A Bottom Of The Barrel Steamer: My Revlon Facial Sauna Review

When my Conair Facial Sauna broke, I wanted to get back to my regularly scheduled daily steam treatments as quickly and as cost-efficiently as possible, so I took a look at amazon to see what was available. I saw that Revlon had a similar unit on the market, and it was a little bit cheaper. I knew Revlon’s reputation, so I figured it wouldn’t be a bad bet, but as it turns out I should have browsed some of the Revlon Facial Sauna reviews before I took the plunge.

The Good

  • It makes steam
  • It’s pretty cheap

The Bad

  • It doesn’t make much steam
  • Cheap parts mean it probably won’t last
  • It’s uncomfortable to use
  • It really stinks (literally!)

Click HERE to read other user reviews or get one for yourself at Amazon for around $20!

Revlon's Facial Steamer

So What’s Right With This Facial Steamer?

Honestly, the main good things you can say about this particular facial steamer is that it’s cheap, and that it does, in fact, produce an amount of steam. However, that’s about where you have draw the line in regards to what’s good about it.

If you’re looking to begin doing daily steam treatments for your skin or for your sinuses, this is better than nothing, and is a little more convenient that settings up your own contraption with a pot of boiling water and a towel (though it’s probably less effective). It provides enough steam that it’s better than worthless, and it will do some good when it comes to relieving your clogged sinuses or helping cleanse your skin of oils, makeup, and other buildup.

However, I can’t in good conscious recommend this product for most people. Why? Let me explain…

Here’s What’s Wrong About The Revlon Face Steamer

You know how people say “You get what you pay for”? Well, that’s incredibly valid for this product. I’ve gotten some deals in my life, things that after I used them thought, “Wow, I can’t believe I only paid $XX for this!” The Revlon RVSP3503B1 Hot Facial Sauna is NOT one of those products.

Straight out of the box, this thing looks and feels cheap. As far as I can tell, they saved money everywhere using the lowest quality materials they can find. It comes with a full face cone and a nasal cone for directing the steam to your face, but the plastic is hard and uncomfortable, and you have to hover over the device in an uncomfortable way to get a decent amount of steam (tip: use a towel over your head to direct the steam your way).

Another problem is the steam, or lack thereof. Yes, it makes steam, but compared to other products I’ve reviewed, including the cheapo Conair unit, it’s pretty pitiful. And we’re talking about a device specifically designed for making steam, so it’s a big deal!

And finally, the strong plastic smell is a real deal killer for me. It might be different for people who are mainly using this for their skin, and not for their sinuses, but I just couldn’t stand breathing in the plastic stink for even a few minutes at a time. I took the Revlon Sauna out of my closet to do a test run for this review, and it seems like the smell has decreased over the months it sat around, but it’s still overpowering.

So What Do I Recommend?

If you’re just looking for a very occasional facial steaming, whether it’s for your skin or nasal passages or both, I recommend either doing your own facial steam with a pot of hot water and a towel, or going with the Conair Facial Steamer, which is in the same price range. If you plan on doing regular steaming, whether it’s weekly or daily, like myself, I very highly recommend treating yourself with something higher end, like Panasonic’s Ion Steam or the Secura’s Hot/Cold Mist .

Of course, I’m just one woman on the internet, so you don’t have to take my word for it! Head on over to Amazon to read other reviews and see what other users prefer!

My Take On The Conair Facial Sauna Systems

I mentioned in my first article for the site, What Is A Facial Steamer?, that the first one of these units I tried was the Conair Facial Sauna Systems.  Having tried a number of these products, I now realized it wasn’t nearly as amazing as I originally thought it was, though it is an okay entry level facial steamer that has the right feature set and price range for a lot of people.  So, for all of you wondering about this product, here’s my Conair Facial Sauna review.

Click here to read other user reviews or get your own for around $20 from Amazon.com.

My First Facial Sauna

I first bought this unit when my doctor recommend steam therapy for when my allergies get really bad.  I mainly chose this unit because of its popularity on Amazon, and the fact that is comes with an attachment specifically designed to deliver steam to your nasal passages, where I needed it most.

After filling the reservoir with water and waiting a few minutes for it to heat up, the machine delivers a decent amount of steam.  With the nose cone attachment, it really helped clear up my sinuses when my allergies were really bringing me down.

I decided to try the unit for its other, perhaps primary purpose: facial steaming.  I removed the nasal cone and put the face cone on, and stuck my face in it.  It actually made a believer out of me pretty quickly.

