Beauty Buzzwords: Micro-Needling
Ever feel like there’s a new beauty ingredient you can’t stop seeing and hearing about? That all of the sudden, it’s in every product and all over your Instagram feed? This is what our Beauty Buzzwords series is all about – helping you learn more about these mysterious ingredients and why everyone is raving about them.
If you’ve been on social media, you’ve probably seen the micro-needling buzz!
However, the procedure has been around for over one hundred years! Micro-needling has gotten lots of attention lately because it’s a more natural way to get results without fillers or invasive surgery.
What is Micro-Needling?
Micro-needling is a cosmetic procedure with a hand-held device containing micro-fine needles that create very small punctures in the skin. I know that can sound scary and terrible but hear me out! This procedure is minimally invasive and administered by a professional.
How Does Micro-Needling Work?
Micro needling is an in-office procedure (no scary operating rooms!) that takes one hour. The best part? There’s no down time post procedure!
A numbing cream is applied to the skin to minimize pain and keep you comfortable. The practitioner will go over the skin with a hand-held needling device, creating small punctures. This triggers the skin’s healing process to create more collagen and elastin. Micro-needling is also used to enhance product absorption as the fine needle punctures enable active ingredients to absorb deeper into the skin.
What are the Benefits of Micro-Needling?
This procedure is for anyone looking to reduce scarring, (especially indented and discoloured acne scars!). It’s also great for people looking to lighten hyper-pigmentation caused by sun damage and melasma. It’s even beneficial to smooth the skin’s texture and soften fine lines.
Results are usually seen within a few sessions, which makes micro-needling a more popular choice than laser procedures because there’s little down-time and few side effects. Studies have shown that micro-needling is a good option for treating melasma (hormonally induced hyper-pigmentation) because traditional treatments for hyper-pigmentation like IPL (intense pulsed light therapy) emit heat, which can worsen melasma.
Can I Micro-Needle at Home?
There are at-home versions, called “derma pens”, “derma rollers”, or “derma stamps” and vary in needle length. Most professionals don’t advise at-home micro-needling, especially when the needle is longer than 0.25mm. There are many factors to consider when micro needling at home like proper sanitization, appropriate pressure, and frequency of use to avoid un-wanted damage and infection to the skin.
It should also be noted that results will take longer when micro-needling at home and they may not be as noticeable. A smaller needle size means they trigger less (or no) wound healing in the skin. The main benefit of at-home micro-needling devices is to enhance product penetration and should be used with active ingredients, like hydrating or brightening serums to see better results. At-home micro-needling devices are more affordable and will inflict less pain than their professional counterparts, but if you do choose to use one, first seek advice from a professional!
If you’re looking for a minimally invasion procedure to treat acne scarring, hyper-pigmentation (particularly melasma) and early signs of aging, micro-needling might be the right treatment for you. Studies have shown significant results achieved through micro-needling, but keep in mind multiple sessions may be required and this will be an investment!
Are you interested in micro-needling? If you’ve tried it before, what did you think?
Seanna Cohen is a certified skin care therapist and founder of the Clean Beauty School, an online destination to learn skin care tips & tricks and get personalized advice. As a trusted skin care expert, she inspires others to take a holistic approach to beauty and find sustainable practices through her skin care coaching, webinars, and classes.