Dreaming of clearer, smoother, softer skin for your big day? There are a few pre-wedding beauty treatments that are a must. And while the results are stellar, most cost a pretty penny and require multiple appointments. There are a number of at-home beauty tools that promise to mimic professional results. But do they really work?
Technological innovation has changed everything from the way we communicate and gather information to how we care for our skin. The latest and greatest handheld beauty gadgets are game-changing for brides-to-be. From a cleansing brush with oscillation technology to a facial toner that fights sagging, meet the high tech devices that live up to their promises.
NuFACE relies on a medical device (Iontophoresis) that dermatologists have been using since the 1960's. "Iontophoresis uses electrical currents to move through the dermis, which causes muscle contraction and helps with soft tissue sagging. There's also data to suggest that the lighter current stimulates fibroblasts and collagen production," explains Bobby Buka MD, board certified dermatologist, founder of Bobby Buka Dermatology and Assistant Professor, Mount Sinai School of Medicine. This convenient, FDA-cleared gizmo improves tone, contour, fine lines and wrinkles in as little as five minutes (when used at least five times a week, for 90 days). "This is a great device, but because it's so light, keep in mind, it's not going to give you the same results as a professional treatment." (Mini facial toning device, $199, NuFACE available at Sephora)
The most budget-friendly of the bunch, this light therapy mask promises to banish blemishes in just 30 days. Blue light is a well-known bacterial reducer. "Spot treatment with blue light doesn't work fast enough, but a full face is able to target p. acnes colonization as well," says Dr. Buka. This full face mask does double duty, harnessing the power of clinically proven blue light technology to target acne-causing bacteria, and red light to reduce inflammation and promote healing. Use daily: After cleansing, place the mask on your face, turn it on and let it work its magic. All that's left to do is close your eyes and relax (it automatically shuts off after 10 minutes). (Light therapy acne mask, $35, Neutrogena)
When it comes to cleansing, it doesn't get any better than Clarisonic (the OG facial cleansing brush). The brand's mini version employs oscillation technology — 300 micro-massage movements every second — eliminates pore-clogging dirt, oil and makeup six times better than face wash alone, in just 60 seconds. "Not only does it remove impurities, but it exfoliates and stimulates epidermal turnover," says Dr. Buka. To save skin from over-exfoliation, which can cause irritation and inflammation, he recommends a gentle, non-soap cleanser, like First Aid Beauty Daily Face Cleanser. ("Mia 1" skin cleansing system, $129, Clarisonic available at Sephora)
"The term microdermabrasion can be misleading. Even spa treatments use silicone beads, which get dead skin off the top, but aren't powerful enough to penetrate past the stratum corneum (which a face cleanser can do)," explains Dr. Buka. "That said, they do give you a nice glow." While this device won't deliver the regenerative results of an in-office treatment, it also doesn't require any downtime. On the contrary, after use, skin looks fresh, smooth and radiant. It's great for before a big event — like your engagement party, bridal shower or wedding — when you want your skin to look its best. ("Personal Microderm Pro" $199, PMD available at Sephora)
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With the stress of planning your dream wedding, sometimes you (and your skin) need some TLC. While a visit to a luxury spa sounds dreamy, it might not be in the cards. For time-strapped brides, an at-home device can bring a spa-like experience into your bathroom. "Steaming is a great way to open up pores before mechanical blackhead extraction," says Dr. Buka. "When your skin is damp, it has the best absorption profile." A relaxing Sunday night ritual: Give your skin a good steam and then sit back and relax with a mask 20 minutes. (Pro facial steamer, $139, Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare available at Sephora)
There are plenty of at-home beauty tools that promise to put an end to waxing and shaving...but many fall short. This gadget uses Home Pulsed Light (HPL) technology to deliver fuzz-free results. "The technology is the same as you would get in office, but it's powered at a lower level," says Dr. Buka. Getting FDA approval is a rigorous process and this device holds up. So you can be confident it's safe and it actually works — meaning you'll be honeymoon ready in no time! ("Flash&Go Express" hair removal device, $299, Silk'n)