7 Zero Waste Makeup Remover Brands Keeping Your Pores And The Planet Clean
Ahhhh, the joys of end-of-the-day removal…
You take off your ethical heels, your organic bra, and your smudged makeup.
We know sleeping in cosmetics is a no-no, but what about when you take it off?
Shockingly, many makeup removers contain synthetic solvents and hydrocarbons that damage our skin—and the Earth.
Zero waste makeup remover options, on the other hand (or face), can provide a much safer way to scrub away the day by shunning both the plastic bottle and petrochemical ingredients.
To avoid waste, we test products on an as needed basis. This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a small commission. Learn more about why we do this here.
The Best Natural Eco-Friendly Makeup Remover For A No-Waste Wash-Up
We think Clean-Faced Cosmetics is one of the best makeup removers in this list. It offers a richly moisturizing hemp and castor oil combo to clear up your clogged pores, without clogging our waterways with more plastic.
Then there’s Eu’Genia, providing plant-based face care that doesn’t rely on unnecessary fillers and additives. They keep their environmentally friendly makeup remover super simple and sensitive-skin friendly with minimal (i.e. 3) ingredients.
Grab your reusable eco-friendly makeup wipes and let’s get cleansing.
Don’t forget to (black)head to the end of the article to take a peek at how we picked these zero waste makeup remover brands.
The Full List Of Zero Waste Makeup Removers
- Clean-Faced Cosmetics | Visit Store
- Activist Skincare | Visit Store
- Andrea’s Organic Market | Visit Store
- Eu’ Genia | Visit Store
- Plant Makeup | Visit Store
- Ethique | Visit Store
- Leafology | Visit Store
- DIY Zero Waste Makeup Remover
- Zero Waste Makeup Remover Pads
1. Clean-Faced Cosmetics
*Note: Some cosmetics contain synthetic dyes but you can request those without.
Clean-Faced Cosmetics’ Zero Waste Makeup Remover
No more excuses for waking up with raccoon eyes.
Clean-Faced Cosmetics’ Hemp & Castor Natural Cleansing Oil is a blend of hemp, castor, vitamin E and rosehip oil, making it moisturizing, rich in omega-6 and omega-3 essential fatty acids, and naturally antifungal and antibacterial.
The quadrangle of natural oils not only leaves your face spotless, but makes your skin noticeably smoother, softer, and even in complexion.
For those with oily skin or sensitive skin, this product is a crowd fave.
It comes in a recyclable glass bottle with an eye dropper, and CFC offers refills at 10% off. Simply ask the brand for a shipping label, send back the empty, and they’ll send back your refilled zero waste makeup remover.
About Clean-Faced Cosmetics
As a small one-woman-operated business and “passion project”, CFC has an impressive roundup of vegan, zero waste, and (mostly) organic makeup.
Candid and transparent in her approach, founder Laura confirms raw materials are sourced from other small businesses and shipping happens with 100% biodegradable packaging.
Because waste is unavoidable to some degree in cosmetics production, she either repurposes (i.e. making a form of sustainable lipstick with accidental air bubbles into samples) or recycles (i.e. ensuring plastic film is sent to a proper plastic film recycling service).
They make regular financial contributions to organizations such as NAACP, Rainforest Trust, and Terrapass for carbon offsets.
2. Activist Skincare
*Note: One ingredient used in their zero waste makeup removers contains RSPO-certified palm oil.
Activist Skincare’s Plastic-Free Cleansing Balm
Activist Skincare offers several luxurious sustainable makeup remover alternatives, in oil, gel, or balm form.
We’d suggest the soft supple shea butter and grapeseed oil in the Deep Moisture Cleansing Balm which provides a highly moisturizing method for makeup removal.
If your face is prone to oily breakouts though (we’ve been there) the Sea to Skin Cleansing Gel is probably more your speed. We love the striking blue from its spirulina extract which cleans your pores without stripping away any essential skin moisture.
For a zero waste oil-based eye makeup remover, try Botanical Cleansing Oil.
All three come in eco-friendly glass jars and do not contain artificial colors or fragrances, formaldehyde, lanolin, mineral oil, parabens, phthalates, silicones, sulfates, and more.
About Activist Skincare
As a small woman-owned zero waste skin care brand with a conscience, Activist Skincare are activists in the beauty space.
Not only members of 1% for the Planet, they also support Rainforest Trust, Earthjustice, and the Environmental Defense Fund.
Ingredients for all formulas are exclusively those approved by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics and Environmental Working Group.
Their entire line is non-GMO, most of it is certified organic, and just two products contain RSPO palm oil.
All Activist Skincare products are sold in reusable/recyclable glass bottles with minimal plastic waste (i.e. droppers). And we love that these are refillable via their refill pouches, which can be sent back to Activist or to TerraCycle for proper recycling.
These refill pouches (just by the way) lessen CO2 emissions by 99% compared to their heavier glass counterparts.
All shipping is from their studio-lab in LA in paper-based materials.
