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Microcurrent at home device face off

March 13, 2013 Reviewed by Marta 25 Comments

When I wrote about my salon microcurrent treatments a few weeks ago, many of you commented on using at home devices. Now I  have never tried one on grounds that the effects of microcurrent are due to the way the probes are used to massage the muscle. As I don’t really have the experience of a trained esthetician, I’ve always felt that I’d be wasting my money on an at-home device. Well, I’m going to have give them a try, at least in the interests of science. So I did my research and here’s what I found:

The NuFace Facial Toning System was launched by the Carol Cole Company in 2008 with the fanfare that it was the first FDA approved microcurrent facial for use at home. The device itself is not much bigger than a cell phone and is sold as a package with the “conducive” lotions (they stop it tingling unpleasantly) for around $250 to $300. Reviews are mixed and I am concerned that it cannot be used around the eyes or mouth (or so I have read). Still, NuFace crops up all over the place and in the interests of science I am going to have to try it. I just ordered one and will come back with a review in a few weeks.

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I must admit that the more that I looked at the Suzanne Somers FaceMaster, the more I took to it. It bears at least some resemblance to the salon versions (which cannot be said for NuFace).  The indefatigable Ms Somers seems to have given FaceMaster a complete overhaul including adding in finger wands for one-handed use. Much to my surprise, the serums that it comes with don’t look too bad either. Both JC and Bev commented that they use and like FaceMaster. OK, so I suppose I am going to have to try that one too.

I also found a microcurrent device called Electrolast by Intelligent Skin Sense. It has the advantage of being significantly cheaper than the others at $150, but it looks very flimsy somehow.  I couldn’t find any reviews of it and so for now will pass.

Same for the Isomers Nutritone, which looks like an electric shaver and not as if it can be manipulated at all. Surprisingly for Isomers, the accompanying serum is also unappealing (vitamin C and not much else). This is the least expensive system at $56.18.

So NuFace and FaceMaster will be put through their paces. Get ready for the microcurrent face off.

Read round one of the NuFace and FaceMaster face off

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  • February 13, 2016

    by Susan

    I have been using the dermal wand diligently now for 3 weeks. I don't see any change in the tone or tightening of my skin.can you recommend a device I can use to get results? Many thanks. Susan

  • January 30, 2014

    by Reem


    What do you think about the Nuskin microcurrent vs. the serious skin egg microcurrent? Any testimonials?

    Thank you!

  • February 3, 2013

    by Judita

    I've just finished reading Perricone's Forever Young and he recommended microcurrent treatments, saying results are cumulative so the longer you use them for the better. I'm 25 - is it not too early for me to start using micocurrents?

  • September 15, 2011

    by Mari

    I am looking for a device that can help me with my sagging cheeks and eye wrinkles, I just read about the benefits of Face master and Nuface, which one would you recommend? I am in my 50's and I would like to age with grace!!!!! I am a bit concern about the comments of the teeth tingling, since my front teeth are crowns.....

  • August 27, 2011

    by Madeline

    I have purchase the FaceMaster and have been using it for a couple of days. MY face fill a bit tighter and I have not seen much difference yet and I am not surprised as everything needs time. What I noticed is during use my front teeth are sensitive to the current and after use. I am using the pre-programmed dial but when I use it around or near my mouth area some of my teeth tingle and after use become sensitive. Any information if anyone knows would be appreciated. I am not sure if I am doing any damage to my tooth nerves.

  • October 24, 2010

    by Dee

    I just got the Facemaster and both my husband and myself are alreay impressed with 3 uses. Best investment we have made in ourselves in a long time. The DVD that comes with it is excellent. We tried silver sol gel instead of the supplied connectivity gel and liked it better; cheaper too. 4 thumbs up from us.

  • October 20, 2010

    by marta

    Hi Gabi

    There are suggestions for gloopy gel alternatives in the readers comments on my follow up post:

  • October 20, 2010

    by Susie

    Hi! First time to this site. Irish born, I'm addicted to Guinot product range and treatments - the Hydrodermie Lift facial is extremely well known throughout Europe and sounds like the same idea. I had no idea these microcurrent/muscle contracting devices could be purchased for home use. I'm very curious to see which one works best as I'll definitely purchase it when you finish your review. On another note, how woudl you compare LED red light to Thermage to Microcurrent? I'm trying to decipher which I need. Thank you.

  • October 20, 2010

    by Gabi

    I have the NuFace model, and I also dislike the goopy conductivity gel, but I've been wondering if I can use something else. I have 100% hyaluronic acid, and it's in a gel form. Anyone try anything else?

  • October 19, 2010

    by Tony

    I have noticed that the results are somewhat temporary meaning I always get a lift when I use the devices especially the nuface. But im sure i am better off overall for having used these devices.

  • October 16, 2010

    by marta

    I am looking into skin blades and have found one device called Skin Spatula, which uses ultrasound to cleanse the skin and remove dead cells. The Porefector by Bliss also seems to be a similar product. More to come.

