Can You Use Olive Oil as Makeup Remover?

Whether you wear a light or full face of makeup everyday taking it off is one of the most important parts of your skincare routine. Fully removing it helps to cleanse the skin, unclog pores, and prevent potential skin issues.

While there are various makeup removers available on the market, a lot of them contain harsh chemicals. Therefore, some folks prefer to look for natural alternatives that when used properly can be a great additional to your beauty cabinet.

In this article, we explore the benefits of using olive oil as a makeup remover, potential concerns, how to use it properly, and alternative options.

Can You Use Olive Oil as Makeup Remover?

Can You Use Olive Oil as Makeup Remover?

Yes, you can use olive oil as a makeup remover! In fact, it's a common practice among natural beauty enthusiasts including myself.

I started using EVOO as a natural makeup remover when I was in college because it was cost effective, After a few months I started noticing how nice my skin felt and knew I was onto something.

Since it's a pure oil, EVOO is really good at breaking down super heavy make up including notoriously sticky products like lipstick, mascara, and my number arch nemesis, thick black eyeliner. Using it before cleansing makes it way easier to take product off and have fresh clean skin before bed.

Olive oil also has a super rich texture and moisturizing properties which make it a great choice for folks looking for a gentler alternative to harsh and drying removers that contain products such as alcohol.

How to Choose the Right One

Before you can use OO as a makeup remover you have the find the right one. Often times folks opt for a lower quality product, such as an ordinary oil for their skin. This is actually the opposite of what you want to do.

Choose a very high-quality extra virgin olive oil, such as EXAU. Extra virgin is the highest quality available to consumers because it's unrefined and therefore retains so many more of its health benefits.


Extra virgin is almost always more expensive than ordinary oil. This is because it costs a lot more to produce and there's less of it.

However, a 500ml (16.9 fl. oz.) bottle of premium EVOO compared to a bottle of makeup remover is less expensive when you take into account the volume of product and quality.

In addition, you have the versatility to do other things with it such as making face or lip scrubs! And of course... there's always pasta.

How to Use Olive Oil as a Makeup Remover

This can be done during anytime of day, however, I usually take off my face at night before going to bed.

  1. Patch test: Before using any new product, especially on your face, it's super important to do a patch test. This is so you can see if you have any irritation or allergic reaction. You can do a patch test by applying a small amount of product to on your arm or jawline. Wait 24 to 48 hours to see if any irritation or allergic reactions occur. If you do have an allergic reaction or irritation do not use the product.
  2. Gently massage onto the skin: Take a few drops in your palms and massage it onto your dry face, focusing on areas with makeup. The oil will help dissolve the makeup.
  3. Remove with a warm, damp cloth: Wet a soft washcloth with warm water and gently wipe away the product and makeup residue. Rinse the cloth as needed and continue until your face feels clean.
  4. Follow up with a cleanser: Follow up with a gentle cleanser suited for your skin type. This will help get rid of any leftover oil, makeup, dirt, and really leave your skin feeling fresh and clean.
  5. Moisturize: After cleansing, you can continue with your regular skincare routine. Apply your regular moisturizers to keep your skin hydrated and of course if you're going our during the day make sure to apply sunscreen!

But before incorporating EVOO into your everyday beauty routine, it's really important to understand how the product can affect your skin...

Benefits as a Makeup Remover

Olive oil is renowned for it's health benefits when consumed. For example, it's packed with antioxidants such polyphenols and according to research can help prevent type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

But what about when you apply it to the skin? Here are a few reasons why EVOO makes a great makeup remover:

  • Gentle on the skin:¬†EVOO is a natural ingredient that is usually well-tolerated by most skin types. Its moisturizing properties help to prevent dryness and irritation during makeup removal.
  • Effective in removing makeup:¬†It has excellent dissolving properties, making it effective in breaking down and removing various types of makeup, including foundation, eyeliner, lipstick, and even waterproof mascara.
  • Moisturizing properties: Unlike some commercial makeup removers that can strip the skin of its natural oils, olive oil acts as a hydrating agent. It helps to retain moisture and leaves the skin feeling soft and supple after makeup removal.
  • Natural and chemical-free: Many conventional makeup removers contain harsh chemicals that may cause skin irritation or allergic reactions. Olive oil, on the other hand, is a natural and chemical-free option, making it suitable for those with sensitive skin.
  • Cost-effective:¬†It's¬†readily available and often more affordable compared to some high-end makeup removers.

    Potential Concerns

    • Oily residue on the skin: Since it's¬†an oil-based product, the product can leave behind a slightly greasy residue on the skin. However, this can be easily mitigated by properly cleansing the skin after use.
    • Potential for clogged pores: Although the product is generally non-comedogenic, meaning it doesn't clog pores, some individuals may experience breakouts or congestion due to their skin's unique characteristics. It's essential to monitor your skin's response and adjust¬†as needed.
    • Staining:¬†EVOO has a yellowish tint, which may leave temporary stains on clothing or towels if not properly rinsed off.


    In conclusion high-quality EVOO makes for a fabulous makeup remover. However, it's important to patch test before use, use the correct amount, and always cleanse after.

      Shop our collection of high-quality Italian EVOO today!

      And for a deeper dive into the world of olive oil and skincare take a look at our book.

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