3. Andrea’s Organic Market
*Note: Andrea’s cleansing products are either vegan or can be made vegan. However, some other products contain things like honey and goat’s milk,
Andrea’s Organic Market’s Zero Waste Makeup Remover Substitute
Andrea’s Organic Market offers a refreshing and nourishing astringent zero waste option with witch hazel and aloe.
The Luminous Skin Facial Cleansing Astringent is a gentle vegan facial cleanser and makeup remover combo that retains your skin’s natural oils to leave it feeling soothed, soft, and clean.
It’s perfect for all skin types, especially those with sensitive skin or damaged skin.
It comes in a glass bottle with options of dropper, pump, or plain cap tops, so you don’t need to waste droppers and pumps on reorders.
There are a variety of other scrubs and cleansers to choose from that contain some of Earth’s finest medicines—cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil, matcha green tea powder, raw wildflower honey, aloe vera juice, and more.
They’re all cruelty-free and vegan, with exception to the Acne Scrub, which contains goat’s milk by default but can instead be formulated with coconut milk.
About Andrea’s Organic Market
Andrea’s Organic Market is a sustainable skincare brand that creates products that harness the power of nature.
Everything is made with organic, chemical-free, non-GMO, palm oil-free, and non-synthetic ingredients, sourced fair trade when possible.
Only glass containers are used, and she accepts containers for refills or offers biodegradable refill pouches for certain products.
You’ll receive your eco-friendly makeup remover in 100% recycled paper cushioning and labels, compostable packing peanuts, and biodegradable hemp string and tape.
*Note: We are confirming policies directly with this brand.
Eu’Genia’s Zero Waste Makeup Remover Alternative
It’s all about plant power with Eu’Genia’s Everyday Strength Unscented Shea Butter.
Wait, isn’t shea butter a moisturizer?
It sure is, but this “wonderbalm” is also one of the best sustainable makeup removers for all skin types—including sensitive, dry, mature, blemish-prone, combination and normal.
In Ghana—where the shea butter is sourced—it is celebrated for its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidizing, antifungal properties thanks to being rich in vitamins A and E.
Simply warm in your hands, apply to your face and eye area, and wipe with a warm, damp cloth.
This 80% unrefined shea butter formula also includes Moringa Oil and antioxidant-rich Baobab Oil to leave your skin with an added natural glow.
They also offer scented varieties that utilize essential oils, but be sure to only use the unscented variety as an eco-friendly eye makeup remover, as essential oil may lead to eye and skin irritation.
Eu’Genia was started by Naa-Sakle Akuete, a former Wall Street analyst and her mother, the former head of the Global Shea Alliance.
No wonder they’re committed to using the best shea butter on Earth.
Eu’Genia is also a social enterprise, and commits to fair wages and increasing opportunities for their female workforce in Ghana, where the shea butter is farmed and formulated.
They donate 15% of their profits back to their workers through an education fund.
Everything is sold in recyclable and eco-friendly tin packaging.
5. Plant Makeup
Note: Plant Makeup’s eco-friendly makeup remover is vegan, but some cosmetics contain beeswax.
Plant Makeup’s Zero Waste Face Makeup Remover
Watch your beauty blossom thanks to the botanicals in Plant Makeup’s eco-friendly makeup remover liquids.
The Herbal Cleansing Oil made with olive oil, argan oil, lavender, and chamomile. It’s gentle and restorative, while remaining powerful enough to remove thick makeup like stubborn, waterproof mascara.
To use, apply some of the oil to your favorite reusable makeup remover pads and gently wipe your makeup away.
Plant Makeup also offers Pore Hug facial mist, an astringent with moisturizing properties.
With lilacs, elderflowers, linden, lemon balm, calendula, helichrysum, yarrow, chamomile, and lavender all as ingredients, your face will be soft and gorgeous as a petal.
Both products are all-natural, ethically sourced, cruelty-free, and vegan.
About Plant Makeup
One of our favorite eco-friendly makeup brands, Plant Makeup is the solo initiative of artist, musician, aesthetician and all-around creative indie goddess Jes.
After discovering her passion for plants, Jes began blending herbal teas. This led to the magic alchemy of turning plants into makeup, skincare, haircare, incense cones, and perfume.
Based in Massachusetts, Plant Makeup is a thriving artisanal apothecary that uses local or organic ingredients, all completely non-GMO, sustainably sourced, and made fresh in small batches.
When it comes to packaging, Jes uses recycled and compostable materials and whimsical, ornate labels that Jes draws herself.
Ethique’s Zero Waste Home Makeup Remover
Ethique keeps it simple with their Bliss Bar.
The plastic-free makeup remover bar gently works as an everyday general cleaner and moisturizer.
It’s suitable for all skin types, but works especially well on dry ones.
The Bliss Bar is made from richly moisturizing creamed coconut butter and soothing kaolin clay—among other non-toxic, non-greasy, and sustainable ingredients.
It’s not tested on animals, is totally vegan, and is certified palm oil-free.
Ethique creates an array of natural products for the body and home alike—zero waste cleaning products, anyone?—and they keep our planet pretty clean, too.
