Dermaplaning is a skin resurfacing procedure that people use to give the skin a smoother appearance. It uses a blade to remove the top layer of the skin.

When a certified professional performs dermaplaning, experts generally consider it safe. However, a person should not try to do dermaplaning on themselves or others at home.

Keep reading for more information on how dermaplaning works and what to expect before and after the procedure.

a man examining a woman's face before a dermaplaning procedureShare on Pinterest
Dermaplaning may reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Dermaplaning is a skin treatment that uses a specialized blade — similar to a surgical scalpel called a dermatome — to remove dead skin and hairs. People may also refer to it as microplaning or blading.

The procedure aims to give facial skin a smooth, youthful, and radiant appearance. As well as smoothing skin and removing “peach fuzz,” proponents claim that dermaplaning can help with acne scars, dry skin, sun-damaged skin, and small wrinkles.

The basic concept of dermaplaning is the same as shaving, but in place of a razor, it uses a scalpel-type blade to remove skin cells, hair, and other debris that may be present on the surface of the skin.

The continuous exposure of the top layer of skin to UV rays, environmental toxins, and irritants means that it may begin to appear dull. Dermaplaning removes the top layer of skin to reveal newer skin cells that may make a person’s skin appear smoother and glowing.

Reports on the effectiveness of dermaplaning are mostly anecdotal, and treatment results may vary from person to person.

An esthetician, plastic surgeon, or dermatologist can perform skin resurfacing procedures such as dermaplaning. A person should choose a professional who has appropriate training and a valid license.

When a professional performs dermaplaning, it is a safe procedure that requires very little preparation. Prior to the procedure, the professional should use a gentle cleanser with alpha or beta hydroxy acids to help loosen dead skin cells. The face needs to dry completely before the procedure.

During the procedure, the professional will use a sterilized 10-gauge scalpel that they will hold at a 45-degree angle to the skin. They will pull the skin tight and use the blade to make short motions against the grain of the hair on the skin.

Following the procedure, they will often apply a moisturizer to the person’s skin before providing them with a post-procedure care guide.

A person will require little downtime, if any, after a dermaplaning treatment. They will not need to take time off work, and they may even be able to fit their treatment session in during a lunch break.

A person can undergo dermaplaning as frequently as every 2 weeks.

Dermaplaning is not a medical procedure, and medical insurance does not cover it. Costs can vary depending on a person’s location, and providers will charge per treatment session.

The provider should be able to give a person specific pricing information ahead of the procedure.

Dermaplaning provides several potential benefits, all of which are cosmetic. There are no medical reasons to get dermaplaning treatment.

People interested in dermaplaning are often looking to achieve a more youthful look by removing dead skin, small hairs, and minor imperfections in their complexion. Some potential benefits include:

  • reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, acne scarring, or sun-damaged skin
  • restoring a youthful glow to the skin
  • removing small hairs that can hold onto oil and debris

The effectiveness of dermaplaning depends largely on the professional’s experience and the person’s expectations. A person may wish to check the reviews of previous customers before booking an appointment.

The results of dermaplaning can vary. A person may find that the procedure did not change their appearance enough to justify the cost.

Choosing the right professional could make a difference. Improper techniques could lead to disappointing results and the risk of minor injuries.

Only a certified or well-trained professional should perform dermaplaning. When an esthetician performs the procedure, a person can generally consider it to be safe. Possible risks of dermaplaning include:

  • small nicks or cuts
  • redness on the skin
  • appearance of whiteheads following the procedure
  • infections or scarring, although these are not common

A person should expect the professional to perform the dermaplaning in a clean environment with sterile equipment. If the treatment area does not appear clean, the person should not go ahead with the procedure.

It is important to ensure that the professional has proper training and experience. People can check the local laws and make sure that the provider is operating with the proper certificates and licenses.

The procedure is relatively short and should take less than an hour. A professional may recommend a person to use a chemical peel following the dermaplaning, as this procedure will have prepared the skin for a peel. The chemical peel will be an additional cost.

The skin may appear red and feel a bit tender for a few days following dermaplaning. A person should avoid UV light exposure for a few days and take precautions, such as wearing sunscreen with a high sun protection factor (SPF), when out in the sun.

If they wish to, a person can plan to have another appointment for dermaplaning within a few weeks. The results do not last a long time.

A person does not generally need to prepare for their appointment, other than arriving with a clean, makeup-free face. A professional should provide any specific instructions for facial care in advance of the appointment.

If a person develops sunburn prior to the appointment, they should consider rescheduling the procedure. If they have specific medical conditions that could affect dermaplaning, such as active acne or other skin conditions, they should check with a doctor before booking the treatment.

It is not advisable to use a home dermaplaning kit. Only a certified or well-trained professional should perform the dermaplaning procedure in a clean and appropriate environment.

If a person wishes to use a home kit, they should do so with caution. The risk of complications and poor results will be much higher.

Microdermabrasion is a similar procedure to dermaplaning, and it typically produces comparable results. Instead of using a scalpel, microdermabrasion uses a rough surface to smooth out the skin.

Microdermabrasion can last for several months, but a person may require several appointments to get the desired results.

Dermaplaning is a procedure that removes dead skin and small hairs to rejuvenate the skin.

A person should only use a qualified professional for the procedure to ensure that it is safe.

Dermaplaning can be expensive, and insurance does not cover it. The most common side effects are red skin and small nicks from the blade.