Among the inspirational quotes I frequently see my friends posting on Instagram is one that says you’re never too busy to make time for the things that matter to you. This resonates with me deeply because I am never too busy to dedicate the appropriate amount of time and energy to my multi-step daily skin-care routine. Some may call it excessive, but I say it’s just a good example of successful prioritizing. This motivational attitude is why I had no problem volunteering to test yet another beauty device when I heard about the new Foreo Bear, the brand’s take on an at-home microcurrent treatment.
“Microcurrent is a non-invasive cosmetic treatment used to improve skin contour, tone, texture and facial wrinkling,” says Loretta Ciraldo M.D., a Miami-based dermatologist and founder of Dr. Loretta Skincare. “Both at-home and in-office devices emit electric current to your skin that stimulates cell renewal.” The effect is one of overall lifting, tightening, and smoothing, as the electrical current stimulates both your muscles and collagen. Ciraldo says these devices can be used either on their own (in order to slow loss of elasticity and tighten facial contours) or as an add-on enhancement to injectables like fillers and Botox. “I don’t believe that microcurrent affects longevity of injectables,” she says, although you should pause this treatment for the first two weeks after any derm appointment to let your Botox and fillers settle in place.
It’s been much longer than two weeks since my last round of injectables; in fact, everything has since dissolved since my most recent sessions of cheek filler and masseter Botox. This gave me a completely blank slate to test the true capabilities of the Foreo Bear. Would it sculpt my cheekbones anew? Breathe fresh life into my jawline? Make my skin reach the level of dewy I usually only experience when I get hyaluronic acid injected into in my face? It was time to find out.
How do you use the Foreo Bear?
As with any device, you should use the Bear on clean skin. When I say clean, I mean that your face needs to be totally free of oils, which prevent the microcurrent from going where it needs to go to work its magic. Skip the oil cleanser (or do a thorough double cleanse afterward). Next, you’re going to need a conductive layer to guide the microcurrent past the surface of your skin. Foreo recommends its water-based Serum Serum Serum, which gives my complexion the sheen of a fresh dewdrop. In the interest of cost effectiveness, I have also been known to use ultrasound gel with microcurrent devices because it’s water-based, contains conductive polymers, and comes in vast quantities. The last part is important because you’re going to need to slather a ton of whatever you’re using on your skin. No skimping here, please—you need to frost your face with a thick enough layer that it doesn’t evaporate before you’re done. I like to work in sections to make sure nothing dries out, first tackling my midface (jawline to cheekbones) before I move on to my forehead and neck.
The Bear runs on a three-minute cycle, which you can extend if you need more time. To turn it on, you simply press the middle of the silicone-wrapped body once. Lights come on indicating intensity levels one to five, with five being the highest intensity of electrical current. You can double press to turn the accompanying T-Sonic pulsations on and off. It automatically switches off at the end of the three-minute cycle, but you can also long press to turn it off earlier. I split my face into the aforementioned three sections, going horizontally from chin to neck on my midface, then using upward motions for my forehead and neck. The steel balls that conduct the current should glide right over your skin. I move it in gradual swipes, with light to medium pressure, and pause for a couple seconds on each of the landing points.
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