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Microdermabrasion Vs Dermaplaning

What are the benefits of dermaplaning compared with other skin-exfoliating treatments?

Dermaplaning differs from exfoliation techniques such as chemical peels and microdermabrasion because there is no chemical product, suction or crystals involved in the treatment.

Instead, dermaplaning uses a sterile blade to gently scrape dead skin cells and "peach fuzz" vellus hair from your client’s face to make the skin radiant and smooth.

It's among the most popular beauty treatments on TikTok but although it’s trending at the moment, it’s nothing new – Marilyn Monroe reportedly shaved her face to help her achieve her bombshell look.

Dr Ahmed El Muntasar, a GP and advanced facial aesthetics doctor, says, “The treatment is essentially a mechanical exfoliation, so it gets rid of the dead epidermis at the surface to encourage healthier-looking skin.”

By removing the dulling peach fuzz and dead cells, the skin looks brighter and more refreshed. “It’s also perfect for aiding absorption of your skincare products and for supporting perfect make-up application,” adds Jenna Unwin, a semi-permanent make-up artist, skincare technician and founder of the Million Dollar Facial system, which features dermaplaning.

Is dermaplaning dangerous?

When carried out properly, dermaplaning can be beneficial for the skin; however, as you would expect with people taking blades to their own faces, there are dangers when consumers carry out dermaplaning without proper training or skin knowledge.

Dr El Muntasar comments, “The blades people are using could be very sharp, and sometimes they can make cuts in the skin. So, you introduce the risk of regular infection, bloodborne infections and cellulitis into the face. Cellulitis can then seep into the skin in the area around the eyes and cause periorbital cellulitis, which can affect vision.

“You can also risk causing damage and scarring to skin of colour, and you can risk post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation due to the trauma on the skin. So, in my opinion, I don’t agree with untrained people performing the treatment.”

Aside from cutting the skin with the blades, there is a risk of damage to the stratum corneum. “At home, people might be over-exfoliating, which can result in an impaired barrier, leaving them with sensitive, red and irritated skin,” says Unwin.

Dr Maryam Zamani, oculoplastic surgeon, facial aesthetics doctor and founder of MZ Skin, concludes, “Dermaplaning needs to be done correctly for maximal benefit. While it is a simple procedure, risks include redness, skin congestion and breakouts, and potential for infection.”

What happens in a professional dermaplaning treatment?

Of course, properly trained beauty professionals will be able to maximise the benefits of dermaplaning without running the risk of injury and infection.

Explaining how to properly carry out professional dermaplaning, Unwin says, “A trained therapist takes many factors into consideration before dermaplaning the skin, such as skin type and condition. They should carry out a full consultation and skin analysis. The skin should be prepped, then a balm may also be used to help with dry skin.

“A thorough dermaplaning treatment will work lightly back and forth around the contours of the face, and the therapist will finish with beneficial serums and SPF, ending with full aftercare advice. They will also be working in a sterile environment, reducing the risk of post-procedure breakouts.”

Dr El Muntasar emphasises that it’s important to lubricate skin properly to avoid uncomfortable scraping and to use clean blades to minimise the risk of infection. He also says that therapists and clients need to acknowledge that the treatment isn’t suitable for everyone, while Dr Zamani adds, “I would recommend not undergoing this treatment if you have active acne or any other active skin condition.”

After the treatment, you can soothe your client’s skin with an appropriate moisturising product and then apply sunscreen to protect it.

Is dermaplaning painful?

Side effects may include slight redness in your client’s face for a few hours post-treatment. Dermaplaning is similar to shaving. During a dermaplaning procedure, your client shouldn’t feel any pain. You use an electronic or manual dermaplaning blade to scrape over their skin and this will continue for around 20 minutes, as you gently work to exfoliate.

Your client may notice that their skin looks brighter immediately after a dermaplaning treatment. As any redness subsides, they will be able to see the results even more clearly.

How long does dermaplaning last?

Results of dermaplaning aren’t long lasting. After three weeks to a month, the results will have faded and so clients will have to have continuous treatments to maintain results.

Is dermaplaning the most effective exfoliating treatment?

If clients are primarily looking to remove vellus hair, then professional dermaplaning is the treatment of choice. However, other professional beauty treatments can achieve similarly glowing results – albeit without the element of hair removal.

Microdermabrasion uses fine crystals and a vacuum to physically exfoliate dead skin cells on the skin’s surface and can help with fine lines and pigmentation. Chemical exfoliation is also an option, where acid peels use ingredients such as glycolic acid to exfoliate the skin by dissolving the bonds that hold dead skin cells together.

Dr Zamani adds, “An example of a treatment that uses exfoliating acids to help remove dead skin cells from the face is Hydrafacial. Skin is cleansed and exfoliated before being prepped for a light fruit acid peel, then a vacuum technology gently extracts impurities. This is a customisable treatment that improves skin clarity, tone and hydration for immediate results with no downtime.”

Due to its ability to encourage dewy-looking skin and remove hair on the face – something many people are self-conscious of – dermaplaning is continuing to grow in popularity in salons, skin clinics and spas. However, it’s important that proper training is carried out and that beauty professionals continue to educate clients on the risks of carrying out DIY treatments at home.

Credit - Professional Beauty

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