Thursday, March 24, 2016

Review: Epielle Original Clean and Night-Time Soothing Towelettes (Pond's and Neutrogena Dupes)

Last month when I was at Big Lots, I noticed two new towelette formulas from Epielle. For those who are new to the blog, I am a huge, longtime fan of Epielle towelettes (they range from $1 to $3 per pack at Big Lots and other discount stores). Epielle is owned by the company Kareway, which is a Korean skincare brand, and their products are made in Korea. Epielle also makes sheet masks and other skincare products, all at very affordable prices.

So when I found these two new-to-me formulas from Epielle, they really grabbed my attention because this is the first time that I've ever seen a "compare to" blurb on their packaging. Could these really be a more affordable alternative to the Neutrogena and Pond's towelettes? Well you know I had to see for myself! So here we go...

Epielle Night-Time Soothing Makeup Remover Towelettes
Compare to Neutrogena Night Calming Cleansing Towelettes
(retail: $2.49 for 30 sheets at Big Lots)

The first thing I noticed about these new towelettes is that the price-point is slightly higher than Epielle's others towlettes, which retail for $1 for 30 or $2 for 60. But if they're awesome, $2.49 for 30 is still a great deal, right?


The seam in the packaging is covering up some bullet points that read:
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Alcohol free
  • Safe for contact lens wearers

The Neutrogena Night Calming Cleansing Towelettes retail for around $7.50 for 25 sheets. The Epielle version retails for $2.49 for 30 sheets. 

Now let's compare the ingredients. 

Here are the ingredients in the Neutrogena version (from the Drugstore.com website):

Water, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Isostearyl Palmitate, Pentaerythrityl Tetraethylhexanoate, Isononyl Isononanoate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Hexylene Glycol, Cyclohexasiloxane, PEG 4 Laurate, PEG 6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Sucrose Cocoate, Carbomer, Sodium Hydroxide, Benzoic Acid, Dehydroacetate Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Fragrance (Parfum)

As you can see, the ingredients in the Epielle version are quite different. Most notably, the second ingredient in the Epielle wipes is mineral oil, an ingredient which is not present in the Neutrogena version. The Epielle version also contains macadamia seed oil, which is not in the Neutrogena version.


The Epielle sheets are large (bigger than the regular Epielle sheets) and if memory serves me correctly, they're about the same size as the Neutrogena version.


These sheets are quite soft on the skin, and I find that the material is a bit thicker and stronger than the material used for the regular Epielle sheets. As for how these towelettes worked for me, they felt promising at first, but ended up being a disappointment. 

In a nutshell, the fragrance is nice (similar to the Neutrogena fragrance but not exact), and I love that these sheets contain more moisture than the regular Epielle sheets, which seem to have decreased in moisture over recent years. But there's a high oil content in these Epielle sheets, which makes it so that makeup is easily dislodged, but it doesn't actually LIFT from the skin. I find that my makeup just sort of sloshes around when I'm using these, but it doesn't get fully deposited onto the wipe. When I was testing these on a full face of makeup, I kept looking at the sheet and was surprised that my mascara in particular wasn't really getting removed. It was breaking up and becoming loose, but it wasn't showing up on the wipe as much as with other brands. I had to rub and rub (gently) and use two full wipes before my mascara was gone, and even then it wasn't completely gone. I could still see traces on my eyes after using two wipes, and I don't use waterproof mascara.

Another thing I didn't care for was the film that was left behind after I was finished using these wipes. My face felt extremely oily. There's a heavy, oily residue that's left behind (probably due to the mineral oil) and it doesn't remove easily at the sink using my regular facial cleanser and water. I once used these at night and I didn't wash my face afterward, and the next morning I found two small breakouts around my chin. I can't 100% confirm that these wipes were the culprit, but I didn't take any chances for the rest of my testing--I washed my face after using these from that point forward. 

While I love Epielle in general, these were just not a love-match for me. I think that maybe if you're just looking for something that will break down your makeup rather than remove it, and you always wash your face after using wipes anyway, these maybe could work for you. But I'm lazy and I like to use wipes on nights when I'm too tired to do a traditional cleansing (hey, it's better than sleeping in your makeup, right?) so in that respect these weren't a good match for me.

Epielle Original Clean Facial Cleansing Towelettes
Compare to Pond's Original Fresh Wet Cleansing Towelettes
(retail: $2.49 for 36 sheets)

These sheets are smaller in size than the Epielle Night-Time Soothing Makeup Remover Towelettes (you'll see a comparison at the end of this post), but you get more sheets in this packet; you get 30 in the Night-Time formula and 36 in these.


The Pond's Wet Cleansing Towelettes retail for around $5.60 for 30 sheets. You get 36 with the Epielle, for $2.49.

Now let's compare the ingredients.

