How to Get Makeup Out of Clothes

How to Get Makeup Out of Clothes

No one is immune to a makeup mishap. Whether you’re a beginner who is still learning about the application of your makeup or an experienced professional, sooner or later you’re going to end up with an accidental spill. The good news is that there are several methods for extracting makeup. The best method of removal depends on the type of makeup, and the type of fabric.

Before attempting any type of makeup extraction from clothing, it is important to test for colorfastness. Here's what to do:

  • Apply a small amount of the cleaning solution to an inconspicuous area
  • Allow it to sit for a few minutes
  • If the fabric bleeds, then do not use that cleaning solution

The next steps involved determining what type of makeup you are dealing with.

Here are some of the more common types of makeup that are notorious for staining.

Oil-Based Makeup

Oil-based makeup, such as some types of:

  • Cream blush
  • Liquid foundation
  • Mascara
  • Cream concealer

can be extracted using mineral spirits or turpentine. These products work because they are petroleum-based solvents, which dissolve the oils in makeup.

With oil-based makeup, be sure to test the solvent on an inconspicuous area before using it on the stains, then follow these steps:

Pour a small amount of mineral spirits or turpentine onto the stains

  • Gently rub the solvent in to loosen the makeup
  • Allow the solvent to dry and then brush off any excess residue
  • Wash the item as usual

Water-Based Makeup

These makeup stains, such as those from eyeshadow and lipstick, can be extracted easily. This is because the makeup is water-based, so it will come out in the wash.

If the makeup is fresh, you can simply throw the item into the washing machine and wash it as usual. However, if the makeup has already dried, you may need to pre-treat the stain with a little bit of dish soap, laundry detergent, or a spray of specialized remover before putting it in the washing machine.

 Follow these steps:

  • Spray a cloth with warm water and add a small amount of soap
  • Rub into the stained area until the makeup has been extracted
  • Be sure to rinse thoroughly, wringing out excess liquid and allow the item to air dry

wate-based makeup

Special Note:  Shaving Cream

Shaving foam is a little trickier because it is an oil-in-water mixture with humectants, wetting agents, and other ingredients added. Fortunately, it’s not hard to remove and your item can just go through your washing machine’s normal wash cycle.

Permanent Makeup

Permanent makeup, such as tattooed eyeliner or eyebrow tinting, is more difficult to extract. This is because permanent makeup is true to name - it's designed to be permanent. However, there are a few ways to try to remove permanent makeup.

First, you can try using an oil-based makeup remover.  Simply apply the product to a cotton ball or pad and gently rub it over the affected area. You may not obtain full results, but you may be able to fade it.

If the above method does not work, you can try using a solvent such as rubbing alcohol or acetone. Simply apply either of these solvents to a cotton ball or pad and gently rub it over the area with the permanent makeup. These solvents will likely extract the makeup, but they may also damage the fabric of the clothing, so use them with caution.

If all else fails, you may need to consult a professional for help removing permanent makeup. A professional can likely extract the makeup without damage.

Specialized Products

You may want to consider using specialized makeup removal products. These products are designed specifically for removing makeup, and they can be quite effective. In addition, they're usually very easy to use and won't damage your clothes.

To use a makeup removal product, simply follow the instructions on the package. Most products will require you to soak a cotton ball or pad in the solution, squeezing out the excess solution and then dabbing it onto the affected area. Let the solution sit for a few minutes before blotting it away with a cloth. You may need to repeat this process a few times. 

These instructions are generalized, so it's important to follow the directions carefully.


In A Nutshell

If you've ever wondered how to get makeup out of clothes, you're not alone. Many people have had the unfortunate experience of accidentally getting makeup on their clothing. Whether it's a smudge of lipstick on your shirt collar or foundation on your pants, it can be frustrating trying to get it out. 

Luckily, by following the above procedures, you can probably remove most sources of makeup from your clothing and if all else fails, there’s always the services of a professional.

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