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What is dermaplaning and is it actually safe to shave your face at home?

By Malavika Pradeep

Aug 1, 2021

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It’s 2021 and gen Z interests are more dynamic than ever. With dynamic interests come dynamic trends which, in turn, creates one of the most unpredictable markets to cater to. Presently gripping 3 a.m. satisfying videos on YouTube after food slimes is a cosmetic procedure guaranteed to make your skin smoother than a baby’s butt.

What is dermaplaning?

Dermaplaning is a cosmetic procedure that removes the top layers of your skin using a surgical scalpel. The procedure gently scrapes away dead skin cells and facial hair (often referred to as ‘peach fuzz’) to reveal softer skin which is even in both tone and texture. In this regard, dermaplaning works as a physical exfoliant to remove barriers to effective skincare routines, meaning your serums would penetrate deeper than ever before. It also creates a smooth canvas for flawless makeup application.

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A post shared by Dr. Eman Abdallah د إيمان (@dremanabdallah)

Also known as microplaning and blading, dermaplaning is recommended for those looking to make their skin more youthful and even. Each 30-minute session can run between $150 and $250 depending on your location and provider. You may also be advised to add a chemical peel to your treatment. This is because your skin will be able to deeply absorb and benefit from a chemical peel right after dermaplaning in a way it can’t at other times. A chemical peel can cost an additional $150 to $300.

However, results only last until your peach fuzz decides to grow back. Dermatologists also recommend leaving a gap of one month between appointments. Patients with sensitive skin can even limit their treatments to one session per season.

This begs the question, is there an ‘ideal candidate’ for the procedure? What about the downtime suggested for recovery? “Those with active acne, infection or cold sores in the areas of concern should avoid dermaplaning,” said Doctor Jonquille Chantrey, cosmetic surgeon and founder of ØNE aesthetic studiø. In an interview with Harper’s Bazaar, Doctor Chantrey explained how dermaplaning may trigger the further spread of infections that can sometimes cause inflammation, pigmentation and permanent scarring.

Another reason to steer clear of the procedure, she explained, is “if this was used on darker hair in a patient with medical conditions such as Polycystic Ovaries Disease (who suffer from excess hair). Misuse could lead to potential worsening of hair growth.”

Unlike most cosmetic procedures, however, dermaplaning requires no downtime for recovery. The procedure is not invasive but superficial, remember? You may experience redness for two to three days after dermaplaning. You may also notice your skin looking super bright immediately after you’re finished with the treatment, but it takes a few days to appreciate the full results. As the redness subsides, you’ll be able to see the results more clearly.

Although there is no downtime required, experts stress on the need for proper hydration and sun protection post-treatment. Removing the top layer of your skin essentially makes it a moving target for harmful sun rays. So make sure to use SPF diligently afterwards.

Is it possible to dermaplane your face at home?

If you are someone camping out on BeautyTok, chances are that you must have already tried dermaplaning your face in the dorms with your roommate holding up a flashlight. With more than 1 billion views on #dermaplaning and 60 million on #dermaplane, the trend is kind of hard to breeze past.

With “My acne could never,” as the copypasta comment across the hashtag, dermaplaning videos on TikTok usually feature users effortlessly gliding a blade across their skin to tame their peach fuzz. Almost makes you believe that you could pull it off. Well, you can. But there are major downsides to the treatment if it’s not carried out properly.

“Over the last two years, I have treated scarring cases of patients who have seen trained practitioners for dermaplaningbut the scalpel was caught on hair and even dragged on the skin, leading to some permanent scarring,” said Doctor Chantrey. “Even with a guard it could lead to some damage if not carried out carefully.”

If you are an ‘ideal candidate’ for the procedure with a steady hand and heart, however, it all boils down to the tools that you want to use at home. “In a professional office setting, such as a dermatologist office or medical spa, the treatment is performed by a licensed aesthetician using a surgical blade that you can only purchase with a license,” said Rachel Roff, licensed esthetician and founder of Urban Skin RX. In an interview with Elle, Roff explained how professional-grade blades give deeper exfoliation that clients wouldn’t get when they perform it themselves.

However, a close second is the list of dermaplaning tools that you can purchase online. Make sure to invest in a quality dermaplaning tool and a cleanser to remove all the excess oil and dirt from your face before the treatment. And once you’re armed with both, grab some paper towels and join me as I guide you through the process.

1. Double-cleanse and prep your face

Before committing to the treatment, it’s essential to start with a nice and clean base. We want to keep infections to a minimum here. If you have makeup on, make sure to remove it using an oil or water-based cleanser. Most dermatologists suggest double-cleaning your face and then following up with toner after. Pat your skin dry and proceed.

2. Optional lubrication

An optional step before going in with the purchased hardware is to lubricate your face. This essentially helps the blade slide across your skin for a smoother and closer shave. Aloe vera gels are the most popular choice in this regard. Avoid slathering on the product, a generous amount is more than enough to do wonders.

