It's time to do the dew...
Such is its glow-giving supremacy, you're virtually guaranteed to find an array of face mists on a beauty editor's desk. One for when skin feels parched; another for when it looks grey from too much screen time and one that revives when you hit that 3pm slump.
Summer or winter, face mists boast skin benefits all year round. A light spray can restore moisture after cleansing without clogging pores. Those containing thermal spring water are a safe bet for easily-riled skin. Most are also packed with the same ingredients you'll find in the best moisturiser for dry skin. They just happen to be suspended in liquid form.
Why Can't I Just Spray Water On My Face?
Face mists come to the immediate rescue of dry office complexions and skin that's battling seasonal sensitivity. 'But only if they contain humectants such as glycerine, hyaluronic acid and aloe vera, which help skin retain moisture,' says Elemis co-founder Noella Gabriel.
Spraying water on your face may feel refreshing but it also guarantees that your face mist will backfire. 'If there are no humectants in your face mist, your skin can't hold onto the moisture,' says Gabriel. 'The water simply evaporates and dehydrates your skin.' Precisely the opposite effect you were hoping for.
Face mists are also ideal for spot-prone, oily skin.
Sebum production increases with a rise in skin temperature. 'If your face feels hot, the risk of oiliness and breakouts increases,' says Dr Marko Lens, plastic surgeon and founder of Zelens skincare. 'Face mists can help to reduce this occurrence by being cooling on contact.'
They also don't contain the heavy oils and waxes normally found in a face cream, so won't clog pores.
These are the best face mists for different skin concerns:
Best Face Mist For Dry Skin: Mario Badescu Facial Spray With Aloe, Herbs and Rosewater, Harvey Nichols
Mario Badescu's face mists are the stuff of legends. This one helps prevent water loss through the day - and beyond - thanks to botanical soothers that punch up hydration and prevent that tight, uncomfortable feeling that makes skin see red. Spray over your day and night creams or use it to set your make-up.
Best Face Mist For Oily Skin: Elemis Superfood Kefir-Tea Mist, Lookfantastic
There's an argument for going vegan with your skincare if you suffer from sensitivity or acne. This is because ingredients derived from animal products like lanolin and beeswax can be harsh and clog pores due to their dense texture. This mist is not only vegan but packed with kefir ferment (great for reducing redness), balancing probiotics, soothing rooibos tea and hydrating aloe vera.
Best Brightening Face Mist: The Body Shop Vitamin C Energising Face Mist
It's no surprise that The Body Shop have formulated a face mist around vitamin C. Being acidic it encourages the skin to heal and prevents excess melanin production, which causes dark spots and pigmentation. We're talking about The Body Shop here, so expect vitamin C-rich camu camu from the Amazonian rainforest and Community Fair Trade aloe vera for do-good ingredients.
How To Use Face Mists
Dermatologists have long sworn by the three-minute rule: apply your skincare when your face is slightly damp. Consequently, use your face mist immediately before your serum and moisturiser to ensure the ingredients absorb better.
You can top up with a quick mist throughout the day. Most contain essential oils, which are impressive at boosting your mood or jolting you out of a 3pm slump. Kind of like a shot of espresso.
Face mists also play nicely with make-up.
They are brilliant at ramping up your highlighter's sheen and can help to reset your make-up at the end of the day. Simply spray, pat away the excess and blend with a sponge to prevent your make-up settling into fine lines.
It's worth mentioning that there's a subset of face mists called 'setting sprays'. Not to be confused with the hydrating versions, those are like liquid primers. They are not meant for every day use, as the film they create over the skin can clog pores with overuse.
More of Our Favourite Face Mists...
Based on a 14th-century beauty recipe, this purifying and reparative facial mist is bursting with mineral-rich thermal waters, glycerine and algae extract. The uplifting neroli and rose scent deserves a special mention, too.
'By settling on the surface of your face, where the good bacteria lives, a probiotic face mist can be more effective at protecting the skin's barrier,' says Dr Lens. The addition of amino acids draws in moisture with a single spritz.
Use over make-up or SPF to shield against ageing exhaust fumes. It's a three-pronged defence: a non-sticky gum forms the barrier, yeast extract keeps skin clean of toxins and antioxidants step up your protection.
Science meets botanics. A totally natural form of hyaluronic acid plumps up the surface of your skin while chamomile water calms down hormonal flare-ups.
If you're a fan of Arden's cult Eight Hour Cream, you'll love the face mist version. Containing super fruits, antioxidants and vitamins, the ultra-fine mist won't disrupt your foundation and is like a tall glass of water for post-sweat skin.
Celebs, make-up artists and beauty editors the world over wax lyrical about this face mist. Why? Because it's like a green juice for the skin. The formula is chock full of vitamins and inspired by the 'elixir of youth' used by Queen Isabelle of Hungary centuries ago. Cool, non?!
Don't believe us when we say that face mists are brilliant? Perhaps you'll trust the statistics... Three of these Avene Thermal Water Sprays are sold every minute in France, thanks to the skin-soothing minerals. All of those people can't be wrong, can they?
You've most likely seen this face mist all over Instagram. It warrants the hype. Aside from the coconut and rose waters to quench parched skin, it smells incredible, too. We totally wouldn't judge you if you used it as a body spray.
Science buffs will love the fact that it is charged with 'Iive magnets' to continually recharge the ingredients. Translation: the nourishing algae extracts keep on hydrating throughout the day and knackered skin gets its glow back.
Dr Sturm is all about reducing inflammation and keeping the skin barrier strong. And how do you do that? By keeping it hydrated with a hyaluronic acid serum, a good moisturiser and regular squirts of this antioxidant and aloe spray.
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Fiona Embleton has been a beauty editor for over 10 years, writing and editing beauty copy and testing over 10,000 products. She has previously worked for magazines like Marie Claire, Stylist, Cosmopolitan and Women’s Health. Beauty journalism allowed her to marry up her first class degree in English Literature and Language (she’s a stickler for grammar and a self-confessed ingredients geek) with a passion for make-up and skincare, photography and catwalk trends.
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