Ten Beauty Gadgets that Actually Work (And a Few That Fail)
The beauty industry is a huge beast, a multi-billion worldwide industry that relies on the insecurities of men and women to turn a profit. Want to look younger- buy this cream? Want bigger lips? A syringe of Juvederm is your best friend… They sell a ridiculously high amount of beauty gadgets, but you want to make sure your money is well spent and not going on some quack cure that will do nothing but leave your wallet hurting. I’ve selflessly tested every single one of the products in out hot list and can recommend them 100% as actually working!
Without further ado, here’s the Chip Chick top ten list of beauty Gadgets that will make a noticeable difference to your life.
Cleansing your skin is very important as it’s good to remove all impurities before going to bed. No matter how much you scrub, there’s a limit to what the human hand can achieve and this is where the Clarisonic comes in. It’s a face cleansing brush powered by sonic technology- similar to what you might get in a toothbrush.
The frequency rotates the brush head at more than 300 revolutions a second and cleanses deep down. This reason this is so impressive is that you’ll pretty quickly notice an immediate change in skin texture and pore size, as you’ll look more refreshed and you’ll find areas such as the pores on your nose which shrink very quickly.
I love using this on rough areas of skin as it seems to vanish them within a few days and it’s suitable all over the body- the Clarisonic comes with a variety of head attachments such as a body brush and a ‘sensitive’ skin head, so you can tailor it to suit your needs. Be warned, once you’ve tried this, there’s no going back! It’s waterproof and bathroom friendly, and has an inductive charging stand to hold the Clarisonic brush upright.
The cost of waxing and buying razors over a lifetime is fairly substantial so it makes sense a lot of people would rather try and spend the same on something more permanent. There are a lot of home hair removal devices on the market, but none quite as impressive as the Tria. The Tria is a handheld hair laser removal device and looks a bit like an oversized hairdryer. You apply it to the skin, choose the right setting (there are a few) press the button and zap, the hair is lasered.
It works by sending light into the skin which turns into heat energy which zaps the hair- the heat inflames the hair follicles which prevents them from growing back. Hair grows in three stages, so this needs to repeated to capture it in all the growth cycles. No laser hair removal device is ever permanent- no matter what they say- but they can offer permanent hair reduction, and after a few treatment with this, you’ll find regrowth faint and infrequent. It’s not suitable for all skin tones- the light energy is attracted to the hair follicle color, so you can burn those with darker skintone, but it’s still a good viable solution for many women and men. Get the Tria here for $790.
If you’re looking for a cheaper (but still effective option) I’m also a fan of the Philips Lumea device, which works on a similar premise, but (in my opinion) takes longer to work.
PowerPlates have been around for a while now, giant fitness machines which shake the body up and offer you 60 minutes of toning exercises in 20 minutes. They’re handy for getting in quick workouts in your lunch hour, toning up your body and generally helping you look more svelte. What they can’t do however is burn fat or boost your heart-rate, so the combination of a bicycle WITH a PowerPlate sounds like a genius idea.
They combine aerobic cycling benefits with vibration technology and has a crank system which produces mechanical vibrations that create more muscle activity per stroke. It’s quite an intense workout, but you do reap benefits in that you end up with a leaner more defined frame-and burn fat to boot. The PowerPlate PowerBike is available to pre-order now.
GHD Hair Straighteners
Curls are cute and waves very boho, but there’s nothing like the glamour of super sleek, super straight shiny hair. Many, many brands try and offer you their straighteners with everything from ‘tourmaline’ technology, to plates that are infused with vitamins (to nourish and add shine) but so far no brand in the world has beaten the quality of GHD’s.
GHD stands for Good Hair Day and that’s exactly what they give you – straighteners which heat up extra fast with a salon length cord, ceramic coated plates (to glide through the hair without snagging) and the ability to create curls with them. They have a universal charger so they work equally well worldwide and they currently have Katy Perry as their spokesmodel! Each season sees them release new colours and your hair will thank you for them!
In today’s society it’s important to be happy with how you look, and that’s much more than paying super close attention to the scales. It’s good to be confident with your shape, and staying a healthy weight (within the BMI parameters) will mean you get a lot more out of life. The Tanita scales are a great way for keeping track of the changes in your body as they’re scarily effective, using precision technology and components to provide you a reading that’s incredibly accurate- and they tell you far more than your weight in kg or pounds.
These Tanita scales also include a body fat ratio- which takes a measurement by sending a tiny signal through your body which measures your fat to muscle ratio so you can know how effective your diet is, and also measures water ratio, which means you don’t need to beat yourself up over water weight. It holds personalized settings for a few people, which include measurements such as height, gender and activity levels- which all lead to a more accurate understanding of your physiology.
Estee Lauder Electric Turbolash Mascara
We’d all like big thicker lashes and have the mascaras to prove it. This offering from Estee Lauder is a great way to extend those lashes as the mascara comes with a vibrating battery which helps coat every lash. It turns on automatically when opened and curls, lengthens and separate with the vibrating mascara wand helping the product affix itself to the lashes- the micro pulse bristles work the whole lash from root to end, giving you great color in volume in one. It also helps you avoid clumping, for a glamorous look, and allows you to layer the mascara for a thicker eye.
Oral-B Braun Professional Care 5000 Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush with Wireless Smartguide
We all know that we should brush our teeth for around 2 minutes at a time but how many of us actually do? Electric toothbrushes are far more effective at removing plaque than manual brushing, so that’s a good place to start, but when you get a brush which has as many features as the Oral-B Braun Professional Care 5000 you’re have sparkling gnashers in no time at all.
