Since the emergence of the Clarisonic and its sonic pulse technology, a multitude of mimickers have followed in its wake. Until recently, I was slow to understand the hype. I had never owned a motorized toothbrush. Did I really need a vibrating face-washer?

The answer, I soon learned, was yes. Over the course of about a month, I tested both the Philips PureRadiance ($149.99) and the FOREO LUNA ($199), and I was extremely impressed by the gentle touch and quick results from both. Below is a comparative breakdown.


PureRadiance: Sits in a stand that plugs into the wall. Holds its charge for up to 30 one-minute uses.

LUNA: Charges with a cord that plugs directly into the device. Charges for up to 450 one-minute uses.

How it Works:

PureRadiance: Comes with two brush heads: one for normal skin, one for exfoliation. With both, you can alternate between the gentle cleansing and deep cleansing speed settings. Once powered on, the cleanser works in periods of twenty seconds, pausing between each to indicate you should move to the next face zone (suggests the face be divided into three zones). Replacement heads are available for purchase.

LUNA: There are three LUNA’s to choose from: one for ultra-sensitive skin, one for sensitive/normal skin, and one for combination skin. Each has two surfaces—a cleansing brush and an anti-aging ridged surface. You can alternate between 8 speed settings, as well as toggle between cleansing mode and anti-aging mode, which targets wrinkle-prone areas with lower-frequency pulsations. Once powered on, the cleanser works in periods of 15 seconds, pausing between each to indicate you should move to the next face zone (suggests the face be divided into four zones). There is no need for replacement brushes, as there are no detachable parts.

The Technology:

PureRadiance: Combines sonic pulses with gentle rotations for a thorough cleanse. The vibrations break up surface impurities that the rotations sweep away, leaving your face deeply cleansed and free of dirt, dead skin cells, and makeup residue.

LUNA: Combines transdermal sonic pulsations with rounded silicone touch points to cleanse pores, remove dead skin cells, and more successfully absorb skincare products.

Overall Impressions:

For starters, I greatly appreciated that I could use my daily face wash with both devices. After fully charging them, I was ready to start cleansing—no additional purchases necessary. Quick picture guides are included with both, making the setup process a breeze.

In terms of the actual cleansing, I liked that the PureRadiance pauses a bit longer in between cleansing periods, giving you more time to transition to the next facial zone. I also liked that only the brush head vibrates (unlike the LUNA, where your entire hand vibrates). But I do love the way the LUNA fit in my hand, and its compact size makes it perfect for traveling. The eight speeds give you complete customization, and its incredible charging capability means you can use it for months before plugging it back in.

Immediately after using both, my face felt softer, smoother, and deeply cleansed. I loved how both significantly decreased the amount of contact between my hands and my face, and they are equally gentle and easy on the skin.

I can confidently say I’m now a sonic pulse believer. Washing your face is a daily habit. Why not invest in the best possible cleanse? Your skin will thank you.