Bonjour! Oui, Micellar water is French, indeed. Micellar water was first popularized by French women who began using it in the early 1900s, when plumbing wasn’t available everywhere yet, and the water in France was harsh on the skin. Micellar water proved to be a useful alternative 100 years ago– and much better for the skin – than the hard Parisian water. (*) But it’s not 1922 anymore.
What is Micellar Water?
Micellar water is a combination of purified water, glycerin, and mild surfactants.
Surfactants are used in skincare to break down and remove particles from our skin. The molecules of those mild surfactants lasso onto each other, and form microscopic clumps called micelles, which surround makeup and dirt, attach to them, and break them down, removing makeup from our faces.
Glycerin is a humectant, a type of moisturizing agent that pulls water into the outer layer of your skin from deeper levels of your skin and the air.
Micellar water is not a catch-all. It can leave a surface residue on the skin while cleaning your face of makeup, meaning dirt and pollution from the day can end up being moved around the face, rather than being removed from the skin.(*)
It’s also not for all skin types, so you don’t want to just willy-nilly assume it’s okay for yours, especially if you have certain skin conditions, such as acne or oily skin. Since Micellar water contains oils, those with oily and acne-prone skin types should be careful because some oils - the wrong kind, especially depending on your skin type - can end up clogging pores and leading to more acne (*), and may require additional skin care products to address their specific needs. Micellar water also isn’t as powerful at removing heavy or waterproof makeup as other products are.(*) We’ll get into that more below.
What Are Our Refining Cleansing Nectar and Our Radiant Nectar Products, and Why Are They the Smart Alternative?
First, let’s take a look at the seawater blue, ultra-refreshing, no-rinse cleanser of our No.2 Refining Cleansing Nectar. Unlike the Micellar water, which we mentioned can potentially move impurities around on your face like bumper cars on a dirty track, the Cleansing Nectar helps penetrate and remove contaminations embedded within the skin. It’s a great way to deep-cleanse your face of makeup and impurities, and then leave it on the skin for effects lasting throughout the day; the natural nutrients deposited during the cleanse soothe your skin for anti-aging results: fewer wrinkles, and dark spots, and fine lines.
Then, we move over to the No.2 Radiant Cleansing Nectar. Colors on the opposite spectrum, this nectarine orange and translucent pink combination – blended when shaken and separate when sitting pretty on your shelf, is a unique, waterless cleanser that removes toxins and bacteria from deep beneath the skin, an action especially effective for clearing acne. Both cleansing nectars use nothing but a simple cotton pad that gently exfoliates while also leaving behind healing nutrients and essential fatty acids.
No. 2 Radiant Cleansing Nectar – just a simple cotton pad and the peachy fresh cleanser needed for pretty, hydrating skin!
Both of our Nectars contain nourishing oils, which is necessary so that the cleanser will not strip the skin of its natural oil, thus balancing oil production (especially in acne-prone skin), and balancing out the nutrient profile. It’s all about the right balance, and we found that right in our lab, with our chemists, with an abundance of high-quality minerals and botanicals to work with.
Micellar Water Ingredients vs. Our Nectar Ingredients
Ahhh, here’s where we get into the nitty gritty of micellar water, and the pretty prolificity of Nectar!
Let’s compare ingredients, shall we?
Surfactants. Hmmm. Here’s what we read about Surfactants: “You’ll also find them keeping oil and water happy together in emulsion products like moisturizers and mayonnaise.” (*)Mayonnaise? Your face is not a sandwich!
Also, surfactant, combined with water, makes what’s called “micelles,” which are “spherical arrangements of surfactant molecules, with the tails pointing in and the heads facing out – this means the hydrophobic tails are protected from the water by the hydrophilic heads…..” (*) Uh, what? I fell asleep.😴 I can’t concentrate.
Natural and simple, please, you say??? You got it.
Our Nectars claim over 40 natural plant and mineral-based ingredients! 🌱
Refining Cleansing Nectar:
- Chaulmoogra Oil: This light, non-clogging oil helps heal the skin cells for a more luminous complexion.
- Kahai Oil: Over 50% more Vitamin E than most ingredients.