It pulsates 40,000 times a minute to breakup plaque and the head rotates 8800 times a minute as well. You get a handy travel case in the pack, and different brush heads for your needs. There are also different brush modes you can use; Daily Clean, Sensitive, Polish, Deep Clean and Massage.
My favourite part of this toothbrush is the included SmartGuide it comes packaged with. This is a two stroke piece of kit- firstly it’s a waterproof bathroom clock that has a digital display, and secondly, it’s like a personal trainer for teeth, ensuring you get a good brush. When you start brushing your teeth, a picture of a mouth quadrant appears on the screen, and will prompt you with a beep to change brushing to different areas of your mouth. It will also count down the time you have been brushing for- and you soon start to realize just how brief your sessions used to be, when you try and stop at 28 or 32 seconds! When you make it two minutes (the generally agreed time) the screen will give you a smiley face- what more incentive to brush do you need than that? Confirmed digital approval in the form of a smile- theirs and yours… OK, sometimes it makes you feel guilty if you don’t manage to do the full 2 minutes, but that’s why it’s so good- you get better teeth almost by accident- by not wanting to disappoint the timer!
Shiseido Makeup Mirror
Buying makeup is a fun activity, but how often do you go home and find that great eyeshadow looks awful on you? Shiseido want to help you and they’ve created a makeup simulator mirror where you can try on makeup digitally. They have a few hard copies worldwide (they’re very expensive) but they can be found in luxury stores such as Selfridges, London.
It’s pretty interesting to use, you get a photo taken of your face and it will actually move around, so you can view yourself in 3D. This is because a small camera follows your facial expressions in real-time and this is used to track changes and superimpose products on your face.
After you’ve applied shades to the eyes, lips, cheeks, you can capture them as a photo and view side by side. Recommendations can be printed out for you and as you see yourself in the colours, it’s a good way to work out what works for you. As many women hate removing their makeup in stores and often make product mistakes because of this, I think this is genius. It’s a new fun way to buy beauty and shows how spot on Shiseido are with their technology.
Cloud Nine the O Hair Curlers
Hair curling has just joined the 21st century with this cool creation. Called simply The O, it’s a futuristic device which contains heated rollers. They heat from the core out so they’re cool to apply but help create a style- and they’re ready to use in 4 seconds! The rollers are kept in the O pod which works with a variety of roller sizes, and as you can choose to heat one or multiple at a time (as it’s so quick) you can adapt your style. My old traditional rollers took around 20 minutes to heat up, so this is unbelievable- and the design is stunning as well. Get them here.
Philips Hush Hairdryer
I used to hate hair-drying – the noise always put my teeth on edge. I knew it was necessary but found myself very unhappy, so the Hush hairdryer has been a lifesaver. Currently the quietest full size hairdryer on the world, it doesn’t scrimp on quality. It features six speeds and temperature settings and 200watts of power. The secret is the aerodynamic design that minimizes noise- there is still some noise, but comparatively it’s so much reduced.
It’s a plain hairdryer, with a rather bland white design, but the reduction of noise more than makes up for the lack of bells and whistles. There’s also an ionic function for nourishing and defrizzing the hair which works very well. Get it from Amazon here.
The Beauty Gadgets you Don’t Want to Buy and Try…
In terms of beauty some people really are willing to try anything, and here’s a few bad ways to spend your hard earned cash on gimmicky products that will end up in a drawer after a week’s play.
Wet to Dry Hair Straightener
On paper this sounds AMAZING- combine blowdrying your hair with straightening it with a product that promises to do both well. The reality- a horrible scorched smell, hair that loses all moisture and ends up thick and fluffy with the texture of straw. Popular in the nineties, these still sell today- AVOID.
Electric Nose Lift
In Japan there are a lot of people who are desperate for Western tilted noses- think Kirsten Dunst- and there has been an increase in cosmetic surgery in this area. Trying to cash in on this, the Electric Nose Life promises to ‘Push up that nose of yours to create the perfect profile’. It says it will do this if you attach it to your face for three minutes a day as ‘gentle electric vibrations; will alter the appearance. Um, the body doesn’t work that way, and any changes will be VERY temporary. Get it here.. if you must.
People have bad posture: fact. We’re all guilty of slouching at our desks and over using computers, so why not create a gadget to improve this? The iPosture is a small device you clip to your shirt/bra strap and any time your angle changes to much it beeps, reminding you to sit upright. Nice in concept, but as it works as a warning, rather than proactively (like a chair with a contour for the back) it gets quite annoying, and OMG that beeping/vibrating noise makes you want to shoot people and your colleagues to kill you.
The Zeno was a product I was desperate to try, as it promised to clear up spots and acne related redness on the face. Problem was you were supposed to apply it at the time you ‘felt a tingling’ or potential spot eruption, meaning you were unsure whether you were using it properly. You were also advised not to use it on patches of spots, just individual ones, and it wasn’t really suitable for whiteheads because of the pressure you had to apply. The electrical current was meant to destroy the acne bacteria… and maybe it did, but I found results about the same as any Proactiv like solution- just much MUCH more costly. Best for those with money to burn- it has some positives, but personally it’s not better than any over the counter remedy.
[Note: There are some new Zeno’s out at the moment and my notes refer to the Zeno pictured only]