As a current bride-to-be and forever skin care lover, I’ve made it my mission to find products, tools, and non-invasive facial techniques that deeply nourish, feed, and protect my sensitive complexion. While my regimen typically consists of using a cooling gua sha stone for depuffing and sculpting my jawline along with clean, preferably organic beauty products (like those from my current favorite brand, KORA Organics à la Miranda Kerr), I recently stumbled upon the notably more high-tech SolaWave Wand — a handheld four-in-one skin care tool that’s become a staple for red carpet prep on stars like Sydney Sweeney, Doja Cat, Vanessa Hudgens, and more.
The slim device packs a multitasking punch: It combines vibrating technology, microcurrents, heat, and LED light therapy, each of which has a different skin-boosting effect on your complexion. I had admittedly never used any of those methodologies on my skin before (as I said, I usually stick with a low-key and low-tech beauty regimen), but I quickly discovered just how game-changing and impactful they can be. That’s because, well, spoiler alert: The SolaWave has completely transformed my skin for the better. If your beauty routine is in need of a serious pick-me-up, you may want to keep reading for my review of my skin’s new BFF.
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- Price: $149
- Rating: 5/5
- Pros: multitasking with LED light therapy, microcurrents, vibration technology, and therapeutic warmth in one device
- Cons: You may need to use a lot of product before using it depending on your skin
As noted above, the SolaWave does multiple things to your skin as you glide it across your face — more on the different modalities below.
LED Light Therapy
SolaWave makes two different wands: one that uses red light therapy, and one that uses blue light. In short, blue light therapy is more geared to those with acne-prone skin, and red is more for smoothing the complexion. Generally, though, LED (which stands for light-emitting diode) works to rejuvenate one’s skin, making the overall appearance more vibrant and energized via the visible light penetrating your complexion.
“Red light therapy has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties and have the ability to penetrate deeper into the skin than other types of light,” explains Dr. Rina Allawh, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist at Schweiger Dermatology Group. According to celebrity esthetician, Taylor Worden, red light therapy can benefit all skin types. “Though ideally [it’s best for] anyone with mature skin or who starts to see the first signs of aging and wants to change that,” she tells Bustle. “It helps with anti-aging, fine lines, wrinkles, and to increase collagen and elastin.” Blue light, on the other hand, has been found to quash acne-causing bacteria to help fight breakouts.
Microcurrent works by emitting low-voltage electrical energy into your skin to stimulate your facial muscles on a deep level. As dermatologist Dr. Hadley King, M.D. previously told Bustle, it’s a safe and effective technology for increasing collagen production for anti-aging results — so this feature is primarily responsible for firming and toning the face.
Yet another technology within the wand is the vibrating massage feature, which utilizes gentle vibrations to de-puff and invigorate one’s skin. “The massaging effect of a vibrating tool enhances circulation to the skin, improving the delivery of oxygen and nutrients,” board-certified dermatologist Dr. Joshua Zeichner, M.D. previously told Bustle. “It may also improve lymphatic drainage, removing excess fluid that builds up.”
The tool’s heat feature (which caps at a temperature of 107°F) not only feels soothing to the touch, but also enhances the absorption of any products you have on your skin as you use it.
While I am grateful to have a relatively blemish-free complexion, my skin does come with its own particular issues — the biggest being my puffy under-eyes. From TikTok-recommended color-correctors to applying ice cubes straight from the freezer, I’ve tried it all — yet my under-eye bags never seem to fully disappear.
In terms of anti-aging, I don’t have too many fine lines, but I am all about preventative care, so I’m happy to use something like the SolaWave to help on that front.
How To Use The SolaWave
The product itself is extremely portable (it’s super light) and rechargeable (it’s meant to last for up to 12 sessions per charge), so you can easily tote it with you wherever you go. It comes with a charging cable for easy use. For the facial itself, the SolaWave is meant to be used on a clean and hydrated complexion. You can snag the SolaWave Renew Complex Serum as your conductive product (which contains hydrating aloe vera), but the brand notes that any moisturizing serum or cream will do the trick.
Once you have a layer of moisture on your skin, it’s important to sweep the wand in upward and outward motions. You can glide it along all areas of your forehead, cheeks, under eyes, jaw, neck, and upper lip — just be sure not to harshly drag any sensitive areas (like right by your eyeballs). You can use it daily for as little as five minutes, but you can work your way up to 30 minutes as your skin acclimates.
Something that’s important to note? The SolaWave is not recommended for use if you’re pregnant, have a pacemaker, or have been diagnosed with cancer.
I opted to try the SolaWave’s red light wand, which comes in a stunning rose gold hue — but both the red and blue light wands are equipped with the other facial modalities, so deciding on which to buy is up to your personal preference and skin care goals.
After charging my device for two hours and carefully reading through the directions, I applied the SolaWave Renew Complex Serum and began massaging my skin with the tool. Moving in slow, upwards motions all over my face, the subtle vibration and soft warmth fully relaxed my senses and prepped my spirit for a good night’s sleep.
To my surprise, there was no ‘on and off’ button — rather, it became active when the wand touched a dewy, moisturized surface (which is a nifty feature the brand calls ‘smart-touch activation’). With that, I quickly learned that being super hydrated was of paramount importance when using this tool. Towards the end of my first 5-minute session using the SolaWave, it stopped working — though after applying a bit more serum, it began exuding red light and vibrations once more, only turning off when the tool wasn’t touching my face or neck.
I highly recommend applying a full layer of a thick, hydrating formula so you don’t have that issue. My miracle blend was The Outset’s Firming Vegan Collagen Prep Serum along with a face oil followed by KORA Organics’ Turmeric Glow Moisturizer. While I did like SolaWave’s serum, I don’t think it’s necessary to purchase it if you have a skin care regimen you already know and love.
After the first use, I was shocked to see that my ever-puffy under-eyes looked smooth and taut. And after two weeks of consistent nighttime use (mostly while sitting cross-legged in bed with the lights dimmed), my biggest skin concern had largely been eradicated.
While I didn’t have too many fine lines to keep an eye on, I did notice that my cheekbones and jaws were a touch more lifted and youthful, and my face looked a little more radiant overall. Also key? My small areas of hyperpigmentation had lightened.
Perhaps my favorite thing about the SolaWave tool (other than the results) is the self-care time I devoted to myself each and every night. No matter where I was or what I was doing, I capped off each long day with five minutes to care for — and ultimately love — my complexion. The vibration and warmth soothed both my skin and my senses, and using the tool each night was enjoyable and never a burden. Interestingly enough, the SolaWave became such a go-to for self-care that even my fiancé began using it on his own skin (after me, of course) for some nighttime TLC.
Overall, I can’t recommend the SolaWave enough, and will absolutely be using it as a regular part of my skin care routine going forward (especially with my wedding just a few short weeks away).
Whether you’re a beauty device newbie (as I was) looking to advance your skin regimen or are on the market for a multitasking facial tool, my take is that you can’t go wrong with this one.