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Dermaplaning, sorry, I am intrinsically opposed to it!

This post is incredibly derisive and always stirs up an argument between the skin pros that do and the skins pros that don’t but……. Dermaplaning, sorry,
I am intrinsically opposed to it! ????????

I’m a ‘corneotherapist’ which means I respect & nurture the corneocyte cells.

Yes I do carry out chemical peeling but it works COMPLETELY DIFFERENTLY particularly when using a system like Ekseption that is progressive not aggressive! The peels I use in-salon, break down the keratinised protein bonds that hold surface corneocyte cells onto the stratum corneum; allowing them to naturally release without any obvious shedding/ flaking/ peeling, speeding up cellular turnover which slows down with age, dehydration & incorrect or poor skin care. It does not SCRAPE them off prematurely with a scalpel leaving premature keratinocytes that aren’t up to the job of defending our skin from pathogenic bacteria or preventing trans epidermal water loss!

Yes, that’s what dermaplaning is! The scraping/ shaving of the ENTIRE face- nose, forehead – everywhere!

I literally have no clue as to why anyone brought this treatment to market or why so many skin ‘pro’s’ didn’t/ don’t think to question it!

The argument for dermaplaning is that it removes vellus hair and dead skin cells leaving a soft smooth surface that can absorb serums more efficiently.

My argument is:

1. Vellus hair serves a great purpose; it regulates our body temperature and it acts as a wick to bring sweat to the surface, without it, blocked pores are pretty much inevitable.

2. Our very vital natural barrier function which is made up of a lipid bi-layer, Microbiome & acid mantle is found on & around the very corneocytes that dermaplaning is prematurely removing. Our skins Microbiome may never be the same again and might take months to repopulate effective microbiata.
If our skins barrier is compromised we risk inflammation such as acne, rosacea, dermatitis, eczema, skin that is sore, reactive & more prone to photo ageing/ pigmentation & post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

Dermaplaners will tell you that vellus hair can’t develop into terminal hair so it’s fine to continually carry out this treatment. ????

My experience as an electrologist of 37 yrs is yes, they are ABSOLUTELY RIGHT – technically hormones have to be involved for this to happen BUT the blunting of the end of a hair means it WILL come through feeling prickly and appear thicker. ????

I see it EVERY DAY under a mag lamp!

Has the world actually gone mad??????

There are also claims of ‘it’s been scientifically proven that shaving doesn’t cause women’s facial hair to worsen ‘. Well that my friends is a lie. To date there have been no clinical tests on a woman’s face- they have all been carried out on mens leg & chest hair!

It’s easy to get misinformation onto the first page of Google when most salons in the world offer this treatment!

‘But men shave everyday and their skin’s fine’

Well actually no, many men’s skin is NOT fine- many men choose a beard cause their skin’s too sensitive, many men only shave once or twice a week cause their skin can’t take it.
Their skin is 20% thicker and more oily than women’s so their ability to cope with daily shaving is generally better than women’s though.
Also, do you see men shaving their forehead, upper cheeks and nose??? ????????

Womens hormones are constantly changing throughout her life; from puberty to pregnancy to menopause.
Most dermaplaning clients are likely to be on The Pill, have a Mirena Coil or be taking HRT and whilst these don’t contain testosterone they do contain progestins which will kick in androgen receptors found in the dermal papilla.

Yep, androgen receptors are found on all vellus hairs and it only takes a shift in hormone levels for them to become stimulated and turn from soft, wispy, almost invisible vellus hair into strong terminal beard hair!

Just watch a pre pubescent boys ‘bum fluff’ turn into a man’s beard when DHT androgens kick in! – the once vellus hair will link up with the sebaceous gland and will fall out as the new terminal hair starts to grow.
Look at how our pubic and underarm hair change during puberty; it’s not exactly rocket science, why would anyone believe this utter BS that is being fed to the consumer?

So whilst dermaplaning isn’t responsible for causing vellus hair to become terminal hair, the combination of having it done whilst at the same time having fluctuating hormone levels is potentially a recipe for disaster.

Salons who claim they’ve been doing it for 20yrs with no complaints; well I’d love to know their actual client retention rate for this treatment because
1. Most clients don’t complain, they just don’t come back.
2. Or are they coming back because they feel they HAVE no choice cause their hair growth IS indeed worse?

