Why we should wave goodbye to face wipes

03/05/2020 — By Hannah Mepham

Why we should wave goodbye to face wipes

Let’s face it, we all dread that time of the evening when we have to take off the day’s make-up and grime in preparation for our much-needed beauty sleep.

For many, cleansing face wipes are a bathroom essential: they’re convenient, cheap and most importantly quick.

Sales of face wipes have doubled in recent years and our skin is not happy about it - and not only that, many face wipes are also bad for the environment.

Are make-up wipes bad for the environment?

Make-up wipes are  becoming an increasingly large problem for our environment, particularly our coastline. A report by the Marine Conservation Society has shown that the number of wet wipes washed up on British beaches has increased by 50% since 2013.

With an average of 35 wipes found for every kilometre of beach, this is a serious problem that is only getting worse. The reason wet wipes are littering our coast line is due to people flushing them down the toilet rather than throwing used wipes in the bin.

Read our blog post to discover more about why make-up wipes are bad for the environment.

Are make-up wipes bad for skin?

Cleansing face wipes contain huge amounts of chemical components to keep them moist, effective and preserved. Methylisothiazolinone (MI), parabens, alcohol denat (ethanol or ethyl alcohol) and triclosan are some of the chemicals which you'll find in your cleansing wipes.

These all help to dissolve and lift make-up, oil and dead skin, but without rinsing those ingredients off you run the risk of leaving grime residue on your skin and subjecting your poor skin to an array of irritating chemicals that will sit on your skin, then potentially be absorbed into your blood stream while you sleep. Yuck!

Eye make-up removal tips

When using a face wipe it’s easy to get into the habit of rubbing the wipe vigorously to remove a bit of stubborn eye make-up.

The skin around your eyes is extremely delicate, the rubbing motion alone will drag the skin and could cause premature ageing, let alone what potential damage the ingredients could cause.

As well as irritation, high levels of alcohol can also cause extreme dryness and premature ageing.

Always be extra careful around the eye area and when applying creams tap, don’t rub. This will stimulate circulation and reduce dark circles and puffy eyes.

Cleansing tips for acne and blemish-prone skin

If you’re prone to spots or acne, a good daily beauty regime is extra important. You may think you like that dry-skin feeling you get after using a cleansing face wipe – especially if you’ve got oily skin.

But drying out your skin won’t improve acne – it can actually make it worse as your skin will produce more sebum to compensate. Feed your skin with skin friendly ingredients like Rosehip, Black Willow Bark and Green Tea – all of which can be found in our anti-blemish range.

Foaming Face Wash 100ml

Foaming Face Wash 100ml

An ethyl alcohol-free, anti-blemish face wash for a refreshingly clear complexion


Day Solution Moisturiser 50ml

Day Solution Moisturiser 50ml

A light, skin-balancing day cream with anti-blemish properties


Why face wipes can upset sensitive skin

Those who wear contact lenses and those with dry or sensitive skin need to be extra vigilant with their skin care routine and avoid cleansing face wipes at all costs.

While they are convenient for our busy lives, cleansing wipes are full of nasties that can irritate your skin.

Moist environments are the perfect breeding conditions for bacteria, so face wipes need a high amount of preservatives to keep them free of nasty bugs.

These preservatives can be extremely irritating to even the toughest of skin so if you suffer from any sort of skin condition it’s best to stay well clear.

Worryingly, the preservative methylisothiazolinone, or MI, which can cause swelling, rashes and blistering, is often found in cleansing wipes – shockingly it’s even found in baby wipes. Read more about MI


The ingredients you need to watch out for

  • Methylisothiazolinone
  • Parabens
  • Alcohol denat (ethanol or ethyl alcohol)
  • Triclosan
  • Artifical fragrances (parfum)


Try a gentle eco-friendly cream cleanser instead

Face wipes will only remove impurities from the skin’s surface, and so have no other skin benefits but Green People’s Gentle Cleanse moisturises and conditions your skin at the same time, and carries far less risk of irritation.  

Our Gentle Cleanse gently removes all eye make-up including waterproof mascara, cleansing away the day's impurities and leaves your skin silky smooth, it's ethyl alcohol-free and rich in moisture-binding and anti-inflammatory actives.

Remember: a good cleansing routine is key for healthy, glowing skin. It’ll only take you an extra few minutes every evening, but your skin will thank you for ditching those cleansing facial wipes and switching to something gentler.

It is safe for the environment and every part of it is fully recyclable.

Gentle Cleanse & Make-up Remover 150ml

Gentle Cleanse & Make-up Remover 150ml

Soothing cleanser & make-up remover for all skin types



If you have any questions about our natural and organic cleansers as a green alternative to make-up wipes, please contact our friendly customer care team on 01403 740350 or email organic@greenpeople.co.uk.


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