I’ve been umming and ahhing about investing in a Clarisonic for a while – I’ve heard really good things about it, but I have the worst habit of buying electric appliances and using them feverishly for a week, then never using them again (hello, epilator!). So when I heard that Priceline had started stocking a similar product at an extremely low price point, I thought it would be a good way to test how it’d fit into my current regimen before deciding whether to invest in the real thing.
The Models Prefer Skin Cleanser retails at $15.99, and comes with 4 attachments – one regular brush, and a sensitive brush, and a foam moisturiser applicator and rubbery massage “fingers”. It also comes with a storage stand. It’s battery operated (2 x AA) and waterproof, although I’d advise against using it underwater.
I had an embarrassing moment trying to work out how to put the batteries in – it took me a few minutes of desperate tugging to work out that this is how it comes apart. If you end up buying it, save this photo! You can also see the black rubber ring which prevents water getting into the electronic innards.
I originally thought the brush would rotate, but it actually vibrates and causes the head to make small, rapid circles.It’s kind of entertaining how it vibrates the skin, and my face felt funny after the first few times I used it, but you get used to it quickly. I’ve found it extremely easy to incorporate into my skincare regimen – I’ve simply used it to apply cleanser a few times a week instead of my hands, and I keep it just outside the shower.
Normal brush – This is the attachment I get the most use of, and I wish I’d been given two of these! On my skin it feels like a coarse-grained scrub, and the bristles are as hard as those on a soft toothbrush.
I’ve been using this with a variety of cleansers (e.g. Guinot Bioxygene Cleansing Foam, Nivea Cleansing Mousse, Lush Angels on Bare Skin, Kosmea Daily Facial Exfoliant, Jurlique Purifying Foaming Cleanser). The grainier scrubs aren’t much good with this brush – the brush’s scrubbing action is stronger than the scrub’s, and more than sufficient to get a good clean, plus the grains get clogged up in the brush, making it hard to clean. The self-foaming cleansers tend to block my nose with soap suds. The best ones in my opinion have been the gel cleansers that don’t foam too much. I’ve been able to thoroughly remove makeup with it, and my skin has broken out less after full makeup days since I started brushing.
Gentle brush – The same idea, but with softer bristles. I can barely feel this one – it’s probably good for girls with sensitive skin, or perhaps if you’re sunburnt but desperately want to scrub your skin. But for me it’s meh.
Sponge applicator – This is basically a cosmetic sponge on a plastic holder, for jiggling moisturiser into your skin. I tried this once, and it left my face covered in greasy plastic smell, which refused to go away, so I’ve steered clear of this one.
“Massaging fingers” – This is supposedly for massaging your face when you’re stressed – I was originally skeptical (I mean, the brush already vibrates, is it necessary to include something that feels like it’s made from “body-safe” silicone and has three little fingers?!) but I tried it, and yeah, it’s not bad. It’s particularly nice on the jaw and temples if you tend to clench when you’re tense. So I take it all back, weird fingers!
Biggest pro: Super cheap – a Clarisonic will set you back about $150.
Biggest con: Battery operated. Old school! Models Prefer does have a rechargeable model that’s around $100, but for that price I would go for a Clarisonic.
Verdict: This brush cleanser is amazing value, and a great way to test out a cleansing brush. I’ve used it almost continuously for three weeks, and it feels like it’s paid for itself. I can’t properly compare it to a Clarisonic, and I’m not entirely sold on the whole “sonic action” thing, but this has really sold me on the cleansing brush concept.