Steam is a very natural way to open up your pores and cleanse them, and my using a device like this you get a greater benefit, and more easily, than you would with a shower.  It helps keep the skin soft and smooth and moisturized.

The Conair Facial Sauna System also comes with a vibrating facial tool that has two attachments, one for exfoliating and one for helping work moisturizers into your face.  I’m actually not convinced this little gizmo works any better than a washcloth, but it does feel nice.  (Disclaimer: I actually own a Clarisonic Mia, which is very similar in form and function but better and absolutely effective.)

What I Didn’t Like About This Facial Steamer

I’ll admit: the steam this unit puts out feels good and does make an improvement on the look and feel of your facial skin.  However, knowing what I know now I don’t really recommend it to people who are going to be using it very often (though if you’re just planning on using it now and then, it will probably be fine).

The first thing you should know is that it can be uncomfortable to use.  I had to prop it up on the box it came in, and I still sat rather awkwardly over it while using it.  One trick I learned is that you can drape a towel over your head to help direct the steam a little better onto your face.

Secondly, you should use the included measuring cup when you fill it up, and attach the cone after you fill it up, to avoid having hot water splashing all over the place.  This is kind of a pain, because the water runs out after a few minutes, so if you do a long facial steam treatment, you need to fill it up a couple times.  Also: if it gets too low, it smells like burning.

Also, after using a number of different face steamers I’ve found out that regular steam like this is alright, but most of it just dries on your face, so you don’t get the full benefit.  Other products release micro-particles that are much finer than regular steam particles and can penetrate more deeply (see my recommendations at the end of this article).

Finally, the big, BIG reason I don’t recommend this one that much is because of this amazon.com user review by a guy whose wife was pretty badly burned, literally, by the product!  It’s probably a fluke, but it’s pretty scary.  And the fact that Conair compensated her less than $30 when she had an $1800 ER bill and two days of lost wages is just unacceptable, really.

If you can look past these flaws, I guess it’s an okay face steamer if you’re only going to be using it from time to time.  Still, I honestly can’t say I’d suggest it to anybody looking for a facial sauna device that they can use every day.  Both the Secura Hot And Cool Facial Steamer and the Panasonic Ionic Steamer are free from the issues stated and are better options for anybody looking for that home spa facial treatment on the regular.  If you’re still interested, amazon.com has a great price and more information.

Micro-fine Hot And Cool Mist? My Secura Steamer Review

In my last article, I covered the Panasonic Ionic Steamer, which I feel to be probably the best facial steamer on the consumer market today.  It’s not for everyone, though, due to the relatively high price tag for a face steaming gadget.  And if there’s one flaw that I think that product has, it’s a lack of cool mist, which is a great feature to have.  So now I’m going to go over my pick the second best steamer, the one that I think will appeal to even more users: the Secura Hot and Cool Facial Steamer Micro-Fine Mist Steamer (catchy name, huh?).

Click here to read the specs and user reviews, or see how much Amazon.com can save you off the list price!

 What Makes The Secura Steamer Better?

If you’ve read my article, What Is A Facial Steamer, you know a little about these devices.  Basically, the steam helps open up and unclog your pores, which helps to clean your skin of unwanted oil, dirt and grime, and do so without harmful chemicals or exfoliating scrubs.  In addition, the steam helps moisten your skin, keeping it smooth and young looking.

Most facial sauna steamers just use hot or heated water to release regular steam, which is good, but not as effective as a unit like the Ion Steamer I love so much, which actually releases incredibly fine particles that penetrate the skin better than regular steam.

The Secura Hot And Cool Facial Steamer actually uses an ultrasonic atomizer to release extra fine particles (1-5 um, to be precise), which penetrate in the deep way I’m talking about.  It helps your epidermis cells (that’s your skin) soften and expand, which helps get rid of the keratinized (“gone bad”) cells and helps regenerate collagen.  If you keep up on beauty products, you know collagen treatments are often very expensive because they work!

In addition to the micro-fine mist, the Secura Steamer also gives you the option of cool mist, as well.  Cool mist helps to tighten the skin and shrink your pores, giving you bright, healthy skin. It helps reduce redness and feels so good, especially if you’re having an acne breakout or a sunburn, or other inflammation.

The hot/cool mist treatment is something you won’t find in the bottom of the line steamers, and the first time I actually encountered it was in a salon.  When I found this unit, I had to have it!

Another thing I love about the unit is the steam comes out of a tube, so you don’t have to hunch over and stick your whole face into the device like you do with a lot of them.

