face wipes for sensitive skin

Why face wipes are bad for sensitive skin

Facial cleansing wipes revolutionized the skincare industry, with almost every major brand developing its own variety targeting oily skin, dry skin and even sensitive skin.

However, face wipes are the one thing the majority of Pai customers cannot tolerate – with many reporting stinging, burning or redness after use.

In fact, a close friend of mine, who isn’t prone to sensitivity at all, recently woke up with flakey, inflamed and itchy eyes after using a well-known brand of ‘gentle’ wipes nightly.

Are face wipes bad for your skin?

In a word, yes. While they are super convenient, by their very nature facial wipes have to be soaked in some pretty potent ingredients.

Moist cloths packed on top of each other are a breeding ground for bacteria.

They sit on shelves for up to 18 months on a warm shop floor, and so require high levels of preservatives, alcohol and anti-bacterial agents to keep them usable.

These harsh synthetics are then rubbed into the skin, particularly around the delicate and extra-thin eye area.

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

Ingredients to avoid are:

  • Propylene Glycol and Dipropylene Glycol (irritants)

  • Phenoxyethanol (irritant)

  • 2-Bromo-2-Nitropropane-1, 3-Dio (a potent anti-microbial agent that carries the highest hazard rating, 8-10, on the Skin Deep Ingredients database. Read more here).

woman with oil cleanser woman cleansing her skin

Why face wipes are bad for the environment

Besides not being great for your skin, face wipes aren’t good for the planet either. Most face wipes are made from a type of non-biodegradable plastic.

Much like other single use-plastics - think water bottles or plastic bags - they often end up in landfill, where they will sit for up to 100 years before decomposing.

They also end up polluting waterways, turning up in rivers and oceans and disrupting the animals and plants that live there.

What to use instead of face wipes

Face wipes only remove impurities from the skin’s surface, and have no other real skin benefits. Every part of your skincare regime contributes to a clear, glowing complexion, so there’s no point investing in a premium moisturiser if you’re using face wipes to cleanse. What’s more, we’re big believers that getting your cleanse right is the secret to happier skin – it all starts from there.

A high-performance oil cleanser, like our Light Work Rosehip Cleansing Oil, removes every last trace of make-up, without any stinging or irritation. And because it contains our wonder-ingredient Rosehip Oil, skin is left feeling nourished and radiant too.

If a cream cleanser is more your thing, our bestselling Middlemist Seven gentle cream cleanser, with Camellia and Rose, is completely irritant and alcohol-free. Its high levels of Omega 3 as well as Vitamins A, B, C and E also keep skin soft and supple. Depending on how much make-up or SPF you wear, you can even use them both as part of a double cleanse regimen each evening.

The best replacement for a face wipe? Using a muslin cloth with your cleanser. Not only are they more effective at removing make-up and SPF, they also gently exfoliate the skin to leave it super soft and smooth. They’re washable and reusable too, making them much more environmentally-friendly than one-use face wipes.

Better for the planet, better for your skin – win-win.


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Personalise Your Routine!

Personalise Your Routine!

Concentrated actives that are kind to skin with no compromise on performance. Blend with your Pai moisturiser or serum, oil, SPF, body cream....you decide!

Concentrated actives that are kind to skin with no compromise on performance. Blend with your Pai moisturiser or serum, oil, SPF, body cream....you decide!

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