Every beauty blogger seems to be obsessed with thermal spring water, but isn’t it really just a little aerosol can of water?
I do not know where I was the first time I heard of “Eau thermale,” or “thermal water.” It was almost certainly an aspirational beauty or fashion blog where everyone is either actually French or did a study abroad term in Paris and still talks about it. I believe it was tucked away on a list of beauty essentials from the Paris pharmacy, and I thought, “Thermal water? What on Earth is that?”
Thermal water is a little aerosol can of spring water that one is intended to spray all over one’s face or wherever else one has sensitive skin that needs soothing.
According to Avene, which is one of the more popular thermal water vendors, the natural trip through mountain streams makes rainwater even better for one’s skin. “[The water] gradually becomes infused with trace elements and silicates, achieving a perfectly balanced mineral composition ideal for sensitive skin.”
I’m still pretty sure that Eau thermale is just a little spray can of spring water, but several people I know in Paris do actually use it as a daily beauty staple. One French fashion blogger of my acquaintance told me that she uses Avene thermal water because the water in Paris is excruciatingly hard, and the hard water is very tough on her skin and hair. She says she uses the thermal water in place of tap water when she can and to “rinse-off” after using tap water whenever she can’t.
My water in Germany is also bizarrely hard. The inside of my tea kettle is covered in calcium deposits, and every once in a while, my iron starts spraying white sand. (I should use distilled water, but lugging giant bottles of distilled water around is more annoying than dealing with my iron when it starts shooting sand.)
The hard water is so tough on my skin that I decided to start copying my French friends and using thermal water instead of tap water as much as possible. In the mornings, I stopped washing my face entirely and just give my face a little spray of thermal water, dab it off, and then proceeded with my face cream and sunscreen. At night, I use cleansers and water to clean away all the random life pollution off my face, but once I am done cleansing and rinsing, I use another spray of thermal water in the hopes that it will rinse away whatever hard deposits are floating around in my tap water.
I pay $10 for a large bottle with a “free gift” tiny bottle attached to it, and between the two of them, I can generally get two to three months’ use out of it. I do feel tremendously silly rinsing my face in spring water every day, but since switching to this process, I have noticed a distinct decrease in face dryness. But the biggest benefit of the thermal water sprays is that it feels really good. It’s very refreshing to spritz on in the middle of the day and will not smoosh up your makeup. My oily-skinned friends carry around blotting papers to dab their foreheads if they start getting shiny. For people with dry skin like me, carrying around a little purse spray of thermal water is basically the same thing, but for dry, tired-looking skin.