this thing's incredible

I Look Like a Dewy-Faced Model With One Spritz of My Pocket-Sized Mister

Photo: Nascent Flash

A couple of months ago, my sister-in-law, a makeup artist, posted a video on Instagram of herself smiling serenely from within a fine cloud of mist. She was on set in Los Angeles, where the dry climate threatened her commitment to dewy skin — but you’d never know that from the video, where she looked like an angel parting an Icelandic fog to invite me to a misty paradise. As I kept watching, I noticed the source of that paradise was a pocket-sized, portable facial mister. Immediately, I slid into her DMs to ask what it was, and if she could get me one. “I’ll pay you back,” I even promised, thinking that whatever it costs would be a small price to pay for something I now convinced myself held the secret to eternal, dewy youth.

A week later, she returned to New York with a rechargeable Nano Facial Mister for me, explaining that she uses it to refresh and rehydrate models’ skin once she’s applied foundation and makeup (without ruining that foundation and makeup). She also told me that she’s noticed more and more models and actors arriving on set with their own mini facial misters. For the first and only time, I felt like a beauty insider. After thanking my sister-in-law, I filled the mister’s reservoir with the recommended distilled water and gave myself a spritz — then another, then another. Its chilly spray of atomized water particles was colder than I expected and felt delightfully crisp on that hot summer day. The droplets were so small (0.3 microns, to be precise) that they looked like smoke rising from a block of dry ice.

Like Tavi Gevinson, I spritz my face with rosewater daily, but the mister feels like a significant upgrade. I rarely indulge in beauty “tools” because I don’t have a ton of space in my bathroom — an electric toothbrush is pretty much all it can accommodate. But the mister is different from most other tools I’ve encountered. Technically it’s called a facial atomizer and uses a high-speed vibration to break its liquid contents into those tiny, tiny particles. Conveniently (for me and my bathroom), the thing itself is barely bigger than an Apple TV remote. But I’ve yet to find a place for it in my medicine cabinet, because I keep it with me at all times; it’s kind of like a tiny, portable waterfall I can use to fight afternoon work lag. It also works for days on end without needing to be recharged (I got it in mid-June and still haven’t had to use its included USB charging cable). You turn it on by sliding down a power tab, simultaneously revealing the mist portal — which, when turned on, will automatically release a steady stream of particles until you manually slide the power tab off.

Shortly after I got it, I started to push the mister on anyone who would listen. “Feel this!” I’d say, just barely remembering to ask for consent before squirting an icy blast into friends’ and colleagues’ faces. I love it so much that I even brought it with me to get a facial, where I eagerly asked my esthetician, Andrew Kelly (a fan of cold skin care who had just spent an hour chilling my face with a sea-kelp mask and a pair of Biologique Recherche cryo sticks), what he thought of it. He seemed optimistic, explaining that “atomizers create nano water particles that absorb into the skin better than a traditional face mist, and anything cold is going to help your skin retain moisture, constrict blood vessels, and tighten pores.” An upgrade from my rosewater spritz indeed.

For even dewier skin, he suggested using the mister before applying a moisture-locking serum or toner. “You want something to help lock in that moisture,” he explained. I also asked him if I could fill the mister with liquids other than water — like a toner or moisturizing serum — and his short answer was yes, but only after checking that it is designed to work with such products (and stressing it would need to be cleaned regularly to avoid bacteria buildup). Turns out that the Nano mister is only compatible with water — which I’m totally fine with, because it does the dew perfectly.

A facial mister you can use with more than just water

After discovering my mister was product-intolerant, I searched Amazon for misters that could handle more than just water and found this one, which says it can be used with toner when diluted ten to one, or with milk when diluted one to one. Thinking that last suggestion couldn’t possibly be right, I called Kelly to ask about using milk for skin care. He laughed first and then said that milk is actually really good for your skin. “It helps if your skin is irritated, red, or very sensitive. It’s calming and soothing and contains proteins and vitamins that are great for skin.” I briefly imagined stylishly bathing myself in milk. Then I thought about it a bit more and decided I should stick to toners. Thankfully, Kelly had recommended a good one (that you could even use in this mister).

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This Tiny Mister Makes Me Look Like a Dewy-Faced Model