DIY Microdermabrasion

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Photo: Courtesy of Riiviva

If you're looking for that smooth, radiant, red-carpet-ready skin on a regular basis, it means removing dead, dull skin flakes on a regular basis. As much as you scrub your face with exfoliating balms, cleansers, and pomades, sometimes a vacuum just does the job better. Riiviva Microderm, the newest at-home microdermabrasion tool, is about the size of an electric razor and employs a diamond-dust-encrusted tip to first loosen dry skin cells and then vacuum the particles away. At $299, it's in the same price range as the Clarisonic Skin Brush but the results are supposed to be more effective. Used a few times a month, this will help get your pores closer to Kate Bosworth perfection.

The directions to use are fairly easy and simple: Cleanse, then microderm. Unlike other machines that might take up a lot of space in your bathroom or come with multiple pieces, the Riiviva microdermabrasion tool consists of just the handheld device and its removable diamond exfoliating tips. While three tips — ranging from gentle to coarse (great for people without sensitive skin) — are included, extra sets for the body (think smoother elbows and knees), acne scars, and keratosis pilaris (those red bumps on arms) are available for purchase online.

I opted for the most gentle exfoliating tip to protect my sometimes sensitive skin. Not even coarse enough to scratch an itch, this tip works best for people who have virgin, un-microdermed skin. After washing my face to remove any makeup and extra oils, I passed the machine over the surface of my face in a gridlike manner. Going over the same spot no more than twice, so as not to remove too much skin and irritate it, the whole process took less than a few minutes. The results were also pretty immediate. You'll want to constantly touch your face (but don't because eww, hands are dirty and your new face is so clean). While my cheeks turned pinkish after each pass, there was no pain and the redness faded quickly. I tried not to be annoyed by the rather loud vibrating sound with the occasional suck of the vaccum. It's certainly not a "hum." After the microderm session, I hydrated the newly exposed layer of skin with an antioxidant-infused serum and a healthy helping of moisturizer. For those going into the sun, apply sunscreen to what is essentially a fresh layer of baby skin. At the end I removed the filter, where a little white cotton pad had since turned grey from all of my dead skin. So satisfying.