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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

30 Models Considered
8 Hours Researched
2 Experts Interviewed
60 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for Best blotting papers for men

Oily skin can be a problem for men and women alike. While some oil (or sebum) is necessary to hydrate and protect your skin, excess oil can cause acne, clogged pores, and a shiny T-zone. For men who struggle with oily skin, blotting papers can help soak up excess sebum without drying out skin.

These small, thin squares of paper can absorb many times their weight in oil, and some have added ingredients to reduce acne and nourish skin. Keep blotting papers in your car, desk drawer, or your bathroom cabinet for easy access whenever you need them. Blotting papers for men vary by material, quality of ingredients, scent, and whether or not they leave behind residue on your skin. Blotting papers also vary in size and absorbency.

If you’re on the hunt for a fast and effective way to manage oily skin, our buying guide has all you need to know about blotting papers for men. When you’re ready to shop, check out our recommendations for the top blotting papers on the market.

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Blotting papers can also be used to clean up fingerprint smudges on your phone screen.

Key considerations

Skin type

Do you have mildly oily skin or a consistently high shine? Do you need all-over oil control or just a dab or two on your forehead? Choosing a blotting paper that’s absorbent enough for your skin type can help you avoid going through multiple blotting sheets at a time or ending up with greasy fingers.

If you have extremely oily skin and want the most matte results, choose a highly absorbent flax, abaca, or rice powder blotting paper. If you need less intensive touch-ups, a cotton or linen blotting paper is a great choice.

Your skin tone can also play a role in your decision. If you have deeper skin, some blotting papers that contain powder can leave a noticeable residue on your skin. Choose a blotting paper without powder or opt for a blotting paper that’s specifically made for your skin tone.

Materials

Blotting papers come in both synthetic and natural fibers that vary in absorbency, softness, and residue.

  • Cotton: Cotton is included as an ingredient in many blotting papers. It’s soft, fairly absorbent, and natural. If you have a mild to moderate oil problem, cotton-based blotting papers will work well for you.
  • Synthetic fibers: Cheaper blotting papers are often made of absorbent synthetic fibers like polypropylene. This material is soft and silky but may not appeal to customers who want natural materials.
  • Linen: Linen is a natural material that is absorbent but has a rougher feel than many other fibers. Some people don’t love the stiffer texture of linen blotting papers.
  • Rice paper: Natural rice paper is thin but can absorb many times its weight in oil. Many rice papers also include rice powder to help absorb additional oil.
  • Flax and wood: Flax and wood create a substantial but soft blotting paper that is natural, powder-free, gentle, and absorbent.
  • Abaca leaves: This highly absorbent natural fiber is another excellent choice if you want to avoid synthetic materials and powders without sacrificing results.

Added active ingredients

While some blotting papers for men are little more than cotton or linen sheets, other options include added active ingredients for better absorbency, acne control, and skin care.

  • Rice powder: If you have very oily skin, blotting papers that use rice powder can be especially effective at absorbing a lot of oil with just one square. However, rice powder can sometimes leave behind a residue, and you’ll need to match your skin tone.
  • Activated charcoal: Activated charcoal is often added to blotting papers since it helps absorb and neutralize toxins and bacteria on the skin.
  • Botanical extracts: Some blotting papers include botanical extracts for natural fragrance as well as antioxidant and skin-soothing properties.
  • Green tea: Green tea is another popular ingredient included in blotting papers. It contains antioxidants that can help soothe skin and reduce redness.
  • Willow bark: Willow bark can help soothe angry skin and reduce the appearance of redness and acne. It can also even out skin tone and fade dark spots.

Keep the blotting paper flat as you press it against your skin for the most oil absorption.

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BestReviews

Features

Mineral oil-free

Ironically, some cheaper blotting papers actually contain oils – particularly mineral oil. Drugstore options that contain mineral oil can clog pores over time or even make oilier skin worse. Look for oil-free blotting papers if you have oily skin.

Biodegradable

If you use blotting papers regularly, choosing a biodegradable option can offer reassurance that you aren’t creating environmental waste while you clean up extra oil on your skin. Natural fibers like abaca leaves or flax and wood are typically the most biodegradable.

