Best Drugstore Eye Makeup Remover

Whether you went out for a night on the town or intend to do just that, it is important to make sure that your makeup is on point.

Of course, if this is the standard for you, chances are you often run into a situation where you need to change your makeup due to a shifting of setting or circumstances. This is where it comes in handy to have a good-quality makeup remover.

In a Hurry? The test winner after 4 hrs of research




Best Makeup Remover

Clinique Take the Day Off Makeup Remover can be used for lids, lashes as well as lips. It is gentle to the skin around the eyes and can be used for sensitive skin. This makeup remover works wonders on waterproof mascara.

This eye and lip makeup remover leaves nothing behind. This gentle formula is tug-free, non-irritating, and non-stinging.

This product is ophthalmologist tested and suitable for contact lens wearers.

Of course, this creates a bit of a give and take where the makeup manufacturers are trying to make their products last longer and longer which ultimately makes them more difficult to remove. On top of that, certain types of makeup are especially tricky considering the location that they are applied namely around the eyes and mouth.

What is the Best Drugstore Eye Makeup Remover in 2020?

Figuring out which is the Top Drugstore Eye Makeup Remover for you can be a difficult and confusing task. That is why we have put together a list of the 7 removers, highlighting what each one does best. Then we provide a helpful buyer’s guide.

(Editor’s Choice)
Oil-Free4.4 oz
(People’s Choice)
(Best Price)
Lotion2 oz
Brush0.2 oz
Oil-Based2.3 oz
Oil-Free5.5 oz
Oil-Free5.4 oz

1. Clinique – Best Drugstore Eye Makeup Remover (Editor’s Choice)

Clinique Take the Day Off Makeup Remover review

If you are looking for a company which has both the prestige of one of the most well-respected makeup manufacturers in the world behind it as well as a science-based approach that is dermatologist guided, then Clinique is the only game in town.

Of course, if you have sensitive skin or eyes, then everything said in that first sentence describes you whether you know it or not, and you should likely take a closer look at Clinique in general. For their makeup remover, it is actually so good that we believe it to be the Top Eye Makeup Remover that we reviewed.

A Solid Formula

When it comes to waterproof mascara removers, the most important thing to decide is whether or not you want oil-based. That said, oil-based makeup removers are quickly falling out of favor to oil-free, and the Clinique Take the Day Off uses this to its advantage using a silicone base instead of oil to accomplish pretty much the same task.

However, the Clinique Take the Day Off also uses the silicone base to allow the introduction of ingredients that do things other than removing makeup. For instance, the Clinique Take the Day Off actually includes a mild astringent which can be irritable for the most sensitive skin but it also includes ingredients which can condition the skin too.

Oh yeah, the Clinique Take the Day Off is meant to be used for your entire face, not just your eyes, which extends its use and versatility.

Clinique - Take the day off Makeup Remover first Impressions and Demo

  • Comes with 4.4 oz of formula
  • Provides a mild astringent
  • Is an especially effective waterproof mascara remover
  • Safe for contact lenses
  • Is oil-free
  • Can condition the skin
  • Fairly good ingredients
  • Does not tug skin
  • Works for the whole face
  • Not for sensitive skin
  • Finish is greasy

2. Neutrogena Wipes – Patented Formula Dissolves All Traces of Makeup (People’s Choice)

Neutrogena Makeup Removing Wipes review

Neutrogena is one of those companies that has seemingly been around forever, and this is because they pretty much have. With almost 90 years of experience under their belt, Neutrogena has become known as one of the best skincare product manufacturers in the world.

That said, this means that Neutrogena does not actually specialize in makeup or makeup removal products though this is not too much of a stretch considering their focus anyway. That said, Neutrogena has managed to seemingly crack the code and provide the best makeup remover wipe for waterproof mascara that we could find.

It Just Works

By far the biggest gripe with most makeup remover wipes is that they are simply ineffective, forcing you to scrub potentially causing redness and irritation that way for them to actually work on waterproof makeup.

