Micellar water vs toner: is there any difference between toner and micellar water?
Yes, there is a difference between micellar water and toner!
Micellar water is a gentle and effective way to remove impurities, makeup, and excess oil from your skin. The micelles present in the water make it possible to achieve this without the need for rinsing or using an additional cleanser. This quality makes micellar water a go-to for cleansing your skin as the first step in your skincare routine.
In contrast, toners contain a range of ingredients that address specific skin problems like acne, dry skin, and more.
There are several formulations of toners on the market that target different skin concerns, and they can be used after cleansing to restore the pH balance of the skin. This helps to strengthen the skin barrier, which is crucial for dealing with problematic skin.
Table of Contents
Micellar Water vs Toner – the differences
What is micellar water?
Micellar water is a dermopharmaceutical cosmetic manufactured in the 1990s in France by Bioderma. The origin goes back to the times when tap water (or tap) contained too many minerals and irritated the skin of the population. It was around 1913. Micellar water was originally manufactured to remove makeup from the skin without the need to rinse it.
It is a light, water-based product. As its name explains, it contains micelles and a solvent that is generally soft water, suitable for all skin types since it does not contain dyes, perfumes, alcohol, parabens, etc.
Primarily it is used as a first cleanser, sometimes as a makeup remover. Hence we would place it in step 1 as you remove makeup.
As time went by, the basic formulations of this water changed by applying new technologies, ingredients and active principles, changing its initial objective. Currently, you can find added and complementary functions such as antioxidant, moisturizing, anti-inflammatory, calming, etc.
What are micelles and soft water?
Micelles are a set of small oil molecules with two poles. The micelles are formed in polarized circular structures, where its external portion attracts the fatty part (lipophilic) while its internal portion attracts water (hydrophilic), this means that it contains two poles:
- One of them soluble in water
- The other soluble in oil acts by trapping and encapsulating dirt and grease that are incompatible with water like a magnet.
Soft water, on the other hand, is a type of water that is very low in sodium chloride, magnesium and calcium. This type of water is used in cosmetics not only because it respects the skin’s pH but also because it leaves no residue. In conclusion, micelles attract dirt and soft water removes it, they work together.
How to use micellar water?
Something very important is to know your skin to select the right type of micellar water. Being its watery texture, the use of the product must be with cotton.
The cotton must be well soaked, and if the makeup is long-lasting, it is always recommended to leave the cotton applied to the area for a while to help loosen it. Also, you should not rinse.
Steps to use micellar water:
- Begin with the eyes by applying minimal pressure from the tear duct to the end of the eyebrow.
- The eyelashes which must be cleaned from the root of the hair to the ends, never in the opposite direction. This is adequate so that the tabs do not break. Many times it is helped with swabs
- The lips must be made up from the corner towards the center, this helps not to spread the pigmentation of the lipstick on the rest of the face.
- Finally, the rest of the face, always sliding the cotton from inside the face (nose) outwards. Without rubbing with hardly any pressure, without aggressive dragging and with small circles thus favoring blood flow.
Learn to make micellar water at home!
Does micellar water need to be rinsed?
Micellar water should not be rinsed a priori since the polarity of these molecules attract dirt and dissolve it, therefore it should not be rinsed.
There are some experts who recommend rinsing it anyway. If the micellar water is bubbling, it is a sign that it contains surfactants (or sulfates).
It is not necessarily a bad thing and these are necessary for cleaning, but leaving them on the skin tends to dry it out, hence many specialists recommend rinsing. You should check the ingredients to know if it should be rinsed or not.
Before moving on to the Toner let us know a few important things:
1) What is the difference between micellar water and makeup remover?
Although there are several types of make-up removers (cleansing milk, oil-based cleansers and our cleansing puff).
Makeup remover is almost always a biphasic product made up of two parts, one aqueous and one oily. The oily one is always deposited below since it has a greater weight.
We should mix them well so that the two parts come together and emulsify. Otherwise, the product may not work. This type of makeup remover is specially designed to remove makeup of all kinds, even long-lasting.
On the other hand, micellar water is made up of micro-micelles. That is, small balls of cleaning molecules suspended in soft water. These molecules attract dirt and oil, so they remove impurities from the skin. Therefore it does not need rinsing.
2) What is the difference between micellar water and cleansing puff?
The cleansing puff is a modern DUAL make-up remover, it removes makeup and all dirt from the skin.
It consists of two sides 1) The fuchsia side made of microfiber will be in charge of removing makeup from your face 2) The white side made of viscose is a vegetable tissue obtained from cellulose pulp and is in charge of cleaning the pores and oil control in them.
1 Cleansing PUFF is equivalent to 500 makeup remover wipes and reduces the ecological footprint since it does not require the use of cotton pads.
Microfiber fibers are 100 times finer than human hair, being so small they can get into the pore and trap dirt and makeup inside the microfiber. THIS IS THE SECRET!
