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Livia

Livia

Overall Rating

4.4

363 Customer Reviews

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Summary

Livia sends safe electrical pulses into your abdomen to block pain sensations from reaching your brain in order to give you pain relief from period cramps. Our review examines whether this device works and who can benefit from it.

Pros

  • The discrete device can be worn without detection
  • 14-hour charge should last all day
  • Begins relieving pain within 30 seconds
  • 90% of users in clinical trials experienced some level of pain relief

Cons

  • Clinical studies involved small sample sizes
  • Doesn’t work for all participants
  • Might not work for plus-sized users

Livia Review: A Detailed Look

By Lydia Noyes

Updated on: Jun 30, 2020

Medically Reviewed by Anthony Dugarte, M.D., C.S.C.S

Livia is a device that allegedly helps alleviate cramps and pain related to menstrual cycles. This subtle device should be worn against your skin, and by pushing a button, you can make it stimulate your nerves to block pain.

The company claims that using Livia is safe for all users and capable of providing immediate relief.

In this analysis, we’ll investigate whether Livia will work as described and whether it’s worth the investment.

How Does Livia Work?

Livia’s underlying technology is based on what’s known as the Gate Control Theory. Dr. Anthony Dugarte, HighYa’s medical researcher, said that this theory was first developed in the 60s by Ronald Melzack and Patrick Wall.

The theory’s premise is that pain sensations associated with injuries are transmitted to the brain from the peripheral nerves through the spinal cord. Along the way, the pain signal encounters “gates” it must go through to continue passing on the message. If these gates are closed, your brain can’t sense the pain.

“The interplay between the central and peripheral nervous systems is complex and not completely understood, says Dr. Dugarte. “Nonetheless, it seems as though a number of factors can affect whether the nerve gates are open or closed.”

Products like Livia work to close these gates by stimulating your nerves so that you don’t feel pain in real-time. This device uses the company’s patented “SmartWave” technology to send out electric micro-pulses to prevent you from feeling menstrual pain.

Once you start using the device, you should experience some level of pain relief within a minute.

Livia utilizes similar mechanisms of action to TENS units (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation), as both provide pain relief through stimulatory impulses.

They will differ in their pulse frequency and the specific waveforms they send out. The company claims that Livia is the only TENS-style product optimized explicitly for period pain.

Clinical Studies

Livia has undergone three clinical trials since its creation in 2016. Below is a summary of the results from these studies:

  • Study 1: 61 women were assessed for menstrual pain over four cycles. 90% experienced pain relief when using a Livia prototype, 31% reported complete relief, and 32% found that it delivered relief faster than drugs.

  • Study 2: 102 women monitored their menstrual pain for four cycles, using an improved prototype. 86% reported pain relief, 57% experienced complete pain relief, and 72.5% stated it worked faster than drugs.

  • Study 3: 65 women monitored period pain for two cycles. Half used a Livia prototype, and half used a sham device that created tingling sensations for the first cycle, and then both groups switched. The study found a statistically significant difference between the prototype and sham device, and participants reported general improvements in their quality of life after using it.

Though these findings seem promising for Livia’s effectiveness, it’s essential to keep them in context.

“While the independent testing does add some merit to their claims, they have yet to be published,” Dr. Dugarte shares. “This means they have not gone through a rigorous peer-review process to determine if their methods were sound.”

Likewise, the sample sizes are small and might not be indicative of the general population’s response to the device. Saying that, it seems that Livia and similar products do show promise for managing period pain for some users.

Side Effects

Livia works externally, which means that it doesn’t have any impact on your menstrual cycle, hormone balance, or other functions.

Likewise, there are no known side effects associated with using the device as described.

The one exception is if you have a heart pacemaker, as the device’s electrical impulses may interfere with it. Don’t use Livia if you have one.

How to Use Livia

Livia comes as a small colored device (about the size of an MP3 player) with two connected electrode pads that come pre-coated with gel.