Thankfully, the Neutrogena Makeup Removing Wipes provide all of the convenient benefits that come with being a wipe type of makeup remover but the formula is strong enough to work better than plenty of solution formed waterproof mascara removers.

Even better than their efficacy is the fact that the Neutrogena Makeup Removing Wipes did forget their roots are especially good for sensitive skin. The only potential issue is that these wipes simply will not last as long as a larger bottle of solution formed waterproof mascara remover.


  • Is great for sensitive skin
  • Are easy to use
  • Are fairly portable
  • Comes with 50 total wipes
  • Is a less expensive waterproof mascara remover
  • Towelettes are softs
  • Works for the whole face
  • Is more effective than most
  • No greasy finish
  • Not as long-lasting
  • Wipes are fragranted

3. COVERGIRL – Keeping Delicate Skin Around the Eye and Mouth (Best Price)

COVERGIRL Clean Makeup Remover for Eyes & Lips review

COVERGIRL is an interesting company in that they initially started as a high-end brand but eventually turned towards the more profitable mass-consumer market.

Still, this does mean that COVERGIRL has a reputation to uphold as well as a background in high-grade manufacturing. As such, the consumer-grade products they produce have a tendency to be a higher quality than those of many of their direct competitors.

For our purposes, the COVERGIRL Clean Makeup Remover has managed to strike something of an odd balance between seemingly contradictory qualities to be our Best Eye Makeup Remover for sensitive skin.

Type and Formula

These two qualities define the COVERGIRL Clean Makeup Remover more than anything else primarily because it is a bit unexpected.

First, this waterproof mascara remover comes in a lotion form, which makes it much easier to apply but more difficult to remove. This last bit is also created because the COVERGIRL Clean Makeup Remover is technically an oil-based waterproof mascara remover though there are a number of other questionable ingredients, which are usually flagged as well.

That said, this is rated as hypoallergenic, is appropriate for all skin types, and can be used on the entire face. As if all of that were not enough, this waterproof mascara remover also includes ingredients which will help moisturize your face if you can stand the greasy finish caused by oils.

  • Is great for sensitive skin
  • Is a less expensive waterproof mascara remover
  • Comes in a travel size
  • Is a lightweight lotion
  • Works for the whole face
  • Good for all skin types
  • Is hypoallergenic
  • Is fairly effective
  • Can moisturize the skin
  • Finish is greasy
  • Has an unpleasant aroma

4. KissMe – Specially Designed for Removing Strong Waterproof Mascara

Kiss Me Heroine Make Mascara Remover review

Unless you are a hardcore makeup aficionado, chances are that you may not be all that familiar with the Kiss Me Cosmetics line, but that does not change the fact that in the east, this is one of their most respected and prestigious brands able to trace its origins back to the 1820s.

That said, it seems the Japanese markets have a different approach whereby unique innovations and pure efficacy are all that matter as this is by far the worst waterproof mascara remover for sensitive eyes and skin even if it is the best waterproof mascara makeup remover.

A Specialized Task

By first glance, it is immediately clear that this waterproof mascara remover is unlikely to function like the others on our list by virtue of its small size. In fact, this product comes with the least amount of formula altogether, but that formula is incredibly potent and the application unique.

Specifically, this waterproof mascara remover is meant to be applied pretty much how you would waterproof mascara in the first place with an applicator comb. If you have a steady hand and are skilled, this will remove even the thickest, most caked-on mascara.

Of course, if your finger slips or you get some in your eye, be prepared for an intense burning sensation. As a way to extend its versatility a bit, the formula is great if you apply makeup to your eyebrows as well like if you draw them on or fill them in.

  • Is extremely effective
  • The most portable waterproof mascara remover reviewed
  • Comes with an applicator
  • Specifically designed to remove waterproof mascara
  • Can technically use any liquid formula
  • The applicator is a comb
  • Easy to use
  • Blends well with others
  • Uses rejuvenating ingredients
  • Not for sensitive skin
  • Is the most expensive waterproof mascara remover reviewed

5. Maybelline – Gently Washes Away Waterproof Mascara and Eye Makeup

Maybelline Expert Eyes Moisturizing Eye Makeup Remover review

Maybelline is another venerable company with a reputation and market share to compete with just about anybody. That said, this is definitely more of a consumer-grade brand, which means it is generally not going to be quite as good as some of the other products that we reviewed.