There’s also essence oil and herbal therapy capabilities built into this device, though I don’t really use that much. I bought my sister one, and she uses it for this purpose as well, so I’ll try to have her write up a review in the near future.

So, to put it in a convenient list, here’s what separates the Secura Steamer from other facial steamers on the market:

  • Ultra-fine, atomized mist
  • Cool mist treatment in addition to hot steam
  • Convenient steam rod blows mist in your face while you kick back
  • Essence oil and herbal therapy capabilities

And You Recommend This?

I’ll be honest here: my absolute favorite steamer is still the Panasonic unit, but I think for most people looking to get a facial steamer, and not spend a few hundred dollars, this is the way to go.  It’s got a great feature set and a good price tag.

The alternating hot steam and cool mist treatment is seriously spa quality, and has to be felt to be truly believed.  It makes your skin look and feel radiant, and just the process itself is incredibly relaxing.  I like to give myself a facial steam when I’m winding down after work.

As far as your bang to buck ratio, I think this is probably the optimal facial sauna for a lot of people.  It’s miles ahead of the cheapo units you can get at Wal-Mart, without a massive increase in the price tag.  If you’re looking for a good every day use facial steamer, I can recommend the Secura Steamer.

Click here to get yours today for well under a hundred bucks with FREE super saver shipping!



Best On The Market: My Panasonic Ionic Steamer Review


(Update 2/2/14 – Panasonic has discontinued this model and released a new updated and more affordable model! CLICK HERE to read my review of the new Panasonic EH-SA31VP Facial Ionic Steamer!)

I figured it would be best if my first review was the the facial steamer I’m currently using.  I’ve gone through a bunch of them looking for the ideal unit, and my experience has ultimately led me to the Panasonic Ion Steamer (EH2426N, if you want to get really technical and specific).  It’s not the cheapest face steamer you’ll find out there, but it’s got some features that I think really make it the Cadillac of these kind of devices.  Until somebody releases a better product, this is going to be the gold standard that other products will try to live up to.

I have not found a single product more effective at making my skin look younger and feel smoother and fresher!

What’s So Special About The Ionic Steamer, Anyway?

Like other facial steamers, the Panasonic Ionic Steamer works by releasing a good amount of steam for you to put your face in.  What makes it stand out above the competition, though, is the Ionic part of the equation.

Normal drops of steam are too large to fully penetrate the pores, and largely end up drying on the outside of the skin, so you miss out on the full benefits.

The Ionic Steam released by the Panasonic unit consists of particles 4, 000 times smaller than regular steam particles.  Whereas normal steam largely ends up drying on the outside of the skin where it lands, the ionic steam penetrates deeper and much more easily, meaning your skin gets a much greater benefit.

The Nano-particles of steam generated by the Ionic Steamer penetrate the skin to renew and replenish it with maximum efficiency, leaving your skin looking and feeling great.

So What Does This Mean For Me?

I have been using facial steamers almost daily for several years because they help open the pores and cleanse the skin, as well as hydrate it and refresh it.  I’ve been an advocate of these for a while, and wasn’t sure the Ionic-particle thing wasn’t just a gimmick.

Of course, as with many things, trying is believing.

When I first tried it, it felt basically like any other face steamer.  I stuck my face in it, breathed in the steam (which helps my sinuses immensely during allergy season), and let my skin absorb the moisture.  The steam helps improve circulation and helps relax the muscles, which makes me look and feel rejuvenated and less tense.

Steam makes your skin softer and smoother.  It opens up the pores and helps cleanse your skin.  This is a fact, whether you use a higher-end face steamer like this one, opt for a cheaper one, or just take a lot of nice, hot showers.  However, after a couple weeks of using the Ionic Steamer, I started noticing a real difference in the look and feel of my skin, above and beyond regular steamers.  And it wasn’t a fluke; I wasn’t alone…

In a clinical study, participants noticed a reduction in lines in just 14 days, and VISIBLE ANTI-AGING EFFECTS IN JUST 4 WEEKS!

As we age, our skin starts to lose its natural elasticity, and steam is a surprisingly powerful natural ally in our fight against this process.  Panasonic adds a bit of science to the mix, and while keeping it all natural, they have actually improved on this simple anti-aging process.

Well, Okay, How Does It Work? Is It Difficult?

The simplest thing to do is just fill the water cup, press the button, wait a minute for it to heat and then just stick your face in the steam.  That’s really it.  The “full” version of the treatment isn’t much more complicated, either.

It’s an 11 minute process of just three steps: cleanse for 3 minutes, wipe or rinse, and then steam for another 8 minutes.

