If there’s something good that came out of being on lockdown (because of the pandemic), it’s probably that many of us have learnt to be more conscientious about our at-home skincare routines.
During the Circuit Breaker in Singapore, we saw many Daily Vanity readers (including our team mates!) trying out gua sha facial massage at home, using sheet masks every day, and investing in beauty gadgets and devices to up their grooming game. Yes, we are finally spending more time caring for our skin!
Does owning an LED mask give you the true mark of a skincare enthusiast?
Of all the beauty gadgets that we can possibly invest in, the LED mask appears to be the ultimate device to get, according to a casual corridor test I did among a few friends.
The device is often seen reviewed by influencers and celebrities and we have to admit that many of us have been tempted to add one to our shopping cart. And when you finally own one, you know you’ve made it… as a bona fide skincare junkie.
While they’re probably not going to be as powerful as the light treatments you get at salons and clinics, the good news is that many dermatologists and skincare experts have said that these home gadgets can certainly help amp up your skincare routine. This means that it can help you maintain your skin’s health if you’re planning on reducing the frequency of your salon or clinic visits.
Cellreturn LED Mask Platinum: I tried a S$2,600+ LED Mask
The LED mask that made the (beauty) news last year was the LG Pra.L Derma LED Mask. This retails for S$1,349 and I tried it for a few weeks when it first launched.
If its whopping price tag made you raise your brows, I’d imagine you’d be quite taken aback by the Cellreturn LED Mask Platinum, priced at S$2,646.11; almost twice the price of the LG mask.
The Cellreturn LED Mask most recently became the talk of the town when Korean actor, Lee Min-ho was seen using it in his latest K-drama The King: Eternal Monarch, in which he played Korean emperor Lee Gon.
This luxurious mask is fit for a king.
While this was the first time for some of us saw the Cellreturn LED Mask, the brand is apparently very popular in Korea. Besides Lee Min-ho, Korean celebrities including Park Seo Joon (What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim, Itaewon Class), Yeom Jung Ah (Royal Family, Sky Castle), and Kang So Ra (Ugly Alert, Doctor Stranger) are among its ambassadors.
I’d like to offer a break here for you to watch this 30-second commercial featuring Lee, Park, and Kang. (I really enjoyed the video, and I think you might too.)
Cellreturn LED Mask Platinum review: Is it worth its hefty price tag?
I was loaned the mask for a few weeks to try it out for myself. I was told by the Cellreturn representative that the brand is a pioneer in LED mask technology and has gone through multiple evolution for its mask. The current LED Mask that we see is already its fourth generation of release.
Having tried a few LED masks before, including the LG Pra.L Derma LED Mask and the Neutrogena Fine Fairness Light Mask that was launched a few years ago, I decided to take on a comparison angle for this review so it can hopefully benefit those of you who are exploring different LED mask options.
Note that the Neutrogena mask was withdrawn from the market in 2019, citing risk of eye damage. While it is no longer available for purchase, I will still make some comparison to it, as a point of reference for a more affordable alternative.
Cellreturn LED Mask is shaped differently and is larger than the LG Pra.L Derma LED Mask
The LG Pra.L Derma LED Mask came in an impressive huge box and the Cellreturn LED Mask Platinum was probably twice its size.
This is partially because the mask is much larger than LG’s. While LG’s looks like a face shield, Cellreturn appears more like a helmet.
Is bigger better? Well, there are two sides to the coin.
The helmet-like design allows the LED light to substantially cover the sides of the face, to make sure every inch of the face is taken care of. On top of that, it also goes down to the neck area to take care of skin concerns such as neck wrinkles.
Of course, the downside to this larger design is that it’s noticeably bulkier and heavier than the LG Pra.L Derma LED Mask.
To compare it: the Cellreturn LED Mask Premium weighs around 690g while the LG Pra.L Derma LED Mask weighs 240g. That makes it almost three times heavier.
