It has been 3 months since I started using my Clarisonic Mia and only now has my skin been stabilizing into some sort of normality. So I feel ok about doing an in depth review of the Clarisonic, my skin has gone through all the 'stages' of the first few months of starting using an electronic sonic skin brushing machine daily. I'm going to break it down zits and all for you month by month here goes:
I had seen all these girls on youtube saying they were using a Clarisonic, Emily from Into The Gloss (probably the coolest girl in the world) she had one, then my friend Dane was like 'Who are you? You have a beauty blog and no Clarisonic?' so I picked one up. Feeling slightly like a chump sucker for paying $145.00 for a skin machine. Firstly I started using it with the cleanser it came with - Do not do that, also I didn't know you had to really wash the brush with warm water to soften the bristles before you go in on your face with it. So first results of the Clarisonic were a very raw red sore dry flakey face. By the third week I had mastered the application process and started using the Dove Cucumber Hydrating Face Wash with it, which was working well and I even started recommended the Clarisonic to friends.
Then dooms day hit mid way through week three : PURGING PHASE STARTED - this is a well documented phase for the new Clarisonic user. Basically how the Clarisonic works is the brush head rotates using sonic technology, stimulating and clearing pores also brushing off a good amount of dead skin at the same time. When the pores are disturbed little bits of muck and dirt come to the surface and they can become irritated and infected = MASSIVE PIMPLES. Like bigger pimples than when I was a spotty teen. I didn't leave the house for days and googled remedies for hours at a time.
Going into month two I was deep in Clarisonic depression thinking I had adult acne, but I kept going with two changes in place.
1. I started using a very sensitive non foaming face wash with my Clarisonic the Elemis Sensitive Cleansing Wash, it contained anti-bacterial properties to help the pores from being infected.
2. Toner came into my life - never before have I been a toner girl. My mum refused to get me the Clinique 3 step thing all the other girls at high school. The toner Mario Badescu's Glycolic Acid Toner closed the pores and also wiped off any extra bacteria lurking about.
The rest of the month flew by my skin becoming extremely clear, glowing even if I do say so myself. Blemishes at bay, the texture of my skin had changed and become smoother and my T-zone was now less oily too.
I have cut down my Clarisonic use to once a day morning or night, but only once so that skin had enough time to readjust and recover. My skin is basically the best it has EVER BEEN! I still get cystic acne break outs - the sore pimples which never actually have top, I cannot stop these because they are caused by hormones. I am going to keep going with my current routine below and hope that my skin doesn't go through another 'phase'.
1. Rinse brush head well with warm water before you start your cleansing routine and clean with anti-bacterial soap once a week.
2. You can NEVER shrink your pores - its genetic. Sorry. But you can reduce the appearance by clearing them out.
3. Do not use an abrasive cleanser with your Clarisonic, no scrubs. Stick to a gel or cream cleanser.
4. Although the Clarisonic is not marketed as an exfoliator - I stopped all other physical exfoliation and started using chemical exfoliants (AHA's) like the Mario Badescu Glycolic Acid Toner.
5. Everyone should start with the gentle brush head, if you want to change brush heads, do lots of research beforehand.
CLARISONIC FRIENDLY CLEANSERS:
1. Dove Face Wash $5.99 Cheap and foams up when used with the Clarisonic
2. Elemis Pro-Radiance Cream Cleanser $46.95 Very creamy and Hydrating
3. Decléor Aroma Cleanse $31.45 Very very gentle - this will not remove make up at all.
4. Aésop Parsley Seed Cleansing Oil $55.00 Gelish and oilish this is great if you have acne which is coming to the surface.
5. Dr Bronner Castile Liquid Soap - Peppermint $25.50 No foaming agents and very organic - if that matters to you.
Step 1: Cetaphil Oily Skin Cleanser $15.40 To remove make up.
Step 2: Clarisonic Mia $134.95 with Elemis Sensitive Cleansing Wash $33.00
Step 3: Mario Basescu Glycolic Acid Toner $28.95
Step 4 Day: La Roche Posay Effaclar M Daily Mattifying Moisturizer $32.00
Step 4 Night: Antipodes Joyous Protein Rich Night Replenishment Serum $62.90