What Is Microneedling?

Men, women, and dermatologists are all on the constant lookout for the next best anti-aging treatment.  Microneedling has been gaining popularity and momentum based on its ability to naturally heal, repair, and restore the skin.

Many consumers have turned to microneedling as they are tired of being let down by ineffective creams, masks, and other skin treatments. 

Microneedling continues to replace these other methods as a low-risk and high-reward option, for those seeking healthier, younger, and improved overall appearance.

Read on to learn more about this multi-purpose treatment, how it works, and why it is so effective.

Key Points

  • Microneedling is a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure. Minimum downtime, suitable for all skin types. 
  • Known as collagen induction therapy, percutaneous collagen induction, or skin needling
  • Commonly used on the face to give the appearance of new fresh skin.
  • Most patients require 4-6 treatments for desired results
  • Considered low risk, high reward when administered by a professional

What is Microneedling?

Microneedling, also known as collagen induction therapy, is a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure used to treat skin imperfections.   

The procedure involves puncturing holes in the skin with small needles. The goal is to produce the growth of collagen and elastin skin tissue.  

What does micro needling do for your skin? In simple terms, it helps build strength and resilience, resulting in a healthier and younger appearance.

Microneedling is commonly used on the face to repair and restore aging skin.  It can be used to treat the appearance of skin concerns on various parts of the body including acne scars, wrinkles, cellulite, and stretch marks

Microneedling is also known to be effective with hair loss and restoration.

Treatments are ordinarily performed by a board-certified dermatologist or a licensed professional in-office.  There are now tools that allow the user to self-administer and perform microneedling at home. 

It is considered to be low risk and highly effective when compared to other cosmetic procedures.

Benefits of Microneedling

There are many benefits of microneedling besides just brighter and improved skin texture.

Microneeding is minimally invasive, which means the procedure is performed through tiny incisions.  This results in quick recovery times, little to no pain, and without any major risks or side effects. 

Most people are able to immediately go back to work or to continue with their daily routines. Microneedling provides less risk, convenience, and effective results when compared to other invasive skin treatments such as chemical peels and laser treatments.

It can be performed on all skin types and on multiple areas of the body. Results can usually start to be seen within the first 24 hours but certain desired outcomes may take months. 

How Much Does It Cost?

Most providers offer treatments that average between $100-$800 dollars.  It’s important to note that multiple treatments are usually required. 

Prices will vary based on the patient’s unique skin issue and treatment plan.  Location and the chosen medical professional will also determine the price. 

Each session is tailored to the individual, so your microneedling cost will depend on your own specific needs and goals.

Microneedling is typically not covered by insurance because it is a cosmetic procedure. Financing and treatment package deals may be available to you by your provider. 

Most consultations are free and will provide a clear idea of the price and treatments needed.

How Does Microneedling Work?

Over time our skin loses its natural strength and structure through aging and injury. Microneedling targets certain cells to release growth factors that are ideal for preserving layers of the skin.  

The tiny needles puncture the skin’s surface and trigger the body’s natural healing process, increasing the production of collagen and elastin. This helps the skin reheal, regain its natural shape, and minimize unwanted appearances.

It is a common misconception that collagen production is the only key to microneedling. 

Elastin is vital when it comes to the shape and appearance of the skin. Collagen and elastin work together to create skin strength and flexibility. Building collagen and elastin proteins can take months.

  • Collagen = Strength and structure
  • Elastin = Keeps skin tight

What Happens When You Get Microneedling

It’s important to have a strict and proper skincare regime in place before and after microneedling.  This will help prolong results and to make sure your skin stays in the best form between treatments. Depending on the type of treatment and target area, the preparation process, procedure, and results can vary.

Preparation

Your treatment process will begin with a consultation at your dermatologist’s office to assess your skin type and desired results.  It’s important to discuss your medical history to make sure you are an eligible candidate for the treatment.

Microneedling may not be a suitable procedure for people with preexisting medical conditions, active infections, or sensitive skin. Sun protection is essential before and after your procedure. Other restrictions such as certain medications to avoid before will be discussed further in the consultation.

Procedure

Before your standard microneedling treatment, the treated area will be cleaned and a topical anesthetic or numbing cream will be applied to the skin. This is usually done about an hour or so before your treatment starts.  