This Certified B Corp was one of the first companies to revolutionize soap and shampoo by getting rid of the bottle altogether.
Everything in their product range comes in the form of a 100% plastic-free bar or compostable cardboard tube—preventing the use of millions of plastic bottles.
They also plant a tree for every online order and donate 20% of their annual profits to charity.
Ethique is also available on Amazon, Holland & Barrett (UK), and Nourished Life (AU)
Leafology’s Eco-Friendly Makeup Remover UK
Among Leafology’s impressive skincare clays, serums, cleansers, and face food, their zero waste eye makeup remover is one of their most versatile products.
It rids your mascara eyes from looking like a bandit by lifting away makeup, rather than smearing it all around your face—all while moisturizing.
The Eye & Lip makeup remover is non-irritating, unscented, lightweight, and nourishing thanks to a fruit sugar-derived and coconut emulsifier.
All options come in a recyclable glass jar with an aluminum lid.
Leafology is all about “pure naked plant knowledge”.
The brand was started by Ella, who spent a decade traveling around the world and using her approach to natural beauty in various fine art photography projects.
This UK-based and award-winning skincare brand features a handcrafted range of vegan products for our skin, hair, and home.
All products are free of synthetic fragrances and colors, preservatives, petrochemicals, PEGs, sulfates, and parabens.
The products are made fresh by Ella and tested on friends, not animals.
Everything is packaged in a recyclable glass bottle or metal, with paper bag refills for powdered products.
Shipping is 100% plastic free and one tree is planted through TreeSisters per order.
8. DIY Zero Waste Makeup Remover
How do you remove makeup without waste?
For the most waste-free alternative makeup remover, DIY is the ticket, especially given it’s so simple to make.
If you have acne-prone skin or dry skin, simply mix witch hazel with equal parts of water to cleanse away your organic foundation and the daily grime.
Alternatively, make DIY zero waste makeup removers with oil.
It may sound counterintuitive—especially when we spend so much time with our zero waste face wash trying to get rid of our oily skin—but our skin thrives on oil. It’s why it produces it!
Simple and effective, oil dissolves the oil from your clogged pores, which helps clean and balance both dry or oily skin.
There are many suitable oils for a DIY zero waste makeup remover, and they’re often found around the house or at the supermarket.
- Olive oil: Ideally extra virgin (and organic). Combine with water (two parts oil, one part water), shake, and put it to work with your eco-friendly makeup remover cloth.
- Castor oil: Used similarly, with the added benefit of supporting hair growth, making it one of the best zero waste eye makeup removers to promote lush lashes. Soon, you won’t need that zero waste mascara!
- Sweet almond oil: Unrefined sweet almond oil has skin-supporting nutrients and is directly applied to your face (just a few drops) before wiping off.
- Coconut oil: Virgin coconut oil for makeup removal is also an excellent option and can be applied direct-to-skin.
- Jojoba oil: You can either apply directly to your skin or add a few drops to dampened zero waste makeup remover pads.
9. Zero Waste Makeup Remover Pads
Now we get to the other half of the zero waste makeup removers: zero waste makeup remover wipes.
It’s not very useful to forgo the plastic bottle if you’re going to use plastic-tubed Q-tips and wasteful disposable makeup wipes.
Fortunately, eco-friendly reusable makeup remover pads are easy to come by. You probably even already have one in the form of a washcloth!
However, if you want something a little softer and face-specific, try the reusable, washable organic hemp facial rounds from Juniperseed Mercantile.
If you just decluttered and are wondering what to do with old clothes, cut or sew your own DIY sustainable makeup remover wipes. Flannel and other cotton fabric garments are ideal.
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How We Found The Best Eco-Friendly Makeup Remover
What is the healthiest way to remove makeup?
That’s what we set out to discover.
Getting rid of that caked on eyeliner in a way that wouldn’t harm our planet required us to take another look at some of our ethical and sustainable beauty criteria:
- Non-toxic: Organic makeup removers typically contain the best zero waste makeup remover ingredients precisely because they consist of natural skin care ingredients (ideally organic) instead of the many ingredients to avoid in skincare.
- Vegan: We make exceptions for products that can be ethically sourced (i.e. beeswax and honey) but appreciate when brands have vegan offerings, too.
- Palm oil-free: Or RSPO-certified sustainable palm oil at the very least.
- Ethical ingredient sourcing policies
- Thoughtful packaging: Whether organic lipstick or makeup remover, zero waste is always ideal.
Final Thoughts On Sustainable Makeup Remover Brands
Clean and clear skin is beautiful skin, just like a clean and clear planet is a healthy one.
It’s only natural to dress up from time to time, and with so many zero waste makeup brands, we can do so sustainably.
And it’s nice to know we also have the tools to responsibly remove the glamor-paint, whether it’s by one of the brands on this list or with a simple DIY zero waste makeup remover.
Just like the best zero waste makeup remover strips your skin of any pore-clogging cosmetics, you can join our efforts of stripping the cosmetics industry of all its nasties by sharing this article.