Is Dermaplaning a Safe and Effective Skin Treatment?


Many women suffer from visible facial hair, ranging from soft peach fuzz to visible black hairs on the upper lip and jawline. Luckily, the act of female shaving has gained acceptance over the past couple of years, and you can find many ways to get rid of those pesky fine hairs.

Dermaplaning stands as one of the most exciting recent developments in facial care. It combines shaving with exfoliation for healthier, more radiant skin. But is this the right option for you? Read on to find out.

What Is Dermaplaning?

Dermaplaning is a technique that uses a very sharp single blade to scrape away the top layer of dead skin cells and vellus hair on your face. A licensed aesthetician will use a surgical scalpel held at a 45-degree angle to work away at the top layer of dead skin gently. An esthetician uses a light, feathering motion and short strokes to prevent the blade from catching on your skin or hair, ensuring your safety and comfort throughout the procedure.

The most common reasons to consider dermaplaning include:

  • Removing facial hair
  • Reducing the appearance of fine lines
  • Reducing the appearance of pocked skin and acne scars
  • Restoring dry and dull skin to its natural, radiant state

How Dermaplaning Works

Dermaplaning is basically the same concept as shaving. An esthetician slowly drags a sterile blade across your forehead, cheeks, chin, and neck to remove dead cells, scar tissue, and other debris that may be causing imperfections in your skin.

What Are the Benefits of Dermaplaning?

The main benefit of dermaplaning is that it clears your face of any unwanted hair. This can make makeup application cleaner and easier, without any fine facial hair to ruin the final look. A dermaplaning treatment also offers the benefits of a deep exfoliator, revealing healthy, radiant skin below the original dull and tired skin layers. It can also remove layers of hyperpigmentation, evening out your skin tone.

Many dermaplaning enthusiasts will also say that it promotes collagen growth, similar to what happens during a chemical peel, which can protect your skin from the effects of aging. You may also hear that removing the top skin layer will improve the efficacy of your skincare products and serums since it can easily penetrate the layers that need it most.

While dermaplaning can have good results with improving skin tone and removing fine lines, it’s important to note that these results don’t last very long. Dermaplaning only removes the topmost layer of skin, which replenishes itself every three to four weeks.

The new layer of skin will suffer from environmental damage during these weeks, making it dull and tired-looking. At that point, you’ll need another dermaplaning session to refresh the results.

Risks and Side Effects

Dermaplaning is a very low-risk procedure, and it doesn’t rely on any chemicals or laser treatments that may affect your underlying skin layers. There is very little chance of developing an allergic reaction since the treatment doesn’t apply any allergens to your skin.

However, as with any skincare treatment, you may experience some minor side effects. The most common effects include:

  • Redness and irritation
  • Development of whiteheads on the dermaplaned area
  • Temporary skin hyperpigmentation

The most severe side effect is scarring, which happens when the skin reacts badly to the micro-cuts and starts forming scar tissue. This scarring usually occurs when the blade catches on hair and cuts deeper than expected. While using a blade guard can reduce the chance of scarring, people who develop keloids or are susceptible to scarring should avoid the procedure.

Who Should Avoid Dermaplaning?

Dermaplaning proves safe for any skin type, including sensitive skin. However, due to the nature of the treatment, some people should avoid the process.

Individuals with cystic acne, cold sores, or other skin infections should avoid the treatment, as the blade can easily cut through the sores or spread bacteria to the rest of the individual’s skin.

If you have sunburn, a rosacea breakout, or a chronic skin condition like psoriasis or eczema, dermaplaning can worsen these conditions.

Be sure to speak to our medical esthetician before committing to a dermaplaning session to make 100% sure that it’s right for you.

Dermaplaning vs. Microdermabrasion

Dermaplaning and microdermabrasion share some similarities in that both remove the top layer of dead skin for a more even skin tone. However, the two procedures vary enough that they offer different benefits for different people.

Microdermabrasion has been extensively researched, and many studies show that it stimulates collagen production, which reduces the appearance of fine lines and promotes healing and anti-aging skin.

Dermaplaning hasn’t had the same amount of attention, which means that clinical studies are rare. However, it removes a thinner layer of skin than microdermabrasion, which means its anti-aging benefits may not be as pronounced.