- Fig Seed Oil: Fig seed oil gently exfoliates dead skin to deposit healing nutrients deep within. Contains nearly 40% Omega-3, 30% Omega-6, and 17% Omega-9, making your skin plump and forever young.
Radiant Cleansing Nectar:
- Apple Seed Oil: Loaded with amino acids
- Hawthorn Berry: Rich in Vitamin C and Antioxidants
- Manuka Oil: Sourced from New Zealand, a soothing, essential oil
- You would like photo proof, you say? Gladly!
Water and surfactants look like this, on the Left(*), and our Nectars look like this, on the Middle and Right. Which looks cleaner and fresher to you? 🤔💙🧡
Quick Q & A: Do you need to rinse your face?
Do you need to rinse your face after you use micellar water? Sadly, the answer to this question is a non-committal, unsatisfying “it depends”. If your skin feels dry or itchy after using it, would recommend following the micellar water with a wipe of a cotton pad soaked in plain water. (*)
Do you need to rinse your face after you use No. 2 Refining or Radiant Cleansing Nectars?
No. No Ma’am. We recommend not rinsing these good-for-your-skin ingredients, and leaving them there to soak in, hydrate, and soften your skin even after you’ve cleansed.
What Does Micellar Water Do, VS What Does Our Cleansing Nectar Do?
True, Micellar Water has some benefits; it’s cleansing and isn’t too harsh. But as we mentioned above, our Nectars have many more benefits, and we go deeper: a submarine plunge to the depths of your subcutaneous. Here are just some of the many benefits of our Nectars:
Cleansing– They remove dirt and makeup, help prevent breakouts, and according to our customer Brooke P, embody a “deep clean, so refreshing.”
Skin Hydration– Soft and gentle, no need for scrubbing or severe cleansers. Soothing to the skin. Our customer Teresa says, “Never irritates, always leaves my skin feeling dewy.”
Multi-skin-type and Multi-Purposei. e. Formulated for all skin types, including dry skin, oily skin, and the most problematic and sensitive skin types. Also helps to minimize scars and marks, reduce inflammation, and clarify pores.
Keep Skin Clear– They fight off icky bacteria that cause breakouts. Mimi says after using it, her skin is “clean, bright, and glowing.”
Easy When Traveling --- Our Luminous Clear Skin Travel Kit, which includes the Radiant Cleansing Nectar, is such a treat! It includes everything you need to go from start to finish when you’re on the road or in the air, and since you don’t need water with our Nectars, you don’t have to use gas stations or airplane bathrooms (ick) – just use our soft cotton pads right in your seat!
Speaking of sans-water….
Skincare without Water– “Skincare without water? It sounds crazy, but that’s the surprising secret to the most beautiful skin you've ever had.”Our Founder and CEO Camille, who developed our products based on her 16-year battle with breakouts, writes about the waterless feature here!
Great for Acne-Prone Skin– As mentioned, micellar water can sometimes make acne worse, depending on your skin type. Check out our throwback to The Best Cleanser for Acne-Prone Skin blog and find out more about why we recommend these Nectars.
Is Micellar Water a Toner?
First, regarding toners: “Studies have shown that a significant improvement occurred when a group of acne sufferers started incorporating toner into their daily regimen.” (*)
And yes, micellar water is sometimes mentioned as a toner because basically, both of them are water-type liquids that help cleanse the skin.(*)
But remember, we also want waterless for easy, on-the-go. We want natural, earthy ingredients. We want products that are cruelty-free (bunny-friendly).Paraben-free. Good for all skin types. We want products that are all of these things. After all, we hesitate to indulge in so many ways. Why not treat the biggest organ in our bodies, that which cares for us every day, our skin? We deserve it.
Can’t give up your micellar water? No problem! Use your micellar water to remove makeup, then give your skin the added benefit of our nectar afterward, to both deep-clean and deposit the acne-attacking, age-defying nutrients that will stay all day and night.
Why Do Our Nectars Work So Well?
“Powered by nature, our products are infused with skin-enhancing vitamins, rich botanicals, and potent minerals that work in unison to make the most effective skincare imaginable.”(*)