Why the numbing cream? Does Micronneedling hurt? No reason to worry.  Most patients claim that the procedure is painless.  The anesthetic is for the slight discomfort of the needle punctures. 

During the procedure, a device containing microneedles is used to create small punctures in the skin.  Your doctor will move over the target areas controlling the speed and depth.  

It’s common to apply a serum before and after the procedure to maximize results. 

The actual microneedling procedure can take anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour, depending on the type of treatment and target area.  In total, you can expect the entire process to be a couple of hours.

What To Expect After

Post-treatment, the body responds to the wounds right away. Your doctor will provide you with the necessary steps for aftercare as well as the best skincare practices.

Most patients experience very little downtime if any at all. It’s best to leave the treatment area alone and protect it from any germs.

Avoid washing or cleansing for the first 24 hours, as well as sweating or exposing the area to any heat (Gym or Sauna). Make up can be applied after 48 hours. 

Make sure to stay out of the sun for the first two weeks. Sunscreen is a must if you need to be outdoors. 

Hyaluronic Acid serums and products with growth factors are often recommended to help speed up the rebuilding process. 

Make sure to educate yourself on the best products to apply after microneedling.

Results

Most clients start to notice results within a couple of weeks but improvements can sometimes be noticed right away.  In order for the body to heal correctly, microneedling sessions are usually spread out every four to six weeks.

But how long do these results last? This is dependent upon your age, the health of your skin, and the depth and frequency of treatments received.

The results of microneedling are long-lasting after you have received your required amount of treatments. Of course, an effective skincare routine is necessary to maintain visible results.

Microneedling is not a permanent solution. Most professionals usually recommend multiple sessions to achieve the best results.

Targeted Areas

Microneedling is mostly used on the face for skin rejuvenation and to prevent signs of aging. The process can help revitalize and enhance the texture of the skin. But micro needling isn’t exclusive to just the face.

Microneedling can also be used to treat skin concerns on all parts of the body from the head to the feet.  Microneedling on the scalp and face can be effective in stimulating hair growth. 

Each treated condition requires a different amount of treatments to achieve desired results.

Microneedling can be used to treat the following :

Risks And Side Effects

Can microneedling ruin your skin? There are always safety concerns to be considered with any cosmetic procedure, but microneedling is considered to be relatively safe with minimal risks. 

Most side effects are resolved rather shortly after the procedure. The most common side effect of Microneedling is skin irritation and mild redness. This usually only occurs immediately after the procedure and can last for 24-72 hours. 

Some inflammation and skin peeling can occur as the skin can become extremely dry from the procedure. Check out more from are pros and cons list here.

The most extreme side effects include:

  • Increased wrinkling
  • Bleeding
  • Burning
  • Bruising
  • Infections
  • Swelling
Microneedling

Professional vs. DIY Microneedling

The two types of Microneedling are known as medical needling (also known as professional microneedling) and cosmetic needling. 

Medical Microneedling

Medical microneedling takes place in a doctor’s office and is performed by a board-certified dermatologist or licensed professional.

There are three common types of medical microneedling treatments:

There are other complimenting add ons that can be provided or added when done in-office to enhance results.  Some of these skin care practices include red light therapy or microneedling with topical products such as hyaluronic acid. 

During the procedure, a professional can apply pressure, speed, and depth with precision.  This advantage provides less risk of damage and traditionally better results. 

In-office procedures will use advanced devices with longer needles to penetrate deeper into the skin’s surface. For this reason, issues such as acne scars and stretch marks should be treated in-office.

Cosmetic Needling

Cosmetic needling is usually referred to as at-home microneedling, with the use of derma roller (dermarolling) or pen device. Users can self-administer treatments in the comfort of their own homes.  

At home, the user must properly assess their skin, while also learning to use and clean their tool correctly to avoid infections and damage.  At-home devices usually have shorter needles, so the depth may not even stimulate collagen production and can cause tearing.

Microneedling at home can be successful to achieve brighter skin but is not beneficial for most skin concerns.

Patients may view this as the more convenient and cost-effective option, but dermatologists warn that this method provides less effective results and comes with a higher risk of infection or damage to the skin.

Final Tip

Microneedling continues to grow as one of the leading and best skincare practices.  As always, when seeking medical advice or before undergoing any procedure, it is best to consult a professional to understand the risks involved. 

If unsure where to get a microneedling treatment done and from whom, check if your doctor or professional has been certified by the American Board of Dermatology. 

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