I was sent the Clarisonic in order to see for myself whether what I had been reading was true: would it cleanse my face and miraculously rid me of the T-zone blackheads I’ve struggled with since before my teenage years?

I was sent a trial model, which consisted of just the handheld cleansing unit, the charging cradle and a white, “sensitive,” facial brush.

I have used the machine now for a couple of days morning and night with my current cleanser from N. Perricone. Normally I only wash my face in the shower every morning and cleanse and remove make up properly at night. I am using a two minute cleansing setting, with 40 seconds for my forehead; 40 seconds for nose and chin and 20 seconds each on the cheeks. I am using the middle speed, which makes my nose buzz rather uncomfortably. I could never be a trumpeter.

The first impression was that the machine made my skin feel squeaky clean, analogous to the difference between using and manual toothbrush and an electric toothbrush. Hardly essential, sure, but one recommended for a good thorough clean by my dentist. And I’d never go back to a manual toothbrush again. It just does not feel clean to me. So it is with the Clarisonic. I have read, however, that the Clarisonic renders ones face too clean and causes breakouts of over-compensation. I am rather wary of this possibility but we shall see what develops over time. To me it is important that any new skin care regime is given time to show its full effect. Just as when we have a facial, the skin is prone to breakouts for a week or two as it rids itself of hidden gunk thrown up by the potions and massage, so it could be with the Clarisonic.

Remarkably, last night I used the Clarisonic and was astounded at how dirty the facial brush had become, particularly as I had been inside all afternoon and did not apply make up yesterday. So it must work.

Now, this squeaky cleanness does mean that my skin feels rather tight. However, it also means that my face is more receptive to moisturising serum and lotion and I find that I use less. I am cautious about over-irritating my skin so have decided to dispense with my nightly exfoliators, at least for the time being. The Clarisonic is an exfoliator in itself, of course but I think I might change now to the factory setting of cleaning for a minute with 20 seconds for my forehead. Perhaps that will be enough and eliminate any tightness. It is quite fiddly changing the factory settings, though.

I was slightly concerned that, far from lessening pore size initially, some of the pores nearer my eyes and nose seemed more obvious. I kept an eye on those but the problem did not seem to persist so perhaps it was just a case of them opening up after such a thorough cleanse. However most incipient and latent blackheads on my nose and chin seem to have disappeared or at the very least are on their way out. Actually, although I do have minor problems and the odd breakout, my skin is not too problematic and it is maturing. I have heard that results can be mixed with problem, bacteria-addled teenage skin as there is a risk of spreading comedogenic bacteria with the brush. I am particularly interested in this as oily, problem skin seems to be genetic to my family and Asian skin seems to scar worse than most, and for longer. I’m wondering whether the Clarisonic would be effective when combined with a good antibacterial cleanser in this scenario and perhaps should start this sort of trial with my teenager.

My face is now, however, very soft. And clean. And could it be my imagination or am I glowing? With a poorly child at home I wore no make up yesterday. But I did not dread looking in the mirror. And I think I look nice. Is it just my imagination? We shall have to wait and see. Watch this space for the next instalment of the Clarisonic trial.

Clarification: this blog is sponsored only in that I was sent the Clarisonic free to try. I have been asked neither to blog nor to Tweet about it.

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