L’Oreal Skin Genesis Wet Cleansing Towelettes: BHA Me

Published in: Product Reviews, Skin Care

I think there’s something therapeutic about watching bad reality TV from the couch while I remove my makeup with a cleansing wipe. Last night I grabbed L’Oreal’s new Skin Genesis Micro-Smoothing Wet Cleansing Towelettes, which I’ve been itching to try for a while, and wiped away my makeup (and my cares) while LC, Spencer, Heidi, Audrina and Justin-Bobby (that dumb ass) battled it out on The Hills.


Why I love BHA Products

L’Oreals Skin Genesis Wet Cleansing Towelettes are the first wipes I’ve used that contain BHA, or beta hydroxy acid (aka salicylic acid). I have mild adult acne, and past BHA products have helped relieve my acne without drying out my skin. I seem to respond well to BHAs, so I was looking forward to putting Skin Genesis Wet Cleansing Towelettes to the test.

BHAs are widely reported to decrease the appearance of wrinkles, roughness and mottled pigmentation caused by sun-damage. Dermatologists often recommend BHAs over AHAs because they’re generally less irritating, but here’s a previous post with more detailed information on BHAs and AHAs.

What Sets These Towelettes Apart?

I gotta say… these are the softest wipes I’ve ever used. The embossed fabric looks fluffier and feels much softer against the skin than MAC Wipes do. Plus, they give a little, like cotton, and have a pleasant (albeit intense) honeysuckle/rose fragrance, which I like.

I noticed the softness immediately, especially on the soft skin around my eyes and lips, and I was able to remove all of my makeup with a single wipe, which is great because that spells value.

Although there’s no reason they can’t be used with other makeup and facial cleansers, L’Oreal says they specifically designed them to work with their other Skin Genesis facial lotions and serums.

The wipes are made out of an embossed fabric that grips the skin well, removing makeup and other impurities. They’re highly effective — much more effective than generic moist towelettes are at removing my makeup. Plus, they’re no-rinse and will come in handy on the road. They do leave behind a very slight residue, but it’s not annoying and doesn’t feel dirty at all.

Sticky Neck

The one area in which these do bother me is on my neck. I can’t stand products that cause sticky neck, and these do. Major bummer, but it’s not necessarily a deal breaker.

Convenient and Travel Friendly Packaging

Despite the sticky neck issue, the product still has a lot going for it, including travel friendly packaging. The snap top pack, similar to MAC Wipes, means that they won’t dry out shortly after the package has been opened. And the package is sized just right for carrying in a gym bag or carry on luggage.



Because I buy MAC Wipes in bulk, L’Oreal Skin Genesis Wipes do end up costing a bit more — 32 cents per wipe in a 25 towelette pack versus 25 cents per MAC wipe, but considering their softness and the addition of BHA, I think the price-value equation evens out.

L’Oreal Skin Genesis Micro-Smoothing Wet Cleansing Towelettes

Price: $8
Use: A gentle makeup remover/facial cleansing wipe
Makeup and Beauty Blog Rating: B+

What’s your favorite cleansing wipe?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 28 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Sylvie says:

    Hi Karen,

    I agree with you, MAC’s wipes aren’t that soft for the eye area to completely remove all traces of mascara, BUT it gives a really moisturizing feeling! Plus, it’s 1/6 of a back-to-mac lipstick =P

  2. Angel says:

    Ooh, those look promising! Have you tried their Pore Minimizing Gel Cleanser? I love it! It really cleans, and even takes off my eye makeup, as promised on the bottle!

    Angel´s last blog post..Of Jung and Dreams–Archetype swatches (Neutrals)

  3. Tania says:

    I really like Olay Express Cleansing Wipes for Sensitive Skin. I would be tempted to give the L’Oreal ones a whirl but they’re scented and my mug doesn’t like scented face stuff. The Olay ones are fab and I think they’re better than MAC wipes. Would rather save my MAC dollars for cleanse off oil which is da shiz!!

