Clarisonic Review

In our industry, we see many “miracle” machines and have heard all types of horror stories pertaining to skincare.  Our clients try “it all” and spend thousands upon thousands of dollars to look their best.

It is no doubt that having great skin gives you confidence.  Just ask the estimated 2.7 million women that walk through the doors of doctor’s offices every year in hopes that they will solve skin conditions or slow the aging process.

The Pros are late to this party for sure as we have heard for the past 2 years, on a constant basis, how great the Clarisonic Cleansing System is and we finally had a client special request the machine during a shoot, so we added it to our professional skincare kit.

One of the Pro’s big rules is to never use products on our clients without first testing them on our own skin, but in this case we had to fulfill the client request and try it personally another time.

However, IMPO Pro Melissa Street saw first hand the benefits of using the Clarisonic and was so confident in the results that the cleansing brush would provide, that she decided to purchase units for herself, her IMPO partners, Cathi Singh and Aileen Wrench and for her two teenage daughters.

Each of the IMPO Pros (and the teens) had different results while using the Clarisonic personally, so we decided to write this post and share with our readers what we really thought of the brush and how it works for us.

Remember, all the Pros are in different age groups – 20’s, 30’s and 40’s, plus the teen’s perspective appears in this post, so if you are considering investing in this machine, hopefully this information will help you decide.

The Teen’s review:
Oh the woes of being a teenager!  Having a professional makeup artist as a mom has its perks, but it also comes with a price! Our mom is constantly lecturing us about skincare and each talk ends with the same words…”you will thank me for this...someday!”

Well mom, you are totally right!  Today is the day that we thank you for giving us the very special gift of the Clarisonic Cleansing System.

Because you know that we are very typical teenagers and sometimes indulge in a good old fashion pimple pop, french fry eating binge and we have fallen asleep without removing our makeup (your biggest pet peeve), you can rest assure that the Clarisonic comes to our rescue and cleans out our abused pores!

In fact, it has also helped dissolve the black heads that appear around our nose and has reduced the number of breakouts from our ever changing skin.  You purchased us the machine called “The Mia,” which is perfect for our needs and we love that it is totally waterproof so we can use it in the shower.

Thanks for making it easy for us to improve our skin issues and our confidence, but we will still eat french fries!

IMPO Pro, Cathi Singh’s review:
My skin just turned 28 and if what science says is true, the decline of my skin has begun. After 25, certain proteins that your skin naturally produces to create new cells just stop working! 

After hearing this alarming, and somewhat depressing news, I began an intense regimen of skincare and upped the ante on my sunscreen applications.

The piece to complete my skincare puzzle was the Clarisonic. At long last I had my very own. After waiting the torturous 24 hours to charge it, I was excited to experience the deep clean machine.

I was so distracted by finally having my own Clarisonic that I did not take into consideration the extremely sensitive condition of my skin due to the dry, cold weather change, the stress of two Thanksgivings at my home, and the construction in my backyard. All of it compiled on my skin, making it overly dry, with redness and a small breakout.

Wanting to use it so badly, I actually overused it by cleansing my skin twice a day for too long and not on the lowest sensitive setting. My skin fought back as it was being over stimulated. Keep in mind, this was an operator error.

However, after reducing my usage to once a day, and cleansing with the correct preset timer, my skin is glowing, blemish free, and more hydrated than it’s ever been.

Friends have approached me more than ever as to what I am doing differently to my skin. The key is to find the right balance for your skin type. Using it twice a day may be too much if you are extremely sensitive as I am.

I keep the sensitive brush head on, and use my Jan Marini BioGlycolic Face Cleanser, followed by Jan Marini C-Esta Serum and Orlane 25+ Anagenese Eye Contour Cream.

What I love about this device is the ease of it - it doesn’t take the time of a facial or exfoliating mask, but it polishes my skin in one minute and I look and feel like I’ve pampered myself all morning.

As discussed in previous posts, I am a professional makeup artist and an airbrush tanning technician and something I stress with all of my clients is the importance of exfoliating before the tan. It makes a world of difference in the depth of color and the life of the tan.

