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5 effective beauty gadgets for spring

At-home spa treatments like gel manicures, LED and cryo facials and foot massages are available with innovative personal care products.
Total relaxation can go beyond your typical cucumber face mask. The process can include some pretty nifty gadgets and beauty products.

Recreating a spa treatment at home requires a little more than Epson salts.

For facials that make a real difference, gel manicures that can be done at the kitchen table, and a foot bath that soothes, we sought out the most highly reviewed and innovative personal care instruments available in Canada.


Energy Beauty Bar

This gold t-bar is the latest accessory that has set the beauty world abuzz. The mild vibration helps soothe and sculpt skin and works to de-puff under-eye circles and define the contours of the face. And at under $20, it's not a bank-breaking investment. Available at Amazon.


Charlotte Tilbury cryo-recovery mask.

Before launching her eponymous skin care line, Charlotte Tilbury was a celebrity makeup artist and a product developer for beauty brands. She worked backstage at designer fashion shows, which led her to hand-mix special creams for the models that could help mitigate the effects of travel, staying up too late, hangovers and smoking.

In 2013, she launched Magic Cream (the silky and rich formula works as a glow-inducing moisturizer and base for a full face of makeup). Today, her skin care and makeup line is sold in the poshest department stores in the world. Her newest creation is the Charlotte Tilbury Cryotherapy Mask (cold can be great for puffy eyes and skin tightening). This mask goes in the freezer for 30 minutes before being strapped to the face and gently massaged into place.

Who it's ideal for: Anyone looking for a multi-purpose, cutting-edge beauty treatment at home.

Why we're endorsing it: Brand trust, innovation.

Where it could use improvements: The complementary eye serum is an additional purchase.

Size/weight/dimensions: One size fits most faces.

(To try this beauty trend on the cheap, this gel eye mask from Amazon works as a cold or warm compress, is reusable, and users seem to find it useful.) 

Dr. Dennis Gross face steamer

Many professional facials involve a gentle steam before extraction (when a facialist manually cleans out blackheads and blemishes from the skin) as the warmth preps pores for a deep cleanse.

This Dr. Dennis Gross Pro Facial Steamer can be used at home to prep skin for a clay face mask or over-the-counter peel. If a mask is too intense, use the steamer to promote circulation (skin will be dewy and flushed after nine minutes) and apply a soothing serum right after.

Who it's ideal for: Anyone with a combination of oily skin and clogged pores.

Why we're endorsing it: Brand trust, ease of use.

Where it could use improvements: Always be sure to use distilled water when steaming. Premium price.

Size/weight/dimensions: 26.16 x 19.56 x 14.22 cm.

(For a less expensive option, this mini facial steamer comes with a four-piece extraction kit and hundreds of five-star reviews. Be sure to use distilled water and read instructions for assembly, distance and length of use details.)


Vibrating face scrubber.

Not for the squeamish, this vibrating skin scrubber and blackhead remover has two adjustable silicone cases for face washing. Here’s how it works: wash face in cleansing mode and rinse but do not dry. There is a lift mode (facial massage), as well as Ion+ (to remove gunk from pores, whiteheads and blackheads) and Ion- (to help skin absorb skin care products). A pre-steam treatment would be a great way to prep the face for this. 

Who it's ideal for: People who want to do at-home extraction of blackheads, sebaceous filaments and comedones.

Why we're endorsing it: User reviewers, multi-use modes, price.

Where it could use improvements: Not waterproof, but face needs to stay wet for it to work. Extraction mode can cause redness.

Size/weight/dimensions: ‎20.8 x 7.1 x 3.7 cm.


Massaging foot spa

A soothing foot massage can ease soreness and pain. It has other health benefits like improved circulation, stress release and can even help with better sleep. Having a foot spa for home, one that can give a light massage while keeping water warm and bubbly, absolutely beats a warm bucket of water.

Who it's ideal for: Anyone who could use a massage after a long day.

Why we're endorsing it: Heats up water to 47.7 C and has six motorized rollers for massage plus a bubbles mode; electronic interface.

Where it could use improvements: The massage is gentle.

Size/weight/dimensions: Fits up to a men’s size 12 foot.