FOREO LUNA Mini

This spring, I purchased a FOREO LUNA Mini in an attempt to troubleshoot my misbehaving skin. Worried I was overdoing it with my Clarisonic Mia 2, I wondered if a movement-free, bristle-free option might treat me better.

Size

FOREO LUNA Mini in my palm. My ringfinger there is a size 5 for reference.

The FOREO LUNA Mini is about the size of the palm of my hand. On the front of the device, low in the horizontal center, is a power button. This single button controls on/off, as well as switching between cleansing modes, of which there are two.

The splotchy shine on the surface of my Luna in the picture there is due to my hard water. I can clean it and make it pristine, but it really doesn’t make a difference – and this is the Real World, not Magical Blogger World where everything is picture-perfect 100% of the time.

Ergonomics

This is one area the device falls flat for me. The round, disc-like device is awkward to hold; it doesn’t feel natural in my hand, and I’m always worried I’m going to drop it. Furthermore, it’s shape is awkward to navigate around the contours of the face. The FOREO LUNA Mini 2 is going to have the same issue, unfortunately. I assume the full-sized LUNA (including the LUNA 2) devices perform a bit better in this area because instead of being a little disc, they’re somewhat oblong.

Cleansing Surfaces

Foreo Luna Mini Skincare Gadget

There are three different types of silicone cleansing nubs split between two locations. On the front, the majority of the surface is made up of thinner, fine nubs. These are the gentlest of the three, and are suitable for your entire face. At the top, the nubs are a bit larger and firmer. They are better suited for more-focused exfoliation without being over-the-top or uncomfortable.

On the rear, also at the top, is the Deep Cleansing surface which features the largest and firmest bristles. Frankly, I don’t use this surface often because it can be a bit much – but when I do use it, I’m using them to work out stubborn sebaceous filaments around my nose.

Cleansing Modes

The FOREO LUNA Mini features two cleansing speeds. When you turn it on, it’s at full tilt; press the power button again to get it to calm down.

LUNA Mini is outfitted with quadpacer functionality that those of you who use electric toothbrushes will be familiar with. It fusses at you to move to a different area of the face every fifteen seconds. It automatically shuts off after 3 minutes so those of us who are absentmindedly overzealous don’t rip our faces up.

Battery & Charging

FOREO LUNA Mini Waterproof (!) Charging Port

On the back, there is a waterproof charging port. This is an interesting choice in this wonderful world of induction charging that we live in but it works just fine. So yes, that’s right – this can live in the shower or at your sink and water getting in the port doesn’t really matter. Give it sometime to dry before charging, though, just to be safe.

The LUNA Mini is fully charged within just an hour. So far, I’ve had no issues with the battery, and have only charged it twice – the initial charge when I unboxed it in April, and in November. The claim of 300 uses (or about 5 months) per charge doesn’t seem inflated or unreasonable based on its performance so far or the performance of the ISSA Mini. I was able to go longer per charge since I switch between this and my Clarisonic.

I have yet to notice degradation in performance that is commonly linked to battery discharge in such devices. A big win here, and that makes it awesome for travel, especially for a week or more – you can do so without bringing your charger.

Cost per Use

Obviously depends heavily on how much you pay for it. When I purchased mine, the regular retail was $99. I got with a Platinum Perk coupon and only paid $79. At its regular retail, assuming once daily use for a year = roughly $0.27 per use. This doesn’t include the cost of the power to charge it because a) it’s negligible and b) electricity rates vary a lot.

These devices will last longer than a year, though. Add in the consideration that there are no brush heads to replace and the fact that you essentially only need to charge it twice per year, and the value skyrockets from there.

Two Years – $0.14

Three Years – $0.09

Five Years – $0.05

My Skin after 8 Months

I didn’t exclusively use the FOREO Luna Mini. My desire to be flexible and pursue what appeared to be working overpowered my desire to approach things scientifically, unfortunately. But I can give you anecdotal evidence.

  • The LUNA Mini is not an exfoliation beast. It DOES exfoliate a bit, but you are not going to get Clarisonic-like results from it. It does clean thoroughly, though, and the silicone bristles feel gentler on the skin. Their construction also feels more like a facial massage than a Clarisonic brush head does.
  • The LUNA Mini can stand up to annoying, stubborn sebaceous filaments. Hallelujah! That’s really my only persistent skin annoyance; and it isn’t really a problem – in fact, they’re present in totally normal, healthy skin…they’re just unsightly to some of us.
  • You do have to apply some pressure with the LUNA Mini to reap the benefits that those odd-looking silicone cleansing nubs can give you. If you’re coming from just washing with your hands, a soft cloth, or a powered brush like a Clarisonic, this will take adjusting-to.
  • I was able to comfortably switch between the LUNA Mini and my Clarisonic Mia 2 without my skin having a conniption.
  • My skin isn’t ‘more radiant’ with it than it was with what I was doing before, but it is cleaner and clearer than when I have a weird day where I just wash my face with hands or a cloth.

The Bottom Line

I’m fairly satisfied with the FOREO Luna Mini. It is significantly more challenging for me to overdo exfoliation with this device because, well, that isn’t what it is intended for – so my goal was ultimately achieved. That said, don’t know that I would repurchase this model or its successor, the LUNA Mini 2. Why?

The ergonomics of it are annoying to me. Furthermore, although it is better suited to travel than my other device, they now have a smaller LUNA better suited to this. (I am referring to the LUNA Go not the LUNA Play. The Go is not disposable! More on that in another post). I would, however, buy a LUNA Go to replace my LUNA Mini. Same functionality, smaller package.

