A micro-current facial uses weak electrical signals to stimulate muscles and skin. Some claim it can reverse the visible signs of aging, such as saggy skin and dullness. However, the effects are not as dramatic as other procedures, such as a facelift.
People can buy microcurrent devices to use at home or have professional treatments with a dermatologist or esthetician. However, there is little evidence to show how effective, reliable, or safe microcurrent facials are in the long term.
A microcurrent facial is a cosmetic treatment in which a person uses a special hand-held device to deliver tiny electrical currents to the face. These micro-currents stimulate the skin and muscles with the aim of improving a person’s appearance.
Micro-current devices have two electrodes at one end, which deliver the electric current. It does not involve any surgery. A person remains awake throughout treatment and can continue with usual activities immediately.
Microcurrent devices are available for home use, or people can purchase treatments from a licensed professional.
Doctors have used microcurrents for decades to treat conditions such as Bell’s palsy, a type of facial paralysis. However, a 2015 analysis suggests the practice may not be effective.
Microcurrent devices work by delivering electrical current to muscles and skin cells. The idea behind it is that the electric current will develop facial muscles, lifting and tightening the skin.
Some companies also claim that microcurrent facials stimulate collagen production. At present, no study confirms this. However, anecdotal reports suggest that people may notice an immediate difference after the sessions.
Limited scientific research suggests that microcurrent treatments can:
Stimulate facial muscles
One of the main advantages of microcurrent therapy is that it
Improve blood circulation
Accelerate wound healing
Other Health Benefits
Microcurrent stimulation may also provide other non-cosmetic health benefits. For example, a
Professional microcurrent devices tend to be more powerful than home devices. This makes them dangerous to use at home, but also means they can create more pronounced results.
Dermatologists and estheticians can also combine microcurrent treatments with other services, such as facial masks, serums and massages. They can tailor this to someone’s particular needs to achieve the desired results.
People using at-home microcurrent facials may need to use them regularly to see results. It may also take longer to notice equivalent results due to lower currents.
Microcurrents are not powerful enough to cause injury, so when a person uses these devices correctly, they should not hurt or damage the skin. However, some people should not have microcurrent facials. This includes people with:
Many microcurrent clinics also advise against treating pregnant women. This is because doctors don’t know if the treatment is safe for a developing fetus.
Another potential risk comes from unregulated or untested micro-current devices. When trying a microcurrent facial at home, a person should always use a Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved device. Alternatively, people should seek treatment from a licensed professional.
There is little research on the potential side effects of microcurrent facials. Some of the effects people report include:
- skin irritation or sensitivity
- skin dryness
- facial twitching
A person should see a doctor about any side effects, especially if they are severe or not improving.
People who seek a microcurrent facial for cosmetic reasons will usually have to pay for the treatment themselves. However, those with a medical condition, such as an injury or severe acne, may be able to obtain insurance to cover the procedure.
Costs vary depending on where the person lives and who they seek treatment from. Most clinics charge between $200 and $600 per session.
Home devices, which one person can use multiple times, can cost between $180-500, depending on the size and strength of the device and accompanying accessories.
Microcurrent facials stimulate the skin and facial muscles by delivering small electrical signals. A person can do this with a device at home or receive professional treatments from a dermatologist.
Some people report immediate results after microcurrent facials, including firmer skin and a more sculpted appearance. However, there is little scientific research proving that this treatment is effective or safe in the long term.
People considering a microcurrent facial should discuss the risks and benefits of the treatment with a doctor. It is also advisable to consider the opinions of specific clinics before booking a treatment.