We all have our beauty woes, right? For me, I’ve almost always felt like my pores look magnified—large, noticeable, gaping even. While I’ve fortunately never struggled with severe acne (just the occasional pimple and hormonal cystic chin zit here or there), I’ve long felt like my clogged pores could use some TLC–which is what drew me in toward the Dermaflash Dermapore pore extractor in the first place, and why its latest iteration (the Dermapore+) got me curious enough to try it.
Overall, the pores on my cheeks, closest to my nose, have long seemed the most enlarged. In the past year, however, I’ve noticed that the pores in the creases of my nose occasionally get clogged, making them look more pronounced, as well. We’re not talking ultra-dark blackheads, but if I look closely enough, I can definitely see some graying build-up. Because of this, I set out to find a solution. Enter: the new Dermaflash Dermapore+.
- Mimics an in-office treatment
- Super effective very quickly
- Ultra satisfying
- Comes with prep mist
- A little tricky to figure out at first (definitely read directions)
- Not necessarily dermatologist-approved
- Not ideal for sensitive skin
- Generally doesn’t solve the root issue of clogged pores
What is the Dermapore+?
The Dermapore+ is the new and improved ultrasonic pore extractor from Dermaflash. While Dermaflash is best known for its namesake device, the Dermaflash (a dermaplaning device which works to exfoliate skin, remove peach fuzz, and enhance skincare absorption and makeup application), in 2019, they launched the OG Dermapore. In the years since, they recognized a few areas for improvement and thus created the Dermapore+.
- Maegan Griffin, Maegan Griffin, MSN, NP-C, founder of Skin Pharm, a cosmetic dermatology clinic and skin-care line.
The biggest difference between the Dermapore+ and its original counterpart is that it has boosted ultrasonic power to dislodge debris from pores (35Hz vs. 33Hz), innovative ionic technology to enhance the extraction and infusion processes, and it comes with a bottle of the Dermapore+ Prep Mist, which is ionically charged to further amplify results.
How to use the Dermapore+
The Dermapore+ features a smooth, triangular silicone base (which is easy to grip) topped off with a curved stainless steel spatula. Where the majority of the spatula is flat, the tip is tilted to boost the extraction and infusion process. Due to its shaping, though, it’s not the most obvious to use if you don’t read the instructions first. (I say this because I definitely used it incorrectly based on how I processed the images on the spatula.)
When looking at the stainless spatula with the tip pointing up, you’ll see three squiggly lines that say infuse on the flat surface and two arrows pointing to the tip on the tilted portion, with the word “Extract.” Because of this, I initially thought that the device was meant to be used with the illustration side down at all times, using the tip for extraction and the flat section for infusion. This felt awkward, so I dug around for the included instruction pamphlet to read up on the device. Turns out, you’re supposed to angle the tilted tip down during extraction (with the non-illustrated side of the spatula facing your skin), and lay the tip flat against your skin during infusion (with the illustrated side of the spatula facing your skin).
Beyond positioning the tip of the Dermapore+ correctly, you have to be mindful of when you use the device and how you hold it. Based on the instructions, you should only use it after adequately spritzing your skin with the Prep Mist (or splashing it with water if you don’t have the mist), while skin is wet. Additionally, you have to keep your fingers (or at least a finger) on the silver strip of the front of the device (it says “Hold Here” to make it obvious). Both the Prep Mist and Hold Here strip enable the next-gen ionic technology to work. If skin isn’t wet or the strip isn’t touched, the white light on the bottom of the device won’t illuminate—this means the device isn’t working as intended.
Now that you’re brushed up on the logistics of how to hold it and use it, it’s time to learn how to actually work the device across your complexion. If you want to extract, press the power button once; if you want to infuse, press it twice. When extracting, glide the tip upwards on your chin, in toward your nose across your cheeks, up your nose, and out from the center of your foreheads. When infusing, always work in upward, outward strokes. Once you finish working the device across your skin, turn it off, marvel over the gunk it removed, and wipe off the spatula with an alcohol wipe. This will prevent the unintentional transfer of bacteria.
Do skin experts like it?
Many dermatologists don’t recommend using skin spatulas at home. That’s why you’ll notice that the Dermaflash site says that estheticians recommend it, not derms. Still, according to nurse practitioner Maegan Griffin, who is the CEO and founder of Skin Pharm, a clinical aesthetics practice, skin spatulas like the Dermapore+ are generally safe.
“As long as you follow instructions carefully,” she explains. “Using a device like this safely requires just the right amount of pressure, so only apply gentle pressure. Be sure to clean it properly and regularly, too, and avoid overuse. It’s tempting to want a quick fix for clogged pores, but these devices should only be used a few times per week, depending on your skin type.”
That said, even if you use your skin spatula regularly, Griffin says that it’s only a temporary fix. “They don’t address why pores are clogged in the first place,” she explains. “The best way to identify the root cause is to work with your skin-care provider. They’ll guide you toward the most effective skin-care ingredients for you, and you can build a sustainable routine to address your unique skin’s needs.”
Generally, Griffin says that perpetually clogged pores are the result of excess oil and buildup, which she says can be addressed with salicylic acid and retinol. “[These ingredients] help cleanse, regulate oil production, and decrease the appearance of pores. “Pore extractors can be part of your routine, but they should only supplement effective, consistent skin-care,” she adds.
If you do choose to incorporate the Dermapore+ into your routine, Griffin says to be mindful of your skin type. “Those with dry or sensitive skin can use it one to two times per week, as overuse may further irritate your skin,” she says. “But everyone’s skin is different, so start slow and pay attention to how your skin reacts.”
How it works
The Dermapore+ is powered by ultrasonic vibrations to gently dislodge dirt, oil, and debris from pores.
“The pore extraction spatula uses ultrasonic vibrations to loosen sebum in the pores, making it easier to remove as the spatula glides across your skin,” Griffin explains.
The Dermapore+ is unique from any old pore extraction spatula on the market, though. For starters, it features 35Hz ultrasonic vibrations, which the brand claims to be the highest speed on the market. Thanks to the high speed, the Dermapore+ is said to require less pressure than your traditional spatula to work effectively. Additionally, it’s ionically charged, so when used in unison with the Dermapore+ Prep Mist (which is infused with negatively charged ions), it has a magnetic effect to really clear out pores.
As I mentioned, I initially used the device upside down. When I did, I still experienced pore-unclogging results but I had to use substantial pressure, much like when using a classic manual blackhead remover. When I used it properly, however, I hardly had to use any pressure to watch gunk rise out of more clogged pores. Talk about satisfying—especially for someone with sensitive, redness-prone skin! While my skin definitely still looked a bit rosy post-use, I was impressed by how much less congested my nose and cheeks looked and how healthy my complexion looked overall. I’m excited to see how this little device continues to boost my routine.
The value: Is it worth it?
I think so! It gently unclogs pores and adds a soothing, ritualistic step to my nighttime skin-care routine, which I enjoy. The only thing is, the device comes with a small, travel-sized Dermapore+ Prep Mist, so you’ll have to buy a full-sized bottle ($28) eventually. I also recommend buying alcohol wipes to conveniently clean it post-use.
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