Fragrance

Some blotting papers are fragrance-free, while others have a mild fragrance. Some customers appreciate a refreshing fragrance. However, if you have sensitive skin or don’t like the idea of applying a scented product to your face, choose a fragrance-free blotting paper.

Powder-free

If you choose a blotting paper with powder (like rice powder) that adds extra absorbency, you may notice that residue is left behind. Powdered papers are often preferred by women who are already wearing makeup, so the residue is less noticeable. However, for some men who don’t wear makeup, this residue can be bothersome and noticeable.

Paraben-free

Parabens are a type of preservative that keeps bacteria from growing on toiletry products. Unfortunately, parabens can cause dermatitis or skin inflammation in some people, which is why many mid-priced and higher-end blotting papers are paraben-free.

Cruelty-free

If a cruelty-free product is important to you, look for the cruelty-free seal that certifies neither the end product nor any of its components were tested on animals. Some products are marketed as “cruelty-free” despite the fact that some product components were tested on animals.

Packaging

Higher-end blotting papers often come in attractive, decorative packages. While packaging is mostly a personal style choice, keep in mind that higher-quality packaging can protect your blotting papers from coming apart in your briefcase, bag, or desk drawer.

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Did You Know?
Facial tissues or toilet paper make poor substitutes for blotting papers since they don’t absorb as much oil and can leave residue.
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BestReviews

Blotting papers for men prices

Inexpensive

You can find inexpensive drugstore blotting papers for men for $2 to $6. Most of these value blotting papers are made out of synthetic fibers like polypropylene, although you can also find some cotton and rice paper options. Higher-quality value options usually come in smaller packages of 20 to 30 sheets. Watch out for budget-friendly products that leave behind a powder residue or include skin-irritating ingredients like parabens or mineral oil.

Mid-range

Mid-range blotting papers for men run between $7 and $15. In this price tier, you’ll find more natural fibers like abaca leaves and flax as well as desirable added ingredients like green tea, activated charcoal, botanicals, and willow bark. A number of mid-range options are paraben-free, mineral oil-free, and have attractive packaging that protects the product in your drawer or briefcase. Mid-range blotting papers usually come in larger packages of 40 to 100 sheets.

High-end

High-end blotting papers for men typically sport a well-known brand name and luxury packaging. Expect to find more cruelty-free and vegan options and highly absorbent natural materials like flax, abaca, and wood that feel great on the skin. In this price range, you’ll also find larger bulk packages of 100 or more sheets. Expensive blotting papers are typically biodegradable and boast the highest-quality botanical and skin-nourishing ingredients.

If you have deeper skin, you may want to choose a powder-free option. Powdered blotting papers can leave a noticeable residue behind.

Staff
BestReviews

Tips
 

  • Press the blotting paper into your skin instead of rubbing it across your face to avoid dragging oil across your skin and spreading the problem.
  • There’s no need to press hard when applying a blotting paper. Too much force can irritate skin. Just make sure the blotting paper is making good contact with your skin.
  • Blotting papers can double as dry shampoo in a pinch. While you’d need a lot of papers to cover your entire head, degreasing your bangs and crown can go a long way.
  • Out of blotting papers? If you’re willing to get creative, you can use toilet seat covers or wrapping tissue as blotting papers.
  • Your skin is likely to produce more oil on warmer days, so make sure to bring your blotting papers along if you’ll be spending time outside in the summer.
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The T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin) is the most common area for oily buildup on the face.

FAQ

Q. Will blotting papers make my skin less oily in the long run?

A. Unfortunately, blotting papers are a temporary fix for oily skin. If you have chronically oily skin, you may want to consider more lasting ways to manage oil in addition to spot treating with blotting papers. Using a mattifying face primer, moisturizer, or setting spray can help control oil throughout the day.

Q. Will blotting papers help with my acne?

A. Yes and no. Blotting papers with skin-nourishing ingredients like willow bark, green tea, or activated charcoal can help with acne through their anti-inflammatory properties. However, acne is primarily caused by clogged pores and bacterial growth, so a good cleanser and skincare routine will go much further than blotting papers. If acne is an ongoing concern for you, consult with a dermatologist.

Q. How often can I use blotting papers?

A. Blotting papers can be used as often as needed to spot treat oily buildup on your face. Your skin type will determine the frequency of use. Most people find that they reach for their blotting papers every few hours.

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