The last few years have seen a serious growth in the sales of mechanical face brushes, with Clarisonic leading the pack.
Here we will try to make things clearer, without the hype.
As an aesthetician with more that 25 years of experience, I am quite familiar with the concept of face brushing. In years gone by we used to use and sell lovely little face brushes, some with natural bristles, others less costly had nylon bristles.
Even back then, the purpose of using the brush was to enhance the results of face cleansing. Oily skin with blackheads was greatly improved when the person diligently used the brush to spread and work in the cleansing milk or foam. Dry skin also benefited from the removal of dead cells and acquired a lovely glow. Mature skin definitely benefited because of the increased blood flow to the area, which improved nutrition and cell renewal.
Brushing was not recommended for very sensitive skin or pustular acne. Sensitive skin may become worse from the brushing action that could irritate. Pustular acne was in danger of spreading the acne causing bacteria by accidentally breaking pustules while brushing. Acneic skin tends to be sensitive and brushing could increase that problem.
The advantages I outlined above are still standing, except that the mechanical brushes will do the work for you, like the sonic toothbrushes will clean your teeth.
If used diligently, the manual brush will give identical results to the sonic brush. The key here is to actually use it daily. Of course, if one spends upward of $100.- on a sonic brush it stands to reason that one will, at least at the start, use it more than one which cost $15.- It’s all down to psychology: if it costs more it must be better.
I would avoid manual brushes with nylon bristles, because they may be scratchy. Natural bristles work very well and need little care. Just rinse well and let dry with bristles facing down, on a towel. Otherwise water will seep into the handle( usually made of wood) and cause it to crack over time. It’s a good idea to disinfect your brush weekly, to avoid creating a bacterial culture in the bristles.
Sonic brushes need disinfection as well and if you opt for one you will be very happy with the results, just as happy as when using a common-or-garden variety. True, there’s nothing fancy about the latter and you cannot carelessly mention to your friends you had just finished brushing with the latest gadget. It just does not have the same “cool, with-it” vibe, a must for many people.
To conclude, sonic brushes are doing just as great a job as manual ones, but if you want one, just go ahead, but at that price you better use it religiously!