Microneedling, also known as Dermarolling, is a hot new skincare trend that eternally youthful celebrities like Jeniffer Anniston swear by. If you're on the hunt for an easy and inexpensive, at-home therapy that can significantly reverse the signs of aging, this "controlled damage" technique may the answer you're looking for.
What Is Microneedling?
Microneedling is a skin treatment that involved rolling the surface of your skin with a small roller device covered in small, sharp needles. The needles are only long enough to provide superficial and controlled puncturing of your skin. Simply put, this treatment involves inserting very thin, short needles into your skin. You can have it professionally done at a clinic, or you can use a Dermaroller device for at-home treatments. If the idea of poking your face hundreds of times with needles sounds painful, don’t worry, the micro-needles range from 0.5-2.5 mm, and you can use a topical numbing cream, so the surface-level pricks of the needles only cause minimal discomfort. This minimally invasive treatment dates back to 1995, although it’s recently grown in popularity due to celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kim Kardashian, and Demi Moore who swear by it.
How Does Microneedling Work?
Microneedling provides controlled damage which triggers your skin’s rejuvenation process and helps exfoliate dullness, stimulate collagen, improve the look of scars (including acne scars) and even encourages hair growth. It’s also the perfect therapy to use in combination with skin care products that contain active ingredients, like caffeine, hyaluronic acid, and retinol.
What Can I Expect?
Microneedling activates your skin’s wound responses, triggering it to produce more collagen which renews your skin and makes it look firmer. The most drastic toll that time takes on our skin is the depletion of collagen and elastin. When you stimulate more collagen, wrinkles are reduced and skin is ‘lifted’ and appears more taught and even toned. In general, microneedling (or dermarolling) has been proven to improve a long list of skin issues such as wrinkles and fine lines, crow’s feet, laugh lines, scarring from acne, chicken pox or surgery, large pores, rough skin texture, stretch marks, cellulite, and sun damage.
How Long Will it Take to See Results?
If you’re using your at-home dermaroller device, you will see subtle results immediately. The results won’t last very long, but if you continue treatments once a week, you can keep the results. You can build up your tolerance to 3 nights a week and you’ll see that lines and wrinkles are much less noticeable and your skin is firmer. Collagen takes about 2 months to grow, so be patient, you should start seeing changes in your skin within a month. You will get better, more dramatic results if you stick with it. A 2008 study found that skin treated with 4 microneedling treatments (1 month apart) saw a 400% increase in elastin and collagen.
How Do I Get The Best Results?
You see some results immediately. You’ll have tighter, more glowing skin right away and that will last a couple of weeks. Because you are puncturing your skin, microneedling also produces a window of opportunity for you to apply skin care products that will penetrate deep into your skin. This accelerates the effectiveness of your products and gives you more dramatic results. Professional microneedling is also available for a more dramatic effect on scars and wrinkles. Usually professionals will pair microneedling with radio frequency treatment for the best results.
Will I Get The Same Results Microneedling at Home?
As long as your device is good quality and you don’t have complicated skin conditions that may affect healing, like eczema, rosacea, acne, and perioral dermatitis, you should see good results with DIY microneedling. If you suffer from any of the skin conditions mentioned above you should consult a dermatologist as rolling at home may cause flare-ups. Before you choose your Dermaroller, be sure to pay attention to the size of the needles. Choosing the right size of needles is essential in getting great results. The needles on a roller device range in size from 0.2 mm to 2.5 mm. If you are rolling at home, it’s not recommended to use a device with needles longer than 1.5 mm. If you’ve never used a Dermaroller before, start with the shortest needles and work your way up. You should also consider the area you are treating. Treating acne scars requires longer needles, while shorter needles are ideal for increasing collagen, reducing fine lines, and tightening skin and pores, and also for use on more delicate parts of your face (such as your eyes and lips).
Is it Possible to Overdo It?
There is such a thing as “too much of a good thing” and too frequent Dermarolling can lead to skin damage like broken capillaries or exposed skin that can appear plastic-like. Ideally, you should space your treatments out to 1 month apart and allow full recovery before you microneedle again.