Here are the ingredients in the Pond's version (from the Drugstore.com website):

Water, Hexylene Glycol, Anthemis Nobilis (Roman Chamomile) Flower Extract (Chamomile), Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E) (Vitamin E Acetate), Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract (Green Tea, White Tea), Cyclopia Intermedia (Honeybush) Leaf Extract (Honeybush), Polysorbate 20, Sodium Lauroamphoacetate, PEG 40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Benzyl Alcohol, Xylitylglucoside, Anhydroxylitol, Xylitol, Fragrance (Parfum), Citric Acid, Butylene Glycol, DMDM Hydantoin, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate

Just like with the Night-Time formula, the ingredients in the Epielle version are quite different. Most notably, the second ingredient in the Epielle wipes is alcohol. The Pond's version doesn't contain straight alcohol, although you do see Benzyl Alcohol toward the bottom of the ingredient list (most experts seem to agree that in small doses, appearing toward the bottom of an ingredient list, Benzyl Alcohol is OK, since it's usually just used as a preservative in this capacity).


These sheets are much thicker and stronger than the regular Epielle sheets, and I actually really love these. I particularly like the raised texture on these sheets, since it does a great job at both dislodging makeup and removing it. The Pond's sheets are textured too, by the way, but the texture is slightly different.


Performance-wise, I found these Epielle sheets much, much better than the Nigh-Time version. I could use one sheet (front and back) to remove a full face of makeup, and I found that my mascara removed easily and completely without tugging. The moisture content is much higher than with the regular Epielle sheets, but not as high as with the Pond's sheets. Actually, if you're a longtime reader you may remember that when I reviewed the Pond's sheets years ago, I found them to be TOO wet and they deposited soapy foam on my skin, which made it challenging to actually remove my makeup. These Epielle sheets seem to have just the right amount of moisture for me--they break up my makeup AND remove my makeup wonderfully.

I also love that these sheets don't leave any type of residue behind on my skin. My face just feels "clean" afterward. The fragrance is also nice--it's fresh and clean, but not super strong (well at least not to me, but if you're sensitive to fragrance your mileage may vary). 

The only thing I don't like about these wipes is the high alcohol content. While I didn't experience any dryness or tightness after using these, alcohol tends to dry out my skin in the long run, so I'm not sure I would reach for these on a consistent basis. But these would certainly be a nice, affordable product to keep on hand for quick fixes and for removing swatches from my hands and arms though, since they are highly effective at removing makeup.


This is just a quick comparison of both towelettes, so that you can get an idea of the different sizes.

FINAL VERDICT: The Night-Time wipes were definitely not a love-match for me, but I found the Original Clean wipes to work extremely well at removing all of my makeup (even mascara) and I love the moisture content, fragrance, and the sheets themselves. Due to the high alcohol content though, I will be reserving these for quick fixes and for removing swatches from my hands/arms, rather than having them be my new go-to makeup towelette. That honor still goes to Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes, which are still my Holy Grail makeup towelettes.

Are you an Epielle fan? Have you tried these new offerings? I would love to hear from you!

PS: If you can't find Epielle products locally but would like to try them, Kareway (parent company of Epielle) actually has an Amazon store HERE.

The products featured in this post were purchased with personal funds. For more information, click here.
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11 comments

  1. I love the Epielle wipes. I found them courtesy of your blog & feel like they do a good job of conditioning my skin while cleaning it. Had no idea they were manufactured by a Korean brand. Double score, if you ask me :)

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  2. Great review G! Thanks for being honest :)

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  3. I love the Neutrogena wipes. Every other wipe I've tried burns the skin under my eyes, but never the classic Neutrogena wipes in the blue pack. I will never stray.

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  4. NIGHT TIME HAVE MINERAL OIL......HORIBBLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

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  5. I love the scent of the green tea Epielle wipes. Haven't used them to remove makeup yet though, but I'll keep buying them for the scent!

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  6. I'm glad I read this! I generally only use wipes if I'm going to redo my makeup after a workout or going out but don't change my eyes. So I don't get overly concerned about removing mascara and such. I certainly don't want extra mineral oil lurking on my face even though I lean towards being dry. I'm glad you got back to some reviews G.! I sure miss them!!

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  7. Wish they would stop putting horrible parabens and SLS in these!!!

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  8. Thanks for reviewing! I think I'll stick to the original Epielle wipes, as you can't beat the price! I use them in the car on the way home from work to remove my foundation and then I cleanse before bed, so I'm not looking for a deep clean.

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  9. I love the Epielle wipes! I use them all the time but I usually remove my eye makeup with Rimmel's Just Let It Go gentle eye makeup remover first and then I use the wipes. I just bought Epielle's Argan oil cleansing tissues from Big Lots and I love them. Thanks G for all your reviews and info. You're my go to site everyday!

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  10. Great review.
    I Love The Green Tea cleansing wipes from Epielle and that's the only wipe I use to take off my make up.its so gentle on the eyes and don't need any extra product to take off any excess.

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  11. I trust you for all my K-beauty recommendations. I find Pond's to be just the right amount of moistened, and dupes usually fall short, but I am curious about these! I will keep my eyes open whenever I am traveling in a town with a Big Lots.

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