Is dermaplaning the answer to our peach fuzz woes? Body+Soul explores the ins and outs of this technique.
Removing that fine layer of facial hair – the vellus hair or “peach fuzz” – is becoming increasingly popular due to a shaving technique called dermaplaning.
To find out more, two Body+Soul team members tried it. Here’s their verdict.
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Q: Why should I shave my face?
A: Dermaplaning or dermablading is a manual exfoliation technique that gently scrapes away dead skin cells and fine vellus hair to reveal a smoother and brighter complexion.
The idea is that removing that fine peach-fuzz hair also allows your products to penetrate deeper into the layers of your skin.
Plus, make-up sits on the skin, rather than getting trapped in the hairs and looking uneven.
Q: How does it work?
A: Usually done in a clinic or even a dermatologist’s office, it involves a very fine, sterile surgical blade or scalpel being used at a 45-degree angle to the skin to shave the vellus hair, which is usually most prominent on the cheeks beside the ears, and along the top lip and forehead.
There are also now DIY tools for use at home, and while these blades aren’t as fine or as sharp as the professional versions, they still do the trick.
Q: Will I grow a beard?
A: No. You can forget the old wives’ tale that once you shave, the hair grows back darker and thicker.
The specialised single- blade technique promises no change to hair growth.
The blade’s 45-degree angle means you move down and along the hair, never against it, and can get as close to the skin as possible without cutting it.
This is also said to ensure the hair doesn’t grow back blunt, which can make it feel and look coarse.
Q: Can everyone do it?
A: Dermaplaning isn’t suitable for anyone with inflamed skin or acne as it can cause irritation and nicks on the skin. It’s ideal for those with hormone- related hair changes or peach-fuzz hair that’s not dark enough to laser.
Q: Do I need to shave my face?
A: Not at all. Vellus hair, like all body hair, is natural and whether you choose to remove it or not is entirely up to you.
Kelsey Ferencak, beauty editor says:
“After the initial fear of putting a scalpel to your cheek, it’s really easy. Ensure your skin and tool are clean and dry. Keeping your skin taught with one hand, hold the blade in the other, at a 45-degree angle to your skin, and gently scrape downwards in short strokes, removing hair and build-up from your skin and blade as you go.
After your cheeks and jawline, do around your lips, chin and forehead, avoiding the eye area. Clean the tool with an antibacterial and gently cleanse your skin, then apply a hydrating serum or cream (I avoid active ingredients to ensure my skin doesn’t become irritated or inflamed).
You’ll instantly notice that your complexion is smoother and brighter. Results are dependent on your growth cycle, but usually last about six weeks. And the beauty of doing it at home is you can do it as often as you need.”
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Bree Player, features & lifestyle editor says:
“I came across dermaplaning in my quest to achieve skin like my six-month-old nephew (let me dream).
My initial reaction was ‘No way am I shaving my face’, but for the next month I’d find myself idly trawling through #dermaplaning TikTok videos, transfixed by images of women with the smoothest and glossiest of complexions. I knew I had to try it.
Unlike Kelsey, I wasn’t skilled enough to take a blade to my own face, terrified I’d nick myself – or worse, shave off an eyebrow. Some things are best left to the experts, which is how I found myself in a dermablading session at The Clinic in Sydney ($220; theclinic.net.au).
Quick and pain-free, the treatment involved the nurse scraping away all peach fuzz and impurities – which felt like a fingernail lightly running over my skin. It was followed up by a Société Oxygenation Peel to deeply cleanse and hydrate.
When I glimpsed my glowy, dewy face in the elevator mirror as I left, I knew I’d be back for my next treatment in the recommended 4-8 weeks.
For your first time, I advise going to a professional – not only is it safer, and likely to give you a more thorough result, but you also have someone to answer all your questions and advise you on aftercare.”