What is Dermaplaning?
Dermaplaning is a safe (provided the person performing it is properly trained) and highly effective physical exfoliation procedure. It requires the use of a sterile, surgical scalpel to gently "shave" the skin's surface, removing the top-most layer of dead skin along with fine, vellus hair (aka peach fuzz). The procedure can be performed monthly, in less than thirty minutes, with no downtime post-treatment. Dermaplaning is only performed on the face; however, it is not meant to be used to shape eyebrows, which are made up of "terminal" (not vellus) hairs. The nose is also avoided. Estheticians, nurses or doctors may perform the treatment, depending on state regulations.
What are the benefits of Dermaplaning?
Physical exfoliation triggers the cell regeneration process and allows products to better penetrate skin. Some practitioners perform a chemical peel post-dermaplaning (I wouldn't recommend this if you've never had either treatment before or have sensitive skin). Dermaplaning is also excellent to rid the face of excess fine hairs which can often accumulate dirt and oil. Contrary to popular belief, vellus hairs, as opposed to terminal hair, will not grow back thicker or darker. Microdermabrasion, which also physically exfoliates skin, does not remove vellus hair. Exfoliation of dead cells along with the removal of fine hairs results in healthier, brighter skin that has a smoother look and feel.
- Removes soft facial hair that traps dirt and oil.
- Enhances the effectiveness of other skincare treatments such as chemical peels, LED light therapy and microdermabrasion by providing deeper product penetration.
- Reduces recent acne scars
- Reduces fine lines
- Produces immediate results with no downtime
- Promotes smoother skin
Is Dermaplaning a safe procedure?
When performed by a well trained professional, dermaplanning is very safe, has no side effects and no downtime.
Will my hair grow back thicker?
No. This is physiologically impossible. There are two types of hair that grow on your body. Vellus hair, which when cut or removed will grow back the same size and shape. Therefore, the main structure of vellus hair does not change and is not altered by dermaplanning. Terminal hair however, is naturally coarse. When this hair type is cut it will always grow back coarse. Dermaplanning is designed to treat the vellus hair which is located on the face.
What areas can be treated?
Dermaplanning is performed on the face only.
How often is the procedure performed?
Dermplanning is usually performed every three to four weeks. Treating the skin in this manner actually removes about two-three weeks worth of dead skin cells. The skin needs to complete its normal thirty day rejuvenation cycle before the treatment is done again.
Does the skin peel from dermaplanning?
Occasionally the skin will peel after Dermaplaning. If the procedure is sooner than a 3-4 week interval, the growth cycle of your hair may not be complete; therefore you are treating skin unnecessarily. This may cause peeling to occur.
What skin types/conditions can be treated?
All skin types may benefit from dermaplanning. Dermaplaning is not recommended if you have acne or an excessive production of sebaceous gland oil. (Sebaceous glands excrete oil along the vellus hair). If the hair is removed, the oils may cause bacteria growth that can stimulate acne breakouts.
Who should consider dermaplaning?
Dermaplaning is especially effective on those with dry or rough skin texture and helps to minimize superficial acne scarring or uneven skin tone. It is also beneficial for mature skin, which tends to have a buildup of dead cells as cellular turnover slows down with age. Dermaplaning is safe for pregnant or lactating clients who cannot have chemical peels (peels penetrate skin to act at the cellular level, thus are contraindicated). Those with very oily or active acne should avoid this procedure as well as anyone with thick, dark facial hair.
Don't try this at home
It's important to note that dermaplaning employs a specific technique requiring a delicate touch and a skilled approach to resurface skin. Thus, I don't recommend shaving at home as an alternative to dermaplaning (see Shaving – the ultimate anti-aging tool?). Unlike shaving, dermaplaning is performed freehand with a surgical scalpel (the average razor has two blades which are also duller than surgical blades) on tautly stretched skin. The methodology requires short strokes at a certain angle in particular patterns depending on the facial region.
Note: Please do your homework (obtain referrals and read reviews) prior to receiving treatment. It takes training to handle a scalpel properly; thus, I can't stress how important it is to ensure you visit a licensed, skilled professional for dermaplaning.
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