To put it to the test, I used the Clarisonic with the body attachment and exfoliated my left arm with the Clarisonic Refining Skin Polish. I scrubbed the right arm in the shower with a loofa sponge and body wash. I then tanned both arms and let the tan set. After rinsing off the cosmetic bronzer, here are the results:

*Note: I did not spray my hands.

It was my first time using the refining polish and body head attachment, and I instantly felt like I was getting a deep cleanse and thorough exfoliation. My arm looked more vibrant and had a healthier color even before tanning.

While the tan doesn’t appear completely different in the picture above, the feeling on my skin was. The Clarisonic “arm” had a noticeable smoothness and the tan set quickly and evenly. The right arm also set, but the sticky bronzer stayed longer and did not feel as smooth.

I highly recommend the body attachment for exfoliation if you have plans to do any type of sunless tanning as well as the Refining Skin Polish in the Clarisonic Pro kit.

IMPO Pro, Aileen Wrench’s review:
The Clarisonic Cleansing System is great but like many tools of the trade, you need to know how to use it and in my case, WHEN to use it.

I am going through two major life changes: I moved from the beach where I have lived for 20 years to an inland valley community AND I am pregnant.  So, I am contending not only with hormones but also the dry winter air of my new community (not to mention the heater that is on a ton in our new house!).
I am in my mid 30’s and have always had very sensitive skin, as my aesthetician will attest.  For me, the Clarisonic was NEVER used twice a day.  But now, I find myself using it less than twice a week!

The onslaught of hormones I didn’t even know I had play a fun game with my skin. Primarily I feel dry, which results in flakes but when I exfoliate, my skin becomes red and irritated, still flaky and dry.  Lotion and facial moisturizer are my best friends.
I have learned to use my Clarisonic less coupled with gentle face wash leaving my face more balanced between the dessert and jungle affects of previous routines.

For a short while, in the early first trimester of my pregnancy, my forehead broke out in little pimples and the Clarisonic was a godsend.  Oil production went into overtime in my t-zone but once I passed through that phase, I discovered the need to retire it to a once a week face-décolletage-back facial.

The Clarisonic is helping to keep my skin healthy during my big life changes and just because I don't need to use it daily, doesn't mean it wasn't worth the investment!

IMPO Pro, Melissa Street’s review:
As a…(cough, cough)40 something female, my skin is pumped full of some great skincare (as you know from past posts), but when I decided to purchase the Clarisonic Cleansing System I wasn’t prepared for exactly how much more amazing my skin would look and feel.

This machine really cleans the pores and preps them to receive the skincare.  In fact, it is my professional opinion that my skincare works better when using this cleansing system.

I am big into anti-aging products because truthfully, I am scared to go under the knife or have needles prick my face!  So, my answer to gravity is to try to defy it with moisturizers, serums and creams instead.  So far, I am winning that battle and I am hoping that with a combination of good health and excercise along with my Clarisonic, I can age gracefully for the next 20 years!

I use the brush to cleanse my face twice a day (morning and night) with my normal cleanser and I exfoliate both my body and face twice a week with the machine too.  My skin feels very clean and glows after using the Clarisonic and my pores are clear, open and prepped to receive my skincare.

I get compliments on my skin all the time and people tell me that I don’t look over 40 years old.  I really feel that it is a combination of great anti-aging skincare and the Clarisonic Cleansing System.

My clients have skin that is unpredictable and is caused by the crazy world of being a celebrity, but now that I have added the Clarisonic to my professional skincare kit, I feel confident that all the makeup I use on each client’s face is able to be removed properly and the skin is cleansed effectively and gently with this machine.

I even purchased another machine for my mother (who is in her early 60’s) and she loves that the Clarisonic is helping to reduce the large pores around her nose, forehead and cheek area, which eliminates the need for heavier makeup to hide imperfections.

When I decided to purchase the Clarisonic Cleansing System for my IMPO partners, my professional makeup team and for my family, I did a ton of research and read many blog reviews.  It was important to me to invest in a product that not only works, but also in a company that has a great reputation.