Even though Panasonic keeps this at the cutting edge of technology, it still is, in essence, steam.  It can’t get much simpler, folks!  AND IT ABSOLUTELY WORKS WONDERS!

Does It Do Anything Else?

Besides the CLINICALLY PROVEN benefits in terms of visually improving wrinkles, skin texture, luster and moisture within weeks, the Panasonic Facial Ion Steamer helps to moisturize and deep cleanse, removing makeup, dirt, and oils without damaging the skin.  It requires no alcohol, soap, oil or fragrances.

It’s also good to remember that when you’re opening and unclogging your pores, you’re doing exactly what your skin needs to help deal with acne, which is essentially clogged up pores.

I’ve also found that it’s really useful for my hair, since it tends to be dry and brittle much of the time.  The nano-particles seem able to penetrate it and hydrate it pretty well.

Okay, So How Much Is This Thing?

As I’ve said, the Panasonic EH2425N Facial Ionic Steamer is comparatively expensive when you’re looking at other facial steamers, however it’s absolutely worth it for what you get.  It comes in at the just-under $300 range.

If the price seems high, consider what you might spend, over the years, on cosmetic products, dermatologist visits and prescription drugs for your skin.  Once you buy this thing, that’s it; there are no refills or anything you need to buy.  (Though I recommend using distilled water in any facial steamer, it’s absolutely not a requirement.)

If you’re looking for the absolute best in steam therapy for your face, I simply cannot recommend this product enough.  It’s the top of the line, and the best you can find right now.  It comes with a 2-year limited warranty, so you don’t have to worry about it crapping out on you, like some cheaper facial steamers have on me.  The best price I have found for it is over at amazon.com.

What Is A Facial Steamer?

A facial steamer, in the simplest of terms, is a device designed for efficient delivery of steam to your face.  It’s really pretty simple.

I guess the question, then, is why do you need to steam your face?  There are actually a number of good reasons…

  • To open your pores for deep cleansing
  • To moisturize and soften your skin
  • To refresh and renew your skin
  • To soothe and relax the skin and muscles of your face
  • To pamper yourself
  • To open clogged nasal and sinus passages
  • To help remove makeup
  • To reduce acne by unclogging pores
  • To give yourself a mini facial at home

My Story: Why I Began Using A Face Steamer

While most people primarily use a facial sauna device exclusively for their skin, I first tried steam therapy at the advice of my doctor to help open up my clogged sinuses during allergy season.  A combination of allergies and dryness were really making my life miserable, and even prescription drugs weren’t fully helpful for me.

The first of these types of gadgets I tried was the fairly cheap Conair Facial Sauna System, which you can see in the above photo.  It helped a lot with my sinuses, and was soooo much more convenient than having to take a hot shower several times a day.

Just taking a look at the packaging and the instruction manual, I found out that it was also supposed to help my skin.  I figured if it worked, it would be a great side benefit.  And what do you know?  After a couple weeks, my skin actually started feeling softer!  I kept feeling my cheeks, thinking, wow, this is amazing!  MY SKIN WAS BABY SOFT AND SMOOTH!

And then, unfortunately, it broke.  The unit lasted barely over a month.

And so began my search for the ideal facial steamer.

Are Facial Steamers All They’re Made Out To Be?

Believe me, I’m as skeptical as the next person when it comes to the claims put out by companies trying to sell their products.  I think we’ve all grown up listening to all kinds of bogus marketing for all kinds of “miracle” products that are supposed to make you look and feel better.  That’s why I was so surprised that something as simple as a face steamer gizmo could be so effective and actually live up to the hype!

Think about it: how does your skin feel after a good shower?  The steam causes your pores to open up, which helps you get rid of the impurities trapped within.  It also moisturizes, cleanses, and just feels good.

And with the right face steamer, you will even see a reduction in line and wrinkles!

After allergy season was over I kept wanting to use a facial steamer, and since the Conair one broke, I went through a number of them trying to find the ideal one for me.  I now use a Panasonic Facial Ionic Steamer with Nano Steam, which is, admittedly, more expensive than some of the others, but after trying a bunch of them out I know it is worth it.  I use it every day, AND MY SKIN LOOKS AND FEELS YEARS YOUNGER!

As I develop this site, I’ll put up different facial steamer reviews of the ones I have tried, including comparisons of different products, as well as my own tips for getting the most out of them (for example, use bottled, distilled water instead of tap water).  Stick with me, and I’ll show you how you can get better looking and feeling skin in no time, and without harmful drugs or chemicals!