The 'Soak' Method Might Be The Trick To Getting Your Eye Makeup Off

The age-old adage "never go to sleep with your makeup on" is practically gospel at this point. Time and time again, experts have been noting to make it a point to remove your full face of makeup before crashing, unless you want to increase your chances of developing a giant, angry zit overnight, not to mention waking up with dirty sheets.

Another reason? Sleeping with your makeup on can apparently also cause blindness. As pointed out by The Cut, a study published by the American Academy of Ophthalmology reported a case of a 50-year-woman who complained about feeling a "foreign body sensation" inside both of her eyes. It was eventually found that she had tons of "concretions" under her lids, which were apparently brought about by decades of failing to remove eye makeup, specifically mascara, the proper way. If left untreated, or worse, infected, the study noted that the woman could have lost her eyesight.

Removing eye makeup is almost as challenging as applying it, so it's understandable why many sometimes forego doing it at night. But horror stories like this should serve as a reminder to do it anyway. And besides, it turns out that there are ways to get rid of eye makeup much faster and more safely.

'Soaking' your eyes with makeup remover can help erase makeup safely

One mistake people tend to make when removing eye makeup is scrubbing the area in hopes that product would come off much faster. But doing so is counterproductive and would only hurt the delicate skin around your eyes. So instead, experts recommend resorting to the "soak" method, which essentially involves dousing cotton pads with makeup remover and letting them rest on your eyes for a few seconds.

"The 'soak' method is gentle and effective. It will start to break down the product immediately without any aggressive wiping," Anton Khachaturian, a celebrity makeup artist, shared with PureWow. What's more, waiting a beat to let the makeup remover do its job is apparently the secret to effective removal as well. "Let the technology do the work," advised dermatologist Dr. Ranella Hirsch to Glamour. "Apply makeup remover and let it sit, and sit some more. If you do this, you won't find smudges under your eyes in the morning anymore."

If you want a shortcut, you may also want to use pre-soaked pads. Just remember to wait for a few seconds to let the makeup remover sit on your eyes and melt the makeup off before wiping it all away.

Make it a point to use oil-based makeup removers

There are plenty of makeup removers in the market, but not all of them are effective in actually eliminating makeup, especially those so-called makeup remover wipes. Not only are they incapable of removing stubborn makeup, but they're bad for the environment, too. Plus, some of them are formulated with ingredients that are bad for the skin.

"There are some that have harsher irritating ingredients in them than others," dermatologist Dr. Shereene Idriss told InStyle. "I think the wipes themselves are irritating and can cause micro-tears because they're not that soft. They're not the equivalent of a cotton pad that you're dousing in makeup remover. And these micro-tears can be aging in the long term."

For removing makeup, your best bet is to use oil-based removers, as most of them are specially developed to effectively take off even the most stubborn products. They also deliver a bonus perk: making the skin much softer. "Cleansing oils have the added benefit of moisturizing the skin," dermatologist Dr. Charlotte Birnbaum shared with CNN, adding that you need to let it marinate for a bit prior to washing it off. "Of note, it is important for cleansing oils to be applied to dry skin to properly bind to oils on the skin prior to being rinsed off with water."