The LED hype is real.
Presented by FOREO
While Korean beauty and its extensive 10-step skincare routine have become popular here in the U.S., there’s one fact no one can deny: it’s time-consuming.
I’ve been doing the 10-step routine since I became a fan of Korean beauty in 2013. While I enjoy the results, sometimes I don’t have the time to spend 15-20 minutes on a sheet mask, not to mention all the steps that come before and after.
The small device combines Korean skincare masks with LED technology for a truly unique skincare experience. FOREO calls it a “smart mask treatment,” a phrase which instantly made me curious. It claims to give the results of a typical sheet mask treatment (15-20 minutes) in 90 seconds. Since the masks the UFO uses are Korean-made, they pack the same kind of ingredients you already know and love, like hyaluronic acid, ginseng, and collagen.
If you’re anything like me when it comes to skincare, you’re not easily convinced LED treatments (also known as photofacials) have anything to offer. They’re expensive and can seem like a gimmick. But while I tested out the UFO for this feature, I did some research on LED therapy and found it’s actually not a sham. In fact, there’s scientific proof of how effective it is. Many dermatologists have backed it as well.
The TL;DR is that LED therapy stimulates cells in the dermis (the layer of skin right below the epidermis) to produce collagen and elastin. That means you’ll see less fine lines, smaller pores, and brighter skin tone. Basically, everything we all want in a skincare treatment. In the long term, a device like UFO costs a lot less than going to the med spa once or twice a week.
The UFO presents a much more sophisticated experience than a sheet mask can. A big part of the reason why lies in the device’s signature T-Sonic pulsations. The T stands for transdermal, which means that the device’s effects go far beyond the surface of the skin into its deeper layers. The UFO produces 8000 pulsations per minute, so it’s more stimulating than even a facial massage can be.
The UFO works with an app which will scan your mask of choice before use. When the app recognizes the mask, it will walk you through the treatment with verbal cues. It also gives you an animation to follow so you can get used to the way the device should be used.
Depending on the mask you choose, UFO will guide you through several stages of the treatment. You’ll begin by removing an attachment ring on the device that will hold the sheet mask in place, laying the mask on top, and snapping the ring back in. The treatments I used began with red LED and T-sonic pulsations, followed by a green LED to soothe skin and seal in the effects of the mask.
The UFO uses three different types of LED lights, depending on the mask you use. Red light is Thermo-Therapy, which prepares the skin to absorb the product in the masks. This is key to what makes them more effective than traditional sheet masks in much less time.
Cryo-Therapy is a green light that diminishes the look of large pores and reduces puffiness, leaving behind firm skin that looks markedly younger. And in case you’re worried, none of these phases use UV light, so your skin is completely safe.
The blue LED is ideal for acne-sufferers. (Yes, even the cystic kind.) It kills the bacteria that causes acne in the first place. You can wash your face all you want, but it’ll never come close to the effectiveness of technology like this.
To test out the UFO, I used it in my morning and evening skincare routine in place of my usual sheet masks 2-3 times a week. I found the LED treatments soothing, and the pulsations of the UFO a perfect mini-massage for the face.
I was most curious to see if I would get the dewy effects that sheet masks bring with this method. While certain sheet masks in my arsenal achieved a more noticeable effect than the UFO, I noticed that consistent use of the UFO (am/pm) resulted in even skin tone and softer texture that lasts longer. Along with the benefits of the mask, UFO also provides a thorough facial treatment with light application, sonic pulsations, thermal, and cryotherapy.
After years of wearing sheet masks, I have to admit the UFO treatment fits my schedule a lot better. It’s a lot easier for me to spare 90 seconds than it is to find 20 minutes, especially in the morning. I also found myself looking forward to using the device regularly, which I only do when I really enjoy something.
The FOREO UFO comes in pearl pink, mint and fuchsia and sells for $279. Pair it with any of seven different sheet masks that target everything from oily skin to dry. They come in packs of seven and range from $9.99 to $19.99.
If you’re tired of spending so much time on face masks and are ready to take your skincare game to the next level, the UFO is a winner. Plus it’s portable and rechargeable. What more can a beauty addict ask for?
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