You are constantly experimenting with new skincare products. You apply sunscreen daily and the word “acid” does not send you into a spiral. You get facials regularly and have watched countless YouTube videos on the topic. You are a skincare junkie.
But ever since you have perfected a morning and night routine you may be wondering what the next frontier is for you. I am happy to report that gadgets are the answer you have been looking for.
Being a skincare junkie myself, I decided to try the reported best beauty gadgets. So if the thought of LED lights zapping away your acne excites you, keep reading.
The Claim: This facial roller was created by Maryam Zamani, M.D., to revive, tone, improve facial contour and uplift the skin. It is made of germanium (Ge on the periodic table for you science nerds) which contains ions that balance over-exposure caused by aging, positive ions and other environmental aggressors. By gently rolling this device in an upward direction for 30-60 seconds, you improve fluid and blood circulation, which works to drain puffiness and even out skin tone. On top of that, this roller claims to help your skincare products penetrate deeper into the dermis.
The Verdict: Let it be known that I have broken a minimum of four jade rollers at this point. I always order the flimsy cheap ones off of Amazon, so when this sturdy germanium beauty arrived at my desk, I could not wait to get home to try it out. First, I cleanse my face then apply a few drops of Sunday Riley U.F.O. Ultra-Clarifying Acne Treatment Face Oil onto my skin because salicylic acid is great for exfoliating and removing sebum. Then I pick up my new device. Think of this at-home massage tool as a facial workout — tightening the skin without having to do anything unbearable like bicycle crunches. My face is initially a bit red, which indicates that the blood is beginning to circulate. In a few minutes, the redness fades, and I clean my roller with alcohol and rinse it with hot water. After a few weeks of consistent use, I swear my face is tighter than it was before, and my contour foundation sticks are sitting on my vanity idle and unloved.
Pulse+GLO Ion Enhancer by Georgia Louise ($165.00)
The Claim: British aesthetician Georgia Louise — whose celebrity clients include Jennifer Aniston, Emilia Clarke, Sandra Bullock, Emma Stone, Alexander Wang and Anne Hathaway — runs an atelier in New York City. While most of us do not have the means to get regular Georgia Louise facials, we can buy this reusable device that is designed to mimic her signature facial. Headbands have been all the rage this year. But a headband that uses galvanic currents to take sheet masks to another level? Revolutionary. This non-invasive device claims to stimulate blood flow, brighten the complexion, refine pores and soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
The Verdict: It seems to be a running joke that women get bangs and apply sheet masks at the first sign of emotional turmoil. Sadly, I might be the poster child for that cliché. Recently, I decided that sheet masks were just glorified hydration in the form of eye holes. However, the Pulse+GLO turbo charges sheet masks to help the ingredients penetrate deeper into the skin. The catch is that you cannot use the device with any regular sheet mask. The Georgia Louise conductive cotton sheet masks use ionized technology and function as a conductor for the device. There are three options: green for oily skin, honey for aging skin and aqua for dehydrated skin. After cleansing and toning, I place the headband over my forehead, allowing the probes to rest on my cheeks. It has three settings — blue for sensitive skin, purple for combination skin and red for skin concerned with fine lines and wrinkles. When reading up on currents I was afraid I would experience the pain of a thousand mini eels on my face, but this device is painless. My favorite part is that once turned on there is no work required on your end, you just sit there as the device works its magic. Twenty minutes later the device beeps to signal that the treatment is over. I remove the sheet mask, tap the excess serum into my skin and stare at myself in the mirror. My skin appears as plump and dewy like makeup artist Nam Vo’s. This has now become a staple in my weekly routine, as I get many compliments on my skin after using it.
FOREO UFO Smart Mask Treatment ($279.00)
The Claim: Another gadget for people who love face masks but wish they did more! The UFO is a complete facial treatment in 90 seconds, using both LED light therapy and advanced hyper infusion technology to infuse mask essence deep below the skin’s surface. With the new app updated, you don’t need to scan the masks any more. You can use the device over your masks, or with serums, etc. Just be careful when using a thermotherapy because if there is no sheet mask between the skin and device it could get pretty hot.
The UFO uses a full spectrum of LED lights — red to erase signs of aging and stimulate collagen production, green to brighten and even out skin tone and blue to target acne-causing bacteria and stimulate blood flow.
The Verdict: It initially irked me that I was subject to using only FOREO brand sheet masks for the device (you are required to scan the barcode of the mask before the treatment starts). However, the sheet masks are made of ultra-soft microfibers and contain Korean skincare formulas, so I quit the whining and got to work. After clipping the mask into the attachment ring, I started the treatment through the app. The device switches between hot (to soften skin and open up the pores) and cold (to firm the skin and reduce inflammation). The best part is that the T-Sonic pulsations give you a soothing facial massage while also pushing the serum into the skin. After 90 seconds the device shuts off and you are left with glowing and hydrated skin. The biggest issue I ran into was accidentally pressing a text message and having to restart the treatment. All in all, it is a very relaxing and soothing experience, but the price is quite steep for such a short treatment.
LightStim for Acne ($169.00)
The Claim: This FDA-cleared gadget using LightStim MultiWave Patented Technology to emit multiple colored wavelengths of light to treat mild to moderate acne and minimize future breakouts. The blue light works to destroy acne-causing bacteria and the red light helps to reduce redness. LightStim can also smooth the texture of the skin and restore a healthy appearance.
The Verdict: When unboxing this device, I found myself stressed out. This product looks medical-grade when compared to the silicone pink devices sprawled around me. But looks can be deceiving — it was the easiest to figure out how to use. The LightStim needs to be kept plugged in, and after turning it on I put on my goggles (included) and get to zapping. It has a three-minute treatment timer, so I concentrated it on my chin (where my acne resides) and let it rest there. After 30 minutes, it automatically shuts off. My main qualm is that since my eyes are covered, I get bored just sitting there with nothing to do, which speaks more to my short attention span than anything. I do not notice a difference right away, but after a few uses, I have far fewer breakouts. A quick, painless and effective alternative to your typical spot treatment mask.