Sonicare, Clarisonic, Supersonic, Sonic the Hedgehog
May 11, 2011 3:23 PM   Subscribe

I love my Sonicare toothbrush so much I wanna marry it. Will I feel the same way about the Clarisonic Mia's effect on my skin?

All of the testimonials in the world wouldn't have convinced me on the merits of the Sonicare, had I not been gifted one and found out on my own.

However. The Clarisonic is a bit spendy to buy without trying, so I'd like to ask the hivemind: what's your experience with it?

Specifically, I'm interested in whether it's intended for one skin type over another, whether special products work best with it, and whether I'll experience the same euphoric feelings of cleanliness with it that I do with the Sonicare, which has done wonders for both my dental health and the appearance/brightness of my teeth.

My special snowflake skin routine, which is actually quite average: Dove soap/Olay sunscreen in the morning, and Dove soap/Clinique serum in the evening. My under-30 white girl skin runs to dry/sensitive.
posted by stellaluna to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (12 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
I love my Sonicare, but my skin is perfectly happy with Neutrogena's cheap-o version. On the other hand, I'm oily and use all sorts of products with The Wave.

Comparison by some blogger I don't know and only found by google.
posted by Ideefixe at 3:32 PM on May 11, 2011

I have both Sonicare and Clarisonic (bought back when I had disposable income like whoa for a short period). The Sonicare gets twice daily use, but the face brush has been sitting neglected for a long time.

I likely have a similar skin type to you, and while the Clarisonic was pretty nice for me, it wasn't revolutionary in the way the toothbrush is. I found something strangely awkward about the way you hold it, never got the hang of the timing and little beeps, and just generally didn't love it. Maybe I saw a little difference, but not a huge one. I went back to using a soft washcloth. I might give the Clarisonic another try now you've reminded me, and I wasn't totally disappointed, but like I said, I just didn't find it to be magic.
posted by crabintheocean at 4:00 PM on May 11, 2011

I don't have a Clarisonic but I do have the very similar Olay Pro-X and adore it. I've got combination skin and used to be really acne-prone, but the Pro-X has completely and totally eliminated that- I have virtually no acne any more, and my skin is a lot more even. I personally couldn't use the cleanser that came with it (my face doesn't like Olay products!) but I've had no problems with any other cleanser. I would definitely use a light-weight lotion, though, because it can be a little drying. I never used to wash my face and slept in my makeup, but this is pretty much the only thing that's made washing my face/taking my makeup off relatively enjoyable. (I use it ~4 times a week)

FWIW, I've tried the Mia and own a Neutrogena Wave- the Mia was too rough for my skin, it definitely wasn't something that I personally could have used more than maybe once or twice a week. I used the Wave for a month-ish before I got the Pro-X, but it was really awkward for my clumsy hands to hold, especially if I was trying to use it in the shower.
posted by kro at 4:09 PM on May 11, 2011 [1 favorite]

I love my Clarisonic! My mom has one and bought me one. It really gets off all the dead skin and dirt.

It came with a small container of cleanser that was a lot like my Cetaphil so I just kept using Cetaphil.

Compared to an electric toothbrush I think it requires a bit more maintenance. I try to regularly take the head off and let it dry out, and also de-gunk it. However it does seem to last a long time between charges. And you can use it in the shower!

I have dry, sensitive skin. I have not compared it to the Neutrogena version.
posted by radioamy at 4:11 PM on May 11, 2011

I only use mine when I have scaly Retin-A skin. It's not a life changing item. You could get a $10 facial brush at Sephora and accomplish the same thing with some elbow grease. (Note: Mine was a gift that came without a receipt.)

The battey charge DOES last a long time though. I've taken it on week long trips without losing the charge.
posted by elsietheeel at 4:50 PM on May 11, 2011

I have sensitive skin & use cetaphil with my clarisonic and I love it :)
posted by pointystick at 4:57 PM on May 11, 2011

I have the Clarisonic Mia, and I love it. It really gets your skin smooth. I use it daily, with a mild cleansing milk (or an acne cleanser, depending on my skin at that moment). You can get normal or delicate skin brushes, so if you find the normal is too abrasive you can switch to using a softer one, or use it with less frequency. All in all it's a purchase I use all the time and it's well worth the money to me.
posted by JenMarie at 4:57 PM on May 11, 2011

I am similarly devoted to my Sonicare toothbrush, but I'm not as enthusiastic about the Mia.

The good: My skin is relatively sensitive and the brushing doesn't bother it. And I think it does feel like moisturizer is more effective after I use it.

The meh: I'd hoped that regular brushing would help curb some small but persistent chin/jaw acne; I don't think it's had much of an effect one way or the other. I originally bought the Mia to try to bribe myself into washing my face regularly at night; in reality, I use it far more often in the morning in the shower. (My lack of consistent evening face-washing may be the culprit behind the acne and is not really the Mia's fault.)

I mean, I like the Mia, I do. I prefer it to a washcloth or even a scrubby exfoliator. But it wasn't as revolutionary as the toothbrush was for me. Still, I think I would buy it again. I've not used the drugstore versions (Olay, Neutrogena), but I will say that the Clarisonic seems substantial and well-made, and the battery does last for at least a week.
posted by purpleclover at 5:29 PM on May 11, 2011

Best answer: Just started using the Olay Pro-X on the theory that if I love it, I can eventually upgrade to a Mia, but if I hate it, I'm only out $30 (or less if you find coupons).

I enjoy how my skin feels after using the Pro-X. It's softer due to the exfoliating effect and I suspect cleaner simply because I'm cleansing more thoroughly with the brush. By hand, I tend to just slap on the cleanser, give it a few rubs, then rinse, whereas the Pro-X replaces the few rubs with brushing.

Differences between the two: the build quality of the Mia is significantly sturdier than the Pro-X. Brush motions on the Mia are also slightly different (it vibrates in addition to spinning while the Pro-X just spins). The Mia is also completely waterproof (so you can store it in the shower) while the Pro-X is just water-resistant.

I'm happy enough with the Pro-X that I will save up for the Mia (especially since I'd like to use it in the shower) but I'm also the kind of person who is really keen on skincare.
posted by kitkatcathy at 5:42 PM on May 11, 2011

Best answer: I purchased the mia for myself as a Christmas present and within two weeks was noticing that it wasn't charging properly, so I returned it to Nordstroms, no hassle. I was completely loving it, my skin felt fresh and clean and I noticed that those little blackheads that are on the side of your nose and never quite go away? Yeah, they were disappearing. It was awesome. AWESOME.

And then I dropped my mia onto the marble floor portion of my bathroom, it landed with a sickening thud, sputtered, and never turned back on. I opted to forgo returning the broken one to Nordstroms and bought the Olay Pro-X at Walgreens for $30 and haven't looked back. It cleans essentially the same and I've only used one set of batteries (which were included) since purchasing this back in January and using it two times a day.

Oh, and as a point of reference, I went on record saying I would risk my life to save my Sonicare toothbrush.
posted by banannafish at 7:10 PM on May 11, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks for all the feedback--sounds like the thing to do is try the Wave or the Pro-X and see how I feel about them. I guess I wasn't aware that the less expensive options existed, so I'll try that and see how my skin does with that. Thanks again peeps!
posted by stellaluna at 10:40 AM on May 12, 2011

I use my Clarisonic Mia everyday and I love it. I have not used the cheaper ones, but my Mia has worked perfectly well over a year. A big plus for me is that you can use it in the shower, so I just use it while I let my shampoo set for a minute.
posted by SarahElizaP at 10:40 AM on May 12, 2011

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