Ingredient Breakdown: The All-Cleansing Micellar Water That You Should Still Rinse Off

Garnier Skin Active Micellar Cleansing Water, All-in-1

About The Product

A few years ago, the French cosmetics company Garnier, part of the L’Oréal group, released a new product – All-in-1 micellar water for all skin types. The product promised to quickly remove makeup and refresh the face without needing to be rinsed off. This is because it contains micelles – cleansing micro-particles that capture impurities from the skin’s surface. According to the manufacturer, micelles do not damage the skin’s lipid barrier and leave it moisturized and fresh.

About The Ingredients

The formula is straightforward. The base is water (aqua/water). The second ingredient is glycerin, a moisturizing component. Next is hexylene glycol, a preservative and solvent. Following that are poloxamers (poloxamer 184) – non-ionic mild surfactants that form micellar structures, the micelles. They are used in cleansing products: micellar water, makeup removers, cleansing emulsions, facial cleansing gels, and hair care products. In the micellar water formula, they act as cleansers: they emulsify oily impurities on the skin and remove them. Disodium cocoamphodiacetate is a mild surfactant responsible for cleansing the skin. Disodium EDTA forms complexes with metal cations present in water, making it softer. Polyaminopropyl biguanide is a preservative that acts as a safeguard, ensuring the formula’s stability by preventing the growth of microbes.

Final Thoughts

I generally recommend rinsing off any micellar water, especially if it contains classic emulsifier-stabilizers like PEG or Polysorbate (spoiler: Garnier’s micellar water does not contain these). These surfactants can cause dryness, redness, rashes, and sensitivity when left on the skin for prolonged periods. Micellar water containing Poloxamer (Poloxamer 188, Poloxamer 407) or Lauryl Glucoside (and) Coco Glucoside is gentler. These surfactants are low-irritating and non-toxic to cells, well-tolerated even by mucous membranes. However, reactions can vary individually.

Suitable For: Basically, any skin type, although it has caused reactions for me a few times due to sensitivity.

How to Use: Use a cotton pad to remove makeup, then cleanse with a gel or foam cleanser.

Currently available at Amazon for $17.42 (4-pack)


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