In conclusion, the folks at Clarisonic have great customer service and most are trained Estheticians so they give you professional advice on skincare, proper use of the machine and good product recommendations.  Their website is packed with incredible information and each cleansing system comes with a warranty incase of manufacturer defect.

The IMPO Pro's hope that our readers have found this post useful and be sure to visit the Clarisonic website for great holiday specials! Please feel free to leave us a comment and let us know your review of the Clarisonic!


  1. I'd like to know specifically which machine each reviewer is talking about. I am debating whether to buy the Clarsonic Plus, including body brush, and wonder whether the regular brush can be used on my arms, or if the Plus is the best choice.

  2. Pearl,

    Everyone is using the Clarisonic Plus except the teenagers - they have the Mia, which has only one speed & no body exfoliating brush. The regular brush head is not strong enough for upper arm or other body areas - it is made for the sensitive face area.

  3. To be honest, I hate the clarisonic. It is so hyped up and overpriced. An electric toothbrush would get the same results.

  4. Thanks for your comment Amy, but I disagree with you completely!

  5. Though I am reading this quite late, I really appreciate this review. I originally purchased the Mia, with its single "normal" speed setting. My extremely sensitive skin (I am in Cathi Singh's shoes) flipped out and I returned it. However, my boyfriend and his leather skin loved it so I searched for another brand that would work for the both of us. I kept coming back to the Clarisonic but I was worried about my poor skin. I will now look into purchasing the PLUS which has the lower setting. Thank you for the perspective and the tips on how to use it on super sensitive skin.

  6. I know this review is over a year old, but I just came across it. THank you for the detailed review and analysis. My 11 1/2 yr daughter has been nagging me to get her a "Wave" or other similar skin cleansing tool. I am/was of the opinion that such tools, as well as cleansing in general, would be too harsh for her pre-teen, pre make-up skin. I've been encouraging her to just stick to the gentle daily washes and regular face washing. Of course, I'm not a good expert as I am extremely lazy and have not done a good job at cleansing and moisturizing my face - and I'm in my late 40's. So, I really want to give her good advice.
    So - do you think the Clairasonic is a good investment for her at this age, (and if so, do you think the Mia, or the version with the sensitive skin brush/settings would be best), or do you think one of the less expensive (i.e., Wave, Neutrogena) products would be suitable at first? Also, what skin care products do you recommend for girls her age? I don't want anything too expensive - especially if I decide to invest in something like this!

  7. Hello lfintexas - I have two girls and both of them have use the Clarisonic Mia - based on our experience with this machine, it has been a wonderful purchase and my girl's have enjoyed the results. However, my actually use this machine - not all girls, especially young teens will listen and remember to use the Clarisonic on a regular basis and that is what is key. You may want to try out a product that is much less expensive to get her into the routine of using a machine to clean her face and then move on to the Clarisonic once you see she is invested. As far as a skincare recommendation, i am not sure what type of skin your daughter has - so here are the products that I love for teen skin: Cetaphil, Clean Start, Aveeno and if she is suffering from acne problems Jan Marini makes an amazing teen line. Hope this helps and thanks for connecting with IMPO.

  8. I'm 41 and was just talked into purchasing a Mia 2 while at the store last night. My skin can be sensitive and more dry than oily. I almost never have pimples, but can get clogged pore white heads. I have some redenning on the checks and my T-Zone can get oily in the summer time. I'm finding that my skin has changed some in the past year - including the pores getting larger. Before I open the package and cannot return it, do you have any advice. I was planning on using my Clarins facial wash with it.

  9. Hi Anonymous - I am 44 and have normal skin - I use my Clarisonic Pro with the sensitive rush head twice a day. I do know that if your skin tends to be dry that this machine can make your skin even dryer. My mom & makeup partner, Cathi Singh, both have dry skin issues so they use their Clarisonics more like 3 times a week. I can't say that this machine is a bad investment because I love it & have seen good results with it. The sensitive brush head may be better for you. Also if you keep the machine you can use it and turn it off instead of using the auto shut off - using it only a small amount of time instead of the full timer setting may help prevent your skin getting more dry. Hope this helped.

