Nothing is more irritating than running out of makeup remover in the middle of the night. Since sleeping with your mascara on is never a good option, knowing some safe alternatives can come in handy.

You may also prefer a natural makeup remover, if you want to steer clear of commercial removers that are usually laden with chemicals. If you already have homemade mascara in your makeup arsenal, it only makes sense to find alternatives to mascara removers.


how to remove waterproof mascara

Before you set out to find chemical-free alternatives to makeup remover that will work well on waterproof mascara, you need to take a look at its composition.

Waterproof mascaras typically contain carbon black or iron oxide pigment to darken the lashes, a polymer to form a film that coats the lashes, preservatives, and thickening agents in the form of wax and oils.

It is this wax-and-oil combo that you primarily need to target, so the best alternatives will be oils and other similar oily products that are safe to use near your eyes.


Here are five chemical-free and safe methods to remove waterproof mascara from your lashes.

Method 1: Baby Oil

Baby oil has long been a dependable stand-in for makeup removers. It’s time to make this trusty alternative your go-to remover for taking off waterproof mascara.

Working on the principle of ‘like dissolves like,’ baby oil helps dissolve the waterproof mascara, making it easy to wipe off.

Single-Step Method: Wipe off waterproof mascara with baby oil

wipe off waterproof mascara with baby oil

  • Put some baby oil on a cotton pad.
  • Gently wipe it over your lashes to remove waterproof mascara.

Method 2: Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is not only a natural makeup remover, it can also help you grow thick and lush eyelashes. Coconut oil is gentle on the delicate skin around eyes, but tough on the most stubborn waterproof mascara. It breaks down the mascara, making it easy to remove without scrubbing and pulling at your lashes.

Step 1. Apply coconut oil on your eyelashes

apply coconut oil on your lashes

  • Take some coconut oil on your fingers and apply it on your lashes, carefully coating all the mascara with the oil.

The coconut oil will melt on your fingers and can be easily applied, but you can also melt the oil before using it.

Step 2. Wipe away the mascara with a cotton pad

gently wipe your lashes clean with a cotton pad

  • Now, simply wipe away the loosened mascara with a clean cotton pad.

Method 3: Petroleum Jelly

Petroleum jelly is another safe ingredient that can easily double as a makeup remover when you need to take waterproof mascara off your lashes.

If you’re not a big fan of petroleum products, you can use homemade petroleum-free jelly for this purpose.


Step 1. Apply petroleum jelly on your lashes

apply petroleum jelly on your lashes

  • Take some petroleum jelly on your fingers and apply it on your eyelashes, carefully coating all the waterproof mascara.

Step 2. Gently wipe your lashes clean with a cotton pad

gently wipe your lashes clean with a cotton pad

  • Gently wipe off the loosened mascara with a clean cotton pad until your lashes are completely clean.

Method 4: Baby Wipes

If you’re an avid user of makeup remover wipes, you’re going love this alternative. Baby wipes are formulated to be gentle on a baby’s bottom, so you can definitely use it near your eyes without any second thoughts.

Baby wipes can remove waterproof mascara from your lashes without any hassle. While conventional makeup remover wipes can dry out or irritate the skin around the lashes, baby wipes have an über-hydrating effect.

Single-Step Method: Wipe off the waterproof mascara with baby wipes

  • Simply pull out a baby wipe, fold it over and gently wipe the waterproof mascara off your lashes.
  • Change the folds of the wipe and repeat until the lashes are completely clean.

Method 5: DIY Makeup Remover

With just a bit of effort, you can make a nontoxic DIY makeup remover to clean waterproof mascara off your eyelashes. You can whip up your own makeup remover by mixing equal amounts of baby shampoo, olive oil and water.


Baby shampoo acts as a gentle cleanser, but be sure to use the no-tears baby shampoo so that it doesn’t irritate your eyes. Olive oil helps dissolve the oils in the waterproof mascara and also provides nourishment to the eyelashes.

If you’re making this in small amounts for immediate use, you can use tap water instead of distilled water.

Things you’ll need:

things you'll need for DIY makeup remover

  • Baby shampoo, no-tears formula (cleaning agent) – 2 tablespoons
  • Olive oil (breaks down the waterproof mascara) – 2 tablespoons
  • Distilled water – 2 tablespoons
  • Cotton pads

Step 1. Combine the ingredients

combine the ingredients

  • Pour 2 tablespoons each of baby shampoo, distilled water and olive oil in a pitcher or bowl.

Remember to use baby shampoo with no-tears formula.

Step 2. Mix well and transfer it to a bottle or pump dispenser

mix well and transfer to a bottle

  • Stir the ingredients with a wooden spoon to mix them thoroughly. Be careful not to agitate the mixture too much, as it may cause it to foam up.
  • Pour the mixture into a dispensing bottle or pump to ensure ease of use.

Step 3. Remove the waterproof mascara with your DIY remover

  • Squeeze a couple drops of the DIY makeup remover on a clean cotton pad.
  • Wipe your eyelashes with it until you’ve removed all of the waterproof mascara.


  • These chemical-free makeup removers are safe to use anywhere on your face and neck.
  • Always remove mascara, eye makeup and other makeup before going to sleep. Leaving mascara on overnight can make your lashes weak and brittle, and even cause eye infections.
  • Avoid pulling and scrubbing at the lashes, as waterproof mascara often makes them prone to breakage.
  • Let the oils or other removers sit on the lashes for a few seconds to break down the mascara, then gently press the lashes with a cotton pad to wipe off the dissolved mascara.


Summary of How to Remove Waterproof Mascara

How to Remove Waterproof Mascara summary

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