Over the past few years, natural beauty, often also called “clean” beauty, has been gaining in popularity as the clean beauty industry was estimated to be worth around $38.2bn in 2020. There has been a shift in customers’ attitude towards traditional beauty brands and a newly-found distrust towards their ingredients, deeming them harmful and toxic. It could be said, that this movement has been lead by actress-turned-businesswoman Gwyneth Paltrow and her clean lifestyle brand, Goop. While some of Paltrow’s claims are questionable, a lot of her beliefs are shared by millions of people who are fed up with marketing lies and long ingredient lists, full of terms most of us don’t understand, leading to the realisation that we don’t know what all these skincare brands put into their products and what we in turn put on our faces. However, natural does not necessarily always mean better. Especially if suffering from any skin conditions, so it is advised to consult your dermatologist before using any of the natural DIY recipes we are about to introduce you to.

But without further ado, here are the best 5 affordable natural DIY makeup remover recipes that you can easily make at home yourself.

girl removing makeup

Witch Hazel Makeup Remover

Witch hazel is a natural ingredient often used in traditional skincare. It is also sold on its own in its pure form in drugstores. Witch hazel is a clear liquid, often used as a toner or a natural astringent causing the contraction of skin cells resulting in tightened pores and drying out of oil in the skin, benefiting those with oily skin.

On its own, witch hazel can be quite drying to the skin which is why to use it as a homemade makeup remover, it is best to mix it with a nourishing oil such as olive oil or jojoba oil. These two oils are deeply moisturising and will dissolve all makeup. They make for a very effective eye makeup remover, even on their own, as they dissolve all stubborn eye makeup, including waterproof mascara. If using olive oil, extra virgin olive oil is best as it is the purest and least processed form of this natural ingredient.

Instructions:

  • Put the mix on a cotton pad and gently work the makeup remover around the face. Don’t open your eyes when cleansing as the witch hazel might sting or burn your eyes. When you’re finished, rinse with lukewarm water.
  • Witch hazel might not be for everybody though. It is generally not recommended for people with overly dry skin or sensitive skin or those with psoriasis and eczema. Before using on your face, test it on the inside of your arm.

Honey Face Wash

Honey is an all-around wonderful natural ingredient for all skin types. It regulates skin’s pH, is naturally antibacterial, a humectant delivering moisture to the skin while also being an astringent, getting rid of excess sebum. Honey is also an effective DIY makeup remover.

Buy a jar of raw unfiltered honey available in most large stores. Manuka honey is also a good option but it is much more expensive as it comes from a single secluded area of New Zealand. You can keep the honey in its original jar or for a more aesthetically pleasing look, transfer the honey to a clear glass jar or air-tight container with a wide opening.

Instructions:

  • First, dissolve makeup with oil cleansing. Apply oil to a cotton pad as in the previous method with witch hazel. For this, you can choose between olive oil, jojoba oil or even sweet almond oil.
  • Then rinse with warm water.
  • To remove any makeup left along with the oil that is now sitting on your skin, scoop out about 1/2 teaspoon of honey from the jar.
  • Massage the honey all over your face in a gentle manner like you would a regular cleanser. Using a combination of two cleansers, the first step being an oil or a balm, is called the double cleansing method.
  • When you’re finished, rinse with warm water and moisturize.

Homemade Exfoliating Scrub

The potential benefits of an exfoliating scrub are smoother skin, unclogged pores and improved blood circulation. There are many face exfoliating scrub recipes on the internet, however, many of those can actually be damaging to your skin. Sugar, for example, is a great exfoliating ingredient for the body and even for the lips, but for the sensitive skin on the face, it is simply too harsh. But even worse offenders are coffee grounds and nut or fruit seed shells such as walnut and apricot, as they don’t dissolve with water and are irregular in their shapes which can lead to micro tears in the skin.

On the other hand, good ingredients for making a face exfoliating scrub are finely ground oats or ground rice powder for the physical exfoliants and yoghurt and milk for what are called chemical exfoliants. These ingredients use natural enzymes to remove dead skin cells. In the case of milk and yoghurt, this enzyme is called lactic acid.

To make our favorite facial scrub recipe, you will need:

  • 2 tbs finely ground rolled oats (you can grind them in a coffee grinder or a food processor)
  • 1 tbs Greek yoghurt
  • 1 tbs coconut oil

Instructions:

  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl. The addition of an essential oil for a calming aromatherapy experience is completely optional. However, bare in mind that some essential oils can be sensitizing to the skin for some people so use with caution and only use 1 or 2 drops.
  • Apply on makeup-free cleansed skin in a gentle circular motion for 30 to 60 seconds. Avoid the eye area.
  • Rinse with lukewarm or warm water and moisturize.
  • Transfer leftover mixture to an air-tight container or a jar and keep refrigerated.
face exfoliating scrub

Rose Water Cleansing Gel

Rose water is made by steeping rose petals in water or distilling rose petals with steam. It is an ingredient used for centuries to soothe skin irritation due to its anti-inflammatory properties, reduce redness in the skin and to aid in anti-aging. Rose water is readily available in stores or you can even make it yourself. It can be used on its own as a homemade facial cleanser – just rinse your face with it or wipe your face with a cotton pad or a cloth soaked in rose water.

But if you combine it with another natural ingredient that is readily available to many of us at home or in food markets – aloe vera – you can make a gel-based natural makeup remover. Aloe too has anti-inflammatory properties and can limit scarring, it also supports the production and release of collagen within the skin.

Instructions:

  • Aloe’s gel is found within its leaves. To extract it, cut a leaf off the plant and remove the green shell of the leaf.
  • Place the gel in a bowl and pour equal parts of rose water in the bowl.
  • Transfer to a jar or bottle.
  • Apply the makeup remover to the face with your hands.
  • Store in a refrigerator. If you wish to extend the makeup remover’s shelf life, put two or three drops of vitamin E oil and shake. You can also mix in an essential oil but that is completely optional.

DIY Makeup Remover Wipes

Regular single-use makeup wipes are unnecessarily wasteful which is why using reusable cotton pads is much better to the environment and your pocket. Going even a step further, you can make your own homemade makeup removing wipes using only natural ingredients.

Here’s what you’ll need:
  • 8 reusable cotton pads or small washcloths, placed in a storage jar
  • 3/4 cup of distilled or boiled water
  • 1 tbs oil (any of these will work – melted coconut oil, olive or jojoba oil)
  • 1/2 cup witch hazel
  • 1 tbs castile soap

Instructions:

  • Combine the water, witch hazel, oil and soap in a bowl until mixed well.
  • Pour the liquid into the jar covering the cotton pads/washcloths. Press the cloths down into the mixture.
  • Take one of the cotton pads and use on your face for removing makeup.
  • Rinse the pad under warm water.
  • Wipe your face with the clean pad.
  • Rinse and moisturize.