  10. Hello, I am 40 yrs old and was told that Clarosonic was a great product. For the most part I have good skin (t-zone area becomes oily); however, I am starting to see my pores more visibly and I'm also getting a lot of dark spots (over-pigmentation) on my face (forehead, cheeks and around my temple area) and I don't know if this brush would help lighten or eliminate the pigmentation. I use oil of olay's
    regenerist moisturizer, neutrogena's fresh foaming cleanser and also use neutrogena's 70 SPF age shield.

    Can you tell me if the Clarosonic Plus brush will help with the pigmentation and does it also help with fine lines? Also should I be using other face products?

    Thanks in advance for your help!

    1. Hello - the Clarisonic will not help with pigmentation or fine lines - it is a cleansing brush. It will help to minimize your more visible pores. The skin issues you are seeing from the natural aging process are more helped by having skin treatments with a professional - I am almost 45 and pigmentation from sun exposure and fine lines which I seek treatment for at a med-spa and then continue treatment at home with skincare and sunscreen.

    2. Thanks for your info - good stuff!

  11. I purchased the Pro in April 2011 and absoluetely love the results! Recently my machine was not vibrating as it should. I called customer service and the Pro has a 3 year warranty. They are sending me a brand new machine! I did not have to send a copy of my receipt noir do I have to send them the machine prior to them sending the replacement model. I have never experienced such exceptional customer service! I bought one for my son who had bad acne. It took about 4 weeks but now a year later he no longer has acne-only the occassional pimple.

  12. Hello, i am 14 years old and i´ve been searching for information about the clarisonic mia. I have oily/dry combination skin. I want to know if you recommend it to me and which cleanser i need to use with it. oh and i read about girls that broke out the first couple of weeks of using it, its that normal?
    Thank you!

  13. Hi Cecilia97 - my daughter has been using the Mia for about 3 years now - however, she has very good, normal skin - I have known many teenagers & adults with oily skin who love it and who hate it - I have seen women with dry skin become drier and flaky and others whose skin has improved texture. I guess what I am trying to say is that it is a personal choice to invest because you do not know how your skin will react personally. I would find an spa in your area that uses the Clarisonic while giving a facial and have your skin analyzed by a professional before purchasing. Also, if you decide to purchase do it directly from Clarisonic and ask about their return policy and recommendations for cleansers for your exact skin type.

    Hope this helps.

  14. If you buy it at Nordstrom you can try it and always take it back! Plus free shipping! :-) im gonna get mine there tomorrow... I hope it works! I have really sensitive skin, its not dry and flakey but certain products i have allergic reactions to, philosophy purity face wash has so far made a difference in my skin, i've only been using it 3 days now and its helped my skin clear up after a serious breakout. If i can finally get my skin to clear up with this machine i will be forever greatful and praise it like no other!

  15. Hello, I'm 16 years old and looking to invest in a Clarisonic, however I'm not sure which would work best for me. I have combination/oily skin and I'm very acne prone! I also have acne on my chest and back which I would love to get rid of. Would you recommend the Mia or the Pro? And what cleanser would you recommend I use it with?
    Thank you!

  16. If you can afford it - I would purchase the Pro because it has a body brush for those problem areas on your chest and back.

  17. Hi, my name is Jovanne. Recently I have discovered the clarisonic mia. I haven't purchased one yet due to the price. After reading this blog I am becoming more and more confident and convinced into buying a clarisonic for myself. I get mild, but frequent breakouts and tend to have dry skin. But I am hoping that with this purchase of a clarasonic I won't have to worry as much about ACNE! (: Also, what products do you recommend to use with the clarisonic for acne?
    P.S. your insight is greatly appreciated!

  18. Hi, I purchased the Clarisonic Pro kit almost 1 1/2 years ago from Nordstrom. I'm now 43 years old and have good skin generally. For the first year, I LOVED the Clarisonic, because my make-up seemed to look better on my skin. However, lately, I've noticed that on the days that I use the Clarisonic (I use it every other morning), my skin got REALLY oily and shiny in the afternoons. And now, after using the Clarisonic for over a year gently on my face with the Clarisonic facial cleansers, I have noticed that my pores have gotten visibly larger on my nose and face! It's almost like the pores are over-compensating and over producing oils. I've stopped using the Clarisonic for now, and I don't get as oily anymore. How strange. I wonder if the Clarisonic over stimulates the pores. Am I doing something wrong?

