the truth about microcurrent

Microcurrent is used therapeutically to relieve muscle pain and to stimulate the muscles to restore a more youthful look to our faces. Safe and non-invasive, microcurrent devices are now available for use at home. Want to know more? Here’s the truth about microcurrent.

Microcurrent is the opposite of Botox

Botox inhibits the muscle movements that cause expression lines. If a muscle is immobilized, even temporarily, it will use less energy and start to atrophy. Indeed, atrophy can be utilized for esthetic effect — for example, a cheek can be given a hefty dose of Botox to slim it down. But for me, that’s one of the problems with Botox; muscle atrophy leads to sunken faces and skin that folds into marionette lines. Me, I’d rather opt for plumping.

And that’s where microcurrent comes in, as it lifts and re-educates muscles. Whereas Botox can make the face hollow and concave, microcurrent achieves what Dr. Perricone calls "convexities" in the face. "Convexities are what make you youthful," he says.

So how does microcurrent do this?

We have electrical charges pulsating throughout our bodies. Microcurrent mimics the body’s own natural bio electrical field and sends tiny electrical currents to our muscles. According to CACI, a British company which has been making professional microcurrent machines for decades: “Combining ultra low frequencies with a modified waveform enables the micro-current to recharge the electrical potential of the muscle by stimulating the spindle cell fibers that run the length of the muscle and attach to the golgi tendon organ in the belly of the muscle.”

There are over 30 muscles in the face, and microcurrent can be used to stimulate the muscles. There is no muscle contraction. The muscle is woken up, and the current reminds it where it used to be (before gravity wore it down) and muscle memory is reactivated. So, used over time, the muscles are re-educated to resume their place for a perky and plumper look.

What can microcurrent do for you?

Originally developed for treating facial palsy, microcurrent in the esthetic realm can:

• Re-educate muscles

• Increase blood and lymph circulation

• Enhance the penetration of the active ingredients of skin care formulations

• Increase the production of collagen and elastin

• Increase protein synthesis, gluconeogenesis and cell membrane transport

Additionally, research has shown that microcurrent may help with anti-aging at an even deeper level. In 1982, researcher Ngok Cheng led a study that provided hard evidence of microcurrent's role in cellular vitality by proving that microcurrent increased levels of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) in lab-rat skin cells by 500 percent. ATP is the fuel a cell needs to function. Actually ATP is a really big deal as it is the energy that fuels all biochemical functions in the body. It boosts protein synthesis, necessary for tissue repair.

Dos and don’ts

Microcurrent is safe to use on the face, neck and even the under-eye area. It should not be used on eyelids. Water or a water-based gel should be used to ensure the conductivity of the microcurrent and for comfortable use of the device. Microcurrent can typically feel a little tingly or prickly. This will vary greatly depending on the individual’s level of sensitivity.