Survey any makeup artist and they'll school you on the most important part of any makeup look: skin care. And where do you start in the skin care process? Your cleanser, of course. From balms to oils to makeup wipes and micellar water, we asked established makeup artists to share their favorite cleansers on the market. The range of price points and formulations means there's definitely a cleanser for everyone in this roundup.
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Hyewon Ahn is a celebrity makeup who also happens to be a champion body painter. In other words, the removal of product is very important for her — so you can bet she has a roster of favorite makeup cleansers to share. One of her favorites is Shu Uemura's Cleansing Beauty Oil, which she discovered at a duty-free shop while traveling. "It's so easy to use because I can wash it off with water after massaging it in my skin. Also, the gingko leaf extract and green tea extract help my skin to calm down. It's perfect for anyone with sensitive skin."
"These wipes are so aromatic and effective that you will look forward to taking off your makeup," says Edward Cruz, a celebrity makeup artist who's worked with Alyssa Milano, Anna Wintour, and Priyanka Chopra. "I love using these on clients because they remove makeup with one wipe — waterproof makeup formulas included — and they are accessible even at 4 a.m. when everything is closed except the drugstores."
"Laura knows makeup, and what a lot of people don't know is that before she found makeup artistry, she was an esthetician in France with sensitive skin herself," says Cruz. "This remover can be used as a cleanser or on a cotton pad. It will melt off makeup and leave the skin feeling refreshed without irritation, ready for your skin care regime. One of its main ingredients is soothing cucumber, which is essential in an upscale spa treatment. I recommend this to everyone."
Cruz notes that while this product is marketed for eyes, it's actually a great cleanser for your entire face. Your eye area is the most sensitive and delicate on your entire body, so if the product is safe for your eyes, then it's also safe for your face and neck.
"This product completely falls into the fight fire with fire category. I've been using it for over a decade and is a staple for me," says Hannah Hatcher, the global makeup artist for Jane Iredale Cosmetics. "It's a nourishing, skin-friendly, oil-based cleanser that completely breaks down your makeup — even the most stubborn, waterproof mascara — and then emulsifies with water and rinses away leaving behind the softest skin." She recommends it for all skin types, even those who are have oily skin.