I was intrigued a couple of weeks ago when I was contacted by Crystal Clear to come and take a look at a product launching soon, as well as to meet the founder of the company at their flagship store in Liverpool. I have to admit that the brand was one I had always seen in spa’s and Selfridges beauty hall, but had always felt a wee bit intimidated by. I had heard about their facials and microdermabrasion technique, but other than that, I was pretty much in the dark, so I was interested to find out more, and I also wanted to meet Sharon Hilditch, the founder and CEO of the company, as she is from Liverpool herself (like me), and has actually been awarded an MBE for her research into skincare.
I’m sure you can imagine that I planned to glide into Crystal Clear central looking put together and like I vaguely knew what I was doing. So naturally that didn’t work out.
I was doing training that day for work in a scratty cheap pair of jogging bottoms and trainers, so I packed a nice dress to change into on my way. But guess what? A dress doesn’t go too well with trainers, and since I’d oh-so-smoothly managed to forget my nice boots… I turned up in scratty tracksuit bottoms and trainers. The Shame…
Oh, and also, my camera decided that would be the perfect time to need a big old charge. Luckily for me, Sharon was absolutely lovely, and didn’t seem to mind that I had turned up looking like a tramp. Oh God, The Shame…
Anyway, onto the non-cringe section of the post…
As I wasn’t massively familiar with the range, Sharon spent time taking me through the range – for facial skin there are the “Stay Young” and “Problem Solvers” ranges. “Stay Young, is suited to all skin-types and is aimed at those who want reduce/fight the signs of ageing, whilst “Problem Solvers” is aimed at soothing, and repairing problematic and spot prone skin. There is also a “Professional Range” which aims to mimic the effects of their salon treatments at home. I personally like it when a range is simplified like this, and Sharon did point out that there are no hard and fast rules – her customers rarely use one range exclusively. Again I liked this – I hate prescriptive skin care regimes, because skin and skin issues rarely fit neatly into one box
We then spent some time looking at of the new product, or rather device, that the company are launching very soon. “Lift Away the Years” has taken two years to develop, and is aimed at maximizing the penetration of product (in this case, serum) into the skin, to allow ingredients to reach their full potential and increase hydration, as well as a lifting effect, and I’m really pleased to be able to give you one of the first looks at this new gadget…
The “Lift Away The Years” device reminded me at first appearance of the many many eye creams available at the moment which come in a roller-ball applicator. This one however packs a bit more of a punch. The device is powered by a AAA battery (it lasts really well – I’d say you’d go through a battery a month with this), and when turned on (there is a touch button at the side which you can see in the next picture) the head vibrates and oscillates.
The device is refillable – the head unscrews and can be filled with the anti-ageing serum. The head then screws back on and when switched on the product is distributed over the skin via the roller-ball, and massaged in by the action of the device.
I have only been using the device consistently for a couple of weeks, and I intend to do a really full review once I’ve given this a really thorough test, but I wanted to share my first impressions with you.
One of the first things I noticed using this is that because you are essentially giving yourself a really thorough facial massage twice a day, you get a kind of “post work out” glow to your skin – obviously the action of massage gives the microcirculation near the skin a boost, and that naturally makes skin look a lot more radiant, and plump. That also means it has an immediate effect on lines and wrinkles, because they look less pronounced. I have to say I was initially a little sceptical about this but I used it on one half of my face and compared sides, and I definitely noticed that my smile line was less marked on the side I had used the device on. So I do agree that the device gives an immediate boost to skin. The clinical research done on the tool also suggests long term benefits, so I’ll be updating my thoughts about that once I have given it a longer test.
Another unexpected thing I found using this is that it is actually pretty relaxing – I work shifts and it can make life pretty hectic, but using this, especially at night actually does help me feel a bit more relaxed. If I have a headache or I’m feeling stressed, spending a bit of time zapping my temples with this makes me feel like I’m ready to fight another day, which is something that rubbing in a bit of face cream can’t really do.
I am wondering if devices like this are going to be the new trend in skincare – after all, we were all happy with a simple face wash before the clarisonic landed. Maybe we have found as many active ingredients as we can, and if now, the way forward in skin care lies in devices which boost the action of products like this one?
The device will be available from Thursday 7th Feb 2013 online, and will retail at £79.99 for a kit containing the Lift Away The Years skincare device, as well as a 30 ml Intense Anti-Ageing Serum (the serum normally retails at £60 for 50 mls).
Stay tuned for an in-depth review!