A new category of beauty products has quietly cropped up over the past few years: spritz-on beauty waters. The traditional gold standard is, of course, the Evian mineral water spray, beloved at fancy Caribbean resorts and by Lauren’s mom.
Beauty companies seem to be moving away from more scientific sounding names for their potions in favor of calling them simply “water” or “mist.” Water conjures up images of rippling ponds and purity. (Well, at least it used to before the BP oil spill.)
These products claim a variety of benefits, from refreshment and hydration to purifying and toning. They appear to be the gentle little sisters of traditional toners and astringents.
I asked Dr. Elizabeth Hale, a dermatologist at the prestigious Laser and Skin Surgery Center of New York, for her professional opinion about this product category. She told me that traditionally, toners contain alcohol, water, and a humectant.
Humectants help to retain moisture and improve hydration. Alcohol, which includes witch hazel, can be drying. While she was skeptical that these products do much more than refresh and soothe the skin, those with humectants (like rosewater or grape water) or antioxidants like vitamins C and E can have some benefits.
So enough of this clinical talk. You should know this is definitely a luxury category. I looked through some local drugstore chains and there were no equivalent yet less expensive versions.
The most important question: Do they make you pretty? Using NYC’s recent heat wave as an excuse, I sampled and spritzed to my heart’s content.
Click through for the best ones.