By Dr. Nausheen Khan, Our specialist at SkinGenious Kurla. Originally Pulished in NDTV doctor. on 30th October 2020
What is micellar water? Where does it fit in my skin care routine?
If there are two topics that are currently trending with skincare enthusiasts, they would be, firstly, the various takes on a multi-step skin care routine at home (they range from the classical 7-step routine to people now talking about a 10 step routine) and secondly, the double cleanse technique. While neither of these topics is the subject of this article, Micellar water (pronounced my-sell-er) is related to them both!
As per the multi-step skincare routine, no matter how many steps we talk about, the process involves:
So how and where does micellar water fit in all of this?
Micellar water is basically a mixture of purified water with surfactants and very often, glycerine. The name comes from the fact that these surfactant molecules bond together to form structures which are known as micelles.
Micellar water is therefore useful in the FIRST step of your skin care routine! It can help dissolve oil-based molecules and is hence great for removing make-up and all other oily products from the skin!
Micellar water is a no-rinse cleanser. This means you do not need to wash and rinse it off.
How do you use micellar water then?
Here is where a lot of us go wrong. The common mistake is of dabbing a little bit of the product on a cotton pad and rubbing the make up off vigorously. The ideal way of using micellar water is completely soaking a cotton pad with it, placing it on the area with heavy make-up, leaving it on for 20 seconds to allow it to dissolve the bonds and then gently wiping it off. Another cardinal rule is to always remove your pigmented make up (eyes) first. Follow this by removing the make-up from the rest of your face.
Micellar water, in fact helps in bridging the double cleanse technique because of the way it works and you can use just micellar water for a quick cleanse. How this can help you practically is that in case you are in a hurry in the mornings, you could skip the double cleanse and use just micellar water. Do the double cleanse only as a part of your night routine.
Another way micellar water is practically useful is the fact that you do not need to rinse. So, you can always carry a small bottle of micellar water in your bag. Use it for a quick cleanse with a cotton pad after you hit the gym or go for a jog!
Probably the most powerful benefit of micellar water is that pure, basic micellar water is great for all skin types, because it does not contain ingredients like soaps or alcohol. It can therefore also be used by people who have skin conditions such as rosacea, eczema or psoriasis. However, since it will be difficult for you to determine yourself whether your brand of micellar water has any extra additives or not, it may be best to check with your dermatologist if you are using a brand that is right for you.
Additives such as niacinamide or salicylic acid may be added to micellar water by some manufacturers. While these are great for people with acne-prone and oily skin, they can do damage to someone with dry or sensitive skin. In case your brand of micellar water is doing more harm for you than good, it is most likely because of an additive in your brand of micellar water. Generally, try to avoid a brand of micellar water that contains alcohol, sulphates or parabens. You should be able to read these off the label easily.
So, in conclusion and to wrap it up, micellar water is a must-have in your skincare routine! Carry it with you always to help you out with a quick cleanse. Dab it on to you face with a soaked cotton pad and clean. It is the first step of your skin care routine at home. However, do be careful of additional ingredients in your micellar water and make sure that they are ideal for your skin type. As part of your night routine, it is better to follow your micellar water with a face wash.