied by that cleansing and subsequent moisturizing).
Tip: Store your MAC Wipes the MAC way... Make sure you close the lid, and try to flip 'em upside down from time-to-time to prevent them from drying out. Note that this usually only happens if you use a package pretty slowly. If you use them daily, you'll more than likely have no problem.
The final word:
Still going to stick with my MAC Wipes to remove my makeup, or even my beloved MAC Gently Off (dual phase) and Pro (no residue) makeup removers. The drugstore products I tested here just couldn't cut it (and my eyes couldn't take the pain!).