Skin care

Would You Try Shaving Your Face? Lots of the Cool Kids Are Doing It ...

Exfoliating with a razor blade is the latest in anti-aging skin care

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Fans of the "Real Housewives of New Jersey" will remember that back in the nascent stages of the "reality" show, Mama Bear Caroline Manzo made headlines by admitting that she shaved her face. Shaved. As in abraded a Trac II across her delicate skin each time she showered. Bloggers went ape, magazines clamored for interviews...she'd inadvertently created a frenzy.

Scoff all you want but Manzo, 52, has an amazing, virtually wrinkle free complexion which she wholeheartedly attributes to "shaving." And, she's not some lone renegade -- the movement is gaining momentum. Heck, even Christie Brinkley embraces the concept. The 59-year-old ageless supermodel has long said to use a super-rough loofah and mega exfoliating scrub in tandem. Her rationale? The fact that men's faces seem to age more slowly -- a fact Brinkley attributes to the fact that they shave and have a "constant turnover of skin." As a result, she tries to imitate the effect by scrubbing her face. "A good exfoliant scrub is the first step for good skin," she says. One look at her and you know she's doing something right.

Now, while no one worth their salt is going to recommend that you grab your Daisy shaver and lather up next to hubby as part of your morning grooming routine, "dermaplaning," the practice of having a super-sharp blade run over your face, has become very popular at dermatologist's offices in recent years.

"Dermaplaning is just a very simple physical or mechanical method of exfoliation, which helps to remove dead skin cells and give your face a brighter complexion," Dr. Elizabeth Hale, a deem at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center of New York told The Cut. "And since it removes some vellus hairs [the baby-fine hairs on your face], it can make the skin feel smoother. But I think it also taps into this whole new field in dermatology which is all about increasing efficacy and penetration of topical ingredients." (Side note: we touched on this last week in a blog about skin rollers.)

What the good doctor means is that our skin is miraculous in what it's capable of. Namely, letting things like sweat out, while keeping blood in. It also excels at keeping foreign matter out -- including all the fancy pants serums, lotions and potions we apply. The theory then is that dermaplaning (and, yes, poking tiny holes into your face) helps anti-aging products permeate the dermis and get to work.

READ: 12 Anti-Aging Skin Care Ingredients You Need to Know About

When you head to have the procedure done, here's what you can expect, as enticingly written by Cherly Wischhover for The Cut.

[The nurse] cleansed my face, put a clay mask on my breaking-out chin (you can't dermaplane on skin where you have acne), added some toner, then started scraping my forehead and cheeks, which we agreed were my dry areas. The scraping sounded exactly the way you would expect a blade on dry skin to sound. But it didn't hurt at all. And the end result is pretty spectacular on two levels. First of all, if you are a skin picker, popper, or peeler, you should definitely ask to see the little pile of gunk that comes off with the blade. It's quite satisfying. Second, when I touched my forehead immediately after the scraping was done, I could not believe how soft it was. I was probably shopping for prom dresses the last time my skin felt that silky.

After the scraping comes an acid peel (that, by Wischhover's account, stings) then a cooling and hydrating mask. Two days later, you're left with "noticeably more glowy, softer skin."

Now, if you want to read about how the DIY version (shudder) is done, click here. Are either of these practices something you'd be game for trying?

READ:23 Worst Anti-Aging Skin Care Products
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