You are meant to stick onto your skin at the site of the pain, usually your lower stomach or back. Secure the device in your pocket or by clipping It to your pants and turn it on.

It’s designed to be inconspicuous to wear throughout daily life or even while exercising – though keep it from getting wet.

The device can be recharged through a micro USB cable, and a single charge should last up to 14 hours.

A small LED indicator above the power button shows you what level the device is set on and how to adjust it from high to low intensity. There are 16 settings total, and tapping the button four times will increase it by one.

Pricing and Refund Information

One-Time Purchase Subscription
Cost $199 $8/mon. (The first month is free, $29 signup fee)
Warranty 2 years Lifetime
Gel Pods 3-month supply Lifetime supply (request more when needed)
Shipping Free across the US Free worldwide
Bonus Features NA Receive new Livia every three years

You can also purchase a six-month supply of gel pods for $29.

With the subscription plan, you must sign up for a minimum of four months. You can return your Livia and cancel your subscription at any time after.

It’s also possible to purchase Livia “skins” to change the color and texture of your device. Each costs $12.

One-time Livia purchases come with a 120-day money-back guarantee. The device must be in good physical condition, and you are responsible for all taxes and return shipping costs.

Analysis of Customer Reviews

There are more than 90 reviews for Livia on our website, averaging 3.2 stars. Here’s are the most common trends:

Compliments:

  • Easy to take out in public when necessary
  • Reduces period pain as well as painkillers or a heating pad
  • Period relief without side effects

Complaints:

  • Slow refund process or refund not honored
  • Didn’t relieve period pain as promised
  • Might not be big enough for plus-sized users

The Bottom Line

Livia claims to offer women with painful periods a drug-free way to get their lives back with minimal inconvenience. The existing clinical trials are small, but they indicate this electrical stimulus device could be effective for many people.

“I do like that Livia is non-invasive, drug-free, and FDA approved,” says Dr. Dugarte. “Independent clinical testing shared by Livia demonstrated safety and efficacy when this product is used as directed.”

However, it’s important to acknowledge that there are multiple causes of menstrual pain, and a device like Livia merely works to cover up the symptoms rather than addressing the problem.

Dr. Dugarte is concerned that using the device might cause you to delay seeking medical treatment for your pain that could potentially lead to the diagnosis of a serious health issue.

If you deal with chronic, debilitating menstrual pain, it’s best to talk with your doctor about your symptoms to rule out other health problems first.

Customer Reviews

4.4 Stars out of 363 Reviews
5 Star:77% 4 Star:9% 3 Star:1% 2 Star:0% 1 Star:10%
89% Recommend This Product
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Posted on Oct 15, 2021

I love my Livia!

By November H., Illinois, Verified Reviewer

I love my Livia! Super helpful for horrible cramps and completely negates the need for medicine! Will forever be grateful for this little device. My only issues are customer service and the website never wanting to let me navigate my account.

Length of Use: 6–12 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Convenient

Painless

Flower pad shape

Customer service

Account usability

Posted on Oct 15, 2021

Works for me

By Trisha M., Tampa, FL, Verified Reviewer

I have to say Livia helps me get through my incredibly painful periods. I get the worst cramps and while it doesn’t take away all the pain, the vibrations do help eliminate some of the pain and give me something else to focus on.

Length of Use: 2+ years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Vibrations

Discreet

Portable

Wish it had heat

Posted on Oct 15, 2021

Absolutely love this for endo pain

By Jillian J., Denver, CO, Verified Reviewer

Those with endo know, it’s not fun. it can truly suck and the pain can be excruciating. This has been one of the things that has consistently helped me. It is not the end all be all, but it doesn’t claim to be. It is just another tool in our arsenal of ways to battle endo pain!

Length of Use: 2+ years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Discreet

Fun skins

Helps with pain

Wires are white and stand out sometimes

Pads are white

Doesn’t work great in humid environment where pad wears out quickly

Posted on Oct 15, 2021

Livia is the bomb.com

By Shante S., Pensacola, FL, Verified Reviewer

Before purchasing Livia I always had the worse pain to the point where I would call off work and would stay in bed for hours. So thankful this product has helped me tremendously each month!

