Micro-needling is a process that most of us have heard of by now, although you might know it by a more common name, Dermaroller. I become a lot more savvy with beauty concerns and the methods to treat them when I started suffering from skin imperfections myself, and I have to admit the Dermaroller was the one I always wanted to experience for a long time.
The truth is that Dermaroller is just one type of micro-needling treatment. There are also Dermastamps and Dermapens. But regardless of the exact device used, the micro-needling process is similar.
Throughout 2016, I went for 5 micro-needling treatments in total, and I find a lot of my readers, friends and colleagues are always keen to hear more. Therefore, I’ve put this little guide together which helps shine some light on the process and why it’s a beauty buzz word for 2017! Firstly, it’s worth remembering that Micro-Needling is brilliant for general scarring, acne scarring, uneven tone and texture, fine lines and wrinkles.
Recognising the Micro-Needling Tools Themselves
When you go to a clinic for micro-needling tools, you are most likely to encounter Dermarollers, which look like small hand-held paint rollers studded with many different needles. Each needle is just barely large enough to puncture the skin. Meanwhile, Dermastamps look a lot like they sound. They are hand-held devices with large “heads” covered in needles. Your technician can use them to methodically “stamp” the skin in the treatment area. The final tool type is the Dermapen, which looks a lot like a pen with needles on the tip.
While those first two options are designed to treat larger areas, much like certain aesthetic medical equipment, the Dermapen is better for treating small areas of the skin, which makes them popular treatments both in clinical settings and at home.
Micro-Needling Devices Trigger Natural Restoration Processes
Your body is designed to try to heal itself whenever possible, and your skin is no exception. However, certain skin healing substances like elastin and collagen are generally produced in higher quantities when people are younger. As you get older, your levels of such substances can drop off a bit.
The nice thing about micro-needling is that it can trigger the natural production of those substances to increase. When the tiny needles “injure” your skin, your body’s response should be to make more collagen, elastin, and other healing materials.
How Increased Hormone and Protein Production Improves Skin Health
After you have a micro-needling treatment, it may take days or weeks for your skin to heal, but when it does both the micro-needling damage and damage that existed before the treatment should be reversed. In other words, the increased production of proteins and hormones should help to fill n fine lines and scars. It can also cause your skin cells to regain some elasticity and smooth out more, in general.
Why Micro-Needling Isn’t Very Painful
When you think of needles you might ordinarily cringe. However, the shots you get in a doctor’s office are nothing like the needles on a Dermaroller or related device. The needles used for those skincare treatments are much, much smaller. Between the tiny size of the needles and the fact that numbing agents are used on the skin before each procedure, your discomfort should be minimal.
If you’re worried about the pain, ask your practioner to leave the numbing cream on for a little longer to penetrate.
Micro-Needling Appointments and Recovery Time Expectations
The time it takes to actually perform micro-needling treatments depends a bit on the section of skin you want to treat. It might take anywhere from a few minutes to an hour or two to do the micro-needling itself. However, from start to finish you should factor in about an hour to numb the area first, as well as time to travel to and from the clinic and do the paperwork involved.
As for recovery time, you should expect some discomfort, swelling, and bleeding right after your appointment. The bleeding should stop before you leave the clinic. The swelling may not reduce totally for a few days. Your skin could also be a little red until a few days after your appointment. However, none of that should interfere with your daily activities much.
I found personally that my recovery time was usually 24 hours, pushing into the next day the odd time. However, during my last session, I opted for a longer needle and a deeper treatment, which actually took 3 days for the redness, needle marks and sore skin to heal. The photos above were taken directly after the intense treatment, but soon calmed after 1-2 days, before completely healing on day 3.
I’d have to say that my micro-needling Dermaroller treatment was possibly the most effective treatment I have had!