We’re positive you’ve seen or at the very least heard of Bioderma’s and Eucerin’s cult-favourite micellar water. But how do they compare? And which is best for you?
Keep scrolling for an in-depth guide to choosing the best micellar water for you, as well as a side-by-side comparison of Eucerin and Bioderma's best-sellers.
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Eucerin vs Bioderma Micellar Water
Firstly, what is Micellar water? Micellar water is made up of purified (soft) water and cleansing oil molecules, usually used to remove makeup from the skin. It looks and feels similar to water, but the oil molecules (micelles) are just the right size to draw out impurities and remove makeup without leaving an oily residue. A good Micellar Water can be used with no rinsing, leaving no residue behind.
Micellar water was first developed in France in the early 1900s, when the primitive plumbing systems meant that water was very harsh on the skin. French pharmacists developed a blend of purified water and oil molecules to help women cleanse their face when water either wasn’t available, or was too harsh to use.
So why not just use purified water? The dirt that accumulates on our face throughout the day, as well as the makeup we wear is not all water soluble. To effectively cleanse it off, we need to add a surfactant that can dissolve fatty dirt and makeup particles.
While Micellar water was developed in the early 1900s, it didn’t gain the popularity it has today until 1995 or so, especially for its use in the West. Now it is popular among makeup artists who are doing makeup on the go, as well as people who are looking for a fast and no-nonsense way to cleanse their skin in the evening. Since 1995, multiple companies have worked to develop and perfect their Micellar Water formulas and bring you the best the market has to offer.
Best overall micellar water
Bioderma's Sensibio H20 Micellar Water gently cleanses your skin from impurities, while removing eye and face makeup. It is formulated to soothe your skin, preserving its natural balance. While it is intended for sensitive skin, it is effective on all skin types and balances your skin’s moisture without leaving it feeling oily. The lipids in it mimic the natural ones found in your skin and work to maintain its protective layer from outside pollutants. The Micellar technology in Bioderma’s Micellar Water means that it doesn’t require any rinsing.
The ingredients list is simple and includes purified water, a few plant based extracts, as well as gentle glycerides for cleansing. It is also vegan, paraben and fragrance free! They have conducted clinical trials that have shown it to be effective in: removing 99% of makeup, removing 99% of pollutants, and cleansing 78% of heavy metals. The formula follows the NOAS research that has a DAF patent that contributes to increasing your skin’s resistance to external pollutants.
Most of the online reviews for Bioderma Sensibio are positive. Customers say that it is indeed very gentle on their skin. Even customers with notoriously sensitive skin have had a positive experience and said that it has not caused any redness or breakouts. People who have tried multiple brands of Micellar Water say that Bioderma’s version is their favorite one.
It’s ability to remove makeup has some mixed reviews. Most customers say that it removes all of their makeup easily and without a trace (even waterproof mascara!), but a few didn’t agree and said that they would still wake up with eye makeup smudges the next morning.
Eucerin DermatoCLEAN 3 in 1 Micellar Water is a little more expensive (~$10 more than it's Bioderma counterpart). They make similar claims to Bioderma in that it is formulated for sensitive skin, removes makeup, and is mild yet effective. It is vegan, alcohol free, paraben free, fragrance free, and safe for use with contact lenses.
The ingredients list is simple, and although some of the ingredients are hard to pronounce, they are all shown to be safe, gentle, and effective. The micelles in the formula are made with Decyl Glucoside, a plant derived cleansing agent.
Eucerin DermatoCLEAN has been through extensive clinical and dermatological studies. During a study of the hydration benefits, the addition of hydrating ingredients such as sodium hyaluronate and glycerin were shown to be very effective. In fact, 81% of the participants experienced an increase in skin moisture levels over a one week period. Their website also includes the results of heat map testing for moisturization, which show a significant improvement in hydration after just one use. They also conducted heat map testing for sebum reduction, showing a significant reduction after a single use.
Eucerin’s Dermatoclean has overwhelmingly positive reviews online. Customers say that it is hydrating and makes their skin feel clean and refreshed, while effectively removing their makeup. Even though the product isn’t technically a toner, customers say that it has replaced their toner because it balances their skin’s cleanliness and hydration levels so well. Some reviews rave about how it makes their skin glow after they use it!
A few customers did have trouble removing their eye makeup with it and had to use a separate eye makeup remover, and a few said it left their skin feeling sticky as opposed to clean and refreshed, but with an average of 4.6 out of 5 stars across several popular online retailers, the negative experiences are definitely in the minority.
Both Eucerin and Bioderma win in our books when it comes to their transparency with ingredients, dermatological studies, and customer reviews.
Eucerin is marginally more expensive, but earns its extra value with the addition of skin-loving hydrating ingredients that elevate it from simply a gentle cleanser to the effective 3 in 1 product in its title.
In our opinion, Eucerin Dermatoclean 3 in 1 Micellar Water is just that little bit more effective than the Bioderma's, but when it comes down to it, both of them are excellent choices.
DermatoCLEAN 3-in-1 Micellar Water by Eucerin
Our rating: ★★★★★
Removes impurities and waterproof makeup.
What makes it special? This mild but effective fluid removes make-up and helps skin to breathe more easily. It contains an innovative combination of active ingredients: APG Complex: an effective yet extra mild cleansing complex, Gluco-glycerol: a nature-derived moisturising active, and Hyaluronic acid: skin care active with a high moisture binding capacity.
Which skin types? For all skin types.
Sensibio H2O Micellar Water by Bioderma
Our rating: ★★★★★
A specific cleansing and make-up removing micellar water for sensitive skin.
What makes it special? Made up of micelles with excellent cleansing and make-up removing properties, Sensibio H2O deeply cleanses the face in the morning and evening, thus preventing pollutants likely to exacerbate skin sensitivity from penetrating the skin. The micellar technology developed by Laboratoire Bioderma is inspired by the cellular lipids found in the skin. In perfect harmony with the skin, it preserves the natural protective film.
Which skin types? Perfect for normal to sensitive skin types.
Work in progress
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