At a glance
I tried the anti-aging device ZIIP OX, a facial toning device, using micro-current and nano-current therapy. This is my review! I’ll tell you who it is primarily for, how to use it, what results you can expect and in how long!
I can see it when I look at my stats on this website, anti-aging devices fascinate you as much as me (my two articles on the topic are in my top 10 most read articles 😆). I started testing a couple of them a few years ago, first with an LED mask, and then I continued with a facial toning device using an electric micro-current, the Trinity from NuFACE. This is the same technique that we’re going to focus on today with my test of the micro and nano-current based anti-aging device, the ZIIP OX!
I have to admit, I’ve been keeping secrets from you! I’ve been using my ZIIP OX device for over a year now. I’m one of those people who invested in anti-aging devices at the beginning of the pandemic… Yes, you’re right to laugh: I’m a cliché! 😉
As a result, I’ve really had time to use it in a variety of ways, see what it does over the long term, compare it to other devices I already own etc, etc.
To tell you the truth, I even had time to test their customer service, which was exemplary when my first device turned out to be defective after a few months. They sent me back another one that has been working with no issue for almost a year 👍 (good to know: it has a 2-year warranty!).
When I first got it, I only used my ZIIP OX device, to see how it felt on its own, and I now use it in rotation with my other NuFACE microcurrent device, which I still really like, but which takes longer than the ZIIP.
I’ll be honest, I think that if I had to choose, the ZIIP OX would probably be my favorite of the two… But I’ll tell you more about it, I compare it to the NuFACE in this post 😉
In this article, I’ll introduce you to the ZIIP OX anti-aging device in detail, give you an overview of the technology it uses and share my personal experience with you!
The article is quite long and detailed, so feel free to go to the part you are most interested in through the Jump To menu on the left of this intro, or the jump to navigation at the top of the page if you are reading this on your mobile phone. You can click on the title of the category you want to read and it will take you directly there.
If you’ve already read my first article on NuFACE, you’ll probably find some repetition; that’s normal, the technology being similar, I had to re-explain the same things 😉
What is microcurrent?
Microcurrent therapy is an aesthetic treatment, known in the beauty industry for its anti-aging properties. This technique is used in some spas and medical practices for facial reshaping, toning and improving the firmness of mature skin.
Microcurrent is a low intensity current that mimics the body’s natural current and can provide instant and cumulative anti-aging results (= basically, the more you use this technique, the more results you get).
There is no risk of electrocution with the micro-current, don’t worry, most users don’t feel anything at all during the treatment!
Initially, microcurrent therapy was mainly used for medical treatments, to stimulate the in-depth muscles. These treatments are mainly used to treat patients suffering from a form of nerve paralysis, which leads to atrophy and sagging muscles. For the record, I’m currently suffering from Achilles tendinitis, and it’s the same therapy that my physiotherapist uses on my calf muscle and tendon!
As is often the case, this medical discovery is being used by the cosmetic industry, for anti-aging treatments!
How does microcurrent work?
Microcurrent stimulates the skin of the face, sending low intensity electrical waves through the skin, skin tissue and up to the facial muscles. Microcurrent also increases the production of ATP.
ATP, or Adenosine Triphosphate, is a chemical molecule present in our body. One of its roles is to help to create skin support proteins such as collagen and elastin. This molecule is also the energy fuel of our cells, capable of storing and using energy.
This increase in ATP also stimulates the muscles of the face, just like physical exercise with the muscles in our body. Unlike the rest of the body, facial muscles are directly connected to the skin. Therefore, the energy they receive will help give them a better, more toned appearance.
Why add a microcurrent device to your skincare routine?
I got interested in microcurrent technology after I turned 40.
My skin has changed over the last few years. I don’t have a lot of wrinkles, but I’m already seeing some sagging in certain areas of my face: contours are less “sharp” than before, my dark circles are getting deeper, and my eyelids are starting to sag and droop!
To treat sagging, cosmetics can’t do much, despite what marketing would often like us to believe. Serums and other anti-aging creams are very effective on the surface of the skin, and also for prevention (= basically slowing down the sagging process) but when sagging is already there, you need something that treats the skin deeper to regain firmness!
