Dermaplaning: Hollywood's Biggest Skincare Secret

Updated 08/10/19
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Celebs seem to possess naturally glowing skin, luscious locks, and wide-awake eyes—partly because of their good genes, partly due to their amazing makeup artists and hair stylists, and partly because of some very well-kept industry secrets. Dermaplaning is one of the latter: Chances are, even if you haven’t heard of it, you’ve seen the results.

We spoke with Dr. Stafford Broumard, a NYC-based plastic surgeon and Associate Clinical Professor of Plastic Surgery at Mount Sinai Medical Center, and begged him to divulge Hollywood’s best-kept skin secret. Scroll through the story below to find out how celebs use dermaplaning to sculpt their cheekbones, remove facial hair, brighten their complexions, and more.

What Is Dermaplaning?

Woman getting face professionally dermaplaned.
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First things first: what exactly is dermaplaning? Broumard says it’s a skin procedure that involves using a sharp tool to exfoliate the surface of your skin, while also removing small, fine hairs. Basically, an esthetician or dermatologist will take a small scalpel and very gently scrape the surface of your skin using light, feathering strokes. If this sounds like something out of a horror movie, keep reading—you might be surprised.

What Are the Benefits of Dermaplaning?

Close up of woman with smooth, glowing skin.
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So what exactly does lightly scraping your skin with a scalpel accomplish? A lot, apparently. “Dermaplaning’s purpose is to give your skin an immediate exfoliation for a luminous glow that lasts a week,” Broumard says. “The benefits are dewy skin, faster cell turnover, and a smoother texture.” Physicians might recommend dermaplaning to anyone who is about to undergo a laser treatment or deep chemical peel, to allow the products to penetrate more deeply into the skin. Plus, the light “shaving” motion gets rid of light facial hairs while it exfoliates.

Who Benefits the Most From Dermaplaning?

“Anyone who has unwanted facial hair and anyone who wants exfoliation can benefit,” Broumard says. Dermaplaning is also great for anyone who is unable to use certain products or other exfoliating treatments, such as pregnant women or those with super-sensitive skin. “It’s an alternative way to lightly resurface the skin,” he says.

What's the Difference Between Dermaplaning and Dermabrasion?

Woman getting microdermabrasion by a dermatologist.
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Lest you get confused, dermaplaning is not in any way similar to dermabrasion, which is a mechanical exfoliation that uses micro-crystals and suctioning to create exfoliation. Dermabrasion is actually rarely done now, because of complications like infections and scarring. Dermaplaning, on the other hand, is, quick, easy, and requires no down time.

Does Dermaplaning Hurt?

This one’s easy: “Dermaplaning is virtually painless,” Broumard says. He notes that the only possible side effect is slight redness, which fades almost immediately.

Where Can I Get Dermaplaning?

Ask your esthetician if he or she is familiar with dermaplaning—if not, they can usually suggest someone who is. There are also other options: Broumard says the esthetic nurse in his plastic surgery practice performs their treatments. The important thing is to find someone who is experienced, adept, and skilled—they are holding a scalpel to your face, after all.

Dermaplaning at Home

Dermaflash Luxe dermaplaning set on a white background.

While professional dermaplaning definitely comes with its perks, there are also benefits of purchasing a DIY dermaplaning device. For starters, when you own your own dermaplaning tool you don't have to book pricy dermatologist appointments every time you want to exfoliate and de-fuzz your face.

Unlike professional dermaplaning tools, personal-use products are designed with safety guards so that it's very unlikely that you'd nick yourself in the process. If this sounds up your alley, check out the Dermaflash LUXE Anti-Aging Dermaplaning Exfoliation Device ($199). While it's certainly an investment, compared to regularly heading to the derm, it's a steal.

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