On top of that, this is also the least expensive waterproof mascara remover that we saw, so you must enter with tempered expectations when opting for a budget-friendly product. That said, if you are looking for a waterproof mascara remover focused primarily on that function alone, then this is a great option for you assuming you have hardy skin.

Oil on Water

This could actually describe the Maybelline Expert Eyes Moisturizing Eye Makeup Remover to a “T” as this is the only traditional oil-based waterproof mascara remover that we reviewed. That said, this means that those with sensitivities to natural oils will need to look elsewhere, but if you are looking for a simple product, this is it.

What is essentially glorified mineral with a number of beneficial additives, the Maybelline Expert Eyes includes a moisturizing feature to help refresh your skin.

On top of that, like most oil-based waterproof mascara removers, the Maybelline Expert Eyes is incredibly efficient with a little bit going a long way further increasing the value of the already least expensive product we reviewed.

  • Has a moisturizing formula
  • Is the least expensive waterproof mascara reviewed
  • Comes in a travel size
  • Is fragrance-free
  • Is a simpler formula
  • Is incredibly efficient
  • Does not tug skin
  • Is fairly effective
  • For mature skin
  • Not for sensitive skin
  • Has a greasy finish

6. Neutrogena – Safe for Contact Lens Wearers

Neutrogena Oil-Free Gentle Eye Makeup Remover review

Neutrogena makes a return to our list, but this time the product is far more focused on the specific situation as opposed to providing an all-around good experience. That said, this is likely the top waterproof mascara remover for sensitive eyes primarily because it does not use oil and only uses a mild astringent.

Still, if you are looking for a waterproof mascara remover that includes pretty much all of the newest advancements, then this is the product for you.

Pushing the Limit

Whenever a waterproof mascara remover chooses not to use oil in an attempt to cater to those with sensitive skin and eyes, the most common substitute is silicone.

This is primarily because silicone has a far lower incidence of an allergic reaction than natural oils may cause inflammation. Still, the Neutrogena complements this with a bi-phase formula that uses an alcohol derivative to break up the toughest mascara while the silicone then washes it away.

The truly incredible part about all of this is that Neutrogena does not feel greasy afterward likely due to the combination of silicone and alcohol, which impede the effect of the other through interaction. Finally, though it is a bit more expensive in initial cost, this is also the most productive by volume, which increases its value.
Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover Review + Demo

  • Is great for sensitive skin
  • Comes with the most formula
  • Is great for sensitive skin
  • Does not use oil
  • Uses a silicone substitute
  • Safe for contact lenses
  • Is a bi-phase waterproof mascara remover
  • Is not greasy
  • Does not tug skin
  • Is a more expensive waterproof mascara remover
  • Ingredients include alcohol

7. The Body Shop – Soothing and Fragrance Free

The Body Shop Camomile Waterproof Eye and Lip Makeup Remover review

The Body Shop holds arguably one of the more unique positions on our list because it is not exactly that well-known but to those who know of the industry, it is immensely respected. This is because The Body Shop is known for producing some of the most effective products regardless of the market though they definitely have their strong suits.

Another interesting aspect of the company is that it makes a genuine effort to manufacture their products ethically and checks off pretty much all of the boxes including cruelty-free as well as vegan. That said, this is really meant for the entire face which is why we ranked it our best waterproof makeup remover.

Good All-Around

While The Body Shop Chamomile may not necessarily do any given thing better than all of the other products on our list, it does so many things exceptionally well that it definitely deserves note.

For instance, this is an oil-free waterproof mascara remover and uses the same active cleaning agent that baby shampoos do though it is likely in a higher concentration.

Regardless, this allows The Body Shop Camomile to provide extremely effective results without you having to worry about irritation to your skin or eyes. On top of that, The Body Shop Camomile is also a bi-phase makeup remover, though in this instance the second agent is water like for most bi-phase makeup removers.