That’s where a device like the ZIIP OX can complement a good skincare routine IMO. Indeed, this type of device can treat the deeper layers of the skin and even work also on the subcutaneous muscles, for an action on the skin tone (= a skin better supported by the subcutaneous muscles appears firmer), which is impossible with a simple cosmetic product, which focuses on the surface of the skin.
With this device, I hoped above all to help maintain the firmness of my skin and I also wanted to improve the areas where I was seeing some sagging (in my case, the jaw contours, and especially the upper eyelid area, which is starting to look droopy).
Clearly, I am realistic, I know that the results are inevitably limited with this kind of devices. If you are expecting a “lifting” effect with this skin gadget, I can tell you right now: you will be disappointed!
However, for prevention and to help the skin stay more toned for longer, this device is a great help.
It goes without saying, but it’s still better to say it, you get much better results if you use your device very regularly. If you only use it once in a while, it’s not a miracle, it won’t work.
Yes, I know, it’s no fun but it’s worth remembering from time to time: even in 2021, magic still doesn’t exist 😉
I had heard great things about the ZIIP OX anti-aging device for several years. I was very tempted because I really liked its ergonomics and the fact that there are several different treatment programs. I was only holding back because I already had my NuFACE device!
But at the very beginning of the pandemic, my NuFACE broke down (thankfully, it was still under warranty, and I have been able to exchange it without any issue since!) and I told myself that it was a sign! (In fact, I really wanted to continue the massage with the microcurrent, I think I became addicted lol)
So I took advantage of a special pandemic promo code (just kidding, I don’t know what the discount was for) on the brand’s website and I treated myself to the ZIIP OX in a kit with the Crystal conductive gel included.
Let me introduce you to it in more detail!
The ZIIP OX anti-aging device, product presentation:
The ZIIP OX is an anti-aging facial toning device for home use.
It uses two technologies: microcurrent and nanocurrent. The latter is exclusive to the ZIIP Beauty brand. According to the brand, these are very weak electrical impulses that synchronize with the electrical intensity naturally present in our body.
The combination of this nanocurrent technology with the microcurrent and the direct current of the body stimulates a natural chemical substance called Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP). As mentioned above, ATP is an energy stored in the body that is released to repair damaged skin cells. As we age, we produce less ATP, but according to the ZIIP Beauty brand, the electrical current from the ZIIP OX device increases ATP levels to restore a healthier-looking complexion.
According to the brand, the benefits of these two currents used together are immediate, and can be seen very quickly after the massage session, but they also accumulate over time. Hence the interest in combining them in the same device!
The ZIIP OX is very ergonomic. It’s very easy to hold and follows perfectly the contours of the face for an easy massage. It has an smart skin sensor to guide the user during the session: when the device is no longer in contact with the skin, the light turns off. This way, you always know when the device is working or not, no surprises.
At the beginning, in my case, no need to charge it before the first use, the device comes already ready to use. Later on, the charging is quite fast thanks to a micro USB cable (provided with the device). You have to charge it regularly, every 10-15 days if you use it frequently like me. But the device tells you when it needs to be charged: it starts flashing on one side.
The ZIIP OX device has two probes that allow to circulate the micro and nano-current on the area of the face you want to treat. I use it for my face, my neck but also my eye contour.
The conductive gels for the ZIIP Beauty:
In the purchase kit, you also receive one of the three conductive gels from ZIIP Beauty, which you must apply to your skin before using the device. And sadly (because they are not cheap!), these conductive gels are by far the best I have used!
They all have a nice formula with skincare ingredients, it’s almost like a moisturizing mask that you leave on your skin during your session. They don’t dry out, so you don’t have to reapply them even for a 20 minute session, it’s super convenient! The device glides over the skin like a dream, it’s ideal to use with the ZIIP OX. And they rinse off very easily with water!
The Silver Gel is the cheapest (it’s still $50 😅), and the one I use the most. According to the brand, it moisturizes and gives a glow.
The Crystal Gel is formulated with organic ingredients. It’s more anti-aging and moisturizing. This is the one I received when I bought my device, but I haven’t repurchased it. It’s good, but I don’t really care if a product is organic, so hey 😉
The Golden Gel is the most expensive, I’ve never tried it. It’s more anti-aging focused, and contains a lot of interesting ingredients like niacinamide and peptides, but also gold extracts and sea water.