  19. Anonymous, I don't think you are using the product wrong, but if I were you I would contact their customer service department. I do know that skin changes as we get older (obviously) and for women there are hormone factors, etc., but I am no expert in the field of skin - ask a dermatologist or Clarisonic directly.

  20. i wanted to buy this long time ago but unfortunately it isn't available here in Dubai and today i found it @ Nordstom:
    but i can't figure out which one is the pro? is it the same as plus? Pls help!!!! I'm 30 yrs old and i've normal/combination skin.

    thank you!

  21. Deemz, the Pro (or maybe it is called the Plus) now is pictured above (white with additional body brush). The major difference in the Mia vs the Pro is that you can use the Pro you your body (chest/back if you have break out) or for exfoliation of the body (back of arms, etc). The brush head that you use will be the difference - they have different types for different skin but I use the sensitive brush head even though I don't tend to have sensitive skin - it works best for me.

  22. Thank you sooo much! will get the pro-plus then :)

  23. I am 41 and having problems with milia or stubborn white heads on my checks and chin ( I frequently work with my chin in my hand). I use Bobbi Brown tube soap with her toner and moisturiser and exfoliate 2x/ week. Could I use the Pro with the tube soap or do I need another cleanser? Should those stubborn white heads come out with this product? Thank you for your help!

  24. Hi Amy - thanks for writing us - my suggestion is that you contact Clarisonic directly with your question - I am not familiar with the Bobbi Brown cleanser you mentioned and they should also be able to advise you with regards to their product versus your skin issue. They have a very helpful customer service department.

  25. This has been a most interesting post along with the comments! I notice, however, that there have been no comments from 50+ year olds. I am 56 with pretty decent skin. I am thinking about getting a Clairsonic. Any words of wisdom for us 'old folk?'

  26. first words of wisdom...56 is not old! Second, I would still stick with the sensitive brush head even though you have "decent" skin - you don't want to mess with it and I have found that the other brush heads have a tendency to be harsh if you skin is over the age of 30!

  27. I've been hearing about the Clarisonic for a few years now...I think I'm going to get one based on all of the above comments. Very informative!

  28. I've been hearing about the Clarisonic for a couple of years now. Based on all of the positive comments, I think I'm going to buy one and try it out. I'm starting to see changes to my skin since I'm now in my mid 40's.....can't wait to see how the Clarisonic works for me.

  29. Hi Pro,

    I'm 27 years old and I've got an oily t-zone/sensitive skin. I don't really get acne, mostly whiteheads and blackheads. I've currently got the DermaNew microdermabrasion kit but I only occasionally use the DermaNew brush with a Japanese facewash with AHA and BHA. On an average day I use a cetaphil cleanser in the morning and at night I'll alternate between the Japanese face wash and the SKII facial treatment gentle cleanser. I've heard great things about the clarisonic and a few negatives but mostly from users overstimulating/overusing it. I am just wondering if it's worth investing in it since I've already got the Dermanew brush. What are your thoughts about the two products?


  30. Hi ladies! Thanks for these great posts. I'm 34, mother of three, no longer on the pill and have just started to break out with hormonal acne in the last 3 months. It's been rough. After normally clear skin save the occasional oily/sweat pimples and black heads I now produce the painful cystic acne sores cooinciding with my period. I know i need to rebalance from the inside but in your opinion will the Clarisonic help treat this type of acne topically? Any advice on what the best type of facial cleasner is for hormonal acne?

  31. Hi... Amazing post! I'm 26 years old and pregnant... I do not have any major skin issues like the pregnant pro mentioned in the post, just that my skin is really full looking... I have combination skin that trends to get oily in the t zone and occasional pimples... I'm planning on getting the Clarisonic Aria.. I was wondering if it is safe to be used during pregnancy? And what cleansers and moisturizers are safe to.use during.pregnancy??
    would really appreciate your help!