Shaving your face as an exfoliant - yay or nay?

Women have been borrowing this practice from the boys for years

By  | Nov 24, 2017, 10:21 AM

Shaving your face as an exfoliant

The trend of women shaving their faces has been around for decades, going as far back as the Marylin Monroe/Elizabeth Taylor era where both stars admitted to doing it primarily to remove "peach fuzz" (the tiny little hairs on your face). 

It also functions as an exfoliant that reportedly helps improve the appearance of scarring in addition to helping one get rid of dead skin faster which is beneficial for those who wish to look younger. 

One would assume that one needs to moisturize their face before beginning but Huda Beauty founder, Huda Kattan, advises starting with a dry face. This is because she believes moisturising one's face with water before shaving makes the hair grow back thicker.  

She's not the only beauty blogger and influencer who subscribes to this method. Nigerian-born, make-up artist, Omabelle (who is currently based in the UK) also created a tutorial sharing her thoughts on this. 

It can go wrong however, as explained by this Youtuber named Yari (please beware that this video features strong language). 

In a Harper's Bazaar article, Dr. Julia Tzu, Director of Wall Street Dermatology, recommends it for women with a significant amount of facial hair, but warns that for women who don't, not only is shaving unnecessary, it may cause damage to the skin, too.

"The shaving process can introduce small abrasions on the surface of the skin that can cause irritation and infection. Just like for men, it can also cause razor bumps that represent ingrown hairs (pseudofolliculitis) or hair follicle infections (folliculitis) and are annoying for most people. For smoother skin, microdermabrasion is an excellent way to evenly and gently exfoliate the outer surface of the skin. I recommend using a crystal-free microdermabrasion machine (slightly more expensive) for best results," explained Tzu. 

Another dermatologist consulted for the piece, Dr. David Colbert, advises choosing a nourishing shaving cream and a quality razor to avoid irritation of one insists on using this cost-effective alternative to laser hair removal.

In addition to that NYC dermatologist Dr. Eric Schweiger, CEO and Chief Medical Officer of Schweiger Dermatology Group explained that “shaving the fine hairs on the face can help with the absorption and penetration of the skincare products you use.” 

Before trying this however, those with sensitive skin are warned to avoid this practice and those who suffer from acne are advised to avoid acne-prone areas as this may lead to knicks, cuts and infections. 

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