Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Reviewed & Loved: Tripollar STOP

I love my gadgets but by far my favourite techy toys would have to be beauty gadgets. I love the idea of innovative technology used in the beauty industry to deliver more positive and lasting results than traditional topical lotions and serums.

And I’ve been keeping a watchful eye of all the advancement in non-invasive medical treatments of– from IPL and fractional lasers (Fraxel) for skin resurfacing & rejuvenation, LED light for skin rejuvenation to skin contouring with radio frequency (Thermage) for skin contouring- all these new technologies providing the beauty world results that would never in a hundred years be achieved from using any cream or serum in a jar.

With this development in the professional market, it has spawned a myriad of similar functioning devices for the at-home market. These are generally lower-powered (for safety reasons for the average untrained user) versions of the stronger professional machines in medical clinics and spas and promises to give similar results over a longer time period with a lower cost and has very little, if any, down time.

Last year, a new generation radio frequency based at-home device was launched into the Australian market. It has been sold in the European markets since 2009 and when it is finally available in Australia, my curiosity was piqued.

After doing some research on the technology and product, seeing pictures of the benefits treatments, I decided I must try it too.

Finally after 4 months of lusting and more readings on the technology and user reviews, I took the plunged and bought the products. Yep, I bought both the STOP and the POSE device in one hit!

Some Background Info
The technology behind the STOP and POSE devices is Tripollar radio frequency (RF), developed by Pollogen (a big name Israeli medical aesthetics company) and has multi-nation patents pending for this at-home device. TriPollar is a non-invasive, pain-free treatment good on all skin types to achieve body contouring, cellulite reduction and an improvement in skin laxity.

Unlike traditional mono-pollar or bi-polar RF, Tripollar RF combines both mono and bi-polar frequency to deliver RF energy where it’s need with less power output and hence less discomfort for the user and is a proven technology for skin tissue tightening and cellulite reduction benefits.

For more information on Tripollar and radio frequency technology please visit here

Ok -Tripollar technology. So What?
I’m not one to be easily impressed, but looking at the before and after photos on the company site and on forums and learning how Tripollar is used to deliver optimal radio-frequency (RF) energy to the dermis and fat layer of the skin (2mm deep) to heat the skin’s fiboblast and thereby can shrink fat cell in and stimulating dermal activity to encourage collagen production, I was very much sold.
After 6 Stop treatments for an EDS forum user
And if that isn't enough and you want some clinical studies then head over here and  here to read the review and results of Tripollar treatment. Although the second listed study not independent and based on the professional Tripollar treatment, they are still very impressive and convincing.

The STOP and POSE devices

Both these devices are powered by the impressive Tripollar technology but are of different power ratings and designed to used on different body parts.

The units are not only different in size, but the energy outputs are different (STOP is output of 1.5A and POSE is 2.5A).

The STOP device is designed for the face, the back of hand and neck whilst the POSE device is designed for trouble spots in your body like your stomach, thighs, arms etc.

Today, we'll take a closer look the STOP device.

Tripollar STOP
This little hand held device comes in a beautiful box, looks sleek and is well made. The device comes in three colours, black, red and white. I ended up ordering the black unit because the red unit I wanted was out-of-stock.
Inside the box, there is a jar of preparation gel to use during the treatment, an after treatment moisturiser, the unit itself, a power supply, instruction manual and DVD and international warranty card.

My unit is glossy black with gold trim at the base and comes capped to protect the work component of the device. It is an elongated hexagonal shaped device and surprising is very comfortable to hold in the hand during use.
On off switch and power adaptor input; Stop electrodes
How does STOP work?
At the base of the power supply there is the intensity setting that delivers low, medium or high output voltages (7V, 8V,9V). When plugged in, a green light indicates the power setting selected and the sliding switch on the side allows for setting controls.
Underneath the cap of the STOP device is 4 metal electrode balls that will be in contact with skin during treatment.

There is also a temperature sensor in the middle to measure skin temperature during use and will cut-off if it detects overheating of the skin ensuring that you can never injure yourself with this device and the green light will go off during use when this happens.

How to use STOP
For the RF energy to be properly conducted into the skin, the preparation gel is needed. You smear a very thin layer all over the area to be treated prior to use. As it is very thick, it feels much like ultra sound gel and is quite gooey in feeling. Thankfully it is pleasant in smell.

I turn on the device and I start off with the low setting during first use to get my skin used to the heat. Nowadays, I go straight to the high setting.

The green light on the STOP machine indicate it’s on. I then press the electrodes onto my skin, making sure that all four nodes are in contact with skin for the RF to do its job.
The instruction manual and video advises that you need to do a warming up stage to warm skin to the right temperature followed by a maintenance stage by going over the area again in upward lifting motion to finish off. The advertorial instructional video can be viewed below.

I take a slightly different approach - I complete the entire process for my one side of the face first before moving to the other side.

Starting at under the eye area, I move in small circular motion to warm up the face until there is the amber light shows up to indicate the skin has reached its optimal temperature (40 degree c). I would stay on the area for another 5 sec before moving to the next area.

After 5 minutes minutes I’m done and move to maintenance mode and do larger sweeping motion on the side of the face for another 5 minutes. So in total it takes me 20 minutes to do my entire face. I haven’t tried this on my neck yet but this would obviously lengthen treatment time more.

