Gadgets may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of beauty, but high-tech beauty tools are changing the way women are caring for their skin, applying makeup, and styling their hair. Curling irons that spin with the push of a button, vanity mirrors with light settings controlled by an app, and handheld devices that reduce wrinkles with red light are just some of the products we found to make primping faster, easier, and -- let’s be honest -- a lot more fun.
If you’re shopping for a beauty lover this holiday season, skip the nail polish, makeup, and bath products and spoil her with the gift of a game-changing beauty gadget.
1. Beachwaver S1
Make her hair dreams a reality this holiday season with the limited-edition white Beachwaver S1 ($129). In as little as ten minutes, the ceramic rotating curling iron can help her achieve model-worthy curls and waves. And that’s not hyperbole: The Beachwaver is responsible for the perfectly coiffed Angels on the Victoria’s Secret runway.
There’s a speed switch and arrow buttons for rotation control, and a digital temperature dial ranging from 290F - 410F for just the right amount of heat. Using a curling iron has never been easier or quicker.
2. Luma Hair Straightening Ceramic Brush
If straight hair is more her style, the Luma Brush ($79) will save her valuable time in the morning. A mash-up between a flat iron and a styling brush, Luma heats up in 60 seconds and straightens hair with a just a few strokes from root to tip. With its wide ceramic surface and heat-insulated bristles, it contours to the head, getting closer to the scalp than a flat iron for a smoother finish.
Luma reportedly straightens hair in just minutes, but curly girls will probably need a pass with their flat iron first. However, Luma Brush is the perfect tool -- and gift -- for quick touch ups and easy-to-straighten hair.
3. Simplehuman Sensor Mirror Pro
Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but makeup looks undisputably amazing when applied using this wide-view sensor mirror ($400). Its tru-lux light system simulates natural sunlight so makeup appears in color-correct detail.
There's also an app that allows beauty buffs to capture lighting from anywhere -- work, a restaurant, the yoga studio -- recreate it with the mirror to ensure that they look their best wherever they go. And if that’s not cool enough, the mirror can connect to Amazon Echo, IFTTT, and Nest platforms for even more control over light settings.
4. Labelle Ultrasonic Skin Spatula
Move over, Clarisonic. There’s a new high-tech cleansing tool in town for oily and combination complexions. When used on damp skin, Labelle ($149) can unclog pores, remove dead skin cells, and extract nasty blackheads through high-speed ultrasonic vibrations.
In the “Infuse Mode,” the device works to penetrate serum and other facial products deep into the skin for improved absorption and better results. And that blade? Not sharp at all. Phew.
5. SonicBLEND Sonic Makeup Brush
Question: Who needs a makeup brush that oscillates nearly 25,000 times per minute? Answer: Anyone interested in saving money on cosmetics and achieving a professional-looking makeup job at home.
The rechargeable SonicBLEND ($99) disperses tiny granules of makeup -- powder, liquid, or cream -- into thin layers to create a flawless airbrush-like finish using less makeup than traditional brushes. It also features the world’s first antimicrobial brush head, which translates to cleaner skin, and three speed settings for a customizable makeup application.
Let's be real: Hand-washing makeup brushes in the sink is a tedious chore. But dirty brushes can cause uneven makeup application, as well as breakouts and other skin irritations. Enter, the BrushPearl ($99).
Inspired by ultrasonic technology used to clean dental instruments, this little machine uses millions of tiny air bubbles (mixed with cleanser) to release dirt, oil, and build-up from cosmetic brushes. Afterward, the lid pops open to allow the brushes to air-dry upside down, prolonging the life of the bristles -- and saving money in the long haul.
7. Baby Quasar Plus
You can buy her an anti-aging spa treatment for the holidays, or you can provide her with one of the most powerful beauty tools to target wrinkles and fine lines at home. The Baby Quasar Plus ($399) is a small but mighty red light therapy device that stimulates the production of collagen and elastin.
The technology, discovered by NASA, improves the appearance of skin by accelerating the growth of healthy skin cells using visible red and infrared light. The Baby Quasar Plus is technically FDA-cleared Class II medical tool, but the experience is totally spa-like (and, importantly, pain-free).
8. Arbonne Intelligence Genius Ultra
For the skincare aficionado with a medicine cabinet stocked with the latest and greatest topical products, there’s the Genius Ultra ($241.20). This ultrasound device uses a cutting-edge combination of ultrasonic waves (approximately 300,000 per second) and warmth to apply serums, eye creams, and lip treatments more effectively than fingertips.
Apparently, our fingers alone can’t do the job properly because of ridges along the skin’s surface that can only be seen under a microscope. By applying products more evenly, the Genius Ultra helps promote younger, more radiant looking skin. And who wouldn’t want that?