I’m sure most of you are familiar with dermaplaning. It’s heavily circulated through instagram and twitter where Esthetician’s everywhere are reinforcing the technique over and over for flawless looking skin. For those less than familiar with the term it’s basically a technique that uses a scalpel, yes the kind surgeons make incisions with, to remove the vellus hair and dead skin from your face. The results? supposedly, ultra smooth, fresh, and brighter skin.
The before and after pictures are wowing and really made me consider trying it, because who doesn’t want to glow? However, there was something about this technique that didn’t sit well. After all, the vellus hair is on your face for a reason.
Last week I interviewed my best friend, Christina that had this treatment done on her skin. We were both really excited about the results of her skin looking baby bottom smooth and dewy. But, things went way off the grid.
In the interview below you can read how her experience went with the dermaplaning technique.
What piqued your interest about trying dermaplaning?
Christina: Social media for sure. I follow a lot of estheticians and skin care accounts on Twitter and Instagram. It was the next cool thing to try because everyone was trying it and it was popular.
There are many fads in the skincare industry. There are many things that may be reinforced again and again just because it’s trendy, BUT it doesn’t necessarily mean you should try it or that’s its right for your skin type.
What appeased you about dermaplaning?
Christina: I’m a naturally a hairy person and so if I get this I’m like, my skin is gonna glow! Like in the before and after pics. It’ll be a quick fix!
Prior to hearing about dermaplaning craze were you concerned with the vellus hairs on your face? Did they ever give you problems such as making makeup look less smooth, dull texture?
Christina: It was a texture thing. Anyone who is a hairy person understands. I naturally get mustaches and chin hairs so I wanted to remove them.
Vellus hairs are the light colored hairs on your body they are responsible for helping to deliver oils to the skin. If you notice that your vellus hair is changing to darker hair and increasing in frequency on different parts of your body this can be a sign of a hormonal imbalance.
What were your skincare concerns prior to going to the esthetician?
Christina: texture . the top layer of dead skin and evenness. That’s what I thought dermaplaning would improve.
Was this your first professional spa like experience?
Christina: I usually get the hydra facials at Sephora. This wasn’t my first experience, but this was my first time seeking out a medical care professional for my skin. I went to a dermatologist office to get it done. The spa was super relaxing and upscale. There was a nice comfortable ambiance. And I thought it was going to be a really great experience overall.
Can you walk me through exactly what your esthi did during your spa experience?
Christina: When I first got there, I was instructed to sign this paper– a liability clause that this treatment could potentially be harmful. She didn’t do any consultation. I laid down she looked through the magnifying lamp and she said, you have really nice skin asked what I used on my skin. Then she cleaned it with pads soaked in this solution without explanation; it lasted at most 2 minutes and that was it!
If your Esthi doesn’t do a consultation just grab your purse and leave sis, cause she doesn’t care about your skin. A consultation is a way to find out your at home routine, areas you want to improve, and most importantly medications/health problems that can interfere with certain facial procedures.
After she cleaned my face she put a solution that smelled strong sort of like acetone and it made my face feel tacky. She said she was supposed to put this on before dermaplaning. Then she finally starts the dermaplaning process. In certain areas, I could feel it scraping against my skin. It sounded like fingernails scratching across your skin that’s the sound and feel it makes. It isn’t painful just uncomfortable.
She applied a serum prior to microdermabrasion. I remember the serum feeling tingly and a burning sensation in certain areas like cheeks, bridge of forehead and my nose. Then she would go back in with a scalpel and remove hair that she missed and continue with the microdermabrasion. It lasted at most 5 to 6 minutes. It felt super quick and impersonal. And lasted 45 minutes. After, she did extractions on my nose and cheeks forehead, and chin.
Double exfoliation is a no-no. I think there are certain skin types that can tolerate this but certainly not all. Dermaplaning is already an exfoliation treatment. A hydrating treatment like a jelly mask would’ve been best to calm down the newly exfoliated skin.
After that, she went through the regular parts of a skincare routine moisturizer and spf.
Did your esthetician give you aftercare advice on how to properly treat your skin?
Christina:No none at all. I had to ask her. She said you’ll experience stubble in 2 to 3 weeks. It’ll feel thicker but it won’t be noticeable by anyone else. It was very terrible service and unhelpful she didn’t even tell me when to come back.
Homegirl clearly doesn’t care about building clientele and seems to lack overall passion for the industry. Your esthi should take the time out to thoroughly explain a proper home care regimen along with products. Besides, the goal is to maintain your skin in between spa treatments.
Afterward, she showed me a mirror and I was wowed because it looked really nice and it felt really smooth, but It didn’t feel fresh and renewed. Obviously, when you shave other parts of your body it looks brighter cause you removed all the hair that’s exactly what I experienced, but it didn’t feel fresh, it felt raw and tinder if anything.
When was the moment of regret?
Christina: When I got home I realized she scratched me on my nose and on my cheek cause it was burning. To remedy it, I used adaptogen cream by Youth to The People. I stopped using my foaming cleanser, and I stopped using toners even my alcohol-free toner cause it burned. I would use tamanu oil, aloe, and sunscreen and my night time routine was the same a part from sunscreen I would just use aloe.
In this case, Christina’s skin barrier was compromised meaning her skin was inflamed, tinder, and extremely parched. When this happens you have to be very, very gentle with your skin. I explain exactly how in this blog post.
My face is super dry and it was flaking and its the driest its ever been. I use half of my adaptogen cream and its not even soaking in.
How does your skin feel now?
Christina: Its been 5 days since the treatment. My hair is growing back I can feel it on the chin and slightly on the cheeks. I’m getting really terrible acne– I’m getting the acne that’s under the skin. I’ve always had hormonal acne but never this! So I’m sure it had to stem from this.
These appear to be razor like bumps that the dermaplaning triggered by the removal of the hair from trapped oil. Dermaplaning is definitely not for all skin types!
What would you recommend for someone considering the same treatment?
Christina: I would say do your research. Even on the procedure, you’re getting. Be really cautious about treatments that take a one size fits all approach. I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone cause would you take your fingernails and scratch it across your face daily, granted you do it once a month but it’s irritating and I don’t think it’s healthy for your skin!
Three weeks later and the irritation has gone away and her skin is healing beautifully.