Ask Caitlin: Will Shaving My Face Make My Products Work Better?

Beauty editor Caitlin Kenny can (and will) blab endlessly about all things primping. We put her smarts-slash-obsession to work on your most burning beauty questions—even those of the woah-you-went-there variety. This week: does shaving your face let products sink in better?

Is shaving your face as a means of exfoliation really a thing?
—Your Fuzzy Friend

women shaving face

(Illustration: Hatecopy)

Hi, my pet,

Last year, facialist to the stars Kate Somerville told the New York Times that she’s been Gillette-ing her face for over a decade. Since then, new blades have hit store shelves hard, promising to scrape away dead skin and peach fuzz. But aestheticians have been dermaplaning (the fancier term) in-the-know clients for ages, to prep skin so products sink in better. When my facialist first pulled out a scalpel, I panicked. Will my fine facial fluff grow in coarser?! No, she assured me, as I held my breath for fear of getting my cheek sliced. By the end, no nicks, just baby-fresh skin. Now, I even dermaplane at home. While Somerville uses shaving cream and an actual beard razor, I prefer the single-blade variety meant for use on dry skin. They’re not quite as sharp, so there’s less chance of cuts, and you get to see the fuzz come off like you’re shearing a sheep. (Be prepared for a bunch of little furballs.) This month, Dermaflash, the first at-home electronic version, lands in Canada. It uses sonic vibrations to increase the sloughing—think of how your Clarisonic’s high-speed jiggle puts a manual face brush to shame—and is designed for those teeny hairs (regular razors, including electric ones, are meant to target thicker scruff). You can dermaplane once a week, but I save it for when I need a pick-me-up. Now, excuse me while I rub my face.

Smoothly yours,

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