DIY Sustainable Re-Usable Face Wipes

January 03, 2020

I've been choosing cruelty free products for years now, but recently I've been thinking I could do even better with the impact of my beauty products. I often use cotton pads to remove my makeup, or face wipes after shows, and those things I just use once then chuck away. It's very wasteful and with information readily available about face wipes containing plastic, I looked into a more sustainable alternative and thought I'd share a tutorial for re-usable face wipes and cotton pads.

This is a very simple sewing project that is suitable for beginners, and where I've thought the language might be unfamiliar for a beginner I've put a '(?)' symbol with a link to a tutorial or definition so it should be easy to follow. But I genuinely had so much fun making these; they're colourful, unique, and environmentally friendly. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did. 

1. Use a compass, a pencil, and some paper to make some templates for the size you want. For the small wipe I did a radius (?) of 4cm, for the medium wipe I did a radius of 6cm, and for the large wipe I did a radius of 8cm.

2. Cut out the templates, pin the templates to the fabric and cut them out. For each face wipe you need one circle of printed cotton and one circle of the same size in fleece (the same kind you'd find on the inside of a nice winter jacket!).

3. This step is optional, but I recommend ironing each circle so that it's nice and flat. This will make it easier to sew later, and I believe it makes the finished product much nicer as well!

4. Pin one fleece circle to the printed cotton, with the right sides facing each other (?). When pinning, I placed most of the pins parallel to the edge, but I placed two that were perpendicular to it. Those two pins indicated where I would stop and start sewing later, so that I would remember to leave a gap.

5. This is another optional step, but if you're new to sewing or just want your finished product to be nice and neat, I recommend using a water-soluble fabric pen and a compass to mark where you will sew. Draw a circle that's about 7.5mm-1cm from the edge of the circle, starting and stopping at the perpendicular pins we placed earlier.

6. Sew the two circles together, making sure you leave a small gap open. I used a running stitch (?), but you could also use a back stitch (?) if you prefer. Try to keep your stitches small and close together, as this will create a nicer finish than if the stitches were too large. Also, try to use a length of thread that is longer than what you'd need to go around the whole circle, and don't trim it at the end - it's useful for later.

7. Use fabric scissors to trim the excess fabric around your stitches. I left about 2mm between my stitches and where I was cutting so that I didn't accidentally snip my stitches. When the excess is removed, turn the circles inside out using the gap that you left when sewing. You should now have a vibrant patterned side and a soft fuzzy fleece side.

8. Use a ladder stitch (?) to close the circles, and give the face wipes a final iron so they are nice and flat. You could be finished here, or you could optionally add some extra stitching around the edge such as a running stitch or a blanket stitch (?) as a finishing touch!

Use your wipes as you would a cotton pad - they work with cleansers and toners just like normal. When you're done, instead of tossing them in the bin, you can wash them either by hand or in the laundry. If you used dark printed cotton like I did on a few of mine, I'd recommend using the dark wash so the colour doesn't run into your clothes.

I hope you've seen that this is a such a simple DIY to make your beauty regime more environmentally friendly. These would make great gifts, so why not make a few for your friends or family to spread the word?

If you do make these following this tutorial, I'd love to see. Tweet me or tag me on Instagram! My handle is @WhoopsItsHannah.

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