Micellar waters have been the talk of the beauty town for the past few months. Since some blogger mentioned it somewhere on the internet at some point in their lives it seems that the Bioderma one is the king of the fancy water game, but I personally haven’t tried it. I don’t *get* the hype, but don’t get me wrong, I’m more than happy to give anything a go. The first one I bought for myself was the L’Oréal Paris Skin Perfection 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution
on offer in Asda a few months ago. I thought it was ok, I thought the range was ok, in fact I actually raved and defended the range – even that horrid cleansing oil
which I loved at first but then after a few months realised why Mineral Oils are a little bit of a devil product. Over the time I used it, yes it kept my skin quite clear of actual spots and removed my make up, but my pores, my poor poor pores. They became grey and weird and looked horrible. I also don’t appreciate how I accidentally squirted some up my bathroom wall and nothing will get it off!! But I digress… Let’s get back to the Micellar Water and what all the hoo-har is about…. Here we have a selection of three of these magical potions to suit each budget: The Vichy Purete Thermale 3 in 1 Cleansing Micellar Solution
for around £10, L’Oréal Paris Skin Perfection 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution
around £5 (currently on offer in Boots for £3.33 saving a 1/3) and finally the cheapest of the bunch in the form of the ‘Pure’ Micellar Water £1.99 at exclusive to Savers stores nationwide (my closest one is Crewe and I can’t find a direct link online.)
BUT… What is a Micellar Water?
Ok, first things first (my chocolate starfish is mah man Fred Durst) a micellar water is basically a fancy pants make up remover. I get the feeling they’re going along the same lines of ‘BB Creams’ where every brand is jumping on the bandwagon and releasing their own version. The initial idea of a micellar water is that it contains a little pretty thing called a ‘micelle’ but what the fudge IS a micelle? Well Wikipedia tells me:
”A micelle (pronounced /maɪˈsɛl/ or /maɪˈsiːl/, plural micelles, micella, or micellae) is an aggregate of surfactant molecules dispersed in a liquid colloid. A typical micelle in aqueous solution forms an aggregate with the hydrophilic “head” regions in contact with surrounding solvent, sequestering the hydrophobic single-tail regions in the micelle centre.”
Please excuse my GCSE level of knowledge in science as that means nothing to me really. But I gather that it’s a tiny oil type molecule which is suspended in the water and they basically cling on to all the shit and dirt on your face and remove/dissolve it. This is why they don’t work as well or at all if you simply swipe your face with them and you need to hold the cotton wool pad over the area set for make up removal for a few seconds first. All ‘Micellar Water’ products should contain the following base ingredients (according to The Beauty Brains
- A Glycol (eg Hexylene Glycol, Pentylene Glycol) – acting both as a humectant and hydotrope (improves solubulity of the the makeup in the surfactant)
- Solubiliser (eg Polysorbate 20) – the surfactant that does the cleansing
So now we have to low down – and as I’ve said I do think there is a boarding concern that most companies will be jumping on the bandwagon and calling any ol’ make up remover a micellar water in the future. Like BB Cream’s we’ve seen all kind of tinted moisturisers throwing around the double B even though BB cream originally stood for ‘Blemish Balm’ in Korea and the like, and now they’re being dubbed ‘Beauty Balms’ by Western brands here there and everywhere.
Here we have selection of three for you to have a gander at and all three I’ve been using now and again. I will say I’m not keen on JUST using them alone though. I do find that my regular face wash does remove my make up anyway, but when I’m feeling frisky I’ll use these and wash my face afterwards too. It’s like using face wipes really, you just don’t feel clean
unless you’re used to not washing your face before bed. The Vichy Purete Thermale 3 in 1 Cleansing Micellar Solution
* is the most recent one in my stash and the most expensive. It sounds perfect for my skin type as it’s a calming formula and my blemishes are pretty angry right now. I’ve tended to use this in the mornings as I don’t wash my face regularly when I wake up and it’s a nice quick alternative. It also ensures my face is clean ready for my make up and not trapping any dirt. I’ve not been using it long enough to notice a spectacular difference, but I have noticed my forehead doesn’t get quite as shiny by mid afternoon. So far, so good. The L’Oréal Paris Skin Perfection 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution
is the middle priced one and I think subliminally I’m still judging it because of the aforementioned cleansing oil. It’s ok, nothing fancy, nothing special, nothing to write home about. As you can see I’ve used it considerably and haven’t noticed a change in skin condition and it didn’t help my pores much when the cleansing oil was clogging them! Finally we have the ‘Pure’ Micellar Water which is worth a whirl if only for that price tag. It’s certainly the most refreshing of the bunch and really soothing, with it’s cucumber extracts and Aloe which definitely makes you feel like you’ve used
something on your skin. One thing that really puts me off Micellar Water’s is that they’re called a ‘water’ so makes me begrudge spending silly amounts on them, and I like having a bit of a scent and feeling from a product not just feel like I’m rubbing something from the tap around my chops.
As for make up removal, I’ve given it a go on the Illamasqua Precision Gel Eyeliner
which is the blackest and most hard wearing make up product I own. From left to right on all 3 pictures we have the Vichy, L’oreal then the Pure one. The first try was a simple swipe and as you can see all seem to have the same effect in removal – only smudging it and lightly getting some off. Then I held them on for 10 seconds each and it seems the Pure Micellar Water faired the best in actually removing almost every trace of the eyeliner! Although all of them did pretty well anyway to be fair. That’s all well and good though but I guess we need to consider the additional benefits to the skin from each one, and as everyone’s skin is different I’m not even going to attempt to tell you which one you should use! I’m no dermatologist after all. But I will continue with the Vichy one for now as I’m really intrigued to see if it does create a different in my skin condition after a few weeks.Whilst I think they must be a great idea for sensitive skin types I do find myself wondering about the benefits for other skin types and whether or not they are worth adding to your skin care regime when there are already so many other products about. As I said, my face wash sorts out removing my make up well enough anyway, and I could just stop being lazy and wash it in the morning too. But these do act as a nice alternative.
BONUS TIPS; I’ve found Micellar Water is exceptionally good to clean brushes with! If you pop a bit in to a little tub and leave your brushes in over night it seems to get rid of the grime and old make up with minimal effort. Just make sure you rinse them well as if some is trapped in the bristles it could affect make up application. Also I’ve found dabbing a cotton wool pad with some on around the knees and wrinkly bits after applying fake tan does a dapper job of removing the cloggy orange look too. Try it!
SO, have you succumb to the micellar water hype, or simply think they’re a load of shite?
Answers in the comment box!