Can you really stop rubbing on the cleanser and splashing water on your face each morning and night? Yes, and your skin may just be all the better for it.

Have you heard of micellar water? It’s basically nanosized oil molecules suspended in soft water. You soak a clean cotton pad with this water and wipe it across your face. The oil attracts other oils and dirt and leaves behind soft, glowing skin. No need to rinse! You may need a separate eye makeup remover if you opt for heavy or waterproof eye makeup, but it does a decent job on its own. And, unlike makeup wipes, which can cleanse but also move that makeup around, the combination of micellar water + cotton pads physically removes dirt and oil on contact, like a magnet, but doesn’t strip your skin at all.

Micellar water and a cotton pad create magic for your skin. Do use a cotton pad, as opposed to tissues, as the cotton strands work better with the micellar water to pull the dirt and oil off your face.

Micellar water and a cotton pad create magic for your skin. Do use a cotton pad — not tissues — as the cotton strands work better with the micellar water to pull the dirt and oil off your face. Image: Garnier

It’s been around for more than 100 years, first formulated in France, and recently gained serious steam stateside. This has us wondering what other beauty routine secrets do French women have?!

After using Simple’s newest micellar water product for two weeks, I can honestly say it has changed my skin care routine and left me with better looking, glow-y skin. I’ve had my two teenage daughters using it, too, both acne-prone but also with dry patches, and the dryness is gone but their acne is not gone (it’s by no means worse). With their skin health looking better overall, their acne does look far better.

I’m pretty lazy when it comes to skin care, so I keep clean cotton pads and a bottle of micellar water both by my bedside and by my sink. This way, if I get into bed without having taken my makeup off, I can still do so (I’m not sure I should be confessing to this … ). Plus, this skin elixir feels so good that I look forward to using it and my skin is benefiting big time.

There are several micellar waters on the market at a wide range of price points. You can go cheap with the Simple version that I’ve been using, or the one by Garnier, or embrace a fancier version. I’m anxious to try some other brands and see which one is my favorite, as one thing is for sure, I’m completely in the micellar water-addicted camp.

“I think micellar water will play a nice role for people with sensitive skin, with fragrance allergies, with acne but not overly oily skin, with eczema issues on the face. For me, it may not totally replace my Clarisonic/gentle cleanser combo, but I like it as an option for the winter or for recovery from laser procedures or chemical peels,” explains Dr. Jennifer Lee. (See our full article on the science and benefits of micellar water: What is Micellar Water? Dr. Jennifer Lee Explains.)

I checked with Crystal Doughtie, an aesthetician at Woo Skincare + Cosmetics, with boutiques in Atlanta, Charlotte and Nashville, and she advises, “We sell both Darphin Azahar Cleansing Micellar Water ($40) and Caudalie Cleansing Water (two sizes $24 and $14). These products are very similar. They can both be used to cleanse your face, eyes and lips, while also toning the skin. You do not need to wash them off, so this makes for a very easy and quick way to take your makeup off with no fuss. They are both great for anyone with sensitivity, but I feel that the Darphin water targets redness and rosacea better than the Caudalie. They both soften, comfort and refresh the skin. I would recommend both of these for someone who just wants a quick and easy way to take makeup off.  Also for someone who can’t use an actual eye makeup remover because their eyes are so sensitive can use both of these products.”

Are you ready to try micellar water? Head to your local cosmetics boutique for advice on which you should try, but till then, here are five micellar waters we recommend to get you started:

Caudalie Micellar Cleanse

Caudalie Make-up Remover $28 (6.7 ounce) or $14 (3.38 ounce)

Dr Brandt micellar water

dr. brandt “dual fusion water” (micellar water + antioxidants), $32

Happy cleansing!

Share with your friends!