Wednesday, December 17, 2008

DIY Eye Makeup Remover: A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned

Hello my beauties,

How are we doing today? I'm so glad that you're here to read my blog! As a beauty blogger and makeup junkie, I find myself applying and taking off makeup more than usual. At times, I realized that I went through a bottle of eye makeup remover a week. Although I really love the expensive department store makeup removers such as Lancôme Bi-facil and Clinique Take the Day Off, I cannot afford spending $20+ USD per week! Also, drugstore eye makeup removers do not seem to do a good job removing all of my eye shadows. What can a makeup junkie do?

Don't fret, my lovely ladies! When there's a will, there's a way. Once upon a time, I read about diluting baby shampoo to remove eye makeup. However, it did not work out quite well for me as I bought a generic version of the baby shampoo to save me some money. Apparently, the cheap version did not do a good job cleaning anything, especially makeup. Also, as I experienced more with eye makeup remover, the best type is the bi-phasic ones that consist of a water-based cleanser and an oil-phase liquid. When you shake them together, the two different phases mix up and combine their power to remove everything on your lids.

My favorite bi-phasic eye makeup remover: Clinique take the day off ($17.50 USD for 4.2 oz!)
Imagine going through one of those every week!

Knowing what I want in my eye makeup remover actually makes it much easier to create my own DYI version at home. This time around, I purchased Johnson's baby shampoo (brand name FTW!) and with some mad scientist skillz, I finally figured out a formula that gently removes my eye makeup and nourishes my lashes as well.

So my kittens, take carefull notes. At the end of this post, the entry will vanish and you will never ever ever seen this secret eye makeup remover formula again!

Are you ready?

What you need (L-R):
Johnson's baby shampoo ($2.50-$4.00 USD), castor oil (~$3 USD), a tea spoon, some water (not pictured), and a Pyrex mesuring cup

  • As I mentioned earlier, the generic (aka store brand) baby shampoo does not work for me. In the past, I used Target brand and Wal-mart store brand: both of them failed miserably. The Johnson's original formula (with yellowish liquid) works gloriously!
  • Castor oil is one of the oils used in Take the day off and I decide to use it instead of other lighter oils such as olive or jojoba oil. Castor oil seems to hold the emulsion much better and the emulsion is the power force to remove all traces of eye makeup.>
  • Although you can use purified water, I prefer my municipal tap water straight from the source. However, it does not hurt to use bottled water when you mix your DIY eye makeup remover.
Step 1: Measuring baby shampoo

Using a clean spoon, add two spoons of baby shampoo to the Pyrex measuring cup

Step 2: Add water to make a 10% soapy solution

Add enough water to make a 2 oz. soapy water, gently mix the shampoo and water together without causing foams.
You just made a ~10% soapy water solution. At this point, you can stop and use the above solution as an eye makeup remover if you wish.

Step 3: Add castor oil to make a bi-phasic eye makeup remover

Add 1 oz of castor oil to make a 3 oz of bi-phasic eye makeup remover

Then carefully transfer the cleanser to a bottle
As baby shampoo is sudsy, I prefer the volume of the bottle to be bigger than the volume of bi-phasic cleanser I make. Therefore, there is enough room for the two phases to mix together while the cleanser foams up.

Although it is hard to see, an emulsion forms after shaking the two parts together
(I tried to find a clear bottle but had to settle with a dark one instead!)

Castor oil has moisturizing property and since I've been using this DIY cleanser, I've seen my eye lashes getting longer. The regular water-based cleansers tend to dry out my lashes and make them more brittle. However, if you are allergic to castor oil, I suggest you to switch to a different type of oil to use as the oil phase.

When I took the pictures, I toggled between different camera settings but the one that casted yellowish hue gave me the clearest pictures. I tried to edit out the tint but was not successful and I'm very sorry for that. I hope the hue does not annoy you and I did my best to make the pictures as clear as possible.

That's all for today, folks! I hope you find this entry helpful and I've been making my own eye makeup remover for about 1/2 a year now. It is very affordable to get all the ingredients and not really time consuming to make a batch (took me about 10 minutes to make this batch and take pictures at the same time!)

Note (10/28/09): It's funny how the Internet works: I wrote this post almost a year ago and recently, it got picked up in a fashion forum. People there questioned how I went through a bottle of eye makeup remover a week. Back then, I bought store brand or cheap eye makeup remover and wore hard to remove mascaras. In order to remove all traces of mascara, I had to saturate two full cotton balls and if you do the math right, a bottle of eye makeup remover did not last that long. On top of that, I felt very irritated to still have remnants of mascara after spending a chunk of makeup remover and time to remove it. I still wear mascara but thanks to this solution, I actually spend less time and liquid to remove my mascara.

You can get castor oil at drugstores and Walmart. It costs around 3-4 dollars per bottle.

Take care and stay gorgeous,
Your Makeup Blogger

P.S: For those who do not use the British system, 1 fluid ounce = 30 ml.
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  1. I'm always looking for a cheap eye makeup remover, because Lancome Bi Facil is just wayyyyy too expensive. And I love me some waterproof mascara.

    excellent idea!

  2. Hi Pepper,

    Thank you for your comment. I saw you at Makeup and Beauty Blog a lot of times :)

    You're right, with the price of Bi-facil, I would go broke pretty soon. If you give this DIY remover a try, please let me know the outcome.

  3. hi!

    it's good to share your homemade recipies! like we say in France "les recettes de grand mère" lol! but, could you tell me what castor oil consists in? is it a "special" product or just an oil like the avocado oil, cause I have a bottle of avacado oil, which, by the way, is excellent to use for hair and skin, and it's cheap!) thx ;)

  4. Hi Ivinea,

    Castor oil is an extract from castor seed and it is high in fatty acid. It is not a blend of a lot of oils but from only one plant.

    Of course you can substitute castor oil with something else like olive oil or avocado oil. Over here avocado oil is quite expensive but really good for your hair.

  5. Oh wow I didn't know this was possible! Thank you for the homemade recipe.

    Yup yup I'm back to the blogging world. I guess I couldn't stay away... lol~ :X

  6. Hi Alyssa,

    You're back and I'm so happy! Blogging is very addicting and I'm glad you're back with us. I've missed you!

    I hope this formula will help you. Please keep me updated with the outcome :)

  7. Thanks for sharing this homemade recipe. I'm always looking for a cheap makeup remover. So far, the only drugstore product I tried that is really good at removing makeup is L'Oreal Gentle Makeup Remover for Eyes and Lips but it stings my eyes :( I will definitely try this soon.

  8. Hi Gio,

    No problem! I've been using it for a while now and it's pretty good, no stinging at all. Make sure you get the tear-free baby shampoo, it's one of the key ingredients. Please give it a try and let me know if you like it.

  9. dao fab post! I hope to try it out soon!

  10. Hi Kia,

    Thank you, you're so sweet! Let me know how it comes out, ok?

  11. I love your blog Dao!

    Thanks for the recipe!

  12. Hi Jaq,

    You're welcome girl! Thank you so much for stopping by!

  13. For cheap makeup remover, baby oil works really well, at least for me. It's also sort of moisturizing too.

  14. Hi Anonymous,

    Yes, baby oil does work. However, I'm not into having blur vision after removing my eye makeup. Also, since mineral oil can clog pores, I try to steer clear of that area as much as I can.


Dear Dao...


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