Here's How to Remove Waterproof Mascara Without Losing Your Lashes

Updated 04/27/19
how to remove waterproof mascara
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After spending thirty minutes (or more) on our eye makeup, the last thing we want is for it to run down our face. To ensure that our smokey eye doesn't become a smudgy one, we look to budge-proof eye makeup products, namely waterproof mascara, as it almost always ensures a mess-free makeup situation. But, alas, at the end of the night. the clingy ink has got to come off (easier said than done, right?). To learn just how to remove waterproof mascara without scrubbing, rubbing, or pulling out lashes, we reached out to a couple makeup artists for their expertise on the matter.

Removing makeup is never a fun task, but removing waterproof formulas is the least fun of all. In an effort to make the job easier, we asked makeup artists for their tried-and-true tricks for removing the most stubborn eye makeup. For the makeup artist approved–way to remove waterproof mascara, keep on reading.

1. Apply A Base Coat

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Stila Huge Exteme Lash $23
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Honey Artist makeup artist Suzy Gerstein's go-to trick for easy mascara removal starts with the application. Before applying waterproof mascara, Gerstein says to protect your lashes with a base coat of regular mascara. Once applied, she says to go over your base coat with waterproof mascara for longer, smudge-proof wear.

2. Use a Good Remover

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Kate Somerville True Lash Enhancing Eye Makeup Remover $36
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The key to taking off eye makeup is a good remover. Honey Artists makeup artist Min Min Ma, recommends using this Kate Somerville formula, as she says it wipes away hard-to-remove makeup, while also hydrating the delicate eye area and promoting healthier lashes. However, if you are removing your makeup as a means to change beauty looks, Gerstein says to use a formula like Nars Gentle Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover ($25), as it doesn't leave behind a residue of any kind.

3. Soak Cotton Pads

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Basic Cotton Rounds $6
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A drop of makeup remover will not do the trick. Both Gerstein and Ma recommend soaking two cotton pads with your makeup remover of choice and gently pressing the pads onto your lashes. Hold there for at least 30 seconds, and if need be, lightly massage the area for no more than 15 seconds. Wipe off the excess remover with a clean pad and or water, and your waterproof mascara should no longer be visible.

4. Clean Up With Q-Tips

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Q-tips Purse Cotton Swabs $1
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If your mascara tends to settle along your lash line, Ma recommends using a Q-tip to gently clean up the area.

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