The Face Wash Series Part 5: Micellar Water


Micellar water is the hottest option for facial cleansing in France. Now it’s making its way in the United States — more and more women are choosing to incorporate the scientifically designed cleanser into their beauty regimens. But is it a fad or is it effective?

We talked to Dr. Eric Jourdan, the scientific director for the French skin care brand Bioderma to learn what exactly micellar water is (get ready: it’s all about molecular structure and something called “surfactants”), how micellar water works, and which micellar product is right for you!

Q: What exactly is micellar water and how does it work? 

A surfactant is a molecule whose head is directed towards water and whose tail is directed towards oil. Since the tails hate water (hydrophobic), in a water solution they will group together and form spheres, known as micelles. Micelles are tiny particles that remained suspended in water indefinitely. These micelles are capable of trapping impurities, dirt and excess sebum. The Bioderma micellar solutions do not require rinsing since the trapped impurities are removed by the cotton pad. They also preserve and strengthen the skin’s hydrolipidic film.

Q: What is the step-by-step process to apply micellar water?

Step One: Apply solution to the cotton pad where the micelles will open up. Cotton is hydrophilic, so the water-loving ends of the micelles are drawn to it.

Step Two: When the cotton is applied on the skin, the lipophilic ends will catch the lipids as makeup, excess sebum or pollution residue.

Step Three: Impurities are fixed to the cotton pad thanks to the micelles, then they are removed and thrown away with the cotton.

Step Four: Renew the application until the cotton is perfectly clean.

Q: What are the differences between micellar Bioderma products: Sensibio H2O, Sébium H2O, and Hydrabio H2O?

For sensitive skin, the micellar solutions in Sensibio H2O is formulated with a soothing and decongesting Cucumis sativus extract. Sensibio H2O is perfectly adapted to patients with intolerance to allergic skin thanks to its non-rinse and ultra-gentle hypoallergenic formula.

For oily skin with blemishes, Sébium H2O includes Fluidactiv, which limits the thickening of the sebum, thereby preventing the formation of blemishes. Plus, the formula includes copper sulphate, zinc gluconate, and antimicrobial agents, all which will purify the skin.

Finally, for dry skin, the Hydrabio H2O micellar water retrains the skin to stimulate its own natural hydrating capacities and retain the water that it needs, thanks to Aquagenium. Glycerine enhances this hydrating action and Cucumis sativus extract soothes sensitive skin.

Q: How often can you use it? 

As often as necessary!

Q: Do you need an additional cleanser to use with the micellar water? 

It’s not necessary. The micellar water is fine to use on its own.

Q: Is it okay to apply a moisturizer/product to the skin right after using micellar water?

Yes, a moisturizer can be used just after micellar water.

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