You have to have heard of micellar waters by now. Although micelles are themselves not a new technology, it is only in the past few years that they have been really gaining traction in the beauty scene as an excellent way to remove makeup or even just the daily grime on our faces during those no-makeup days.
To get into the science of it, micelles are basically lipid molecules that form themselves in a spherical formation, with their oil-loving tails pointing inwards. As makeup is mostly oil-based, they are more attracted to the oil-loving tails of the micelles than your face, and so you are able to remove them.
Think of micellar waters as a more gentle form of a cleansing oil, as they’re literally cleansing oil molecules suspended in water. You get the cleaning efficacy of cleansing oils, without actually having to spread oil all over your face which may clog pores and induce zits.
Without further ado, here’s a list of notable and/or recently launched brands of micellar water which you may not know about yet.
1. Etude House Monster Micellar Cleansing Water
Freshly launched in the market, the Etude House Monster Micellar Cleansing Water contains Green Power Complex: a mixture of aloe, green tea, and bamboo that will cleanse your face gently and without any irritation.
Etude House Monster Micellar Cleansing Water retails for SGD 26 (700 ml) at Etude House outlets and Lazada.
2. Bioré Acne Care Micellar Cleansing Water
Micellar waters are generally pretty gentle to the skin, but for those of us with acne-prone skin, Bioré is now launching one specially for you. Aside from being lightweight and hydrating as most micellar waters go, the Bioré Acne Care Micellar Cleansing Water also includes an anti-bacterial formula to remove excess sebum and dirt that may cause pimples from deep within the pores.
It also contains natural mineral water from the Northern Japanese Alps for a gentle and soothing formula. It is non-comodogenic, and free from alcohol, fragrance, artificial colouring and oils.
Bioré Acne Care Micellar Cleansing Water retails at SGD 18.90 at all leading pharmacies, super/hypermarkets, and Lazada.
3. L’Oreal Paris Bi-Phase Micellar Water
This micellar water was recently reviewed by us, and it turned out to be as good as it claims! Its unique bi-phase technology consists of a micellar layer and a cleansing layer, both of which work in synergy to remove not only impurities, but even the most stubborn of makeup.
The micellar layer acts like a magnet to lift up impurities, oil and makeup off the skin, while the cleansing layer removes stubborn, waterproof makeup without including formula ‘nasties’ like oil, fragrance or alcohol.
L’Oreal Paris Bi-Phase Micellar Water retails for SGD 22.90 (400 ml) at all leading Watsons, Guardian, Unity stores, Lazada, and major super/hypermarkets.
4. Crabtree & Evelyn Damask Rose Relaxing Micellar Water
This micellar water contains plant-based ingredients like French Damask Rose, Rose of Jericho and Hollyhock, which means it smells nothing short of amazing. Not only does it do its job in wiping the impurities from your face, but the amazing scent will also help you destress and relax at the end of a long day.
This micellar water is said to be both a toner and a cleanser in one – more steps eliminated from your skincare routine!
Crabtree & Evelyn Damask Rose Relaxing Micellar Water retails for SGD 30 (150 ml) at Crabtree & Evelyn stores.
5. Caudalie Micellar Cleansing Water
The Caudalie Micellar Cleansing Water consists of a delicate fragrance of orange and lemon blossom, watermelon and mint leaves.
It is a no-rinse formula, hypoallergenic, non-irritating and suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin.
Caudalie Micellar Cleansing Water retails for SGD 33 (200 ml) at Sephora.
6. Guerlain Eau de Beauté Micellar Cleansing Water
The star ingredient in the Guerlain Eau de Beaute Micellar Cleansing Water is the Nigella Flower Oil, which is said to have antioxidant properties to purify, tone and hydrate the skin.
The liquid is unique in that it is almost gel-like, rather than the watery texture of most micellar waters. This cleansing water also has an exclusive signature fragrance developed specially for Eau de Beauté: a pure white tea blended with musky notes and some jasmine.
Guerlain Eau de Beauté Micellar Cleansing Water retails for SGD 88 (200 ml) at Sephora.