Some of the unique benefits of microdermabrasion include:

  • Reduced appearance of large pores
  • Reduced severity of stretch marks
  • Enhanced uptake of transdermal drugs

Microdermabrasion specifically targets the skin layer without affecting facial hair. If you want a procedure that removes unwanted facial hair, then dermaplaning is the right option for you. If you want something that will keep your skin looking younger for longer, microdermabrasion may produce better long-term results.

Preparing for Dermaplaning

Before your dermaplaning session, you’ll have a short consultation with your esthetician. You can use this time to ask any questions or raise any concerns. The provider will ask about your medical history, focusing on potential skin issues, and identify your skin type and complexion. All of this information helps ensure that you experience minimal irritation and side effects after the treatment.

Dermaplaning is a relatively gentle procedure, meaning you don’t have to undergo any pre-treatment before the process. Depending on the treatment area, the treatment itself will take between half an hour to an hour. If you’ve combined dermaplaning with some other treatment, you may be in the chair for slightly longer.

You also don’t have to schedule any downtime for recovery, though you may notice a bit of redness for one or two days after the treatment.

Recovery After Dermaplaning

The main concern after dermaplaning focuses on taking care of your newly exposed skin. This skin is particularly vulnerable to the environment, especially UV rays, so be sure to wear heavy-duty sunscreen of SPF 40 or higher after your treatment. Try to keep out of the sun as much as possible after the treatment.

Also, consider using a lighter moisturizer to prevent clogs or heaviness that may dull your newly revealed skin. Consider using serums and more nutrient-dense products rather than focusing on heavy-duty moisturizers for the best effect.

Common Questions About Dermaplaning

Is Shaving Your Face the Same as Dermaplaning?

Not really. While both treatments use blades to remove facial hair, regular shaving doesn’t affect your top skin layer. As a more controlled procedure, dermaplaning offers more than just hair removal benefits.

Does Your Hair Grow Back Thicker After Dermaplaning?

In almost all cases, no. Dermaplaning doesn’t affect the hair follicle, which controls the texture and density of your hair. However, people with a history of excess hair growth may notice a potential worsening of hair growth, though the texture will remain the same.

The most susceptible area for hair growth is the chin, where the bristlier, more masculine-type hair follicles reside. Removing the hair will result in a coarser, prickly feeling when the hair starts to grow back, and plucking may be a better option to remove these hairs.

Can Dermaplaning Be Combined With Other Treatments?

Most dermatologists recommend combining dermaplaning with facials and other light anti-aging techniques. Since you’re exposing a new skin layer, you may find this new skin better at absorbing nutrients and compounds better, making it the ideal time for serums and other skin treatments.

We don’t recommend combining dermaplaning with waxing or other skin-irritating procedures since your skin will already be sensitive and vulnerable to environmental damage.

What Results Can Dermaplaning Achieve?

Dermaplaning provides temporary results in increased skin radiance, softness, a minor reduction in fine lines and wrinkles, and smoother, hair-free skin.

However, it’s important to note that these results will only last for a couple of weeks. Your skin typically renews itself every three to four weeks, meaning that the new layer will have started to die and lose its healthy shine after that amount of time. You’ll also notice that just like shaving, your hair will grow back after a couple of days.

Will Dermaplaning Cause Breakouts?

It may, depending on your skin type. Some people report developing whiteheads after the treatment, which disappear after several days. If you suffer from any chronic skin condition, dermaplaning may spread bacteria around, resulting in increased acne or pimples.

The best way to avoid breakouts after dermaplaning is to work with a licensed esthetician or dermatologist who has experience performing the treatment. Ensure that they use sterile, packaged scalpels during the treatment and follow sterile techniques, such as not touching your face excessively, using isopropyl alcohol to wipe down their gloves and equipment, etc.

How Much Does Dermaplaning Cost?

A typical dermaplaning session will set you back between $150 and $250, and you can expect to see results for a couple of weeks. Health insurance doesn’t cover the procedure, so expect to pay the full amount yourself.

 Schedule A Dermaplaning Consultation Today!

If you’re interested in Dermaplaning in Miami contact Salas Plastic Surgery in Miami today for a free consultation. Our MedSpa team is standing by to help pick the best skin treatments for you.