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How to remove UV makeup

Updated: Jan 11

It's sod's law! I was going to write a review of Glitzy Girlz' UV makeup palette when something cropped up that seemed... well, rather more important. How to get it all off.

After testing out the neon pigments and being, initially, somewhat underwhelmed, my other half flashed an ultra violet light in my face - and I lit up like a Christmas tree.

The effect was stunning. Every dot, splatter and carefully drawn line fluoresced in a dazzling display of all things stand-out BRIGHT. Even my eyelashes flashed DayGlo green.

I couldn't believe it; it worked!

What a shame I was all made up with nowhere to go, marvelling at my creativity in ultra-uncool 'granny' slippers with stray threads where pom-poms were once attached and an over-sized T-shirt that often doubles up as a nightie.

"It's getting late," my other half reminded me, going on to stress we had to be out the door at some ungodly hour in the morning.

It was the nudge I needed to launch myself into my evening skincare regimen. But, as I was to discover, the effort required to remove UV makeup goes above and beyond any normal cleansing routine.

UV makeup

Neon makeup - takeaways

There are a couple of things I'd like to share about neon makeup. They are important, especially if you are considering a purchase or have UV cosmetics that you haven't tried yet.

First up, pigments in the palette I bought were quite loose and crumbly. Apparently, this is perfectly normal. However, it is likely to mean they won't last very long. I could see the bottom of pans after just a few sweeps with a brush. Careful storage is also a 'must' to stop pigments from going all over the place. My book palette came with a sleeve-style box, which should keep everything intact.

Another thing of note is that the shades did not appear to be particularly neon or even bright in daylight. In fact, they had that wishy-washy 'barely there' look. Knowing what I know now - that they are spectacular under UV light - I am going to take this as a good thing.

It is perfectly feasible to use this makeup either under or over day makeup without looking like a freak. So you won't stand out when you don't want to but will be ready to shine brighter than the Aurora Borealis when the time comes.

Because the pigments had that whiter shade of pale look in normal light, I was tempted to keep piling it on which, it later transpired, wasn't necessary. Oh, how I wished I'd been a lot more economical - when it came to washing it off.

neon makeup

Removing UV makeup

First up, scrap your normal routine. It won't work. Trust me on this - I've been there.

Start with micellar water and pay particular attention to areas with high concentrations of UV makeup. Hold a soaked pad over these areas for at least 30 seconds before sweeping the face.

Next, you will need Vaseline or a good cleansing balm. Massage a fair amount into the skin. Keeping massaging for three to five minutes before removing with a hot cloth or warm water.

If you have a UV light, use it now to see how much you have managed to remove. If you can still see a large amount of product, repeat the first two steps. Don't rub or drag the skin and only use gentle motions.

Once you are satisfied you have got the bulk of the makeup off, give your skin a wash with a mild, hydrating cleanser. If you have an electronic cleansing tool, use it during the wash.

You can now tone and moisturise.

In all honestly, it may take a day or two to get every last spec of product off your skin and lashes. A depressing prospect, if you are a skincare junkie like me.

My initial plan was to share images of my UV creations but, after testing out the palette, I was dismayed at the effort required to remove this stuff. Hence, I have not yet been able to bring myself to use it again - yet. I am sure temptation will get the better of me at some point.

Here's a quick recap. The infographic below can be downloaded and saved for future use.

How to remove neon makeup infographic

UV makeup is great fun to use. Seeing the designs you have created come alive is a literally breathtaking moment.

Enjoy experimenting with this cool way to express yourself. Just remember to remove UV makeup properly as soon as you are done with it.

bright makeup

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1 Comment

Hi Belinda,

Your post has just taken me back 30-odd years to when I was at university. The lighting at certain late night events must have been similar to a UV light because some of the sights that you saw were ... unusual! Just like some of the pictures that you've shown above.

I'll be sure to mention your article to my wife in relation to the best approach for removing UV makeup.

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