Length of Use: 6–12 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

It lessens my pain level

It’s small and portable

Being able to accessorize with my favorite skin colors

Needs more than just 2 pads at once

Bigger pads for greater coverage

Having to charge it

Posted on Oct 5, 2021

Lightweight and effective

By A L., Missouri, Verified Reviewer

This device almost completely eliminates my need to medicate for my cramps. It is very discreet, and even better, lightweight. If I have to clip it to my tights, it does not pull them down. I wish there was a carry-all case for the set though.

Length of Use: 2+ years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Lightweight

Effective

Cute

Expensive

Storing the gel pads that are in use

Small and easy to misplace if you aren’t organized

Posted on Oct 4, 2021

How Livia basically saved me

By Chloe W., London, England, Verified Reviewer

I bought my Livia in 2018 and have been using it every month since! That is mostly why I need to buy a replacement flower pad cable since I use mine so often. It also comes with a little white box that you can safely keep your Livia in, which you can put in your handbag for example. It is a reminder to myself to take care of my device more and use the box next time I have finished using my Livia.

I love using my Livia. I used to have really painful period cramps which would make me not able to work, it helped a lot with my pain management. Now that my cramps have improved, I use it less, but it is still very handy when I get uncomfortable PMS or period cramps and don't want to have to take painkillers. It is a great alternative option.

Length of Use: 2+ years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Easy to use

Can take it everywhere with me

Long battery life

Runs out of battery

Can't charge and use at the same time

Gel pads for flower pads don't stay sticky for long

Posted on Oct 2, 2021

Best thing ever

By Jordanna G., Amarillo, TX, Verified Reviewer

This little thing has been a lifesaver. There are so many levels to choose from to help your pain. It’s super portable and the pain is gone almost instantly.

Length of Use: 3–6 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

It’s portable

Pick your level

Stops pain almost instantly

No “cons” were specified in this review

Posted on Oct 2, 2021

Works well

By Alysa W., USA, Verified Reviewer

Has really helped with my cramps. Usually I’m unable to work but this little thing helps me cruise through my day with no issues. Has been a lifesaver for me.

Length of Use: Less than 3 months

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Appearance

Usability

Concealed

Having to move a lot

Cord breaking

Posted on Sep 24, 2021

Love my Livia

By Candace T., Atlanta, GA, Verified Reviewer

I love my Livia. It helps ease or eliminate my period pain so I can continue with my life instead of laying in bed on a heating pad and ruining my liver with pain meds. That being said, see your doctor first to make sure you don’t have an issue that needs to be addressed if you have chronic pain. After that, use this device. It really works.

Length of Use: 1–2 years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Small and discreet

Works quickly

Takes long to fully charge

Carrying case too small for the flower pads to be safely stored

Helpful Review? 1 Person Has Voted

Posted on Sep 16, 2021

Livia user for 2 years

By Bella B., Manila, Philippines, Verified Reviewer

Been using Livia for almost 2 years now, it's definitely a lifesaver. I get through my periods because of this. I am just obsessed with the skins, I wish I had all colors.

I've been functioning even when I'm experiencing my worst cramps because of Livia.

I also have friends who have bought and tried it out and this tiny device doesn't disappoint.

Length of Use: 1–2 years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Effectiveness

Its size and portability

Being able to switch skins

Customer service

Long shipping time

Posted on Sep 15, 2021

Say goodbye to period pain

By Nadia B., London, United Kingdom, Verified Reviewer

Honestly a game-changer for my periods. Gets to work almost immediately, which means I can get on with my day without being uncomfortable in pain. I love that it’s a more natural method than taking painkillers.

Length of Use: 2+ years

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

Pros and Cons

Gets rid of my pain

No “cons” were specified in this review

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