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L'Oreal Paris

Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Normal to Oily Skin

13.50 fl. oz. for $ 9.99
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Chances are you've probably heard about micellar waters, which are gaining popularity as alternatives to regular cleansers and makeup removers, though in the long run they just clean the face and have a clever science marketing story to tell. L'Oreal's Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Normal to Oily Skin is one of the better options in the category of makeup remover that you leave on the face, and the price is right too.

Before we get more into this particular micellar water cleanser, a note on micellar technology in general. It's a way to formulate a cleanser or makeup remover that involves how certain ingredients called surfactants (which are detergent type ingredients most cleansers and makeup removers contains) combine with water and interact with oils, like sebum, to cleanse them away. Marketing might make it sound like groundbreaking scientific technology, but it isn't, in fact it's just the way most cleansers and makeup removers work.

The reason this gets high marks is not because of the micellar construct; rather it's because it performs exactly as advertised. This fragrance-free formula is water-light and easy to distribute across the face with a cotton pad. True to L'Oreal's claims, it easily removes dirt, oil, and makeup without harsh rubbing or pulling at skin. It dries quickly and doesn't leave skin feeling dry or tight after doing so.

There is nothing about this extremely simplistic, basic formula that makes it better for oily skin as it isn't mattifying or all that different from L'Oreal's version for dry skin.

One concern, because this makeup remover contains the cleansing agent disocium cocoamphodiacetate, leaving it on the skin is NOT a good idea. Cleansing agents break down makeup and oil and skin as well. We recommend washing it off with a gentle water soluble cleanser and following up with your other skincare products.

Though this is not a replacement for more advanced cleansers with skin-beneficial ingredients, it's a good option for makeup removal, especially if you want a "quick and easy" option to take off your makeup before going to bed (which you absolutely should be doing), not to mention at this size, it's a drugstore bargain.

Pros:
  • Effectively removes dirt, oil, and makeup.
  • Doesn't leave skin feeling dry or tight.
  • Fragrance-free.
  • Inexpensive.
Cons:
  • There is nothing particular about this formula that makes it special for oily skin or mattifying.
  • Extremely basic simplistic formula.
  • If left on the face it can be drying for skin.
Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: Yes

With oily skin, over cleansing and exfoliating to remove excess sebum can strip the skin. LOreal Micellar Cleansing Water for Normal to Oily Skin is gentle on skin but removes makeup, dirt, and excess oil in one step, leaving skin looking purified and mattified.

Water, Hexylene Glycol, Poloxamer 184, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Disodium EDTA, Polyaminopropyl Biguanide.

L'Oreal Paris At-A-Glance

Strengths: Budget-friendly prices; good makeup removers; wide assortment of self-tanning options; one of the best, most comprehensive makeup collections at the drugstore, with superb options in almost every category; the mascaras are a tough act to follow.

Weaknesses: Jar packaging hinders some of the skincare formulas; many of their skincare formulas contain problematic amounts of fragrance and/or other irritants; exaggerated anti-aging claims.

L'Oreal's extensive makeup collection retains its stature as one of the better selections at the drugstore, though they have stiff competition from Revlon and, in some cases, sister company Maybelline New York. In recent years L'Oreal has made significant strides with foundation shades, powder textures, concealers, and, of course, superlative mascaras that rarely fail to impress. Their lipsticks are excellent and you will find many L'Oreal makeup products have a Lancome counterpart, and that the differences are minorif there are any at all.

L'Oreal's displays in many drugstores reflect better-organized products and shade categories (though testers are still scarce). Given the number of lipsticks they sell, it only makes sense to put them in color families so consumers have a better shopping experience. Their True Match products are also sensibly laid out, but the rest of the foundations aren't as organized, likely due to the smaller selection of shades. Speaking of foundations, L'Oreal has made further strides by offering more that provide sufficient UVA protection. Revlon still has the edge for consistently launching impressive foundations with sunscreen, but at least L'Oreal is (finally) catching up.

The bottom line is that every category of L'Oreals makeup has some winning (and in some cases, benchmark-setting) products.

Unfortunately, despite the brands enormous presence in the beauty industry, L'Oreal's moisturizers and treatment products are a nearly all unremarkable and repetitive. When it comes to moisturizers or serums, just about anything from Dove, Olay, Neutrogena, or Aveeno is preferred. L'Oreal does well with most of their cleansers, along with scrubs and self-tanning products, but given the widespread availability and financial resources of this line, they could be doing so much more. The good news is their makeup has made major strides and now ranks as the best overall color collection at the drugstoreimagine the results if their skin care followed suit.

For more information about L'Oreal, call (800) 322-2036 or visit www.loreal.com or www.lorealparisusa.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.

Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.

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