The brand recommends using 9 pumps of product for each massage session, but that’s too much. I use 6 pumps and it’ more than enough! One bottle of gel usually lasts me 3 months (and I use my ZIIP OX device 3 or 4 times a week).
The ZIIP OX and ZIIP GX devices, what’s the difference?
The ZIIP OX is white with silver details, the ZIIP GX is white with gold details.
The ZIIP OX is the brand’s newest model. It’s preloaded with the Lymph & Lift treatment, designed to encourage lymphatic drainage. The ZIIP OX also comes with the Crystal Gel.
The previous model, the ZIIP GX, is preloaded with the Energise treatment and comes with the Golden Gel.
Precautions and contraindications:
Do not use if you have a history of epilepsy or seizures.
Do not use if you have had recent facial surgery or other surgical procedures – consult your doctor.
Do not use if you have any active cancer or over any suspicious or cancerous lesion – consult your doctor.
Do not use if you are pregnant.
Do not use on infants and children under the age of 18, and keep device and attachments out of the reach of children.
Do not use if you have a cardiac pacemaker.
Do not use if you have an implanted defibrillator or stimulator.
Do not use if you have an electronic implanted device.
Do not apply stimulation across your chest as the introduction of electrical current into the chest may cause rhythm disturbances to your heart which could be lethal.
Do not use ZIIP on the breast area, midline of neck or groin.
Do not apply stimulation to the temples. ZIIP should not be used on broken, swollen, infected of inflamed skin.
Do not get your ZIIP device wet or use in the shower / bath.
ZIIP OX, the different treatment programs:
The major plus of the ZIIP OX device is that it has 10 pre-set treatment programs, designed by the brand’s founder, Melanie Simon.
This “electric esthetician” has gained popularity in the United States for her treatment protocols dedicated to electric microcurrents. She has a number of well-known celebrity clients (Mandy Moore, Eva Mendes, Catherine O’Hara to name a few…) which probably helped a lot when she decided to launch her own micro and nanocurrent massage device to use at home!
She teamed up with a childhood friend, an engineer who worked in Silicon Valley, to create an app to allow the ZIIP device to sync with multiple massage protocols.
And I’ll be honest, it’s definitely the diversity and technicality of these massage protocols that made me want to try this device and it’s also what makes it my favorite microcurrent skin device of all the ones I’ve tried!
There are about ten of them available on the app, which you just have to download on your smartphone after buying your ZIIP Beauty device. They are all targeted and allow you to treat either the whole face or just certain areas of the face, as you wish.
You can also combine treatments (as I often do), as they are rather short (the longest one is 12 minutes and it is the most comprehensive). They last between 2 and 12 minutes.
The app walks you through them from start to finish and there is a YouTube video for each treatment protocol!
There are 10 of them, which I will detail below:
The first is the “preparation” program, the Primer, to do before each of the other treatments. It lasts 2 minutes.
Energize (12 minutes) or Sensitive Energize/ Nano Facial for sensitive skin (12 minutes) are designed to rejuvenate, firm and brighten the skin of the face and neck.
Do you have acne-prone skin? The Total Smoothing treatment (1 to 8 minutes) uses negative energy to kill acne-causing bacteria to reduce and prevent the appearance of pimples. Beware, this one may sting a bit on those breakouts!
Instant Gratification (4 minutes) gives an immediate boost to the complexion, and leaves the skin with a nice glow. This treatment is quite “strong”, not necessarily for beginners in microcurrent. Wait a few days for your skin to get used to it before testing it 😉
The Electric Tone treatment (1-6 minutes) addresses excessive melanin production, to keep a more even skin tone.
For lymphatic drainage, you can choose the Sculpt & Lift treatment (7 minutes). It’s ideal for skin that tends to be puffy and helps to restore a more “sculpted” look.
For those in a hurry, the Quick Fix treatment (2 minutes) is the fastest treatment on the menu. It focuses on clearing pores, reducing blackheads and fighting dark circles under the eyes.
The VitalEyes treatment (4 minutes) helps fight puffiness, fine lines and dark circles around the delicate eye area.
And finally, the 11s treatment (2 minutes) focuses on treating the frown line (the one between the eyebrows).
