Dermaplaning: what is it and does it work?
Dermaplaning is the process of exfoliating the top layer of the skin (epidermis) and essentially shaving off the fine hair (peach fuzz) from the face. (Image: Joshua Lewis / Seattle Refined)

Dermaplaning: what is it and does it work?

The request came in the form of an email.

“Are you up for this?” my editor asked?

“Yes!” I typed back. I skipped the details that followed, I was so excited.

Who wouldn’t want a little pampering at SkinSpirit (formally Calidora) in Seattle? The place had always been a mystery to me.

SkinSpirit doesn’t have a storefront – it’s sandwiched in between Village Maternity and Kiehl’s in the UVillage, a flight of stairs leads you to it. I always envisioned it as a place where those “in the know,” sit in the lap of luxury.

It wasn’t until later, that I read the fine print; I’d be reviewing something called dermaplaning. “Hmm,” I thought. “Maybe it’s some sort of scrub?”

I ran the term through Google. First, an image of a scalpel popped up. Then an article with the headline, “Face Shaving For Women.”

What have I gotten myself into? A little more research revealed the answer.

Dermaplaning is the process of exfoliating the top layer of the skin (epidermis) and essentially shaving off the fine hair (peach fuzz) from the face.

A surgical grade scalpel is used during the procedure. In the end it’s supposed to help with fading fine lines and wrinkles and making the skin smoother.

“Why not?” I said to myself. Lately I’ve been looking like I’m going through puberty again, I could use a little skin smoothing and brightening.

My immediate impression of SkinSpirit, is that it feels like part spa, part dermatologist. It’s cozy and luxurious like I imagined, and the people who work there seem to know a lot about skin. My impressions were solidified when I met my esthetician Adriana. To say her skin is amazing, is really an understatement. It’s almost like she has a filter or a special “halo” light around her face, so smooth and dewy. When she informed me she does dermplaning on her face, I was sold.

First, Adriana cleaned my face, then got right down to it. She moved the surgical grade scalpel across my bone dry face, in quick strokes. It felt like the end of a piece of paper sweeping across my cheeks, forehead and temples. There was something so satisfying about imagining all of the “stuff” being shaved away, kind of like the feeling you get when using those nose pore strips. After about 20 minutes, Adriana was done, and of course I asked to see the stuff she’d collected. It wasn’t as gross as I thought, but man, I apparently had a lot of hair on my face.

We followed up with a microdermabrasion on my nose (the scalpel can’t move across bendy places on your face, there’s too much of a chance of getting cut).

Adriana followed up with a facial which she recommends. It costs extra, but she says it enhances the results of the face shaving, aka dermaplaning.

Afterward Adriana notified me that I have NO signs of lines OR aging, (yippee) but my pores were pretty clogged, she says I could benefit from a standing facial appointment.

I left SkinSpirit glowing and my face felt smooth and subtle, like a baby's bottom! After two days however, I started to look like I’d gotten sunburn (yes black people burn!) the skin all around my nose was peeling. Adriana says this is normal, it’s the dead layers coming off. Depending on the sensitivity of your skin, you may not want to get this before a big event.

The procedure costs about $99.

Was it worth it? Would I be willing to have a scalpel at my face again? You bet.

Sign Up For Our Newsletter And Event Updates

Want all the latest on dining, fashion, travel, events and more delivered straight to your inbox? Subscribe to receive exclusive newsletters and special offers from Seattle Refined! Enter your email address below to receive the latest updates.