Many of us go to great lengths for beauty, from plucking and waxing, to trying all sorts of concoctions and products. But it’s safe to say that few of us would resort to shaving our faces all in the name of having great skin.
However, a beauty trend is changing this: Called dermaplaning, this quote-unquote “facial shaving” treatment is touted as a way to reduce fine lines and create softer, more even skin. While dermaplaning gained popularity a few years ago, it has re-surged once again when Kate Somerville was quoted in a New York Times article saying that she swears by the treatment – and that many of her celebrity clients do as well.
To get the inside scoop on how it works and who should try it, we interviewed Dr. Nasimeh Yazdani, medical director at Beverly Hills Rejuvenation Center, who routinely performs dermaplaning on her patients. Here’s what you need to know before you whip out your disposable razor and start going to town on your face. (Actually, definitely don’t do that!)
What exactly is involved in dermaplaning?
Dr. Nasimeh Yazdani: Dermaplaning is a safe and simple procedure for exfoliating the epidermis and ridding the skin of peach fuzz. Using a scalpel with a delicate touch, the provider simply abrades the skin using light feathering strokes. Dermaplaning will accelerate the sloughing off of dead, peeling skin and is a great alternative to waxing and shaving.
MORE: Everything You Were Too Embarrassed to Ask About Hair Removal
What’s the difference between dermaplaning and just using a razor at home?
DNY: Many aggressive products, such as commercially available razors, cause the skin to be more vulnerable to damage and may cause skin damage, so it’s best to leave this treatment up to a professional.
What skin types or skin issues is it best for?
DNY: Dermaplaning is an excellent treatment for any clients currently using Retin-A, retinols, glycolic acid, high strengths of salicylic acids or other aggressive topical treatments. Clients with dry skin or peach fuzz (vellus hair) are also good candidates.
There are a few individuals that should not do dermaplaning, however. If you have active acne, open sore or wounds on your face, or any inflammatory skin condition, this treatment is not for you. Also, if you have thick dark hair (called terminal hair), it’s not a good idea either.
MORE: Beauty Etiquette 101: All the Advice You Need to Know For Your Salon Visits
What are some of the benefits?
DNY: Immediately after treatment, you should see a refreshed and refined look to the skin. Because the treatment removes vellus facial hair (which absorbs oil, dirt, environmental toxins, and excess product) and surface dead/keratinized cells, you’ll notice more even skin tone, softer lines and wrinkles, and improved texture. Dermaplaning stimulates circulation of blood and lymph flow and increases the skin’s immune response, as well as maximizes the skin’s ability to absorb product.
How often can this procedure be performed?
DNY: Dermaplaning can be done as often as every two weeks, however the frequency should be determined on a case-by-case basis.