My Experience 
  • I found the heat very comfortable, it wasn’t too hot and during the cooler month, a very welcoming sensation.
  • There is a intense heat sensation when you overstay in an area of your skin, especially if you have the device on higher setting. It doesn’t cause any burning but it’s momentarily painful until you move the electrodes to another area of the skin and that area cools down. Thankfully you do not suffer any burns from this.
  • The lighting system was very weird for me, sometimes it takes a while to turn amber while other times it turns amber immediately, I think it has to do with the ambient temperature in the room, and heat dissipating from the surrounding treated area, so when you move to the next spot, it heats up faster. I also found it annoying to always having to look into a mirror to be able to see the amber light. After a few uses, I just learnt by feeling of the heat on my skin before moving to the next section.
  • The gel definitely made the gliding of the STOP electrode more smooth and pleasant even if it feels slightly icky when initially applied. It also wipes off easily without leaving any residue or stickiness which is very handy. 
  • I used the after treatment moisturiser and found it to be very rich (although thankfully not greasy in feeling). I’m not sure I like the richness after my skin is all heated up.
  • Afterwards my skin looks flushed like I’ve just gotten out of a very hot shower. It looks plumped up but it also looks like it could be due to a slight swelling effect as well. 
  • It works a treat on removing my under-eye bags. The dark circles are still there but you can see that my eyes are less puffy. It also helps to get rid of the crepey look in that delicate skin area The lines look the same until the next day. I can see the expression lines under my right eye is that little bit shallower compared to the day before. Even when I smile, the crinkles are less deeper. This effect lasts about 3 days before the lines creeps back again, albeit shallower.
  • Helps with zapping minor hormonal zits as the heat seems to do a great job of killing the bacteria on skin. 
  • I do notice immediate lifting and tightening effect. When done on one side of my face, I can see a difference – it looks more lifted and sculpted. I tried capturing it in photo but the effects aren’t as sensational as it is in real life in the photos below. You will see there is slight redness and swelling on left face of the before pic as I have only used on one face so far. In the after pic, 20 minutes after treatment and washing off the gel, my face is no longer red, and it appears more sculpt and the skin feels taut.
  • Having used the device for 4 months now (about 9 treatments so far because I find it had to find time to consistently sit down for a session in the past few months. Nor have I been following the manual's advice of  2 treatments a week for 6 weeks and then once a fortnight maintenance regime due to a irregular evening schedule) 
  • But STOP gives your face the fresh and healthy look. It seems to improve skin clarity and give the impression that I’ve had plentiful and restful sleep even when I haven’t. 
  • My skin is ultra soft and smooth the next day after using STOP and stays that way for 3 days before the glow and clarity fades and is akin to applying my ultimate serum and moisturiser combo (more on that in another post) 
  • My skin also feels very taut. I can pinch and pull it and it feels like the skin elasticity is given plenty of resistance and springs back immediately. 
  • The skin also feels thicker – I feel like I have skin back in my early 20s again where it was bouncy and with consistent use, my lines haven’t disappeared but they are less prominent. 
Notice the bags under the eyes have improved and the face looks more lifted and sculpt on the left side
The verdict:
I’m enamoured with the results that I get from STOP. The expression lines are not fading fast enough for my liking but I can’t complain as I have few lines to begin with and they are definitely softening.

My biggest love is the taut bouncy skin I get that lasts for over a week with the use of this device. I’ve never had a topical product ever give me skin with so much elasticity and At hefty price of almost A$400 STOP is not cheap but it is cheaper than paying for a professional session of RF treatment.

You need to be committed to find the time to use this product regularly for it to give you results. If you are prepared to put in that effort, the rewards are worth your while. Otherwise you will just have another expensive gadget sitting in your cupboard.

For me, this device is a keeper and worth its price and more for the skin sculpting effects and reduced fine lines. I can achieve all that in the comfort and convenience of home.

You can now read my review of the POSE body contouring device here.

Tripollar STOP - RRP A$399.99 online or at selected Myer stores.


  1. I just recently started using the Stop device and I'm feeling pretty positive about the results too. Thanks for your very helpful review. - Lisa

  2. Hi, been using STOP regularly 2-3x a week for 7 weeks now. I plan to do it till 8th week then shift to maintenance. I can see it really works. But sometimes my husband looks at me weirdly and tells me to stop treatment bec he says it looks unnatural. He does however makes a disclaimer saying it might be psychological on his part since he knows I'm using the device. Do you have the sale observations ? Like the plumpness looks a bit unnatural ?

    Oh and my device works weird too ! Sometimes the orange lits up in just 30 seconds in section, ESP on my neck. On my hand it takes 2-3 minutes for it to light up. I do make slow circular motions.

    Lastly , how near the eye do you use the STOP on ? Is it safe to use it right under the eye ( but not so near ). I can see your dark circle area improved a lot ! I avoided treating that area for fear of damaging it.

    Hope hope to hear from you. I know this is a late post. Tnx !

  3. I would like to share my great experience with this product and the after sale service I received from www.iskinproducts.com
    Sandy Sherman - long-island

  4. @Lisa - Thanks for dropping a note letting me know you are having similar positive results. I hope it continues to improve :)

  5. @Anonymous - Yes, I think it should be safe to use within orbitals of the eye. The device doesn't heat up enough to burn skin and on my own face I haven't experienced any adverse effects using it that close to the eye are. - I actually found it quite soothing.



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