Men are not the only ones shave your face. Now women too.
And they openly share their experiences with dermaplaning, which involves shaving the soft little hairs off your face for a instant youthful glow.
Mona Gohara, dermatologist and associate clinical professor of dermatology at Yale University, is happy to see that the practice has become a topic of conversation in recent years, especially on social media. The #dermaplaning hashtag has over 1.8 billion views on TikTok.
“As a Middle Eastern woman, I constantly have facial hair, so being able to exfoliate and remove that hair is a big cosmetic benefit,” she says.
Typically, a dermatologist or licensed esthetician will use a surgical-grade scalpel to scrape the vellus hairs (also called “peach fluff”) and a top layer of dead skin cells. But experts say you can also do it at home with an exfoliation tool.
“It’s different from a regular razor because you can get a better angle with the long dermaplaning tools and it’s also less sharp than razors, which are meant for cutting thick hairs,” says Gohara.
For those interested in trying dermaplaning, here’s what you need to know about the trendy procedure, including its purported benefits and risks.
Why is everyone talking about dermaplaning?
Over the past year, many women haven’t been afraid to show off their facial hair, which has generally been considered “coarse” or “unfeminine,” as well as their dermaplaning routines.
“It’s not just men who have thick, dark facial hair. And it’s not just men who shave their faces,” user @thatgirlsare posted on TikTok Saturday. “Let’s normalize some girls having thick facial hair and using razors to shave.”
“I love how much confidence this gives me,” user @about_theglow wrote on TikTok.
Also known as “female face shaving”, dermaplaning has many benefits: it can lighten the skin, fade dark spots and soften fine lines and wrinkles.
“While those soft, vellus bristles can be helpful, they also trap makeup, dirt, bacteria, and a whole host of irritants,” says Cassandra Bankson, a skincare expert and medical esthetician who regularly shaves her face. “I found that when I dermaplaned my face, my selfies came out sharper because the powder makeup didn’t stick to my facial hair.”
Azadeh Shirazi, a cosmetic dermatologist, adds that this skin-smoothing effect is one of the main benefits.
“It’s more than just a hair removal method. It’s a much deeper exfoliation treatment…so the removal of dead skin cells allows for better penetration of your skincare products , making them more effective. It also allows makeup to look smoother,” Shirazi says.
Will Shaving Your Face Make Your Hair Thicker?
It’s common for shaving to cause your hair to regrow thicker, darker, and faster. But skincare experts say it’s “a complete mistake.”
Bankson says it can appear that way because the hairs “grow back evenly and seem to pop up immediately out of nowhere.” However. Gohara says your hair growth and thickness is “genetically pre-programmed.”
“There are different factors that play a role, like age, hormonal influences and genetics. That’s what influences the amount of hair and how thick it is, not how you remove it.”
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Are there any risks to dermaplaning?
For anyone with a skin condition — sensitive skin, rosacea, skin cancer, eczema or severe acne — the benefits are not worth the risks, especially for infections, potential scarring or skin damage.
“Dermaplaning can cause breakouts in some people,” Bankson says. “The hairs on the face are there to get oil into the outer surface of our skin. If you were to shave off those hairs, those oils could still potentially stay in the skin for those with acne or pores. clogged, which could trap everything inside and cause a pimple.”
To minimize the risks, Shirazi says it’s best to consult a competent professional in the practice. But for those who choose to do so from home, be sure to proceed with caution.
“You need a strong skin barrier, so if you have dry skin or red, flaking skin, this is not a good treatment. It can make skin problems worse or worse, so make sure you first consult your dermatologist and treat your skin before trying any home treatments,” warns Shirazi.
“Always clean the skin to be treated and clean your hands, tools and the area where you are going to do it. Be informed about dermaplaning, do’s and don’ts, techniques, because the more you know, the better is you can assess the risks.”
Contributor: Joshua Bote