  • October 16, 2010

    by marta

    Hi Kim, I just looked up Dermal Tone and discovered that it was <a href="" rel="nofollow">reprimanded by the FDA in 2000</a> for claiming results that would require it to be regulated as a medical device. As far as I can tell, the company closed operations in 2006 and I believe that these days there are only a few devices circulating on eBay and the like. Kim, if you know that the company is still in business and selling Dermal Tone devices, please let us know.

  • October 15, 2010

    by kim

    Does anyone know where Dermal Tone fits into the mix? Has anyone used it? Marta, have you heard about this device?


  • October 15, 2010

    by Mark

    Hi Daniel -
    thanks so much for your comments - I haven't heard of the skin blade before so I'm really intrigued by it, and it's good to know that you are having positive experiences with the red baby Q.
    It's really great to have input from other guys, too. Your input is valuable, so please share your experiences often with us. Cheers!

  • October 15, 2010

    by Daniel

    It's kind of ultrasound so the very quick and numerous oscillations are able to either deep cleanse and or push ingredients deep into the skin. Hope you like what you see. Think my next purchase will have to be a clarisonoc. For men it would be an amazing tool to lift up hairs before a shave . It's so expensive in England as we only just got it here.

    Have a great day Xx Danny

  • October 14, 2010

    by marta

    Hi Daniel,
    I am very intrigued by your skin blade. I'll have to look into it. Thanks for the tip.

  • October 14, 2010

    by Daniel

    As a male who has always been interested in looking and feeling great I have managed to purchase a few things over the years . I adore my baby q !! I use the red one maybe twice a week and it's kept my skin looking great and plump and firm . I do love the gel that comes with it . Wish it was a bit cheaper tho the copper peptide and low molecular HA have made such a difference. My most recent purchase is a skin blade. It gently removes dead skin cells but the bit I adore is that I flip the blade and apply my serums or gels and go over my face and the teeny vibrations make my skin literally drink it up in no time. I've seen the benefit in such a short time. Bliss have recently launched a model . In the uk it's a fortune £135 . I got my generic machine on eBay for £25 and it's wonderful. Just makes sure I get all my serums and gels and gel masks to sink in deeper . A wonderful piece of equipment .

  • October 14, 2010

    by Jaysie

    I'm really interested in whether these devices have a noticeable affect on sagging skin and, if they do, how often you need to use them before you see results. Looking forward to your report, Marta!

  • October 14, 2010

    by Valerie

    I wanted to mention a couple of things. When you start using the Nuface, take a look at their website for the "international instruction video." There they use it on the neck and other areas. I was curious if there is any reason we should not use it on the neck. It obviously isn't cleared for that use in the US. Additionally, I have both Facemaster and Nuface. I started using them. I thought I would just use the Facemaster around my eyes and use Nuface elsewhere because it was faster. It may have nothing to do with the microcurrent, but after a month or more, I started noticed discomfort in my teeth even after I completed the treatment and during the rest of the day. I'm not sure if there is any correlation. If in your research you uncover something along those lines, I would love to know about it. Have fun giving them a whirl.

  • October 13, 2010

    by Susan

    Oh goody, you're going to try the FaceMaster. I've played with the idea of purchasing one. I'd like to cut back to every 3 months on salon microcurrent facials ($115 a pop), so I can't wait to read your review.

  • October 13, 2010

    by marta

    Hi Summer

    Can't wait to hear how you get on with FaceMaster and I look forward also to comparing notes.

  • October 13, 2010

    by jc

    though i already know i love my facemaster, i'm kind of excited that you are going to be checking it out and reviewing it, marta! if you like the looks of her conductive serum, suzanne somers has an entire organic skin care line over at personally i'm not so much interested in her skincare, but i figured you might like to look at it. have fun testing your devices! marta, here's the link for shopnbc/suzanne somers' skin care:

  • October 13, 2010

    by summer

    Hi Marta,

    I think this is what my 33 y/o face needs right now. I just purchased the Face Master online and will get back in a few weeks with my thoughts. For the cost of having the Face Master at home, you are saving SO much money time. The only spa in my area that offers micro-current charges $100 a pop. I think I'll give Susan Sommer's product a try.

  • October 13, 2010

    by Mark

    Hi Tony - I am curious - since you have used the Facemaster, have you found that results are cumulative and lasting, or are they only temporary and results are only seen for a short while after you use it? Thanks so much for your comment.

  • October 13, 2010

    by Tony

    I am a long term user of both devices. I began using the older version of the facemaster in 06 and have been happy with it I still use once or twice a week. I began using the Nuface device in 08 I was sold on the micro current pitch. I am 45 but am easily mistaken for 25 my skin is in great condition but Im convinced that it always looks better after I use one of these devices. For nu skin I notice an imediate and obvious lift in the lower portion of the face every time I use it. I also am a fan of cellex Vit C, skin biology cooper peptites, and retin a, and LED lightstim.

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