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Micellar water may just seem like another standard makeup removing solution—or at best, a gentle toner that removes excess dirt, makeup, and impurities from the skin’s surface—but it turns out, it’s got a little more to offer than the conventional water-based formulas we’re used to. Micellar water is in fact, not just a fancy, gimmicky water—it actually contains skin-soothing “micelles” (tiny little oil molecules) that allow the formula to gently refine, cleanse, and even out the skin without over-drying it causing an uncomfortably tight feeling. While some use micellar waters alone as the main staple in their cleansing routine, others use it to double cleanse following an oil, cream, or gel-based face wash for an extra deep clean.
The best part? Because it’s technically a “water,” it doesn’t require any additional water to rinse it off—in fact, you don’t rinse it off at all. Simply swipe the liquid onto the skin with a cotton pad of your choosing and follow up with your favorite serums, foundations, and cream. While any skin type—oily, combination, and the like—can benefit from incorporating micellar water into their daily routines, it’s especially beneficial for those with sensitive and super-dry skin because it doesn’t strip natural oils and actually promotes balanced hydration levels. Ready to add one to your current lineup? We’ve gathered a few of our favorite effective and affordable formulas to try for yourself.
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1. Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water
This multipurpose formula can be used as a morning cleanser to start your day off fresh or as a part of your nightly makeup-removal routine (or, ideally, both). The rinse-free solution removes excess sebum, makeup residue, and other impurities for an extra deep clean that doesn’t strip your skin entirely.
2. Simple Kind to Skin Cleansing Water
This advanced cleansing water is tough on removing excess makeup, oil, dirt, and grime and other residues from the day’s wear and tear, but it’s also gentle enough for all skin types, keeping natural oils balanced and skin even-toned instead of over-dried.
3. Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micellar Water
As a longtime French cult classic, this iconic micellar water is a trusted favorite by beauty connoisseurs from around the globe (not just Parisians). This cleansing water leaves the skin extra clean and feeling refreshed without ever leaving behind tightness or worsening dry patches.
4. La Roche-Posay Micellar Cleansing Water
This micellar water is formulated with antioxidant-rich spring water, which will calm your skin down. The water removes 99 percent of foundation and even removes harmful pollution from your skin. Don’t worry though, it won’t dry out your skin like other formulas.