Move over, Microderm!
Dermaplaning is so much more than just shaving your face.
Let’s talk superficial, minimal downtime, mechanical exfoliation methods. Notice how we italicized mechanical? It refers to a method of removing dead and dull-looking epidermal cells via some form of friction-based contact with the skin whereby the layers are physically loosened and scraped off.
Microdermabrasion has long been the standard for mechanical exfoliation in the esthetics field using a minimally abrasive instrument to spray on the particles or sand away the outer layer of skin in the targeted areas causing the removal of the thicker, uneven outer layer of the skin known as the stratum corneum.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons website, “microdermabrasion helps to thicken your collagen, which results in a younger looking complexion.” Benefits of microdermabrasion are said to include:
- Reduce fine lines and wrinkles
- Improve hyperpigmentation (patches of darkened skin)
- Lessen the appearance of stretch marks.
- Reduce or eliminate enlarged pores
- Treat acne and the scars left by acne
We can appreciate the Society’s attempt to simplify the physiological processes involved in the skin’s rejuvenation for the above benefits by using the term thicken, but collagen induction (the actual term) can be done much more effectively, and ultimately cost you less in the long run, using microneedling or laser skin tightening. No amount of microdermabrasion you might ever do is going to affect changes deep enough in the dermal layers of the skin to revise hypotrophic scars and stretch marks the way microneedling can. For fine, lines, wrinkles, and loss of elasticity (sagging skin), our laser skin tightening leaves microdermabrasion in the dust, without the risks that come with aggressive microderm sessions such as uneven abrasion depths and broken capillaries.
But you know us, we love giving you all the information you need to make the best decisions for your skin. There are two types of microderm hand-pieces, a diamond-tip hand-piece designed to abrade (sand off) dead cells found in the outermost layer of the epidermis, and the crystal microdermabrasion hand-piece which uses a crystal-emitting nozzle to spray on fine crystals, such as aluminum oxide or sodium bicarbonate loosening up the top layers of the epidermis. Both hand-pieces will suction off the dead skin flakes and crystals simultaneously. The depth of the abrasion will be affected by the clinician’s pressure applied on the hand-piece as well as how long the suction is allowed to remain on the skin- both potential double-edged swords where results and side effects are concerned.
Dermaplaning uses a single-use, sterile medical-grade blade to slough off dead skin cells and peach fuzz, and stimulate new cells to emerge. Along with the dead cells, some minor friction is also applied to deeper epidermal layers which are not dead (like their stratum corneum sisters). This “trauma” to those deeper epidermal layers results in signaling to the dermal layers (dermis lies beneath the epidermis) to send their newer cells to the surface while stimulating fibroblast cells to produce more collagen and improve the overall tautness of the skin. Regular razors from the drugstore won’t be as sharp—or as effective—as the medical-grade scalpel used at the office. Dermaplaning can be performed as an add-on service to our Deep Decongesting or Signature facials, or on its own during the Dermaplaning Exfoliating Facial.
Our Dermaplaning Exfoliating Facial includes deep cleansing with oxygenating steam application, surgical blade mechanical exfoliation to gently but precisely remove some of the outer most layer of the epidermis called the stratum corneum. We follow with an enzyme treatment designed to soften and dissolve remaining dead skin flakes and particles. Finally, application of growth factor rich serum and moisturizer is performed. All this to reveal smoother, brighter skin, while leaving the face free of peach fuzz for approximately four weeks.
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