Does Micellar Water Remove Sunscreen?

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Micellar water first became popular as a fashion product cleanser in France, where it was found to provide fast relief from the dryness and itchiness caused by the country’s notoriously hard water. It’s an extremely gentle product that, after the removal of a harmful ingredient, has overtaken the world of make-up removal. 

The question does micellar water remove sunscreen is a good one. Yes, micellar water can remove sunscreen.

This is great: you can use micellar water at night to clean off the sunscreen you applied that day. But you should also be careful to not use micellar water after applying sunscreen if you are going to need sun protection!

This article will go over why micellar water is so adept at removing sunscreen, what else works, and why it’s important to remove sunscreen at night. 


What is Micellar Water?

Bioderma Micellar Water

Micellar water is, primarily just water. That’s what makes it so gentle to apply. The other ingredients, while in small amounts, play a vital role in cleansing. Micellar water uses “micelles”, tiny spheres of oil that float in the water and run across your skin. 

The micelles draw out the dirt and other leftover particles on your skin, dissolving them. This leaves your skin feeling soft.

It may feel like water, but it has the strength to remove sunscreen, dirt, and, make-up like an oil-based cleanser.

Does Micellar Water Remove Sunscreen?

You may think sunscreen is easily washed away if you just bathe or swim in the ocean. Some of it is, of course. But sunscreen is designed to last!

And when you reapply more, dirt and grime get trapped in between the two layers. You should always reapply after going in the water, regardless!

You’ve likely come home from the beach and, even after showering, you still feel the itchy sand. That can be taken care of with some micellar water.

Does micellar water remove sunscreen? Yes, micellar water will remove sunscreen.

Should I use micellar water after sunscreen?

This is where you need to be careful. If you’ve applied your sunscreen, you should not apply micellar water over it, as you will strip off at least some of the sunscreen you’ve applied.

You need to think about your daily skin care routine, and apply micellar water after sunscreen. Or better yet: use your micellar water at night to cleanse your skin and freshen it for rest.

Bioderma - Sensibio - H2O Micellar Water - Makeup Remover Cleanser - Face Cleanser for Sensitive Skin
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Do You Need To Use Micellar Water To Remove Sunscreen?

Sunscreen is one thing that water alone can’t properly remove. Sunscreens made of chemicals are oil-soluble, and other sunscreens are oil-based, so water is not going to be enough.

You don’t have to go out and seek a specific sunscreen cleanser, but make-up remover like micellar water will do just fine. 

However, for some sunscreens, other products may work better. Oil cleansers tend to work exceptionally well. It doesn’t matter what kind of oil you use, either.

Coconut oil or sweet almond, either would work. 

To apply oil to sunscreen, pour a small amount in your palm. Massage it on your face, then let it sit for a few minutes. Run a face towel under some warm water. Hold it over your face for ten seconds.

After you dry, your skin should feel soft and fresh. 

Is It Bad To Leave Sunscreen On All Night?

One habit of a lot of sunbathers that is proven unhealthy is leaving the application of sunscreen on overnight, either due to laziness or forgetfulness.

This presents some serious problems. Often, people are using sunscreen specifically because it prevents premature wrinkles. If you’re leaving sunscreen on at night, you’re clogging your pores, forcing them to open wider. 

So while sunscreen is important to wear during the day to avoid the harm the sun can do to your skin, it’s unhealthy to leave it on at night. Your skin is repairing itself while you sleep, and it has a harder time doing so when the pores are blocked. 

Here are the three main reasons to not leave sunscreen on at night. 

Lack of moisture: If you’re using a moisturizer at night with reparative qualities, the sunscreen will stop it from doing what it’s meant to do. 

Pore-clogging: Some sunscreens are particularly pore-clogging, which can lead to issues for those prone to congestion and breakouts.

Costlier: Think about it. What you’re saving on sunscreen you’ll be using to buy skin repair and spa treatments thanks to the damage you’ve caused. It’s much wiser to just properly wash it off, either with an oil or micellar water. 

Does Micellar Water Remove Zinc Sunscreen?

Zinc is often an ingredient used in mineral sunscreen. It’s known for being non-toxic, non-irritating, and it protects your skin from the sun’s rays physically.

It’s also water-resistant, so it won’t wash off easily. 

But using oil-based cleansers like the ones described above can be a little frightening to those with oily skin. 

Fortunately, the oils and soaps contained in the spheres of micellar water are just as effective at dissolving zinc as the oil-based cleansers that come recommended for removing this kind of sunscreen. 

Does Sunscreen Age Your Skin?

This has long been a myth that haunts the sunscreen industry. It was once believed that sunscreen actually added years to your skin. In fact, studies have shown that some sunscreen actually has some anti-aging properties. 

One amazing study in the Annals of Internal Medicine found people who use broad-spectrum sunscreen have 24 percent less skin aging than those who do not. The study followed 900 people, and found improvement even in people 50 years and up. 

What Happens If You Don’t Wear Sunscreen?

This is a fairly simple matter. There’s a reason there’s a popular song/college lecture based on the idea that one should always wear sunscreen as common sense advice. Here are five terrible things that can happen without sunscreen:

Sunspots: Sunspots can appear on your body, creating hyperpigmentation in certain areas of your body and speeds up aging in general. 

Telangiectasis:  This is the scientific term for broken blood vessels caused by UV exposure. 

More wrinkles: Not wearing sunscreen will damage your skin’s collagen and connective tissue. This will ultimately lead to a loss of elasticity – in other words, more wrinkles. 

Painful burns: You’ve probably experienced light sunburns, which are plenty painful in their own right. But they’re nothing compared to unsightly, boiling blisters left by overexposure. 

Potential scarring: Some people have underlying conditions, such as lupus, which UV rays can severely irritate. This can result in scarring. 

Final Thoughts

Micellar water will remove sunscreen. Use it at the end of the day to cleanse your skin. But don’t use micellar water if you’ve just applied your sunscreen.

Iit’s always important, whether tanning or just spending a lot of time outdoors when it’s hot, to wear sunscreen. But it’s equally important to remove it at night. 

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Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).