For the longest time, I did not wash my face in the morning. Yes, you read right. No face washing. Why? Well because my face wasn’t dirty. After all, I had just woken up, right? The night before, I removed my makeup, used a facial cleanser, and moisturized. Then slept. I had not done anything else to dirty my face. In the mornings, while in the shower for example, I would rinse my face to wake me up/refresh my skin. That was all, just rinse with water and then apply my face cream. Practical, quick and I was convinced my face was better off for it! Additionally, I have dry skin, so using a facial cleanser in the morning–even a mild, soap free one–was a no-no for me. Then I met Laetitia, a beauty consultant, and discovered the benefits of Micellar, a long-time French beauty secret.
After sharing my approach, Laetitia told me that it was wrong for so many reasons! True, my face does not get dirty while I sleep (except if it’s during a heat wave with no air conditioning and then yes, there’s sweat to worry about!), but skin does in fact go through physiological changes at night—the process of recovery. This natural action produces principally two things, a lot of dead skin cells and sebum. Water can remove some of them, but not all. So by then using a face moisturizer and make up, I was essentially putting them on a layer of dead skin (yuck). Not great for skin’s overall look and feel throughout the day.
In addition, the tap water in Paris is extremely harsh. It has a high concentration of calcium and magnesium salts that are good for the body when ingested, but are not so great if left on the skin, especially facial skin. So what to do?
I still didn’t want to use facial cleansers in the morning, so Laetitia suggested that instead, I try using a Micellar water product that I could find in any pharmacy in Paris. She explained that Micellar water was efficient to remove dead skin cells and sebum without drying out sensitive skin. So off I went in search of this product, and I was surprised when the pharmacist confirmed what Laetitia told me. The pharmacist also explained that Micellar water was widely used by women in Paris for decades, both as a facial cleanser and a make-up remover. So I purchased BIODERMA Créaline H20 TS for dry skin, the leading brand of Micellar water in France, and started using it religiously every morning, as it is essentially a cleanser and makeup remover in one. I still rinse my face with tap water, but I follow this up with a cotton pad of BIODERMA Créaline, gently wiping it around my face including my eyes. That’s it! No need to rinse with water after. I was so surprised by what I saw; the cotton swab was actually dirty. And my face felt clean with no pulling or drying sensation.
I’ve also started using it to remove my makeup in the evenings, and I highly recommend trying this product. The good thing is that BIODERMA Créaline is now available in the states. Enjoy discovering Micellar water!
Jackie Celestin-André is a Brooklyn born beauty, fashion and healthy living aficionado, with a penchant for wines and French foods (including anything chocolate and pastries), currently living in Paris, France. She is a marketing and diversity professional working for the global leader in beauty, and writing about beauty brands, events, and French beauty makers. Her goal is to bring readers a little closer to Paris without their ever leaving the USA.