We’ve all been there: coming home from a long day at work or a tiring night out and all you want to do is crash on the bed. But as you remove your mascara, you find that it’s not coming off easily. It won’t budge even as you rub or tug at your lashes. Worse, you see some lash strands fall off. It can be challenging and damaging to your eyelashes if you don’t know how to remove mascara the right way. Fret not because here we’ll share tips and tricks on removing your mascara easily, effectively, and most importantly, safely so you can get your mascara off without damaging your lashes.

Why is it important to remove mascara at night?

We get it. We’ve all asked ourselves “Can I leave mascara on overnight?” as we get into bed after a long exhausting day. Removing mascara before going to sleep can feel like a chore but we must do it. Imagine the smudges that can end up all over your face and on your pillows! But aside from waking up looking like a raccoon in the morning, here are some reasons why it is important to remove mascara at night:

  • Removing mascara prevents eye irritation and infections.

Leaving your mascara on overnight can cause it to flake off and the dried-up pieces can get into your eyes. This causes irritation and also makes your lashes an ideal place for bacteria and germs to breed, causing eye infections. Removing mascara prevents your eyes from getting irritated or infected.

  • Removing mascara protects the delicate skin around your eyes

Because the skin around your eyes is delicate and sensitive, leaving your mascara on overnight can cause irritation, itching, redness, and dark circles. By removing your mascara, you protect your delicate skin.

  • Removing mascara avoids clogged pores

Because mascara can clog the pores around your eyes, leaving your mascara on overnight can cause breakouts and other skin problems. Prevent clogged pores and keep your skin healthy by removing your mascara before going to bed.

  • Removing mascara improves eyelash health

Leaving your mascara on for a long period of time dries out and weighs your lashes down, making them brittle and prone to breakage. Remove your mascara before bed to keep your lashes long, thick, and healthy.

Removing your mascara before hitting the hay not only prevents waking up with raccoon eyes but also keeps your eyes free from irritation and infection and maintains the health of your lashes. Going to bed with the feeling of a fresh, clean face is a bonus! But how do you remove mascara properly to not damage your lashes?

Things You Need in Removing Mascara

Before heading out, make sure you have all the things you need in removing your mascara at the ready. This makes starting the process a lot easier for you when you come home exhausted later at night. Gather the following supplies for easy mascara removal before bed:

  • Cotton Pads
  • Cotton Buds
  • Warm Water
  • Eye Makeup Remover
  • Facial Cleanser
  • Soft Cloth
  • Eye Cream
  • Eyelash Serum

To keep your eyes and lashes safe and healthy, avoid using the following:

  • Alcohol-Based Products

A drying ingredient, alcohol is not only bad for your eyelashes, it’s also bad for your skin. Using alcohol-based products on your lashes can make them brittle, causing them to fall out and thin. You also risk drying out the thin, delicate skin around your eyes which makes it prone to irritation.

  • Products with Synthetic Fragrance

Synthetic fragrance can be irritating to the sensitive skin around your eyes. It can also cause the skin to dry and age prematurely.

  • Petroleum-Based Products

Petroleum-based products such as baby oil and mineral oil are skin sensitisers. They leave a film on your lashes that can build up over time.

How to Remove Mascara

Now that you have the materials and products you need, you can now learn how to remove your mascara without damaging your lashes. Whether you used regular, waterproof, or tubular mascara, here is a step-by-step guide on how to gently remove mascara:


1. Soaking your lashes in the right eye makeup remover first is the answer to how to get mascara off easily.
  • Wet a cotton pad with just enough eye makeup remover that it’s not oversaturated or else the solution will drip all over your face.

  • Keeping your eye closed lightly and without scrunching it, press the wet cotton pad against your eye and just hold for about 20 seconds to break down the mascara.


2. Begin wiping your mascara off gently. Move along the direction of the eyelashes, away from the eyelid.


3.Dip a cotton bud in the eye makeup remover and clean up the remaining small smears or flecks of mascara.


4. After removing the rest of your makeup, wash your face with your gentle facial cleanser and warm water to get all of the makeup off, including your mascara. Use a creamy facial cleanser that has hydrating moisturisers to prevent your skin from being stripped of its natural oils.


5. With a soft cloth, pat your eyes and your whole face dry to remove excess moisture. Do not press too hard.


6. Do your usual night skincare routine. Don’t forget to apply gentle eye cream on the skin around your eyes to keep it healthy and moisturised. A good anti-ageing eye cream that’s suitable for all skin types can help prevent fine lines and puffiness.


7.Don’t skip eyelash aftercare! Use an eyelash growth serum that’s safe for sensitive eyes to help nourish and repair your lashes and keep them long, thick, and healthy.


While the steps are quite the same in removing various types of mascara, there will be little differences specifically in the eye makeup remover to be used:

How to Remove Regular Mascara

Regular mascaras are usually water-based. Warm water won’t get it off right away but they can easily be removed with a gentle eye makeup remover or micellar water.

How to Remove Waterproof Mascara

Many don’t know how to remove waterproof mascara properly. It is a bit more difficult as waterproof mascara is designed to be long-lasting and smudge-proof. The answer to how to easily remove waterproof mascara is to use an oil-based eye makeup remover instead of a water-based one.

How to Remove Tubular Mascara

A tubular mascara forms a tube wrapped around each eyelash strand, making it appear dramatically fuller and longer. So how to remove tubular mascara? While they are usually smudge-proof, a good tubular mascara can be easily removed even without makeup remover. The best way to remove tubing mascara is to use warm water and a gentle cleanser.