My favorite programs:
Personally, I love to combine several treatments if I have time, and I also do the Instant Gratification program very regularly (usually paired with the VitalEyes). My favorite is probably the Energize, which I find very complete, but the Sculpt & Lift is also great for those mornings when you wake up all puffy. And the Total Smoothing is ideal to get rid of a stubborn pimple faster!
You can really feel that a professional esthetician has designed the programs. They are both very technical in their approach but also super easy to perform on yourself! And it’s super convenient to be able to do them in less than 5 minutes if you don’t have much time and want to focus on the essentials 😉
There’s been an update on the ZIIP app a few days ago, and there are now more treatments available. They’re even more organised on the app and you can do treatment plans for several weeks if you want too. The app is also more intuitive and easy to use than before, which is amazing because IMO, it was already great!
I’m still discovering all the new functionalities, but so far, I’ve been enjoying it a lot!
ZIIP OX, how to use:
Before you start using your ZIIP OX device, you need to download the ZIIP app on your smartphone and log in. Once you are in the app, you will choose the treatment you’re interested in by turning on the device, selecting the treatment and syncing it with your device (the app guides you step by step to do this).
Depending on the program you have selected, the duration of the session can vary between 2 and 12 minutes, even more if you cumulate treatments.
It’s pretty cool to have this choice, especially since there are complete treatments of 2 or 4 minutes for those times when you’re in a hurry!
The brand recommends using the most complete programs at least three times a week, but you can go up to five times a week if you want.
A session with the ZIIP OX device is divided into several steps:
You begin by cleansing your skin with an oil-free cleanser and apply the brand’s conductive gel to all the areas you want to treat in a medium layer (I use 6 pumps of gel).
I’m sorry to inform you that the ZIIP Beauty gel, that costs an arm and a leg, works the best with the device. I attempted to use some Aloe Vera gel to save money but it doesn’t work as well. Too bad, that would have been more cost-effective!
For men, be sure to shave before using the device as your beard or moustache etc., can interfere with conductivity.
– Massage with the device:
When you turn on your device, it beeps once (when you turn it off, it beeps twice). You choose your treatment on your phone and you sync it with your device. The device beeps twice slowly to signal that it’s ready to perform the massage. The treatment starts as soon as the device comes in contact with the skin and lights up.
With the device, you follow the predetermined treatment protocols. There are YouTube videos that guide you step by step, and they are very well done. The motions last between 2 and 10 seconds depending on the protocols. A vibration of the device signals you when you need to move on to the next motion. In the middle of the massage, the device beeps once to let you know that it’s time to move on to the other side of the face.
During the massage, make sure that the device is always in contact with the skin so that the microcurrent can be effective. It’s easy to tell, when the device is in contact with the skin, it lights up with a bluish light. And if the contact is interrupted, this light switches off.
No need to reapply conductive gel to make sure the device’s tip can glide properly during the massage, the ZIIP Beauty brand gel doesn’t dry out (a big advantage over Aloe Vera gel that I often have to reapply or re-wet with water with my other microcurrent devices).
The device turns itself off when the massage is over. It beeps twice to let you know.
As far as sensations are concerned, at the beginning of the treatment, during the massage, I felt small tingling on the areas where I hadn’t applied enough conductive gel, and/or around the eyebrows and hairline sometimes, or if I have a small pimple. Now, with practice, I hardly feel anything at all!
– At the end of the massage:
Once the massage is over, you can remove the conductive gel with a warm, damp washcloth (or a towel/wipe). I also use this damp cloth to clean my device after use. From time to time, I also use a tissue impregnated with alcohol to disinfect it. And I store it in its special pouch.
Afterwards, you can apply your usual skincare products.
Personally, especially in the beginning, I really noticed the effects of the massage on my facial muscles! It was like I had spent several minutes laughing, you know what I mean? My muscles felt like they were a bit stiff. After a few weeks of use, I probably got used to it and I didn’t feel this muscle soreness as much.
You can do your massage once a day maximum, in the morning or in the evening. Personally, even if it requires a certain organization, I prefer to do the massage in the morning because it creates a slight natural lifting effect that lasts for a few hours, and it also helps to reduce the puffiness on my face when I wake up. But I understand that it isn’t easy for everyone!
The ZIIP OX device, the results:
So for context, I’m not new to microcurrent technology, as I’ve been using my NuFACE device for several years now. So I can’t really do before-and-after pictures this time, since I wasn’t really starting from scratch when I started using my ZIIP OX.
