Written by Grove Collaborative

We tried it: Does the makeup remover towel really work?

Last Updated: April 22, 2021

Do makeup remover towels really work with just warm water — no cleansers? Is that even possible? Well, Grove writer, Carly Reynolds, tried it — and here’s what she found out.

Makeup is part of my daily routine, but putting makeup on means that at the end of the day, I have to take that makeup back off. I have long used cotton rounds and micellar water to wipe away the day’s look, but I’ve been trying to cut back on waste — and those cotton rounds really add up.

In an effort to make a more environmentally friendly and cost-effective choice, I tried out the Superbloom Makeup Remover Towel, and I’m here to report the results.

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The claim: Makeup remover towels wipe away your makeup — without a cleanser

The Superbloom Makeup Remover Towel claims to make easy work of wiping away the makeup of the day — including your waterproof and smudge-proof varieties — without the need for cleansers. This oblong, ultra-plush polyester towel is purportedly extra-gentle and highly effective. It’s trimmed with thin, super-soft piping to prevent fraying, and it’s machine washable, eliminating all of the waste associated with cotton rounds and wipes.

First, let’s talk about initial impressions. The towel comes in an adorable box that cleverly resembles an eraser. The fabric is sumptuously soft and not the least bit scratchy. Even the piping around the perimeter is soft to the touch. The towel is a great size, with plenty of real estate to wipe your full face. So far, I’m impressed.

The experience: Do makeup remover towels really work?

Before: Feeling a little skeptical

To be honest, I was pretty skeptical about the whole “no cleanser needed” thing — I’m not a big believer in magic — so when it was time to put this product to the test, I really piled on the makeup, including my usual bold eyeshadow with waterproof eyeliner and mascara that won’t turn me into a raccoon after a long day in the Florida heat and humidity (even my micellar water and cotton rounds don’t fully remove this face).

How do you use makeup remover towels?

Using the makeup remover towel is super easy:

Step 1: Wet the makeup remover towel with warm water.

Step 2: Gently wipe the towel over your face to lift makeup.

Step 3: Continue with your usual skincare routine.

After: The magic is real!

So I got the towel wet — water tends to sit on the surface of the fibers for a while, eventually dampening but not soaking it — and started by wiping off my concealer and foundation, which came off easily. Then, I moved on to my eyes. The eyeshadow wiped clean with minimal effort. It did take multiple passes before all remnants of mascara and eyeliner were gone, but it worked beautifully — and without any skin irritation! The picture above shows my clean eye (my left eye) vs. my eye with full makeup (my right eye).

Not only did I love the experience, but my teen girls love it, too. They’re just settling into their own skincare routines, and this (magical?) towel means they don’t have to slather gross chemicals on their young, fresh faces.

How to care for a makeup remover towel

Handwash vs machine-wash

Once all of my makeup was on the towel, I was a little skeptical (again!) that it would come clean. Although it’s machine washable, I don’t do laundry every day, so I decided to just handwash the towel for next time.

I used a very mild, organic soap handmade by my cousin, and believe it or not (believe it!) the towel came out just like my face — makeup-free! I toss it in the wash every week or so for deep-cleaning (and hang it to dry,) and several weeks later, it still looks new.

I plan on stocking up on more of these makeup remover towels so my daughters and I always have one on hand — and now I know what I’m giving all of my makeup-wearing friends and family members as gifts this year too.

The verdict: I’m a believer in makeup remover towels!

So after using the makeup remover towel, will it become part of my daily skincare routine? Absolutely!

Not only was it luxuriously comfortable against my skin, but I love that it works with warm water alone. Any beauty routine that minimizes the number of bottles on the bathroom counter is a win in my book!

Is using a makeup remover towel a complete skincare routine? Not at all, but it is a great first step for prepping your face for your usual skincare essentials — you’ll still want to stick with your deep-cleaning masks, exfoliating treatments, daily serums, and natural moisturizers as well.

About the author: Carly Reynolds is a writer and mom of three who needs a little magic at the end of a long day. Carly has been writing for Grove since 2020.

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