What's the Deal With Microcurrent Facials?
Believe the hype—with the ability to tighten and tone your facial muscles, microcurrent facials are the beauty equivalent of a personal trainer, lifting your overall structure and amping up your glow factor. "The treatment essentially reprograms your muscles back into shape, uplifting and toning your facial contours," explains skincare expert Ildi Pekar, who does many microcurrent treatments on both the face and body at her spa. "It uses micro electrical currents to stimulate your facial muscles by shortening and strengthening the muscle, so the lifting and tightening becomes visible." Because the skin on our faces is connected to muscle, the current, which gets carried through a set of metal spheres, reaches those deeper levels to keep everything firm. It also helps to reduce puffiness by stimulating lymphatic drainage, removes stored toxins, and increases blood flow. At Pekar's spa, she begins each treatment by first cleansing and exfoliating, then works the microcurrent tool over specific areas. "We work on reducing and softening the deepest wrinkles, darkness, and puffiness, but we are also able to penetrate products deeper into the skin," she says. "It's great for all skin types, and it's cumulative, so the more you do it, the better it is."
Pekar claims you'll see immediate results after your very first treatment, and it can be done once a week for an entire month if there are problem areas you want to address. After the initial round, you can opt for a monthly maintenance treatment if your skin requires it. Under the surface, your elastin fibers will grow in length, and more collagen will be produced, effectively filling in any stubborn lines. The NuFace Facial Toning Device ($325; sephora.com) is a comparable at-home device if you want to keep things in check post-treatment, or want to take a baby step toward the in-office version. "The microcurrent level of the NuFace is identical to the in-office treatment," says NuFace CEO and Co-Founder Tera Peterson. "The innovative technology targets muscle below the skin, so it is universally effective, and all skin types will benefit." Peterson advises going by a 60-day timeline, treating your skin once a day for five days out of a week, and once you've reached the 60-day mark, you can do every other day for maintenance. Start by washing your face, then apply the conducting gel all over. Once your device is ready, work the rounded ball attachment over your facial contours to lift your brows, cheekbones, and jawline. "If used consistently, once daily is enough to achieve your desired results," she adds. "Over the 60-day period, 85% of users saw improved facial contour, 80% reported smoother skin, and 77% thought their skin looked more toned."