Demo of Camomile waterproof eye & lip makeup remover from The Body Shop

  • Comes with 5.4 oz of formula
  • Is extremely effective
  • Can remove makeup around the lips
  • Has chamomile extract
  • Is decent for sensitive skin
  • Is a bi-phase makeup remover
  • Is a vegan product
  • Excludes most problem ingredients
  • Is not greasy
  • Not all sellers authentic
  • Is a more expensive waterproof mascara remover

Best Drugstore Eye Makeup Remover Review – Buyer’s Guide


TypeThe “type” might be a bit of a misnomer as no single company has truly cracked the code as to what makes a great waterproof mascara remover. Instead, you have a number of different products, which each work better or worse depending on the skin type that they were developed for with none of them being suitable for everyone.

On top of that, there is not yet a single formula that is suitable for the most sensitive of skin regardless what the company may tell you. Still, the type can often tell you what to expect, what type of skin works best, and the method of application.


These are often not looked at in the highest of regard for a number of reasons, but if you can actually find a brand of makeup removing wipes that work well, then you should jump on it.

Type WipesAs alluded to, the biggest issue with makeup remover wipes is that they have a tendency to not be as effective as other types of makeup removers because you cannot control the saturation of the formula.

On top of that, the container of the makeup remover wipes inherently allows them to dry out over time no matter how quickly you work.


This is by far the most common type of makeup remover, but there are plenty of reasons not to go with it. For one, no matter who you are, and oil-based makeup remover is going to leave your skin with a greasy finish, and there is little you can do about it outside of then using some form of alcohol to remove the residue.

If you have resilient skin and are okay with the time and money investment, this is the most effective route. However, more people than not cannot do this for one reason or another but primarily due to skin irritations.


This is the attempted solution to provide a makeup remover experience like the oil-based types but without the same drawbacks. In some respects, this has actually been an effective development that allows an entire market, which would otherwise be removed from using this product.

On the other hand, this type of waterproof mascara often substitutes the oil with some form of silicone, which ultimately leaves you with the same greasy finish. Still, the silicon substrate is generally better for those with sensitive skin and especially those with sensitive eyes.


Type BrushThis is not an especially common type of makeup remover and is primarily meant to be used on the eyelashes and eyebrows to exclusion. Basically, this type of makeup remover looks almost identically to an actual bottle of mascara, and this type of makeup remover even has an applicator brush to go with it.

However, the point of the brush is to allow you plenty of fine control for the precision application of powerful formulas. While this is arguably the most effective method, it also requires more skill to use than most, is the least versatile, generally the most expensive, and is definitely not for sensitive skin or eyes.


Type LotionThis is technically not its own “type” as it can be either oil-based or oil-free, but lotion makeup remover has the advantage of providing a better substrate. Basically, the lotion base is much easier and cleaner to use than the more common liquid form of makeup removers.

Aside from the fact that it is easier to apply and less likely to cause a mess, lotion makeup removers are also fairly effective for the most part. On top of that, their form also allows the easy inclusion of moisturizers or other ingredients, which can care for the skin beyond makeup removal.


conclusionAs we can see, with so many different skin types and so many different ingredients, it is nearly impossible for a single waterproof mascara remover to be the best for all people. When trying to find the best for you, it is a good idea to figure out what your skin type is and what types of ingredients you might react poorly with.

If your only issue is with various types of natural oils, then we recommend the Clinique Take the Day Off Makeup Remover, which uses silicone-based substitutes and a number of other ingredients to both clean your face not just your mascara or eyes and leave it feeling fresh and rejuvenated.

Most of the worst offending ingredients have been omitted, and the Clinique Take the Day Off Makeup Remover also helps condition the skin for the whole face.

Of course, if oil-based waterproof mascara removers are what you came here for, then we recommend the COVERGIRL Clean, which not only provides the impressive cleaning ability of various natural oils but also comes in an easy to apply lotion as opposed to a more viscous solution. On top of that, the COVERGIRL Clean also goes to work moisturizing and conditioning your skin as well.

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