I've had this tool for several months now and finally have perfected how to use it for me. I run the wire part of this tool over the pores by my nose, along my forehead and on my nose a few days a week. It's constantly moving...I don't press on any one blackhead for an extended period of time -- if it doesn't come out in one pass, I'll get it the next time...don't want to irritate my skin. It definately works for me.
There's not much more to add to the already wonderful reviews for this fantastic tool, other than I sure would have prettier skin today had this been around when I was a teenager. :-) A must-have for blemish-prone people!
Thank you MUA!! I discovered this thing browsing around the reviews here and it's by far the best ten dollars I ever spent on skin care. I'm 28 and I had had blackheads on the sides of my nose since I was a teenager. I seriously thought they were incurable, since I'd done just about everything for them. The only things that seemed to actually make a difference were Biore strips and the Body Shop's Tea Tree Oil Nose Pore Mask, and the progress with using those was quite slow. This thing doesn't eliminate the blackheads immediately, but with twice weekly usage for about three months, I seriously have no blackheads at all. There are some enlarged pores remaining, but they are empty. It's SO satisfying; I mean, I had hated those things for over ten years! Now I'm preaching the word of tweezerman to everyone I know and like.
Now I'm on a maintenance schedule, using the tool once a week, after a hot shower and some kind of treatment (clay mask, biore strip, or Body Shop nose pore mask), which seems to help loosen the gunk and pull it to the surface. Using it twice a week is a bit too often because it actually was removing too much oil and leaving my skin dry and peeling, which is such an odd feeling on such an oily area. Now I actually use moisturizer around my nose! Word of warning, if you get to where you're getting liquid oil from your pores, rather than the solid-ish goo, you need to stop. Your skin needs some oil; it's just the old solidified sebum and sticky skin flakes and such you want to extract.
As far as technique goes, what works best for me is to slowly run the flat loop down the side of my nose while pressing. It seems that everyone finds different ways to make it work though, so do experiment with it. Be sure to sterilize the tool before using and treat your skin afterward; I've had no problems with infections, and I can't say that about squeezing and picking with my fingernails, which is why I stopped doing that years ago. It can also be used on other areas of the face, but it's not as easy or effective, and can even be put to task for the occasional ingrown hair.
Now if I could only convince my husband to use it...
I couldn't get this thing to pop out a single blackhead even though I followed all the instructions from people on MUA. I steamed, tried both ends, tried different angles and pressure, tried different areas of my face, and tried it several times on different days. I was really patient, I swear. But I finally got frustrated and started pressing too hard with it because it left red marks on my face that lasted for over a week. So be careful with this thing!
However, in defense of this popular tool, I should make it clear that nothing has ever worked on my small but stubborn blackheads. To give you an idea, I've been using Retin-A Micro and PC 2% BHA solution, both daily (amazingly, my skin tolerates this well), for about 6 months but I really haven't seen a change. Additionally, I don't wear makeup and I'm careful about avoiding comedogenic products. My point is, it obviously works well for some people, but if your blackheads are as rebellious as mine, don't expect any miracles.
For me, there is a certain technique to using this tool. At first, I would put the loop over the area and push, but that would not work. Through trial and error, I found out that the extractor works best when you gently push the round edge of the smaller loop against the area right next to the blackhead.
Like many of those who have reviewed before me, I agree that this is very addicting. You may be tempted to use more than you need. I was left with some scarring as a result of not using it gently, but you get the hang of it and it can help you get rid of blackheads, especially those on the side of your nose.
Oh my gawd! This has to be the most addictive and satisfying beauty product ever made. During my recent (and first) facial, I learned that although I have great-looking skin, I have tons of ugly junk stored up in my pores. (To quote my facialist... "Eeeewww.")
This thing is a godsend. It looks like a torture device, but once you learn how to use it, it's amazing what it gets out. I tried it on my boyfriend's back (talk about Eeeeewww) and neither of us could believe how much stuff it got out. We were amazed and (disturbingly) fascinated with the results.
Be careful with this--don't go overboard with it. Use it wisely, and perhaps your facialist won't go "Eeeewww" at the site of your pores. Be sure to clean it properly and make sure you put something on your skin afterwards to ward off bacteria.
I believe in the Tweezerman Skin Tool! 5++ lippies.
I love this thing. It's the only thing I've found to keep my nose free from blackheads. Typically, I do an aspirin mask or steam first.
You will not believe some of the stuff that comes out of your pores!
One hint - there is a bit of a learning curve with this thing, and for some reason, dragging the smaller hoop UP instead of DOWN does the trick on my nose. If you're not getting results, give it a try.
Wanna do some damage???? All I need now to fully deflate my self esteem is a magnifying mirror to go along with this little babie! I gave the extractor 5 lipstix due to the fact that it removes blemishes/whiteheads/blackheads very very effectively. However, it should come with a warning. Maybe it's just me, but if I use a leave on glycolic after extractions I get severe dark spots and burns. It is absolutely amazing as well as disheartning to find all this "gunk" in my skin after trying to keep it free with the best cleansers and treatments, but as I said it does a great job of freeing debris from pores. I would rec any beauty addict to have one in their arsenal.
This product *was* great before they changed it. I used to swear by this extractor, and rushed to buy a new one when I lost it. Sadly, the new one is just not as good -- the edge on the flat end is a little thicker than before, and slightly more rounded. This slight difference demoted it from HG to occasional-use status. *pout*