When Therabody launched the first Theragun in 2016, it changed the game for our recovery routines. The percussive therapy device became a go-to for professional athletes and everyday gym-goers alike, and in the years since, the brand has developed an entire line of devices that take people's rest days to the next level. This week, with the introduction of its first-ever facial device—the TheraFace Pro ($399)—Therabody is doing the same thing for our skin-care routines.
The TheraFace Pro is more than just a massage device. It features the same percussive therapy as the original device, but it delivers it alongside a slew of other skin-friendly features. It includes a silicone brush attachment for deep cleansing, LED lights to smooth wrinkles and manage acne, and microcurrent waves to firm and tighten skin. For an extra $99, you can get the TheraFace PRO with Hot/Cold Rings ($498) to treat your face with therapeutic heating and cooling. It's as if a NuFace, Clarisonic, and Theragun had a baby, and after trying it out for myself, I'm in love.
How the TheraFace Pro works
The TheraFace Pro has a sleek design featuring an interchangeable head (you can swap between three massage heads, the cleansing head, the microcurrent head, the LED light ring, and—if you've got 'em—the hot and cold rings), a digital screen, and three control buttons. The top button changes the speed of the heads. The middle button controls the intensity of the microcurrent head, the LED light therapy ring, and the hot and cold rings. The bottom button is the power button.
Each treatment offers three levels, which are clearly displayed on the LED screen. This may all seem confusing on paper, but in person, it yields a seamless and intuitive user experience.
The massage heads can be used for as long as you like, while the other treatments max out at 8 minutes. As you use the tool, it will beep every 15 seconds to signal you to move to a different part of your face.
What it's like to use the TheraFace Pro
Massage is Therabody's bread and butter. The brand uses its standard percussive technology, a form of massage that uses rapid pulses and vibrations to treat muscles. The TheraFace functions like a mini Theragun for your face, and each of its three massage heads serves a different purpose. A flat head relieves tension in the face, neck, and chest; a cone head provides targeted treatment around the eyes, nasolabial folds, and any pressure points; and a micro-point maximizes circulation in larger areas like the forehead, cheeks, and chest. All three heads feel great, but the cone head is my fave. It feels like it's providing deeper, more targeted relief exactly where I need it.
Theraface's cleansing mode uses the same percussive technology to rapidly pulsate the cleansing head, which is covered in dozens of tiny silicone "bristles." This motion helps remove dirt, debris, oil, dead skin, and other debris from your face while delivering a gentle massage. It feels amazing—so good, in fact, that you might have a hard time stopping and getting on with the rest of your routine.
The silicone bristles allow for easy and hygienic maintenance of the head (you can wash it with soap and water) and don't feel as rough as traditional bristles on the skin. You can pair it with any face wash you already own, as long as it's free of microbeads or gritty exfoliants.
"Microcurrent is electricity, and we use it to stimulate the muscles in your face," says Shamara Bondaroff, founder of SB Skin, during an episode of What the Wellness. "It stimulates your muscles, stimulates collagen, elastin, amino acids, ATP, cell turnover—it does so many different things." Depending on the strength of the microcurrent, you can feel nothing but a light tingle to straight-up pain.
Like all microcurrent devices, the TheraFace Pro comes with a conductive gel that must be applied generously all over the face before treatment. Because this device only has three levels for the microcurrent intensity, the jumps between them feel more drastic than that of other microcurrent devices (which tend to offer more options). I didn't feel anything during level one, level two was definitely amped up, and level three was strong but tolerable.
LED lights are great for treating your skin in different ways. The TheraFace Pro's LED ring attachment allows you to choose between three light settings, each offering different benefits. Blue light helps to kill P.acnes, the bacteria responsible for acne, helping to clear up breakouts. Red light helps to firm skin and soften wrinkles by amping up collagen production to improve skin elasticity over time. And a combination of red and infrared lights provides those same skin-firming results with the added bonus of temporary pain reduction.
The light attachment is circular with a hole in the middle, which means you can use it simultaneously with any of the massage heads. Just be sure to only pair these treatments with the red or infrared settings, as massaging over acne with blue light can spread bacteria around your face and cause more pimples to pop up. When using the light ring on its own, just hover the device above your face as you move it around.
I preferred using the LED and massage setting in tandem, because I found it a bit boring to simply hover a light around my face and feel nothing (I think I'll stick with my standard LED mask for that type of treatment). However, I like that you can use the blue light for a quick, targeted spot treatment.
Hot and cold rings
These $99 add-ons offer two additional spa-level treatments. First, the metal hot ring gets warm in seconds, and feels amazing on tired facial muscles. The flat-topped-cone head allows you to get into the contours of your face while the heat reduces tension and pain and increases blood flow. I love using it to warm up my muscles before going in with one of the massage heads.
The cold ring is basically a techy version of your standard ice cube facial. It can help instantly reduce puffiness by dilating the underlying blood vessels under your skin and gently distributing lymphatic build-up. Because it's made from metal, it feels pretty chilly without even turning it on, but feeling it get colder on your skin is heavenly. It has a one-up on other cold-therapy tools, like ice globes, because it doesn't warm up as you move it around your face—it stays cold the entire time you're using it. However, because the head is totally flat, you won't get quite the same massaging experience as you would from a jade roller or ice globe.
Is it worth it?
The biggest benefit of this tool is that it combines so many therapies in one. If you don't own a single beauty tech tool, you can get this one and consider yourself stocked up with everything you could ever possibly need. But even as someone who owns tons of tools (#beautyeditorlife), the TheraFace Pro still stands out. The massage function sets it apart from every other beauty tech tool out there. Even if it were simply a mini Theragun for your face, I'd say it's worth having—especially if you deal with headaches or facial muscle tension. But the fact that it also does so much else makes it a winner in my book.
To experience it yourself, add the TheraFace Pro to your cart.
Learn more about Therabody from its founder:
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