3. Wield your blade

Take your blade in one hand and hold your skin taut with the other. Now place the blade at a 45-degree angle to your skin and start shaving in short, feathery strokes upward. Continue until you have covered the cheek and jawline area on both sides. Now repeat on the lip, chin, nose, forehead and neck, avoiding your brows, eyes and mouth. Avoid going over the same patch of skin twice and make sure to wipe off the debris on some tissues or towels. I can’t stress this enough but let’s do our best to minimise infections here, okay?

4. Follow and finish up

Once you’re done and dusted with the hard part, it’s time to pamper your skin a bit before heading out. SPF is crucial here. Apply generous amounts, follow up with some moisturiser and slay your makeup as usual. Oh, and make sure to toss that blade on your way out!

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♬ original sound - David Lawson

What is dermaplaning and is it actually safe to shave your face at home?


By Malavika Pradeep

Aug 1, 2021

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From Gigi to Doja, bubble braid is the versatile hair trend you can pull off all summer

By Malavika Pradeep

Jul 17, 2021

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It’s not every day that I braid my hair. On the days that I do, I skip ten reps of tricep extensions in the morning. To top off the physical strains required to pull off the classic hairstyle is a list of hybrid techniques—with names ranging from fishtail and mermaid to pull-through and rope twisted braids. For those pushed for both time and effort, there’s an effortless hair trend in town that I’d like to introduce you to: bubble braids.

What are bubble braids?

Fuelled back into popularity with the resurgence of Y2K, bubble braids are ponytails or pigtails fluffed up to create sections—generously spaced out with the help of elastics. Hybrids of the trend depend on various factors like the volume, hair texture, number of sections, choice of height (high, mid or low) and the types of embellishment. In this regard, they can be worn in pigtails, half-up braids or high ponys. No matter what hybrid you choose, however, bubble braids are guaranteed to be an Insta-worthy hairstyle you don’t need to be a pro to perfect.

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A post shared by Claire Rose Cliteur (@clairerose)

Although bubble braids are not a new trend, they have been sweeping runways, red carpets and social media lately. In March 2021, we saw Doja Cat slaying the trend at the Grammys. Then came Priyanka Chopra Jonas strutting onto the BAFTAs. The following months saw Gigi Hadid celebrating her birthday with a few face-framing bubble braids and Griffnamed as 2021’s Rising Star at the Brit Awardsrocking the look during and after her show-stopping performance.

Be it flat sections or full-blown bulbs, bubble braids can spice up a classic braid or ponytail in just a few minutes. So, what are you waiting for? All the A-listers are on it. Let’s catch up to the effortless trend minus five cans of hairspray today.

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A post shared by Griff (@wiffygriffy)

Step 1: Decide on the placement of your ponytail

First up is to decide where the base of your ponytail will sit. You can opt for a high ponytail if you want a sporty look, a mid ponytail for casualness or a low ponytail to channel ultimate sleekness. If you have short hair and your high ponytail ends up looking like a water fountain, two factors have got you covered: extensions and the number of bubbles. With extensions, always make sure to add the same type as your natural hair texture and adjust the number of bubbles to suit the length.

Step 2: Tie the base ponytail and start sectioning

Once you’ve decided on the placement, it’s time to go ahead and commit to the trend. Brush your hair into a ponytail at the choice of height and tie it off with an elastic. This is your base ponytail for all of the bubbling that is to come. Neatly brush out this ponytail before grabbing more elastics and getting to work. Depending on the size of your bubbles—be it flat-sections like Gigi or full-blown bulbs like Griff—take an elastic and tie it a couple of inches down your ponytail. Keep sectioning your hair till you reach the desired tail length for your bubble braids.

Step 3: Bubble up those sections

It’s not bubbles unless you can see them, right? After dividing your base ponytail into sections, start teasing and loosening the space tied off between two elastics using your fingers. This helps voluminise individual sections into bubbles. Tease all of the sections until you reach the desired shape. Brush out the tail and voila! You’re ready to ride off into the sunset with a hairdo that looks like you’ve put your entire heart and soul into.

Step 4: Spice it up even more

Let’s talk about various bubble braid upgrades that come pre-installed with the trend. For starters, you can play around with the colour and type of elastic you use for sectioning. Regular elastics can be switched out with scrunchies. You can also choose to alternate between the colour and the type. Next is the number of sections. While closely-sectioned bubble braids are guaranteed to turn local cul-de-sacs into runways, various foam shapes can be embedded into the sectioning to completely amp up your hair game. Flowers and rhinestones are additional embellishments one can choose from.

Although bubble braids don’t pop or flatten out easily, hairspray is often suggested to seal the look. But you only need to commit to the spraying if you have hair whipping on your itinerary like Doja. If not, play around with the messiness and flyways to curate a personalised look. After all, if you can do a ponytail, you can do a bubble braid.

From Gigi to Doja, bubble braid is the versatile hair trend you can pull off all summer


By Malavika Pradeep

Jul 17, 2021

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