7. La Mer The Cleansing Micellar Water
Although the price of this micellar water borders on the ridiculous, there have been many online reviewers who affirm that it is every bit the luxury treat for your skin as its price tag makes it out to be.
La Mer uses their signature marine nutrients as well as their Miracle Broth, delivered to your skin via micro capsules, in order to bring you this powerful cleansing water powered by the sea.
La Mer The Cleansing Micellar Water retails for SGD 180 (200 ml) at Tangs.
8. La Roche Posay Physiological Micellar Solution
La Roche Posay is not a newcomer when it comes to skincare solutions, and its products have been hailed as holy grails by many beauty junkies. Their Physiological Cleansers series also contains a Physiological Micellar Solution which, as its name suggests, removes impurities and makeup without disturbing the physiological balance of the skin.
This cleanser is said to be perfect particularly for those with sensitive skin, as it is a gentle but thorough cleanser that leaves no residue on the skin after. It contains no soap, colorants, alcohol or parabens.
The product may be switching its name and packaging soon to the La Roche Posay Micellar Water Ultra, also for sensitive skin.
9. Uriage Thermal Micellar Water
The ingredient list for this micellar water is pretty simple: it only contains Uriage Thermal Water, Glycerin, and gentle non-ionic surfactants. Its three versions, for normal to dry skin, for oily to combination skins, and for sensitive skin, contain a different additional ingredient each.
While the Uriage Thermal Water is already said to nourish and moisturise the skin, the normal to dry skin version of the micellar water contains cranberry extract to provide additional hydration for suppleness. The oily and combination skin version contains green apple extract and pore refiner, which is said to normalise sebum production. The sensitive skin version contains apricot extract to soothe irritated skin.
10. NYX Stripped Off Micellar Water
This is a pretty straightforward micellar water that does just what it claims: remove makeup thoroughly. While NYX doesn’t usually produce skincare products, we think it might be worth a try. After all, it is pretty affordable and, according to this reviewer, works just as well as the similarly-priced Garnier micellar water. Reviewers on the NYX website have testified to its efficacy and its value for money.
NYX Stripped Off Micellar Water retails at NYX boutiques islandwide.
11. My Beauty Diary Micellar Cleansing Water
Any beauty guru worth his or her salt, especially those based in Asia, should not be a stranger to Taiwanese skincare brand My Beauty Diary. Their cult favourite products are their bestselling face sheet masks, but did you know they also made micellar waters?
The My Beauty Diary Micellar Cleansing Water is their first foray into the realm of facial cleansers and makeup removers, but it has already received rave reviews from beauty junkies across Asia. This beauty reviewer says it works not just for makeup, but also removes everything from the usual sebum and impurities that build up on your face after a whole day, and dried up pimple cream left overnight. Removal was also found to be “easy and effortless”.
My Beauty Diary Micellar Cleansing Water retails for SGD 19.90 (400 ml) on Watsons.
12. Simple Micellar Cleansing Water
Simple is a brand that has gained its reputation for, well, keeping its ingredients simple. It works well with removing makeup, and leaves the skin feeling lightly hydrated rather than stripped of moisture. Some reviewers have noted that it has an odd smell, though they were not sure if they had gotten an unusual batch.
Whatever it is, the efficacy of the Simple Micellar Cleansing Water has been acknowledged to be on par with that of some higher end brands. Considering its much lower price, it’s definitely worth a try.
Simple Micellar Cleansing Water retails for SGD 16.90 (200 ml) on Watsons.
13. Sephora Collection Micellar Cleansing Water
This micellar cleansing water comes in either green tea or charcoal variations, and both of those smell refreshingly different from other cleansing waters. The green tea also contains antioxidant and astringent properties that’s going to be great for your skin.
Its formula is said to be able to mattify skin, reduce sebum production and even clear blemishes! This is a pretty big claim for a micellar cleansing water, but this has been verified by online reviews from users who were impressed by its effect on their skin.
Sephora Collection Micellar Cleansing Water retails for SGD 9.90 (100 ml) at Sephora.
And if you need more micellar water recommendations, you definitely need to see this blind test we conducted on five popular options. We found the ultimate winner and tell you which it is!