As a 60-something female, Kate Swanson is well aware of the challenges facing women throughout their life in health, beauty, and fashion.
Over the years I've tried several beauty gadgets, including CACI and red light therapy. Although both offer benefits like more glowing skin and fewer wrinkles, neither do much (if anything) for sagging. Now that I'm over 60, I'm developing a serious "turkey neck", and I haven't been able to find any effective solutions, until I found the Rio 60-Second Neck Toner.
I'll give more details about my experience shortly, but you want to know whether it works so let's cut to the chase.
Yes, the Rio Neck Toner Works!
The science behind the Neck Toner is sound. It's a Faradic system, a proven technology that's been around for many, many years. So yes, the product should have a beneficial effect and I've been very pleased with the results. I suspect the reason some people say it doesn't, is that they're not using it correctly, or they're trying to fix a problem it can't help.
So, if you want to try this product, bear in mind:
- You need to be honest with yourself. This device tones saggy muscles; it can't dissolve fat. So if you have double chins, ask yourself - are they caused by sagging, or are they due to excess weight? If they're pads of fat, this toner won't help.
- You need to be realistic. This is not a facelift! Even the clinical research claims only a 33% improvement, so don't expect miracles (and let's face it, is it realistic to expect miracles for less than $100?).
- You need to use it consistently, every single day. Since it takes only 3 or 4 minutes, it's very easy to include in your beauty routine, but it does need to become a long-term habit: the effects wear off if you stop using it.
- You need to read the instructions and follow them carefully. It's fiddly to find the right positions at first. If you can't see any muscles contracting while you're using it, you're doing it wrong and will get no benefit.
- You need to watch yourself in the mirror while you use it, so you can be sure the muscles are contracting with every pulse. So this is not something you can fit into your routine while watching TV.
- You'll have ongoing costs. So far, I'm finding that the batteries last well but they will need replacing from time to time. You will also need to buy conductive gel, which can be hard to find (and expensive) in pharmacies. Plan ahead and buy online!
How It Works
The video below shows the toner in action. You hold the toner against the skin for 60 seconds in each position (first directly under the chin, then on either side). Some people use it for longer than 60 seconds in the early stages or use it twice a day, to speed up the results.
It's a pity they've chosen models whose chins really don't need firming, but you get the idea! It's not easy to see the muscle twitching in the video; personally, I like to put it on a higher setting so I can see the muscle reaction more clearly, so I can be sure it's working. You will feel a stinging/prickling sensation on higher settings, but that's useful as a guide - the closer you get to the right spot, the less it will sting/prickle. Also, being generous with the conducting gel will reduce the sting.
How It Feels
In a word, unpleasant! Faradic facials used to be quite popular, but I'm guessing they fell out of favour because they're not a comfortable experience. Comfortable or not, they are still the only treatment that can make any significant impact on sagging.
If you've ever had a CACI or galvanic facial, you'll be familiar with the slight tingle created by the probes. You'll get the same sensation from the Neck Toner on a low setting, but most of the time, you won't get any benefit when it's set at that level. To really see results, you must turn the device up high enough to get a visible muscle spasm - and that means it must be set high enough for you to feel discomfort. But "no pain, no gain", yes?
If You're Impatient...
On the box, it claims that you'll see results immediately. I didn't. It took weeks for me to notice a worthwhile improvement. Since then, I've discovered that one of my local beauty salons offers a Faradic facial (which is the same thing but with a more powerful salon machine).
If you can find one in your area, I'd say it would be worth going and having a few professional treatments which will give you faster results. Then you can use your Neck Toner for maintenance instead of going back for regular top-up sessions.
One of the downsides of this device is that you need to keep buying conductive gel - which is expensive and can be hard to track down. I've just discovered that pure aloe vera gel works just as well; cheaper and good for your skin too!
Can I Use the Rio Neck Toner on My Face?
Before I bought this product, I had considered buying the Rio Face Toner, but it was four times the price! Besides, I had learned a lesson about whole-face treatments from using the home version of phototherapy: it's all very well to say each facial "zone" takes only a minute or two, but add them all up and you've got twenty minutes or more. I knew I couldn't make that kind of commitment every single day, so I decided to be realistic and concentrate on my neck because it's the worst affected by sag.
Now, I'm slightly regretting that! I'd love to do something about my jowls, my nasolabial folds and the hollows under my eyes. So the natural question was - could I use the neck toner on my face?
The makers, Rio, won't say - but the answer seems to be "Why not?" Fundamentally both devices appear to work exactly the same, so it's hard to see why the neck toner couldn't be used safely on the rest of the face. I have found reviews by other users who are using it on their face without any problems, so I'm certainly planning to give it a try. Obviously, I can't recommend either way; it's entirely up to you whether you'd feel comfortable doing so.
There's a chart available from Rio Beauty which explains how to position the contacts to tone the face:
One thing to note: If you have fillings, and you use the device on your cheeks, you'll feel pain in your teeth. I haven't been able to find out whether it's something to worry about or not, so I would advise taking care.
If you decide to do it, let me know how it goes!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Joanne on April 01, 2020:
I have used the Rio neck toner on my face for over a month and it is showing great results. I do worry about whether it’s too powerful and still can’t find any advice about this. Now Rio have brought out their new Rio Face Lift, I really would like to know if there is any difference between the strength of the two gadgets?
milli76777 on March 15, 2018:
I am in my 50's and was looking for a cream that would help with the appearance of my neck. I am pleased to say that the Made from Earth Vitamin Firming Serum has delivered on the promise to firm and help reduce the creepy look. Since I have very sensitive skin I waited, dreading a rash or itchy skin but it never happened! My husband, who is five years older than I (really old
Lyn from England on August 05, 2016:
Very interesting & informative.
Kate Swanson (author) from Sydney on December 26, 2015:
That's my problem too Snakesmum. Exercises do help, but ONLY if you do them religiously, which I don't! You also have to be regular with the neck toner, but you don't need to devote so much time to it.
Snakesmum on December 24, 2015:
Turkey neck - being well over sixty, I also have this problem. When I remember, I do some toning exercises, but not often enough to do any good. Shall have to look into this gadget - it sounds like something I could use.
Thanks for the info.