In fact, the very first time I used the product, it felt a little uncomfortable and I had a headache after using it. However, after a few more times of using it, I gradually adapted to how it felt and was able to find an angle and position for it to feel comfortable.
Note: I highly recommend that you do it with your head leaning back, like what Lee Min-Ho did in the show, so that the weight is distributed across your face instead the top of your head.
Cellreturn LED Mask has significantly more LED lights than the other masks in the market
The helmet-shaped Cellreturn LED Mask carries 1,026 LED lights, compared to LG’s 160 LED lights. Neutrogena had 18 LED lights.
You can see a significant difference in the number of lights between the two LED masks.
With more number of LED light on the mask surface, the mask is able to distribute the light more evenly and thoroughly throughout skin’s surface. In fact, Cellreturn says that all masks are individually checked and tested to make sure that there’s consistent LED output in all direction and across every LED module with precise wavelength so that it is able to deliver the highest level of performance.
The 1,026 LED lights are distributed evenly among three types: 342 near infrared rays, 342 red wavelength, and 342 blue wavelength. The LG Derma LED Mask’s 160 lights are made up of infrared rays (80) and Red LED lights (80).
Cellreturn LED Mask has more customisable modes
While the LG Derma LED Mask offers one easy-to-use mode: nine minutes per day to improve the radiance of your skin, Cellreturn offers four modes altogether. You can watch this video to see how the mask should be used.
1. Red Mode (20 minutes): This combines red LED light and near infrared rays to help improve the appearance of freckles, blemishes, and redness, as well as helps skin look brighter.
2. Blue Mode (20 minutes): This uses blue LED lights to give relief to sensitive skin, and is beneficial especially for those who are prone to acne.
3. Pink Mode (20 minutes): This is for calming down problematic skin and reducing the appearance of blemishes.
4. Fast Mode (9 minutes): For the time-starved, Fast Mode offers seven minutes of Red Mode, one minute of Blue Mode and one minute of Pink Mode for a quick skin-pampering session.
Cellreturn LED Mask uses a no-controller-needed operation
While most LED masks, including the LG Pra.L Derma Mask uses a controller to operate the device, Cellreturn’s is wireless. It uses a touch sensor on the top of the mask to change the mode, start and stop the device.
While the sensor controller makes the masking process less cumbersome, take note that you’ll have to be aware of how you’re holding the mask to avoid accidentally switching it on before you’re ready to put it on.
Unlike the LG Pra.L Derma Mask, which has a sensor to make sure the lights will never be on when the maskon your face, the Cellreturn Mask can be switched on before it is worn, which makes it less safe to the eyes.
How about the results?
I feel that both Cellreturn’s and LG’s masks yield very similar results. In both cases, I could tell that my skin looked brighter after several uses and for the case of Cellreturn, I was able to soothe my irritated skin on days when a pimple or two came up. However, note that both were used over approximately four to six weeks so I can’t really say that the difference won’t be significant after longer periods of usage. I also used the LG’s more frequently. (I was advised by the Cellreturn representative to start with a short session and then slowly increased the duration and frequency.)
I really have no straight conclusion for you regarding which one to go for. Neither will be considered a ride-or-die for me, but are definitely a great addition to those who are very serious about their skincare. If you have the budget to invest in superior skincare solutions and are looking for an LED Mask to add to your skincare arsenal, then you should consider the comparison I’ve made above and weigh out which factors are most important to you.
If you want something that is more high-tech and customisable, then you should definitely choose the Cellreturn LED Mask Platinum. The Cellreturn mask also wins in terms of the amount of coverage it offers – including sides of face and neck – which to me is a very strong point for investing in it. On the other hand, if you want something lighter, simpler, and more affordable, then you’ll probably find the LG Pra.L Derma Mask a better option.
Cellreturn LED Mask Platinum retails for S$2,646 and is available at the Cellreturn website and Lazada. LG Pra.L Derma Mask retails for S$1,349 and Lazada offering it at S$1,049 at the time of writing.