Given my stance on repurchasing, this is one rare instance where my recommendation(s) aren’t entirely aligned. I would recommend the LUNA Mini to the following:

  • Young people who are into skincare and want a device. A fourteen year old doesn’t necessarily need to go Clarisonic-hard on her skin!
  • Mature individuals with delicate skin. A powered-brush might be too hard on this skin-type. and exfoliation at this point is (usually) best addressed with a chemical regimen established with a dermatologist.
  • If you travel, it’s viable…but again, I’d recommend the LUNA Go over the Mini for those with travel needs.

Have you tried a LUNA device or are you considering purchasing one?

Recent Repurchases – Fall/Winter 2016

Us beauty bloggers talk a LOT about new things we’ve tried, or NEW(ish in my case!) favorites, but I think we collectively do a poor job of talking about what we loved enough to repurchase. I might really enjoy a product for a few months, but by the time I get to the end of the bottle or hit pan, things may have changed.

Here’s are my recent repurchases as of last week.

 

Recent Repuchases - Million Dollar Tan Cabana TanMillion Dollar Tan Cabana Tan

Some of my hunt for a more cost-effective sunless tanner has been chronicled. I’m not unhappy with Million Dollar Tan in the slightest, but accessibility and cost are key items that factor in my buying choices. St Tropez is more accessible didn’t blow my mind. Vita Liberata is more accessible, but also more costly. Many drugstore options are hit-or-miss. On Thanksgiving, Million Dollar Tan featured a 40% off discount – so I snagged the already-discounted 2-pack of Cabana Tan for only $30 TOTAL with the 40% code and free shipping. Normally $32 EACH (I’ve never paid full price, but still) this is a solid deal. With my usage, it takes me forever to get through the product, so it will be about two years before I need to replenish.

For those who would prefer to order through a retailer, Nordstrom carries it now too.

 

2016 Holiday Gift Guide - Big Sexy Hair Volumizing SetBig Sexy Hair Root Pump

I’m utterly helpless when it comes to hair, but I’ve figured out how to be presentable for work. One of the consequences of insisting on having long hair is that long locks tend to weigh down roots, so I need help in that department. I’ve bought a few travel-sized bottles of Big Sexy Hair Root Pump before, too gun-shy to shell out for the a full-sized can. This gift set from JcPenney (fluctuates between $22-25) finally got me to bite the bullet with some promo code and rewards cash for ultra-cheap.

Sigma F80 Flat Top Kabuki

Sigma F80

Read moreRecent Repurchases – Fall/Winter 2016

Shiseido Facial Cotton vs Swisspers

Three months ago, I wrote about the cotton pads from Swisspers that I use with my micellar water to remove makeup. In that post, I exclaimed that nearly $10 for the Shiseido Facial Cotton was ludicrous. As it happens, a smaller pack was available at Sephora for $5 – and I’ll swallow that in order to compare them for you.

Packaging

I was surprised to see that the packaging of my $4 or $5 Swisspers product is remarkably similar! Both products come in a pouch made of this translucent, velvety, satin-finish plastic.

Shiseido Facial Cotton
Resealable? Swisspers is, Shiseido Facial Cotton (in the small size I purchased or the full size pack) is, unfortunately, not. It does not appear that the full-sized package is, either.

Size

Read moreShiseido Facial Cotton vs Swisspers

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Full vs Travel

Last year, I won a travel sized Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder (my post on it here) in Dim Light. I liked it so much that I splashed out for a full-size (on sale, of course). Sites obviously shares the volume of product in each, it can be hard to tell without a side-by-side. My local Sephora store, for instance, does not carry Hourglass – and when I have an idea that I think would have helped me, I like to share.

Side-by-Side

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Full vs TravelHourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Full vs Travel

The difference is pretty comical – so to put numbers to that picture, the left is 0.35 oz (for $46); the right is 0.04 oz (for $22). You’re getting over 8x the product for just over twice the price…and with how long the tiny travel size has lasted me (barely looks used), that is going to last me sometime into the 22nd century.

The Bottom Line

Unless you need the tiny size for some odd reason, skip it – the value just isn’t there. The price-per-ounce is already painfully high in the full size (I keep reminding myself of the fact that this stuff is going to last 2/3 of eternity) at around $131. The travel size comes in at a crushing $550 per ounce. It’s sheer (ha) lunacy.

What I NEVER Buy at Sephora

What I NEVER buy at SephoraI’m generally comfortable with investing in quality products, and there are some things I am glad to splurge on. In spite of just locking in VIB for another year, though, there are some things I NEVER buy at Sephora. This is just a list of things I won’t buy for myself; I may buy them as gifts if I know the recipient would love it. This is also not a list intended to criticize people’s shopping choices (except maybe the Louboutin nail polish), just to point out what I choose not to buy.

Manicure Products

Sephora just isn’t the place to go for manicure offerings. I know some people love Deborah Lippmann, but I just haven’t been ensorceled by her products. I’ve shared my thoughts on freaking Louboutin making lacquer, on not liking FormulaX, and how unbelievably ridiculous Nails Inc is with their NAILKALE. If I’m shelling out $15-30 dollars on polish, you can bet it’s going to be UV/LED cured and a massive, pro-sized bottle, at that.

There are more brands, but the best bang for your buck when it comes to manicure supplies is simply NOT there at Sephora.

Mascara

Although my favorite mascara to date is prestige, I never buy at Sephora and pay prestige prices for mascara. This drugstore option gets me results nearly the same – and for the $12/tube savings, I’m fine with a potential and slight drop in quality.

Read moreWhat I NEVER Buy at Sephora