Battle of the Micellar Waters

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Garnier are the latest brand to dip their toes in the micellar water market and as I mentioned in my recent beauty buys post I bought myself a bottle when I was in Boots last month.  I've been using it for the last few weeks and wanted to do a review but given that it's a bit of a DULL product to write about I've tried to do something a bit different.  Before the Garnier version came into my life I'd been using the L'Oreal 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution pretty solidly for the last 6 months or so and still had some left so I thought I'd do a "scientific" (not really) experiment and pit the 2 against each other to see which was better.  

Ding ding!  Let battle commence!

Makeup removal
First up is arguably the most important bit - how good a job do they do at removing make-up.  The only reason I use micellar water is to take off my makeup before cleansing so ideally I want this to be as easy as possible - if I have to use tons of soaked cotton pads then I'm not impressed.  

To keep things fair I used one micellar water on each half of my face, that way they were both removing the exact same amount of makeup.  I used one cotton pad per eye, then one pad for the face, going over with a third to check if there was anything left.  There wasn't much difference between the two at this stage to be honest, with the third cotton pad coming back completely clear for both sides of the face.

Winner: Tie

I couldn't really find a good word to describe this next test so I've gone with "finish" - basically I tested how the product left my skin, did it dry quickly, did my skin sting etc.  I timed how long it took for the product to completely dry on the skin and surprisingly there was absolutely no difference between the two - both took 1 minute and 40 seconds to sink in.

The one difference though was that the L'Oreal version made my skin feel really hot on the cheeks for some reason - I have noticed that my face does sometimes feel really flushed after I've removed my makeup but hadn't actually thought it was anything to do with the product.

Winner: Garnier (purely due to L'Oreal making my skin flush)

Having used the L'Oreal cleansing water for the last 6 months or so one of the things that annoys me on a daily basis is the packaging.  The bottle LOOKS nice and as it's so slim it doesn't take up much room in my beauty drawer, but when it comes to putting product onto a cotton pad the flat top means that you get a lot of spillage.  It's pretty much impossible to squeeze some out without it dribbling down the side which is a pain in the arse.  The Garnier bottle has a much better design though so it's a lot easier to get product out (and also to decant into a smaller bottle for travelling). 

Winner: Garnier

Show me the money!  If I'm honest, price has definitely been the biggest influencer behind me buying L'Oreal  up until now, as it's significantly cheaper than the Bioderma version.  When sold at full price Garnier is exactly the same as L'Oreal BUT the bottle is bigger so you're getting more for your money.

L'OrĂ©al Skin Perfection 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution - £4.99 for 200ml (currently on offer for £3.33)
Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water - £4.99 for 400ml

Winner: Garnier

So based on these super scientific tests....ahem....I'd say that Garnier is the clear winner!  In terms of makeup removal and the way it feels on the skin there's not a lot between the two to be fair, but Garnier definitely has the better packaging and you can't argue with the price.  This is one I'll absolutely be repurchasing.

What do you think though - have you tried both?  Can you recommend another cleansing water I should try next?


  1. I've been debating getting a micellar water for ages!! Definitely intrigued by this Garnier number. Will have a closer inspection myself! xx

    1. I couldn't live without a micellar water now! So used to it being part of my nightly routine. You need to get in on the action :) x