The act of face shaving or eliminating the fine peach fuzz on the face is something I was taught to do as a young teenager. My mom often picked up face shavers at the Asian grocery stores and though I never did my entire face, I have always kept these little razors in my bathroom for cleaning up around the moustache area. I love watching facial services on YouTube as a form of relaxation and when I came across dermaplaning, I started looking into whether there were any places in Vancouver I could get this done. Obviously, Instagram read my thoughts and started recommending Vancouver-based Mint Smilebar through my ads and as they were doing a promotion in combination with a lash lift, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to get it done!
What is dermaplaning? This is a manual exfoliation technique using small strokes from a medical grade surgical steel scalpel to remove the top most layer of dead skin cells and fine vellus hair (peach fuzz). This is a completely non-invasive treatment and is a great alternative to microdermabrasion and chemical peels. Dermaplaning is great for smoothing skin texture, getting a brighter complexion, acne-scarring (to a certain degree), increasing the absorption of skincare products and more flawless foundation application! And, in case you were wondering, the vellus hair does not grow back thicker if shaved off! I have actually shaved my moustache area since my early 20s and it is has never changed the thickness of my hair!
Prior to my visit, I made sure to fill out all intake forms online before appointment which were all sent in an email from Mint Smile Bar. I also made sure not to exfoliate for a week before the visit or wear any makeup just to make things go faster.
Dermaplaning was done first with the skin being prepped first with a glycolic acid cleanser. Leanne said it might tingle, but I didn’t feel anything at all. Once the cleanser was rinsed off, rubbing alcohol was wiped over my skin to dry out the skin, disinfect and create a super smooth canvas for dermaplaning. This is one of the few times rubbing alcohol is GREAT for the skin!
My skin is still fairly taut (hallelujah to the Skin Gods), so Leanne did not need to apply too much force to stretch it, but she also mentioned that she did have a fairly light touch when compared to other estheticians (based on her personal experience). There is a disclaimer that it is possible you might be superficially nicked as you are being shaved with a scalpel, but I told Leanne she had my full trust and sure enough I was completely unmarred by the end of it.
Ignore this hideously unflattering selfie, but just like in the YouTube videos, I found the sound of dermablading very relaxing and it does not hurt at all! It just feels like a gentle scraping that you just tune out after a minute or two. I totally forgot to take a photo of the peach fuzz that came off my face (I’ll add it in next time), but even though I don’t have a ton of hair on my face, I felt a noticeable difference! My skin also looked visibly brighter! I couldn’t wear face makeup for 48 hours, but the first time I applied Hermes Complexion Balm, my skin looked freakin’ FLAWLESS! Like wowwwww!
The dermaplaning itself took about 20-25 minutes and once finished, my skin felt fairly normal. Maybe a tiny bit sensitive, but all of that disappeared once the soothing modeling mask was applied. Modeling masks are powder-based and contain algae. Once mixed with water, the ingredients are “activated” and when applied, form a thick gelatinous mask that dries after about 20 minutes and can be removed in one satisfying movement. The mask I had was a blend of Egyptian Rose (smelled FANTASTIC) and polylactic acid by the brand Esthemax (instead of the term “modeling mask”, they use “hydrojelly mask”) which I might just have to pick up on my next visit! Once the mask was removed, a hyaluronic acid moisturizer and sunscreen were applied and then it was time to prep for the lash lift and tint!
I have gone into incredible detail about getting a Yumi Lash Lift back in 2018 so I will not go into again as the procedure was fairly similar. The only difference is in the name of the brand and the price as I paid $150 alone for the Yumi Lash Lift while the dermaplaning AND the lash lift and tint at Mint Smile Bar was a package for $159! So, if they still have this package later this year, I will definitely be taking advantage of it!
The lash lift and tint took about an hour, but Leanne and I were chatting beauty the whole time so I didn’t really notice the time too much. I have a finicky left eye where the lashes are more stubborn so I think that eye took a few more tries to get the lashes to curl how we wanted them to curl, but we got there! I also asked for the biggest silicone “bump” to get the most dramatic curl I could get as the lift does lower with time. A plumping solution was then applied to my lashes to make them look “wet” and glossy. What I like about getting lash lifts is how natural they still look as it basically takes on the appearance of having curled your lashes with an eyelash curler. While my lashes don’t point down straight, they are short and thin so the lash lift and tint makes them look a little glossier and my eyes more perky.
I was given a few minutes to readjust to being vertical after being horizontal for 2 hours and provided with some aftercare instructions for my skin and lashes. One thing I should have remembered is that you cannot get your lashes wet after a lift for 48 hours so ideally, I would have liked to skip washing my hair for 2 nights, but the timing didn’t line up. If there is high humidity, my scalp just feels so itchy and I have to wash it…
Overall, I am so glad I fell for the Instagram ad because I am most definitely going back to Mint Smilebar for not only these services, but hopefully for some other facials and treatments!
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