Microneedling (also known as collagen induction therapy) might sound scary thanks to the word “needles” in its name, but actually it’s an easy and minimally invasive treatment that is restoring and rejuvenating to the skin. Virtually painless, this anti-aging procedure can be done by a trained dermatologist, esthetician, or yourself in the convenience of your own home.
A microneedling beauty tool is called a derma roller and looks like a paint roller covered with fine needles. Its purpose is to puncture the skin when you run it over your face to create hundreds of tiny, invisible puncture wounds in the top layer of the skin. Piercing the skin with tiny holes kick starts the skin’s natural healing process, and best of all stimulates both collagen and elastin production. Some doctors even say that this procedure is one of the most powerful ways to stop aging by lifting the skin and preventing new lines and wrinkles from forming.
How does it benefit my skin?
The clinically-tested derma roller has the ability to trigger the generation of new skin cells. Even only a couple of sessions will noticeably reduce acne scars, deep wrinkles and crow’s feet. A great home beauty gadget, results range from improved texture and firmness to reduced pore size and stretch marks. At the same time, microneedling helps your skincare lineup work better because the tiny punctures allow skin care ingredients to penetrate faster into the skin than they would on their own and therefore causing faster changes in the skin.
How do I pick a derma roller?
Arm yourself with the right beauty tool and microneedling at home is a cost-effective solution to more beautiful skin. Consult your esthetician, or if you have already done micro-needle treatments previously, your dermatologist, so they can recommend an ideal needle length and give you a tutorial on how to use it. Remember to read reviews, research well-known brands, choose the correct needle length and be sure to buy a suitable, quality roller.
Derma rollers can be used for all skin types, but you shouldn’t use one if you have skin conditions like rosacea, active acne, and extremely sensitive skin. Choose derma rollers that have needles that are between 0.25mm to 1.0mm for the face, anything above 1.5mm or above should be avoided since they are designed for use on the body. You might also have slight bleeding when using needles over 0.5mm.
Surgical steel derma rollers are great for single-use treatment but you can safely reuse them if you sanitize it properly. Titanium microneedles are harder than surgical steels hence less prone to breaking, however you really should not use it if you accidentally dropped it, and neither should you re-use it too many times for hygiene reasons and to avoid using dull needles.
Choose a density of 540 needles for better coverage. There are derma rollers with detachable heads with different needle sizes, and there are different roller heads that specifically target the eye or lip area. At THEA, we recommend starting your microneedling journey for face only with Derma Roller which has needles at 0.5mm in length or the 6 in 1 Derma Roller System which provides attachments for the body, face, eye and lip area at different needle lengths.
Using a derma roller at home
Microneedling is best combined with a topical treatment, like a vitamin-rich serum or platelet rich plasma (PRP). Rolling will enhance products’ absorption, so be aware with applying alpha hydroxyl acids or retinols as they can cause skin sensitivity and avoid them completely until your skin gets used to this procedure.
After you’ve cleansed and applied your skin serum, apply gentle pressure while rolling your device over your skin vertically, horizontally and diagonally. Aim to do two to four rolls each way in the same area and then move on to the next section. After the rolling is done in every area of the face, apply a second layer of serum. Wait a few minutes before applying other creams and lotions.
When and how often should I do it?
A great time to do microneedling is at night for three reasons.
1. your skin may become a little pink from it, while it's perfectly normal, it can take minutes for the redness to go away
2. It is best to apply skincare instead of makeup right away. Those micro punctures on the skin form temporary channels for skincare ingredients to penetrate deeper.
3. Night time is when our body rests and time for organs to regenerate.
A good way to start is by rolling once a week to begin with, then gradually increasing to three to five times a week depending how your skin reacts and your skin goal.
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Taking care of your derma roller
Keeping your beauty tool clean is very important, especially with a derma roller. As soon as you’re done using your derma roller sterilize it in a specialized roller cleaner or soak in alcohol for 15 minutes. Let it air-dry and then put it back in its container.
A derma roller should be replaced every month if it is frequently used because the needles will dull. Your first derma roller should last roughly 3 months BUT if it is used several times a week you should get a new roller every month.
Other than the traditional derma roller, there are more advanced microneedling tool such as Tik Tok Automatic Microneedling Device. Instead of reaching your skin at an angle, the stamping motions create those perfect straight micro punctures, resulting in more perfect punctures so less recovering time. It stamps at 6,000 times per minute, cutting your treatment time to 1 minute and giving more impressive results at the same time. Although this device comes at a higher price tag at first, it is used with inexpensive replaceable single-use microneedle attachment making it a worthwhile investment if you are looking to incorporate microneedling into your beauty regime.