Q&A: Eye makeup remover in Japan?

Q: I am yet to find a good waterproof make up remover in Japan. I used L’Oreal’s make up remover before but due to its cost here in Japan, which is three times more in comparison to other countries, I decided to go for a bit cheaper option. I bought a Shiseido one, but it doesn’t work that well for me and doesn’t do a good job at removing mascara.

I was thinking, they must have a good make up remover here because Japanese mascaras are known for their toughness and staying power and local women and girls seem to use mascara a lot so they must have a good and strong make up remover…


A: Let's preface this with: it's difficult to know if any product will work for you until you've tried it. I understand your frustration completely, as I often go through this process with not only cosmetics or toiletries, but various other types of products.

Luckily, we can check out reviews and ratings of cosmetic products here in Japan, which may give you a better idea of what works and what doesn't. The best, and easiest, way to do this is to check out a "ranking website." You can find these types of websites by searching for "コスメ ランキング" (cosmetic ranking). One website you can try is cosme.net.

Go to the category page, scroll down and choose "ポイントメイクリムーバー" ("point makeup remover, or makeup remover for certain areas, such as the eyes).

The page that comes up (below) shows three products (along with a huge variety of other sorting options). Click on クチコミランキング (word of mouth ranking) to get a full list.

A list comes up with various products, and you can choose how you want to sort the products (though that will require a separate post to explain fully - so we'll just work with the list that comes up for now). As you can see, the first three products are the latest and best ranked products (and so on down the list). The top three eye makeup removers listed here are (as shown in the picture below):

1. Cleansing Express Eye Makeup Remover (クレンジングエクスプレス アイマイクアップリムーバー)

2. Kiss Me Heroine Make Mascara Remover (キスミー ヒロエンメイク マスカラリムーバー)

3. Privacy Mascara Remover (プライバシー マスカラリムーバー)

You can click the product name for more info, and you can see the price and sometimes quantity for each product, as well as consumer ratings and reviews. Once you've clicked on the product name, a screen will show up with further details and information. So by looking through the details, we see that this particular product removes waterproof mascara, and also contains no artificial colors, fragrance or parabens.

So, that's one way to find out what consumers in Japan consider to be the best cosmetics (and there are various other sites, similar to this one, out there as well).

You may also find some useful information in how to find skincare products in Japan.

Now, to the readers out there - do you have any eye makeup remover recommendations? Tell us in the comments!

From @_qiquan:
I'm using the Macquillage mascara remover (it's a stick which works like a mascara), pretty effective :)

From astrorainfall:
Oh yeah, I totally agree Mandom Cleansing Express rocks. But you could also use cleansing oils like Shu Uemura or Fancl or DHC which are sort of the same texture as "western" eye makeup removers. They remove waterproof mascara really well. You don't even need a cotton pad...Just leave it on for a few seconds (eyes closed!) and it'll wash off, esp with a facial wash after.

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