“Don’t shave your face!” all women heard growing up. “It will grow back thicker and darker and then you’ll have to shave forever.” That sounded like a follicular horror story, so we turned to waxing and bleaching our upper lips so that we would never end up with a five o’clock shadow.
But then, this new beauty trend came along called dermaplaning. It’s the process of women shaving their cheeks, forehead, nose, upper lip and chin for exfoliation and smoother makeup application. It is usually done with a scalpel by an esthetician or a dermatologist, but can also be performed at home. Will this leave you looking like a wolf-man when it grows back? Generally, no.
Usually, women have fluffy, light hair all over their face called vellus hair, commonly referred to as “peach fuzz.” These hairs are usually difficult to wax because they are so fine, so dermaplaning is a great way to remove them. Dermaplaning also scrapes the dead skin away, thus the exfoliation. Radiant skin underneath is revealed, plus serums and lotions soak in even faster. Applying foundation is like butter post-planing, so there are lots of benefits to it.
The good news is when you cut the fuzz with a razor, it will continue to grow as fuzz. Cutting it will not make it thicker or darker. When all of this fuzz is suddenly the same length and the tapered edge is blunted with the razor, it may feel briefly stubbly, but that goes away once each strand starts to grow at different rates. But fuzz is fuzz, and no amount of cutting it can change that.
Buttttt -- and here’s the big but -- some women have thick, dark hair above their lips and on their jawline. It can be caused by high levels of testosterone and sometimes as a result of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) or an adrenal gland disorder. In these instances, when hair is darker and thicker to begin with, shaving may create rough stubble, but it’s not the shaving that caused this as much as it just made it more obvious. Laser hair removal or electrolysis are the only ways to eliminate this type of hair.
So, shave away that peach fuzz, ladies. Or don’t -- whatever you do with your facial hair is cool. If you do decide to dermaplane at home, always use a clean razor, be careful not to slip to avoid scarring and mind your eyebrows! Last we checked, those are still in.
TL;DR: Shave your peach fuzz, because you won't transform into a vampire at the next full moon.