  4. Tiera says:

    I’m currently working my way through my first pack of wipes from Korres. At $12 for a pack of 25, they’re definitely climbing up the price chain, and I’m not really sure they’re worth it. The seal closes with a sticker, which means I’ve got to put something on the package (normally my straightener) to keep it closed tight! I’m not sure I’m feeling much of a difference between these wipes, which are made for oily/combination skin. But on the plus side, it does have a fantastic pomegranate scent!

  5. Justine says:

    I use the cleansing wipes from EveryDayMinerals which I like, although they’re not very soft. They smell a bit like grapefruit though!

    And sadness, I decided that I DID want the Beiges de CHANEL quad but they’re not selling it in Canada :S

    Justine´s last blog post..Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog

  6. yadiq says:

    hmmm Interesting these would be fab pre and post workouts
    I hate working out with my makeup on but I am always running late to my street fighting class 🙁
    These could work miracles as I am walking to the gym LOL funny sight huh?!?!?
    I am riding home right now from the gym it’s just shy of 9pm I wish I had a face cloth now !

  7. Marisol says:

    These look like a great product. I may pick them up for my trip. Very convenient!

    Marisol´s last blog post..Gotta love men with accents

  8. Karen says:

    Hi Sylvie,

    Yup! That’s one huge advantage MAC has, for sure. 🙂

  9. Karen says:

    Hi Angel,

    I haven’t tried it, but it sounds great. Does it have the same nice Skin Genesis scent?

  10. Karen says:

    Hi Tania,

    Oh! I haven’t tried their Cleanse Off Oil! I used to not be crazy about MAC skin care but after falling in love with their Moisturelush Line I changed my tune.

    I agree with you — those Olay wipes are pretty fab.

  11. Karen says:

    Hi Teira,

    I saw those when I went to Sephora a few weeks ago and I was tempted. Ugh, don’t you hate those sticker closures? They never stay put! The scent sounds really tempting, though. Are you a Korres fan? I have a friend who swears by the line!

  12. Karen says:

    Hi Justine,

    Oh, sounds yummy! I love grapefruit scents and would probably like it.

    So sorry to hear that Beiges is MIA for you guys. 🙁 If you really want to get your hands on it, you could always try ordering it by calling up Nordstrom or Bloomindales stores here in the US. I’m pretty sure both ship internationally (for a price).

  13. Karen says:

    Hi Yadiq,

    Girl, I was supposed to run today, but it so didn’t happen. I pulled something in my thigh when I turned at a weird angle at work (was busy running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off).

    When I worked at my corporate job I used to work out right after quittin’ time, and then I’d ride the train home. I couldn’t stand sitting there all greasy and crusty with sweat, but I didn’t want to bother showering until I got to my house, so eventually I ended up just carrying makeup cleansing wipes with me to quickly refresh and clean before I got on the train. They are really handy (I’d use them pre-workout, to take off my makeup too).

  14. Karen says:

    Hi Marisol,

    The BHAs are a nice touch, too! I hope you like ’em. 🙂

  15. Jackie says:

    Hey Karen! Love your website…

    I really want to try these wipes, but wear some pretty stubborn eye makeup on a regular basis – does the BHA bother your eyes? I wear contacts (but never remove my makeup with them in), and so my eyes are pretty sensitive…Whatcha think? 🙂

  16. Karen says:

    Hi Jackie,

    Thanks! It’s nice to meet you. 🙂

    I got these wipes all up in my eyes (waterline and everything) and so far, so good. It didn’t sting or irritate them at all.

    The BHA is waaay at the end of the ingredient list so I’m guessing that these wipes weren’t designed to be the sole source of one’s BHA.

    Hope this helps!

  17. Justine says:

    I’m in Vegas next month so I am crossing my fingers that I will still be able to find it when I’m down there! I might call Nordstrom’s and see, though…

    I highly recommend them! I don’t use them to take off mascara and such (too rough) but it removes everything else great!

    Justine´s last blog post..Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog

  18. Karen says:

    Hi Justine,

    Yeah, that might be a good idea just to get an idea how fast it’s selling out. It’s a REALLY GREAT quad!

    I hope you win big in Vegas! Woo hoo! When I visit that place I swear you need to tear my booty away from the Wheel of Fortune slot machines. I love those things!

