HAVE YOU BEEN WASHING YOUR FACE THE WRONG WAY YOUR WHOLE LIFE? IF YOU’RE AMERICAN, RINSING WITH TAP WATER PROBABLY SEEMS LIKE A NO-BRAINER. BUT IN FRANCE, HOME COUNTRY TO SEEMINGLY AGELESS WOMEN, MICELLAR WATER IS THE PREFERRED FACE WASH DU JOUR. SOUND INTERESTING? WE SPOKE WITH NYC DERMATOLOGIST, DR. MARINA PEREDO TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF MICELLAR-BASED PRODUCTS.
What is it?
Think back to high school chemistry—micellar water is made from micelles, the hydrophobic component in soap. Lost already? Don’t worry—here’s how Dr. Peredo explains it, “Because micelles are hydrophobic, they remain dispersed in water.” This means that micellar water doesn’t irritate the skin, which explains its popularity. “French women don’t like products that irritate their skin”—and neither should you!
How does it work?
It couldn’t be easier. Use a cotton pad soaked in micellar water and gently wipe it over your skin until the cotton pad shows no leftover makeup.
Is it really better than tap water?
According to Dr. Peredo, there’s nothing wrong with using tap water to cleanse, however, like most American products, tap water is packed with chemicals such as chlorine that can be irritating to those with very dry or sensitive skin.
Lotion vs. Water
If you have dry or sensitive skin, Dr. Peredo recommends using micellar wipes or water such as Simple Cleansing Micellar Water Make-up Remover Wipes or Simple Cleansing Micellar Water. French women swear by Orlane Vitality Radiance Micellar Cleansing Water.
Lotions like Avene Micellar Lotion, work for all skin types. Whatever kind of micellar water-based product you chose to use, Dr. Peredo says, “the most important take-away is that you need to cleanse skin regularly to prevent clogging in your pores.”
What does the future hold for cleansing?
Only time will tell if micellar water will become a cleansing ritual for American women like it is for French women. Dr. Peredo admits she hasn’t seen a huge interest in micellar water among her patients, who favor cleansing brushes and AHA/BHA-based products. Traditionally, European women value gentle products more than Americans do, but that could change, as micellar water does seem to be having a moment.