But in a nutshell, here are the results I was hoping to keep when I started using my ZIIP OX:
- better overall skin tonicity on my face,
- a targeted action on my sagging areas (the jaw contours, the naso-labial fold, the hollow of the dark circles and especially the upper eyelids),
- a better microcirculation and drainage thanks to the massage for a more visible radiance of the complexion, and a less “puffy” face in the morning,
- and finally, a little help to clear up my breakouts faster.
Indeed, I already obtained good results with my NuFACE device so I wanted to compare the two and see if using the ZIIP OX made a difference on my skin. And the answer is: no, but the ZIIP OX has maintained my good results obtained with the NuFACE, which is quite appreciable!
Knowing that, as I often say, it’s always a bit complicated for me to show results with what I test because I take good care of my skin since before I was 30. I have a very elaborate skincare routine, so my margin of progress with the devices is always quite small.
But what I can tell you is that since I started using microcurrent devices, I can see and feel a difference on my face, especially in my face contour, which I find is more defined than before. I also find that it shows on my mouth contour, which looks better to me, with more definition.
And I also feel the effect on my upper eyelids! They are smoother and less droopy than before I used this type of device.
I also notice a result on the radiance of my face, which can be seen immediately after the massage. My face is also less puffy than when I woke up. The stimulating and draining effect of the microcirculation is undoubtedly a big part of it!
And so, if I were to compare the results I had with the use of NuFACE and ZIIP OX, I would say that I see the same good results on my skin. Both are effective for the effects I am looking for.
The plus of the ZIIP OX is the “anti-blemish” treatment: it’s the only device of its kind to offer this. But for the rest of the benefits of the treatment, it’s quite similar, IMO.
Overview of my experience with the ZIIP OX device:
I think I can say it, the ZIIP OX is my favorite of all the microcurrent devices I’ve tried so far.
Granted, with this device as with the others, the results on my skin are still subtle, but it’s something I’ve been expecting. I am used to microcurrent devices, and if you expect the same effect as a surgical facelift, you will likely be disappointed, you should be aware of that!
Personally, I was able to notice a good maintenance of my skin tonicity, especially in certain areas of my face!
Now, I keep in mind that I am only 42 years old, my loss of firmness is only in its early stages, and it will most certainly increase over time. I take good care of my skin daily, and have done so for a long time, so I imagine that this also plays a role in the “subtlety” of the result on me. On other people, it’s very possible that the results will be more obvious.
As was already the case with my LED mask, I see my ZIIP OX device as a complement to my skin care routine, but for me, it does not replace it, nor do I think it can replace a cosmetic procedure. The results are not comparable.
On the other hand, I really think that the use of microcurrent devices is interesting as a preventive measure and it perfectly matches my approach to skincare. For me, it’s always much easier to preserve the youthfulness and tonicity of your skin by protecting it with the right products and stimulating it with different treatments, than to try to “repair” it once it’s too late!
This is not to say that you won’t have good results with this device if your skin is more mature than mine, I have seen several reviews by women who were between 10 and 20 years older than me, and they were overall very satisfied with the results obtained!
One other thing, if you are interested in this treatment, you really need to ask yourself if you are willing to take the time to use the device. Personally, I use my ZIIP OX 3 to 5 times a week, and my sessions vary between 5 and 15 minutes max.
Like all anti-aging skin devices, I think it should be considered a long-term commitment. It’s a treatment that needs to be done on a regular basis to maintain results. I’m usually pretty disciplined about these kinds of things, but I can see how it might not be easy for everyone for a lot of very good reasons. I think of it like a workout. If you stop doing it for several months, you will inevitably lose the results you have acquired!
Finally, I’m well aware that the price of the device is also a drawback for many. It retails between $480 and $500 (without discount). And the cheapest gel of the brand is sold around $50, knowing that if you use it regularly, you have to replace it every 3 months.
It’s clearly a purchase that I can see paying for itself in the long run. And if I compare it with a Botox or hyaluronic acid injection which are about the same price, I find it more interesting for me at the moment. First of all because I don’t feel ready to do injections, and if I understand correctly, you have to do them every 6 months-1 year. Whereas a microcurrent device normally lasts several years!