  19. Karen Ann says:

    What a coincidence! I bought these today on my lunch hour and just tried them out a few minutes ago. Loved ’em. Agree…the towelette is super soft, has a nice “give” and takes it all off. The scent reminds me of something in my past…but I can’t quite put my finger on it. Hopefully with continued use, I’ll remember. Thanks so much for figuring the cost vs. MAC wipes…those are wonderful too, but I think I prefer these Loreal wipes. Plus the little pink package is so compact and cute!

    And bonus…the wipes are sold for $7.99 at Walgreens and this week there is a rebate for the full purchase price!

  20. Angel says:


    I’ve never sniffed the wipes (although I’m really lemming them now!), but your descriptions are pretty close to what my bottles smells like!

    Angel´s last blog post..Of Jung and Dreams–Archetype swatches (Neutrals)

  21. Karen says:

    Hi Karen Ann,

    Thanks for the heads up on the Walgreens rebate! That’s a fantastic money saving tip. 🙂

  22. Karen says:

    Hi Angel,

    They’re great wipes! Do you use the Skin Genesis line?

  23. Karen4 says:

    Hi Karen–I really enjoy your posts. I’ve not used the Skin Genesis wipes, but have recently fell in love with the Garnier Nutritioniste Nutri-Pure wet cleansing towelettes. I used to faithfully use the Olay Wet Daily Facials for Sensitive Skin and have found Garnier’s to be much softer–like the Skin Genesis ones you describe. It removes all of my makeup with one wipe, and they have a very soft, fresh scent with no sticky residue. Leaves my skin very soft and comfortable! At about $5.99/25 wipes, that’s a good bargain! The only detriment is you have to be careful how you open the pack. I always make sure it’s well sealed, and store them face-down to prevent dry-out. Haven’t had a problem.

  24. Karen says:

    Hi Karen4,

    I really like those too. They smell great and they don’t leave a film — the packaging really irks me, though. I’ve gone through about two packs and they all end up drying out, even when I’m extra careful about closing it.

    Have you tried anything else from their line? When I was in the UK a few years ago they had these body lotions that I swear were the *best* I’ve ever tried. I shed a tear when I ran out of ’em!

  25. Sylvie says:

    Hi Karen, I saw in one of your replies that you wanted to try MAC’s cleanse off oil. Well, seeing that I was an avid user (it was a damn good and it smelled awesome), and that I switched over to Shu Uemura after receiving a small vial of cleanse-off oil from them, I think that says a lot. Shu Uemura takes off every damn thing, I swear. It doesn’t smell as good as MAC’s (less fruity, I think), but there is a HUGE difference in the after-cleansing effects. It’s incredibly moisturizing and the skin is very supple afterwards, whereas with MAC, such effects weren’t so noticeable.

  26. Joanne says:

    Hi Karen!!

    It’s been awhle since I’ve left a comment. I really wanted to try the Skin Genesis makeup wipes, but I still had some packs of cleansing wipes left. I’ve tried the garnier nutrisse and the boots cleansing wipes. At first, I really liked the Boots because it took off my mascara, but it left my face sort of dry. I now switch off from the nutrisse and comodynes. The comodynes sheets are huge! I got them at Trader Joes for 4 something and I think it comes with 25 or 30 wipes. I’m not sure if that’s cheaper than MACs, but I still can’t get myself to pay for MAC wipes. I still can’t find a makeup wipe that can remove my waterproof mascara without tugging and pulling =(

  27. bgirldskco says:

    i too love the boots wipes! i bought some biore ones cuz i was in need and was at the store, and i hate them. so don’t get them, they are kinda sticky and not so soft, but i’ll just finish up the pack and not buy them again. oh yeah and the mac cleanse off oil is awesomeeee. i haven’t tried the shu or shiseido one yet though.

  28. Elena says:

    Urr, you’ve made me want to try those now.
    I am of the TERRIBLE adult acne persuasion and have never thought of BHA’s in a wipe (I hate them in cleansers and in lotions they cause cakiness with my makeup so I usually had them in scrubs in the past).

    Elena´s last blog post..The grooming routine of the world’s most beautiful 1 year old

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