Everything You Need to Know About Dermaplaning: Benefits, Side Effects, and More

A summer packed with sun, sweat, and loads of sunscreen can leave your face looking dull, but dermaplaning gets your skin back on track by sloughing off that residue. Curious about how it works? SkinSpirit’s Head of Aesthetics, Karen Fernandez, is sharing her expertise on the process, benefits, side effects, and costs of dermaplaning.

What is dermaplaning?

Dermaplaning is an exfoliating facial treatment that sheds off layers of rough, dull, and damaged skin using a gentle blade. “The dermaplaning tool houses a sharp, straight edge razor that glides over the skin, removing dead skin cells and hairs from that stratum corneum layer,” Karen said.

What are the benefits of dermaplaning?

Exfoliating helps the skin breathe, feel healthier, and absorb serums and treatments more effectively. Dermaplaning is a particularly effective method of exfoliation because it thoroughly removes the dead skin cells, but does so “quietly.”

“It does not involve any suction or manipulating that can come with other exfoliation methods, like microdermabrasion or a scrub,” Karen explained. “It stealthily gets in there, resurfaces the skin’s surface, and creates a beautiful glow. “

During the dermaplaning process, unwanted facial hair that sits above the epidermis is also removed, preventing it from growing back in thicker.

What type of results should someone expect from dermaplaning?

Dermaplaning leaves skin smooth, brightened and tightened. Results last about 4-8 weeks, depending on your skin type and metabolism. Vellus hair, aka peach fuzz, will slowly grow back over the course of a month. It may feel a bit rough for a day or two as it breaks the surface, usually about two weeks after your treatment.

Terminal hairs—the thicker darker hairs, usually around the lip and chin—will come back sooner than they would with waxing or root-based removal methods. Laser hair removal is a better long-term fix for terminal hairs.

Who is dermaplaning best for?

Dermaplaning is excellent for most skin types, but it’s especially great for more delicate or thin skin that can’t tolerate abrasive exfoliation methods, and skin prone to redness or broken capillaries. (Not-so-fun fact: Suction can worsen those conditions.)

People with heavier or darker facial hair tend to love dermaplaning because it instantly brightens skin by removing the dark shadow vellus hairs can cause—even around the eyes! Plus, it pairs well with facial laser hair removal.

Younger skin does not always do well with dermaplaning, so, as a rule of thumb, the treatment is recommended for people over 25. If you have active acne, talk to your skincare provider:, dermaplaning could cause further irritation, but a SkinSpirit professional can recommend an alternative.

Are there any risks or side effects from dermaplaning?

woman in white towel received dermaplaning treatment

Skin may be a little tender or flushed following dermaplaning. Like most new-to-you skincare treatments, the first time may feel a bit weird. Karen describes it as an “almost numb” feeling.

“The little hairs we remove are also receptors to nerve endings; without them, you lack sensation on the skin’s surface,” she said. But there’s no cause for concern: That numbness resolves itself as you rebuild your outer layer of protective dead skin.

Since skin is vulnerable right after dermaplaning, it’s important to limit contact with bacteria to avoid a break out.

Karen noted that every client is different, and some people simply gravitate toward alternative exfoliation treatments. “I have found that some just don’t like how their skin feels and they prefer the DiamondGlow or microdermabrasion. That said, many love dermaplaning, and how smooth and soft their skin feels after—especially after you have done it a few times and your skin is acclimated and toned!”

How should someone prepare for a dermaplaning treatment?

Stop using your “actives” 3-5 days before your treatment. (That means retinols, topical medications, AHAs, or other topicals that might make skin more sensitive.) If your skin is irritated or inflamed—like a sunburn or chemical burn—reschedule your dermaplaning appointment.

Post-dermaplaning tips

After a dermaplaning treatment, it’s best to continue avoiding actives for 2-4 days, or until your skin feels “normal.”

“I always say: Gentle cleanser, neutral moisturizer, and physical SPF for the few days after,” Karen advised. “Avoid direct sun or other heat-heavy activities, like hot yoga, steam rooms, or golf days in the sun.”

Be sure to clean anything that will come into contact with your skin after dermaplaning—makeup tools, pillowcases, etc.

How much does professional dermaplaning cost?

Dermaplaning facials are one of the most popular treatments at SkinSpirit. The treatment costs about $200, because it’s only provided at a medspa-type clinic that’s operating under a physician’s license.

How is professional dermaplaning different from dermaplaning at home?

“The blades sold over the counter are flimsy, small, and really just meant for superficial touch ups, Karen said. “They are designed to remove the visible hairs from small areas—the upper lip for example—but not to exfoliate the skin properly. They can harbor bacteria, which can cause acne breakouts.”

Professional dermaplaning blades, in contrast, are the highest quality surgical steel, and they offer a thorough, yet gentle, exfoliation.

The quality of the practitioner and the blade is vitally important: If a dermaplaning treatment isn’t thorough, oils can collect under the skin and cause breakouts.

“I don’t recommend doing this at home,” Karen warned. “The tools available will more than likely irritate your skin more than help.”

Get started with dermaplaning! Schedule an appointment today.


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