I feel bad whenever I get asked by some followers to recommend them some Japanese drugstore products, because I don't use Japanese products much unless they're given. I only have a couple of products I can recommend, such as RAFRA balm cleanser and Love Liner. So I came up with the idea of doing 'Popular Japanese Products' series on my blog, to give myself an opportunity to try more Japanese products, and you guys get to read my reviews at the same time. How efficient!
Today's theme is 'makeup remover'. In Japan, micellar water isn't as popular as it is in the western world and I guess the reason is because Japanese people hate rubbing their face to remove makeup. Asian skin is said to be thinner than western skin, thus we are prone to pigmentation caused by friction. And also it simply irritates sensitive skin. You would be overwhelmed by the number of cleansers displayed if you visited Aintz&Tulpe's basement floor where they have skincare products. I had no idea which one to pick, but I managed to choose 3 popular makeup removers to compare.
To test how they remove makeup, I used these products. From left, Mis"el Ady Liquid Eyeliner aka one of the hardest liquid eyeliner to remove, Kesalan Pathalan Smooth Lips, Nudestix Magnetic Eye Color and Anastasia Brow Pomade.
Shiseido Senka Perfect Watery Oil 980yen
Their face wash Perfect Whip became popular more than a decade ago, and still is one of the most popular cleansers. I used to be a heavy user of the face wash until I became more fussy about skincare products in my mid-twenties. It was my first time to try out their oil, and I must say I was pretty impressed.
The consistency is pretty watery as the name suggests. The top ingredient on the list is mineral oil, which I believe most of you hate. I self-studied dermatology to get to know more about skincare when I was into natural and organic beauty products, and I believed mineral oil was bad for your skin, but also found information that claims mineral oil back in the day contained impurities and irritative, but nowadays impurities are all removed from the oil and nothing is wrong with using the oil on the skin. It's completely up to you what to believe, but I don't care too much about it because my skin doesn't hate it anyway. To cut the long story short, I just wanted to mention that it contains mineral oil.
The good thing about this cleanser is that you can use it with wet hands. Normally you need to apply cleansing oil to completely dry face with dry hands to dissolve makeup, sebum and dirt. But this one can be used in the shower, when both face and hands are wet. How convenient.
It instantly removed everything besides the eyeliner. See, I told you this is pain in the butt to remove it! Apparently this cleanser contains 'mascara remover' which makes it easy to remove waterproof mascara. Well, it didn't remove the waterproof eyeliner though.
I love the floral scent which isn't too overpowering at all. The texture is very smooth just like normal cleansing oil, and it rinses off quickly with warm water. No need to use muslin cloth, Japanese oil cleansers are designed to be removable with warm water.
It leaves moisturising feel to the skin, which is perfect for dry skin yet not too heavy for combination to oily skin. A bonus point is that it contains hyaluronic acid too.
This remover was recommended by Sami from Makeup Wasteland when I mentioned Mis"el Ady Liquid Eyeliner would never come off completely. This gel consistency eye-makeup remover is neutral just like your tears, which makes it less harsh to your eyes. The thick formula removes your eye makeup instantly that you don't need to rub your eyes which is the most sensitive area of your face.
As you can see, it's pretty thick. If you put this cotton pad directly to your eyes, it might go into your eyes and causes irritation. I make sure the makeup remover is soaked completely into the cotton pad, then place it on the eyes and leave it for a couple of seconds without rubbing.
Sami mentioned it would remove the eyeliner easily, but for some reason it didn't work as good on me. It could be the combination of the eyeliner and my skin -no idea what that means but hey, something could be wrong with my skin- but it takes two cotton pads to remove my makeup on one eye.
It's fragrance-free which is suitable for sensitive skin, and it's also oil-free that's perfect for those who hate the oily residue some eye-makeup remover leaves on the skin. Hyaluronic acid and provitamine B5 protect your lashes. I use it to remove my eye makeup only when I'm wearing heavy makeup but it does shorten the makeup removal process which I appreciate.
Bifesta Bright up Cleansing Sheet 550yen
Bifesta is famous for their micellar water -which I believe is the most popular drugstore micellar water- and this is the face-wipe version from the same series. They have 3 different types of makeup wipes you can choose depending on your skin type. I picked up 'Bright up' one which contains AHA and moisturising vitamin C to clear up the complexion. There are 'Moist' and 'Enrich' ones as well.
It was very hard to capture how wet the wipes are, but can you see the small pool around my finger? It's pretty wet which reduces friction and irritation caused by the harsh material. I like how soft the wipe is, it's not irritating at all on the skin which is always a plus.
Another good thing I must mention is that this packaging is genius. The most annoying thing is that when you try to take one wipe, another comes with it and you have to put it back in. Worse is that the wipe gets dried out the next day -and the worst case scenario is the whole pack gets dried up. Bifesta's makeup wipes never do that. This genius packaging allows you to take only one wipe each time. Also the lid is actually plastic, not a sticker that loses stickiness after 3 uses.
The wipe is 15cm x 20cm which is pretty big. Use on dry skin start from wiping the whole face gently. Then I fold it and sandwich my eyelashes to remove my mascara, then wipe around my eyes even more gently. Because it's pretty wet, it's not harsh on the skin. It removes not only makeup but dirt and dead skin cells, which is of course a plus.
So, I placed a wipe on the skin covering the half of the area I put makeup on, and waited for 10 seconds. Then, gently wipe the skin off trying not to rub the skin.
You can see the only product it removed completely is the lipstick. The traces of brow pomade and eyeshadow are visible although the other two I mentioned earlier completely removed them. As for the eyeliner, words are not needed to describe how disappointed I was. I added 10 more seconds to the test after taking this photo but it didn't make a big difference.
I don't think this is a perfect makeup remover to use on its own, but in combination with other cleansers, I actually find it convenient. I usually remove my makeup and cleanse my skin at the same time with RAFRA cleansing balm. It does remove my makeup very well but sometimes I have panda eyes after rinsing my face. That's when it comes in very handy. I fold the wipe into four, then remove the makeup left around my eyes using the edge. It works better than using the eye makeup remover with a cotton pad because it's thinner and edgier. I also use it to remove a part of my makeup in the morning when I screw up. I don't recommend to rely on it, but it's handy to have for sure.
Phew, I wonder why my posts are freaking long all the time. I wonder if there is someone who's read it all, but if you did thank you so much and hope you enjoyed!