BRUSH BATTLE: CLARISONIC VS. OLAY PRO-X

Good evening lovelies (and just a warning, there’s a long post ahead)!

Even though I’m a product junkie, there are very few products out of the many tons that I own that I consider staples, especially when it comes to skincare because, well, my skin is pretty much issue free. However, I like the feeling of leaving the house knowing my skin is clear, clean, and just all around flawless looking. Everyone knows that to get a flawless face, you need good makeup, of course, but what good is all that makeup without good skin to put it on?!

That was my logic behind finally deciding to purchase a face brush (which basically does for your skin what an electric toothbrush does for your teeth) and take my skincare routine up a notch. I originally started out with an Olay Pro X face brush, but then stepped my game up and caved in and bought a Clarisonic. Though I own a Clarisonic Smart Profile now (and it’s literally my favorite thing in my beauty collection), I originally started with the Clarisonic Mia, so that’s the only one I’ll talk about in this review. After using both brands for a super long time, I can give the lowdown on how they compare.

brush-types

Let me begin by saying that no matter which face brush you side with, virtually any option is better than washing your face with your hands because bristles will always reach places that your fingers can’t, and ultimately clean up to six times better than using your hands alone. Most people have difficulty talking themselves into buying a face brush because they think that they can get the job done just as well with their hands. Unfortunately, that just isn’t the case. Face brushes are meant to really clear the dirt and debris out of the skin and create longer lasting results, as opposed to using hands which just “move” the dirt and debris around, and quite frankly deposit just as much gunk as they remove.

Once you accept that simple fact, then the question becomes – which brush do I choose, and is it worth the money? Well yes, it is worth the money, but how much money is the real issue. It seems that the two most popular face brushes on the market right now, the Olay Pro X representing the more affordable mass market, and the Clarisonic representing the high-end market, are in a constant battle against each other. The end goal of both brushes is the same, but the results and technique are far different.

When the concept of a face brush was first introduced, Olay was quick to jump on the bandwagon and create one that was both effective and affordable, meaning you’ll see results and can easily pick one up at your local drugstore. Olay introduced their face brush as part of their Pro X line, and it retails alone for about $30 with replacement brush heads at $10 which are needed every 2 to 3 months.

The Pro X brush moves via a circular, rotating motion and works well to move debris off of the face completely, rather than just moving it to different areas of the face. It is quite compact and works ergonomically to ensure comfort when holding it and moving it around the face. Because of the small size of its brush head, it’s actually quite easy to maneuver it around the crevices of the nose and other hard to reach places. The bristles are extremely gentle, which makes this brush a good option for people with sensitive skin. There are two speed settings, fast and slow, and there is only one brush head option. Each cleaning cycle, regardless of speed, lasts approximately 30 seconds. The Pro X brush requires two batteries and is water resistant.

Being the first face brush to ever hit the market, Clarisonic was able to set the bar pretty high in terms of what their prices and claims were. Because there are several different variations of the Clarisonic (there are devices with different speed settings as well as for different parts of the body) the price can vary between $125 and $250, though the brushes themselves are usually always accompanied by sample sized (or full sized if you know where to look) skincare products. Replacement brushes always retail for $27 or $32 to be replaced at least every three months, and are available in five different types: sensitive, normal, deep pore, acne, and smart.

The simplest (and cheapest) Clarisonic model, the Mia, oscillates via sonic vibrations so as to dig deep into the pores and thoroughly cleanse them of dirt and debris. Over time, because the gunk isn’t keeping them open, pores are left looking smaller, tighter, and skin looks smoother in general. The Mia is portable but still somewhat bulky, yet is still able to effectively clean around hard to reach places on the face. All Mia models come with the sensitive brush head installed, which makes it a good option for those with sensitive skin. There is only one speed setting on the Mia, and each cleansing cycle lasts for approximately one minute. The Clarisonic Mia is waterproof and is powered via wall charger.

Having used both brushes for the same amount of time, I can say without a doubt that the Clarisonic is definitely a better bet and entirely worth the money. Why? Customization aside, the Clarisonic left my skin visibly cleaner and tighter, which says a lot because my skin was fine to begin with. The Pro X brush cleaned it just fine, but I would still notice the occasional breakout and it did virtually nothing to permanently resolve my (barely existent but still noticeable) blackheads, whereas the Clarisonic cleared them out completely.

I also noticed that complexion products that had a tendency to oxidize did so less with the Clarisonic than with the Pro X, and when I do get a breakout every once in a while it clears up much faster with the Clarisonic than it did with the Pro X. Also, brush heads lasted considerably longer with the Clarisonic – I was replacing my Pro X brush head every two months because the bristles would become frayed after daily use for that period of time, whereas I’ve been using my Clarisonic for the same amount of time and my brush head has yet to fray in even the slightest.

Ultimately, though both brushes clean better than using your hands or a washcloth, the difference between the Pro X and the Clarisonic is simple: a Clarisonic is an investment that will last many years, while the Pro X is a good short-term fix. I gave my Pro X brush to my dad, and he loves it, so I feel no guilt about making the switch to Clarisonic.

Ladies and gents, if you’re hesitant about buying a Clarisonic because of the price, just consider how long it will last you compared to the Pro X, and I guarantee you the investment will be well worth it and will ultimately save you money in the long run. If you need a face brush right this second and don’t feel like spending the money, the Pro X is still a great alternative and a lot better than washing your face with your own two hands.

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