Review: Paula’s Choice Reusable Cotton Pads

Hello my friends!

I hope you’re all having a great week so far, and that you’re all safe and well. As you can tell from the title, today I’ll be reviewing the Paula’s Choice cotton pads that I bought a few months back during one of their sales. I have previously reviewed the Garnier ones, which are a little bit different to the Paula’s Choice ones (keep an eye out for a comparison blog post coming soon).

So why the move to reusable cotton pads? With the amount of waste that accumulates from one time use cotton pads AND the amount of money spent repurchasing them – why not invest in some reusable ones? There are so many in the market nowadays, all made with different materials. The Paula’s Choice ones are a combination of cotton and bamboo, 30% and 70% respectively. They also come with a bag so you can chuck them in the washing machine for a deeper clean. With a 7.62cm diameter (3″), they’re slightly bigger than your standard one-use cotton pads (I usually purchase the ones from Beauty Essentials). As they’re made from a combination of materials, I found these to be quiet durable, they won’t tear with regular use and have a hold to them.

Breaking down the cost of a 10-pack of these, they retail for $20AUD, which means a single cotton pad costs $2 each (I got them for $16 as they were on sale). However the Beauty Essentials cotton pads I usually use cost $3.99 (they used to retail for $3.49 and the price has gone up recently) for a 200 pack, which means each cotton pad roughly costs $2 each as well. However, once that packet finishes, I would normally go and spend over $3.99 and so on, leaving the cost to build up over time. By purchasing a reusable 10 pack, my spending is capped at $20 because I can constantly wash and reuse these. A good tip I read is reusing the cotton pad (by using the other side) for something else, before washing it and therefore you get 2 uses out of the one. Sometimes I will apply toner in the morning and when I apply toner at night, I just use the other side of the cotton pad. Then I will make a pile of cotton pads that are separate to this as those will need to be washed! I’ve also reused them to apply glycolic acid to exfoliate my body (which I then shower off).

Now when it comes to cotton pads, they are used for a multitude of reasons. I’ve used them for different purposes and here’s what I found:

  • Makeup removal – Pairing them with micellar water, I found they remove makeup well, but it doesn’t feel as soft on the skin. As the micellar water penetrates the cotton pad, and you wipe it on your skin, I found that I needed to add more micellar water as the initial addition “dried up”. Overall, they’re not that bad at removing makeup, but they’re definitely not as soft as what I’m used to. I’d give it a 6.5/10.
  • Toner application – So I’m currently using the Kiehl’s Cucumber Toner and it is green. The cotton pad is white and so when I am cleaning them (by hand), it sometimes leaves a green tinge behind on the ring/outer side of the cotton pad – no big deal but worth pointing out if you are considering using this with something quite coloured. I found that putting them through the washing machine gets rid of 98% of any colour left behind. As for the application of the toner, I did find myself using more product as the cotton pad soaks up the liquid rapidly. I’d give it a 7/10.
  • Cleaning dye – I know what you’re thinking, what do I mean by cleaning dye. So from time to time I would die my eyebrows and use single-use cotton pads to remove the dye from my brows – simple and I can toss the pad away. From my experience, I wouldn’t recommend using this for dye removal. I had a bit of difficulty washing this out, it did come out eventually, but it felt a little more laborious. Removing the dye – 7/10. Washing the dye out – 4/10.

To summarise, here’s what I like about them:

  • Multipack

I generally use 5 of them (both sides) and then I wash and reuse them. I use them alongside the Garnier ones so I typically don’t need to use all 10. Though the multipack gives you a good amount to go through if you’re someone who regularly uses cotton pads.

  • Durable

The combination of the materials, which I’ve outlined above, makes the cotton pad for durable. They can be stretched and they hold liquid well without turning into mush.

  • Comes with a laundry bag

I love that they come in a laundry bag, this would be perfect for travelling to have them all in one place. It also makes it easier to toss into the wash as you don’t need to purchase/use another bag.

  • Saves money

In the long run I am saving so much money and reducing a lot of waste caused by single use cotton pads.

Laundry bag

And here’s what I didn’t like:

  • Not as soft

I mentioned above, they’re not as soft as single use cotton pads so it can feel like it’s “drying” on your face when you apply products.

  • May leave stains

Sometimes it can leave behind stains, which is annoying but generally they can be washed out through the washing machine. If it’s a small amount of cotton pads that I’m washing, I just wash them by hand because it’s easier, but this means stains might not be washed out thoroughly/easily.

  • Can only be purchased online

You can only buy this online, usually directly from the website. This might not be convenient for everyone so that’s why it’s listed as something I don’t like.

Overall, these aren’t too bad. Despite my personal preferences, the positives do outweigh the negatives. Just think about how much money you’re saving by using reusable cotton pads and how much waste you’ve reduced by making the switch. I’d rate them a 7.5/10, definitely worth purchasing in your next Paula’s Choice order if you’re trying to reach free shipping or if they’re on sale!

I will do a comparison post on these vs. the Garnier ones, so keep an eye out!!

Hope you have a great week!

With love,

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