By: Julie Arounlasy
Say “hello” to at-home-spa treatments with skincare devices such as microneedling, light therapy masks and laser hair removal. When it comes to skincare, we want to be on top of our game. Here are the latest tips and trends on doing it all yourself.
First on the list of trending at-home devices is derma rollers. These cosmetic tools are handheld devices that have hundreds of tiny needles that come in different sizes depending on what kind of skin imperfections you have, including acne scarring or stretch marks. The procedure feels like light jabs against the skin. The needles gently prick the skin and create microscopic injuries that the body then repairs. The pricks are meant to stimulate collagen production, smooth wrinkles and boost ingredient absorption up to 90 per cent.
Purchasing your own derma roller for at-home microneedling is more cost-effective than visiting your local spa. However, mastering the technique takes time. Beginners will experience small, irritable injuries on top of the skin. But the discomfort is normal and means the roller is working.
“Go see a professional prior to purchasing a derma roller and get their opinion on what products to use after using the roller as well as what depth to get the roller,” advises Petra Hughes, medical aesthetician at Edelstein Cosmetic, a cosmetic and plastic surgery clinic in Toronto.
“There are so many different kinds of at home rollers out there and you can’t just go into microneedling blind. If you do it correctly, you can start derma rolling in your 20s once or twice a week and that will give you absolutely amazing results.”
Like any skincare treatment or procedure, patience is key when it comes to seeing a difference in the skin. Some results are immediate, such as glowing and radiant skin. For wrinkle reduction and acne prevention, consistent at-home treatments bring positive results within roughly four to six weeks.
LED light therapy facial masks are devices that use UV-free colour light therapy in specific wavelengths through small LED bulbs to increase facial blood circulation and collagen production, skin healing and acne reduction.
Red and blue wavelengths are included and are the most important wavelengths in the best LED face masks. The red rays are meant to stimulate the collagen and elasticity production in the skin by increasing local blood circulation. The skin should be plumped and glowing right after the treatment. After approximately two weeks, skin should have less wrinkles, fine lines and sagging. Acne on the face heals more quickly.
The blue rays can eliminate up to 80 per cent of the acne-causing bacteria. These rays help with fast elimination of acne breakouts and the prevention of any new breakouts. The strength of the light is what makes the results more prominent. Weaker LED facial masks take more time to bring results.
Laser technology can be used to permanently remove unwanted body or facial hair. There are several DIY kits on the market today that can be used at home to remove hair effectively and deliver results quickly.
There are downsides of using at-home laser technology for removing hair. Most machines don’t work well on dark skin or light hair, it’s a lengthy process which requires time and patience, and devices can be expensive.
The pros of using these hair removing devices are treated areas stay hair-free for months or years, and it’s less irritable than waxing or razor cuts. The devices are not guaranteed to be pain free, though. It’s a good precaution to apply numbing cream until your skin is more used to the discomfort of the device.
Before purchasing a laser hair removal device, it’s important to find out which system is best suited for your skin and hair.
Olive or darker complexions need a system that is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a specific skin tone. Fair skin works well with just about any system. You can also speak with a dermatologist to find out whether or not at-home laser hair removal will work for your skin type.
Black or brown hair should see effective results, but blonde hair has a harder time when it comes to laser hair removal. The lasers have difficulty picking up the light pigmentation of blonde, white or red hairs.
Laser hair removal kits may seem expensive, but compared to several trips for professional treatment, purchasing a high-quality kit is more cost-effective. Depending on how serious you are about hair removal and how long you intend to use these machines, paying a little bit more for a higher quality kit may be worth it.
There are many ways to pamper yourself without having to empty your bank account. But speaking to a professional could help you understand your skin’s underlying problems where a DIY kit cannot.
Hughes recommends starting a daily skincare routine from as early as your teens.
“The best thing one can do to prevent acne and scarring is, from a very young age, apply a SPF cream daily,” she said. “This will prevent aging from the sun and pigment damage. Acne is more prone to scar if it is exposed to the sun as well.”
Acne is a very common thing, says Hughes, and will eventually go away. However, if you don’t take care of it, the scarring can last forever. That is why it is important to wear sunscreen no matter where you live.
GloPRO® Microstimulation Facial Tool
An at-home microneedling device that promises to help smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The rejuvenation process begins immediately as cells respond to needles by restoring volume from the inside out. The device also features a red LED light function to help renew healing skin. The roller can be used alone or paired with your favourite serums and creams. It is recommended to use the GloPRO® three times per week. After 30 days of use the majority of consumers reported an improvement in their skin’s firmness, an improvement in the evenness of their skin tone and younger looking skin. The kit comes with a storage case, sanitizing spritzer, instructional guide, power supply cord and adapter.
After cleansing your face at night, use moderate pressure and roll the device over each targeted facial area four to 10 times, changing direction with each pass. The needles are gentle enough to be used around the mouth and eye areas. The tool should be used for at least one minute to ensure skin has been properly stimulated. The skin should appear flushed after use. Apply a serum of your choosing within the first 60 seconds after use. $250 Available at gloprobeauty.com
Neutrogena® Light Therapy Acne Mask
This mask is free of UV light and uses blue and red LED light to clear acne and allow skin to heal. The mask can be used on all skin types and is easy to incorporate into your daily skincare routine.
For best results, wash your face first, then plug in the entire activator that comes with the kit and put on the mask. Press and hold the start button for a full second. After 10 minutes the mask will automatically turn off. It is not recommended to use the mask more than once a day. Results begin in as little as one week and continue to improve over time. The best results are seen after around 12 weeks. It is important to be consistent and patient when using the mask. $50 Available at Neutrogena.ca
Tria Hair Removal Laser 4X
This tool does not use replacement cartridges and is hassle free. It is designed for long term results and uses laser technology compared to most devices today that use pulse light technology. Laser is stronger than pulse light so this device is best for removing stubborn and fine hair. The treatment head is streamlined which makes it easy to access finer parts of the body. The device is also FDA cleared. $515 Watch for holiday promotions.
Available at triabeauty.ca