Of course, everyone will have their own opinion on the matter, and I know that the ZIIP OX is a real investment in money and time, but personally, I find it’s worth it 🙂
Comparison with other microcurrent devices (NuFACE, Foreo Bear):
For me, the first big plus of ZIIP OX compared to NuFACE is the fast treatment time. With the ZIIP OX, you can really get a very thorough session in 5 minutes a day, whereas with the NuFACE, it’s always much longer. Technically, the short version of the NuFACE massage is also 5 minutes, but it’s very superficial, whereas the ZIIP “Instant Gratification” massage is top notch and gives a very good result (it’s the one I do the most).
NuFACE is more time consuming, that’s for sure. Even though I love the results I get with it, I have to admit that I can get the same results in less time with my ZIIP OX, so I use the latter the most. I now only use my NuFACE on weekends when I have more time.
I use my ZIIP OX 2 to 3 times a week, and my sessions vary between 5 and 15 minutes max, whereas with the NuFACE, it’s 30 minutes for the whole session.
Another advantage of the ZIIP OX over the NuFACE Trinity is that it can be used on the eye area without the need for an additional attachment. And I find that even though the probes of the ZIIP OX are rather large, I can use it wherever I want on the eyelids and around the eyes because of the good ergonomy of the device.
I haven’t reviewed them yet, but I also own the Foreo devices, the Bear and the Bear Mini. The brand sent them to me.
If I compare the ZIIP OX with the Foreo Bear, it’s true that the time of the massages with the ZIIP OX is longer (the treatment with the Foreo is super fast, 2-3 minutes), but personally, I still prefer the ZIIP OX. The massages are much more technical and targeted than those of the Foreo devices.
For me, the technicality of the ZIIP OX’s massages, and that they target specific areas and needs, are its biggest advantages compared to other devices using the same technology. You can feel that the ZIIP OX was designed by an esthetician. It’s both technical and easy to use: the best of both worlds!
Of course, the drawback of ZIIP OX is its price. It’s the most expensive of all the devices, but for me, it’s also the most technical, the most complete (it can be used on the face, neck and eye contour), and it has an anti-blemish purifying treatment unlike the others. It is also rather fast to use (between 2 and 15 minutes max). It’s really super versatile!
In short, if someone asked me what my favorite microcurrent device is among all the ones I own, I would definitely say the ZIIP OX!
A brief recap:
Who is it for?
For those who want to prevent their skin from sagging and improve its tonicity.
For those who want to avoid a “puffy” appearance in the morning.
For those who want more radiance, and also to have a more even skin tone, or even to reduce their hyper-pigmentation.
For those who have a tendency to develop small breakouts.
How to use it?
3 to 5 times a week, on clean skin and after applying a conductive gel, morning or evening. You choose a treatment on the app according to your needs and you let the video guide you. You can alternate the different treatments and also combine them if you have more time.
After the treatment, you rinse the gel and clean your device and you can keep on with your usual skincare routine.
How long does it take?
Between 2 and 12 minutes depending on the treatment, which can be combined if desired. Treatments must be done 3 to 5 times a week.
Is it easy to use?
Yes, this device is both very technical because you have very well designed treatment protocols, and easy to use because it’s very ergonomic and you just have to let the videos guide you.
Is it painful?
No, not on me. It can happen that it stings a little if I didn’t put enough gel, if I get too close to the hairline or eyebrows, or if I have a slight wound on my face, but nothing intolerable.
Is the skin irritated after the treatment?
Not at all, no redness, no sensation of irritation.
How long does it take to see results?
The results are subtle, but very noticeable. With this technology, I could see a radiance and a less puffy skin immediately, and a better tonicity of my skin after 1 to 2 months of very regular use. From now on, I’m just maintaining my good results.
Of course, I insist on the fact that you have to keep using the device regularly to maintain these results. If you stop, you lose the benefits and you have to start all over again (it’s like sports 😉 ).
How much is it?
Like all anti-aging devices, it’s an investment in time and money, and as I always say, it’s also an extra, a complement to a good skincare routine, which obviously doesn’t replace it.
But if you have the budget and are motivated to fit it into your schedule, I find that the ZIIP OX is probably the best option on the microcurrent devices market at the moment.
Have you tried the ZIIP OX or any other device that uses microcurrent technology? If so, what is your experience with this technology? Tell me about it in the comments 🙂