I don’t make this stuff up, I see it every day and the dermatologists I respect and follow are also of the opinion that dermaplaning and dermabrasion are too aggressive and can lead to acne and inflammation.

There are so many other treatments available for a smooth, glowing complexion that ARE gentle, effective and promote healthy skin.
Also, I hasten to add, much more enjoyable and still effectively transdermally deliver serums & mesotherapy into the skin.

I guess there are therapists who are better at it than others; therapists that make sure their clients are potentially good candidates ie; their skin is very strong & healthy, that they have fantastic nutrition & get them on good skincare products & protocols including daily SPF 50 but this doesn’t guarantee a good response & sadly, as I keep saying- we’re not a regulated industry- ANYONE can carry out this treatment and even more worryingly you can DIY!???????? check out ‘dermaplaning gone wrong’ on Google images!

Why risk it if you don’t have to?????????
Is it really that important that your foundation is as flawless in real life as a tiktok filter makes it appear?
Are we women really that vain?

I see women day in, day out, with full on beards! These poor women are beyond self conscious and paying to rid themselves of their testosterone fuelled hair growth with regular electrolysis treatments. These women have my heart felt sympathy, I often cry with them! But those with invisible peach fuzz?
I’ve been accused of ‘invalidating peoples insecurities’ well maybe I am, but seriously- come on ladies; I may be in the beauty industry but I just don’t get it!! ????????

The amount and colour of vellus hair usually depends on genetics.
I accept there are cases when vellus hair can be darker & long on the sideburn area and obviously it can be a problem when applying foundation/ powder. I acknowledge that it can be upsetting for some, particularly if you’re Asian or black or maybe have Cushing’s syndrome or hypertrichosis.

If you insist on having it removed with dermaplaning perhaps just get the affected area done instead of scraping the entire face?

Alternatively, I now offer an ‘Alkaline Wash’ which although not proven to be permanent like electrolysis, can sometimes be a permanent solution to vellus hair or at very least will improve it (unlike dermaplaning) as it not only breaks the hair down but also has a destructive effect on the germinative cells within the hair bulge. This is definitely a better option for vellus hair removal and also gives the skin a chemical peel at the same time.

If you have an excessive amount of vellus hair you should talk to your Doctor, you may have an undiagnosed medical condition.

Whilst you’re there, it’s worth asking the Dr about Spironolactone- studies have shown a decrease in darkening, coarseness and depth of terminal hair.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2357784/#:~:text=Subsequent%20studies%20have%20largely%20confirmed,and%20decreased%20hair%20shaft%20diameter.

If you suffer with anorexia or bulimia you may experience ‘lanugo’ hair ( the type babies are sometimes born with) which is a bit ‘furry’ so different in appearance to vellus hair. It is believed it grows in response to the body’s inability to keep warm due to malnutrition. I would really hope that no salon would consider removing this cause someone who is malnourished will certainly not heal well.

Terminal hair is very different; it’s dark, coarse, strong, obvious, women don’t need it and it can seriously affect lifestyle & mental health. We can destroy the follicle & blood supply with electrolysis so it’s a no brainer IF you can afford it!
If you can’t, find a technical college and become a model for a student.- They will be very grateful!

Going back to hormones….

Women have testosterone too; it’s produced in the ovaries and adrenal glands. Some women naturally have more than the average & they may experience more facial & body hair, male pattern baldness, acne, possibly an enlarged clitoris, smaller breast size, deeper voice & an increased muscle mass. Irregular menstrual cycles, low libido, changes in mood & in
more severe cases such as PCOS, it can cause infertility and obesity.

Now obviously dermaplaning is a woman’s treatment but what if she’s going for regular dermaplaning and her androgen levels are also unknowingly rising?

What if she develops PCOS?
What if she develops Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) or has over active adrenal glands producing excessive cortisol and/ or adrenaline?
What if she develops diabetes (this should definitely be contraindicated btw) or very commonly, insulin resistance? (pre diabetic) -If the body can’t process sugars properly hormone levels are inevitably affected, potentially causing facial hair to grow.

What if she’s taking high blood pressure medication such as Minoxidil, steroids or various other prescribed medications that can exacerbate hair growth?

What if she’s taking DHEA – an otc supplement often taken during menopause?

What if she is naturally very low in testosterone and has been prescribed it for improving libido?