Removing Mascara for Sensitive Eyes

How to take off mascara for sensitive eyes? The process and the materials are the same but make sure to use products that are hypoallergenic or safe for sensitive skin. To keep your eyes and the surrounding skin safe from irritation, check the ingredients for potential irritants. It’s also best to use mascara that’s safe for sensitive skin right off the bat.

Removing Mascara Dos and Don’ts

Now that you know the best way to remove mascara, you should also know the guidelines to avoid damaging your lashes and make sure the removal is efficient. Here are some removing mascara dos and don’ts to keep in mind:

  • DO: Be gentle.

Do not be aggressive or rigorous. To avoid scratching your eyelids, removing your lashes, causing a burning sensation, or breaking the blood vessels around your delicate eyelid area, remove your mascara with a gentle touch.

  • DON’T: Rub your eyes.

Rubbing your eyes not only damages your lashes, but it can also cause skin irritation and damage or promote premature ageing of the eyelid skin. You might also get mascara all over your face and clog your pores.

  • DO: Use an eye makeup remover.

Don’t use a regular makeup remover or just facial cleanser on your eyelashes. These might contain irritants that are too harsh on your eye area’s delicate skin. Use a makeup remover made specifically for the eyes. Make sure your eye makeup remover doesn’t have alcohol, fragrances, or petroleum.

  • DON’T: Use a cotton ball.

Avoid cotton balls when removing your mascara. These can leave bits that can tangle in your lashes and get into your eyes. Instead, use cotton pads that won’t tear apart.

  • DO: Press a remover-soaked cotton pad on your eyes first.

To make removal easier, don’t rush the process! Give your remover time to dissolve the mascara first by pressing a cotton pad soaked in eye makeup remover against your eyes for about 20 seconds.

  • DON’T: Wipe your eyes in a circular or horizontal direction.

Moving in a circular or horizontal direction just moves the mascara around and makes a mess on your eye area. This can also break or pull at your lashes.

  • DO: Wipe in the direction of your eyelashes.

Working from the inside out not only prevents lash breakage but also minimises the chances of mascara and bacteria getting trapped in your eyes.

  • DON’T: Pull the mascara off with your fingers.

You won’t just pull off the mascara, you’ll pull out your lashes, too. You might end up with thinning eyelashes and it takes time for the lashes to grow back.

  • DO: Cleanse your face after.

With a gentle foaming facial cleanser, remove leftover makeup residue and wash off all of the dirt and impurities. Washing also makes sure you remove makeup removers, especially oil-based ones that can build up if not removed thoroughly.

  • DON’T: Skip moisturiser and eyelash aftercare.

Removing mascara puts your skin’s protective barrier at risk and can lead to dryness and irritation. Use a moisturising eye cream to keep the skin around your eyes hydrated and nourished. Don’t forget to nourish your eyelashes with an eyelash serum for healthier growth.

How to Remove Mascara Without Makeup Remover

Using a gentle eye makeup remover is the easiest and safest way to remove mascara. But you might find yourself in a pinch and find you don’t have any at the moment. There are natural remedies to remove mascara without makeup remover that many recommend. However, while they may be effective, they might not work as well as eye makeup removers. They also might not be as safe and might cause infection or irritation, especially for sensitive eyes. Here’s how to get mascara off without makeup remover:

  • Baby Oil

Does baby oil remove mascara? Yes, it can even remove waterproof mascara. However, it is mineral oil and may contain ingredients that can irritate the delicate skin around your eyes. Baby oil can also leave a film or residue on your skin, clogging your pores and contributing to breakouts.

  • Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is said to have nourishing and hydrating properties that can soothe and protect the delicate skin around your eyes. But does coconut oil remove mascara? Coconut oil breaks down waterproof mascara quickly without tugging at the skin or lashes. However, it is comedogenic and can clog your pores, leading to breakouts. So if you have oily or acne-prone skin, steer clear of coconut oil.

  • Petroleum Jelly

Does petroleum jelly remove mascara? You can use petroleum jelly to remove your mascara. However, like baby oil and coconut oil, it can also leave a greasy residue on your face that’s difficult to remove. It also clogs pores so it can contribute to breakouts, too.

  • Baby Shampoo

Baby shampoo is a gentle and mild cleanser and is safe to use around the eye area. But does baby shampoo remove mascara? Yes, it can help break down most mascaras, such as regular formulas and tubular mascaras. However, it is not as effective in removing waterproof or long-wear formulas.

  • Micellar Water

Does micellar water remove mascara? Yes! In fact, out of all the natural remedies on this list, micellar water is the best option, especially for those with sensitive skin. It contains micelles or tiny cleansing molecules that attract and dissolve dirt, oil, and impurities from the skin. It’s the most gentle and effective way to remove your mascara aside from a gentle eye makeup remover.

While these alternatives may be effective, they might cause eye irritation or infection, especially in sensitive eyes. Before trying out these natural remedies to remove mascara, do a patch test first and consult with a dermatologist if you experience irritation or other issues.

It’s best to look for a product that’s specifically designed to remove mascara, such as a gentle eye makeup remover that does not contain oils, fragrances, alcohol, or petroleum. It must also be hypoallergenic to avoid irritation and sensitivity around your eye area.


So, there you have it! Now you know how to get mascara off properly without damaging your lashes. Removing your mascara is safe, easy, and effortless with the right products, materials, and steps. Remember to always be gentle with your eyes and eyelashes to avoid irritation and other problems.

And to keep your lashes long, thick, and healthy, use high-quality eyelash serums and mascaras formulated for sensitive eyes.

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