3) What is the difference between micellar water and toner?
The toner is not a cleansing step, it corresponds to step 4 of the Korean routine while the micellar water corresponds to step 1.
The main function of toners is to balance the pH, hydrate and also prepare the skin for the following steps.
Why balance the pH?
The most important role that our skin develops is a protective barrier between our body and the outside world.
The skin’s pH is one of its key protection mechanisms. The acid mantle is important for the creation of the skin’s protective barrier.
It neutralizes aggressive alkaline-based agents, inhibits the growth of bacteria, restores and maintains the optimal acidic environment so that the skin’s natural flora can thrive.
After cleaning, the pH can sometimes be altered and it is the toner that restores it, putting the protective barrier in order. The toner does not need rinsing.
What is toner?
The toner is a water-based cosmetic with rapid penetration into the skin, made to help balance the pH, restore the stratum corneum and hydrate. Giving strength and energy to the body.
Once we cleanse, remove make-up or exfoliate, the pH of the skin becomes unbalanced.
And many times the cornea layer is injured and it is there where the tonic fulfills its function of restoring the skin, thus leaving the skin healthy to provide hydration.
The toner fulfills an important step to prepare the skin before moisturizing it, it is the balance between cleansing and hydration.
Within the toners, we can find variants.
Astringents for oily skin, antioxidants for dry skin, soothing for sensitive skin, etc.
What is the function of the toner?
The toner’s function is to restore the skin’s pH, hydrate and refresh it.
It is the last step in cleansing and prepares the skin to receive the following hydration steps. It leaves the skin perfectly prepared so that it is easier to absorb all the products that will come later in the skincare routine: essence, serum and emulsion.
How is the toner applied?
The toner can be applied with cotton, in the form of a spray or with the fingers exerting little pressure. It is best to apply it with small touches, they help to stimulate blood flow so that the skin can absorb hydration better.
The toner goes all over the face and should be left for a few minutes for the skin to finish absorbing.
What are the differences between micellar water and toner?
The first difference between them is that the micellar water works fulfilling the function of makeup remover and cleansing.
Although it has the same aqueous texture, the Toner is composed to restore and balance the skin after cleaning, therefore it is step 4 of the Korean Routine.
Let’s see the differences and some similarities between toner and micellar water.
|It is step 1 of the Korean routine||It’s step 4 of the Korean routine|
|None need rinsing|
|Its main function is to attract makeup and dirt. In conclusion, micelles attract dirt and soft water removes it, they work together.||The toner’s function is to restore the skin’s pH, hydrate and refresh it. It is the last step in cleansing and prepares the skin to receive the following hydration steps, it leaves the skin perfectly prepared so that it is easier to absorb all the products that will come later in the skin care routine: essence, serum and emulsion. The most important role that our skin develops is that of a protective barrier between our body and the outside world, with the skin’s pH being one of its key protection mechanisms. The acid mantle is important for the creation of the skin’s protective barrier, neutralizes alkaline-based aggressive agents, inhibits the growth of bacteria, restores and maintains the optimal acid environment so that the skin’s natural flora can thrive. After cleaning, the pH can sometimes be altered and it is the tonic that restores it, putting the protective barrier in order.|
|It is applied as the first step||It is applied after cleansing (double) and exfoliation but before the essence.|
Final Words: Tonner vs Micellar Water
While both micellar water and toner are used in skincare routines, they serve different purposes.
Micellar water is used as a gentle cleanser to remove impurities, makeup, and excess oil from the skin, while toners contain specific ingredients to address various skin concerns and restore pH balance.
Hence, it is important to understand the difference between the two products and choose the one that best suits your skincare needs.
FAQs: Differences between Micellar water and Toner
What is the difference between micellar water and toner?
Micellar water is a gentle cleansing solution that uses micelles (tiny oil molecules) to attract dirt and makeup, while toner is a water-based solution that is used to balance the skin’s pH level and prepare it for better absorption of other skincare products.
Can you use micellar water as a toner?
No. While micellar water can be used to cleanse the skin, it is not a substitute for toner. Toners are designed to remove any residual dirt and oil that may have been left behind after cleansing, balance the skin’s pH level, and provide additional benefits such as hydration or exfoliation.
Are micellar water and toner suitable for all skin types?
Both micellar water and toner can be used on all skin types, but it’s important to choose the right product for your skin’s specific needs. For example, if you have dry skin, you may want to opt for a hydrating toner or micellar water that contains moisturizing ingredients.
Is micellar water better than makeup wipes?
Yes, micellar water is better than makeup wipes. It can be a good alternative to makeup wipes as it is gentler on the skin and does not require harsh rubbing or tugging to remove makeup. Micellar water is also more environmentally friendly than makeup wipes, as it does not create as much waste.