What if she’s going through menopause & oestrogen levels are depleting? She’ll ultimately end up with a higher ratio of free testosterone and this can of course cause facial hair to grow (and head hair to thin!)
Ask about micronised progesterone HRT which is chemically identical to the human hormone- avoid fake hormones if you can!

Hormonal changes during pregnancy
can also cause hair to grow- leave them alone, within 6 months of giving birth these usually disappear so don’t mess with them- just cut if necessary.

I think you’ll agree the ‘what if’s?’ accounts for the large majority of women at some point(s) in their life so most women are at risk of developing terminal hair whilst also having dermaplaning!

There are a huge amount of therapist’s offering dermaplaning, many of whom are level 2 and have no advanced consultation skills – probing questions MIGHT be asked but it’s unlikely.

These same therapists don’t understand hair growth like an electrologist and when clients get to the point where their hair has become terminal they will advise waxing.????????

‘I wax my legs and the hair growth has got finer- isn’t it the same on the face?’

No! ( and that’s another reason I don’t wax above the brow! ????????)

I don’t know exactly why but the same rule most definitely does not apply to leg hair despite what you may read or have been told!

We have three stages of hair growth and varying cycles so if you’ve been shaving your legs for years ALL of your follicles will have a hair protruding and each of these hairs will feel prickly cause you’ve ’blunt ended’ them. When you have them waxed they will obviously start to grow through slower & finer cause they’ve been ripped out and they will become sparse as the differing hair cycles come through at varying times. I’ve waxed my legs since I was 17 and over the years they have slowly depleted- I rarely think about them these days and many of my regular waxing clients no longer have any leg hair to speak of- this may of course be due to age too though!

BUT Please don’t EVER pluck or wax the face! Waxing (mass tweezing) distorts the hair follicle, causes an increase in blood supply to the root, leading to really strong, deep rooted, resistant hairs that grow really quickly! When you eventually take the decision to have electrolysis it’s going to take waaaay longer, will be more expensive and time consuming because we are inserting straight probes into a follicle that could actually be curly! ???????? Having electrolysis as soon as you see a dark hair means we can GET RID OF IT FOREVER IN JUST A FEW SESSIONS BECAUSE THE FOLLICLE IS STILL STRAIGHT & THEY’RE EASY TO TREAT- SO DON’T DELAY!

Yep, it’s no surprise that those ‘vellus’ hairs might not always stay vellus and of course dermaplaning may be unfairly blamed, but the combination of hormonal changes + dermaplaning = potentially big problem!

Then again many of us lose the vellus hair as we age too! ????????

Now, supposedly dermaplaning shouldn’t be carried out on terminal hairs BUT I’m in the industry and I know it happens! Most salons won’t turn someone away just because they’ve got a few terminal hairs amongst the peach fuzz.

In my 37 yrs in the treatment room I can catagorically tell you MY clients believe shaving and/or dermaplaning has exacerbated their facial hair & caused acne or some kind of inflammatory, reactive condition.
Indeed it’s not unusual for them to have such reactive skin they can’t even use a sensitive skin cleanser on it without coming up in hives!

Dermaplaning IS shaving regardless of whether you use a scalpel & I will never be convinced otherwise!????????

If you’re going into the beauty industry please learn electrolysis! We are a dying breed and this service is still actually very much in demand because laser hair removal is NOT a permanent method of removal- just a method of reduction!
In the 80’s/90’s electrolysis was such a popular treatment but sadly, when NVQ came in and lasers started to make an impact, therapists stopped training in electrolysis! I guess because salons stopped offering it, newbies don’t bother to train in it!????????

Apologies to those in the industry who offer dermaplaning; it’s an emotive subject & I will, no doubt have riled you but this is MY experience as a professional, my clients experience and the experience of many others. I recently did a tiktok that went viral and the majority of those who commented had also experienced acne & a worsening of facial hair as a result of dermaplaning.

I could easily offer this service if I wanted to- it’s popular and I get at least two enquiries every week for it, but I truly believe it is THE worst treatment to ever hit our industry! If you understand skin science why on Earth would you promote the obliteration of The Natural Barrier Function? ????????

It is not my intention to cause an argument but to provoke thought.

Thanks for reading to the end!
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#dermaplaning #electrolysis #vellushair #shaving #pernenanthairremovalchatteris #electrolysischatteris

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