Hundreds of tiny pinpricks going into your skin might sound like the beauty version of water boarding, but it could be the best thing to happen to your face. Microneedling (also known as collagen induction therapy) involves using fine needles to create hundreds of tiny, invisible punctures in the top layer of skin. Sounds appealing? Perhaps not. But this minimally invasive treatment—whether done by a trained aesthetician, dermatologist, or plastic surgeon, or at home using a dermaroller (a small, handheld paint roller coated in tiny needles)—is virtually painless and effective. The micro-openings so created stimulate the body’s natural wound-healing processes, resulting in cell turnover and increased collagen and elastin production, therefore reversing as well as preventing signs of aging. It works the same way lasers do, only you’re treating the skin mechanically instead of using heat or light.
One of the main benefits of this treatment is its ability to stimulate the growth of collagen and elastin, which is the key to new, youthful-looking skin. With its ability to trigger the generation of new skin cells, just a few sessions of microneedling will noticeably reduce fine lines and deep wrinkles on the forehead. This is one of the reasons people like microneedling—because it’s able to utilise the body’s own natural healing mechanisms, so the results are very natural. To treat wrinkles, a needle with the length no greater than 1.5-mm should be used.
With at-home microneedling, a 1.5-mm handheld roller is long enough to improve the appearance of acne scars. However, for severe acne scars, you may need even longer needles for maximum results, so you’ll want to find a dermatologist or facialist who performs microneedle therapy treatments. Professional grade microneedling devices can be as long as 3 mm, which is twice as effective and will treat deep acne scars that occur beneath the surface of the skin.
Once again, collagen is arguably the most vital way to improve the look of skin, and this goes far beyond reducing wrinkles. By stimulating collagen growth with the process of microneedling, you can also reverse sun damage and discoloration, including the hyperpigmentation that comes with melasma. Microneedling is considered to be promising treatment for the blotchy, brownish facial pigmentation that comes with this chronic condition. To improve extra pigmentation from sun-damaged skin, your dermaroller needles should range between 1.0 mm and 1.5 mm in length.
On top of microneedling’s ability to smooth and correct damaged skin, it also has the added bonus of tightening loose skin, which makes it great for older men and women. Microneedling is a new way to achieve skin rejuvenation, tightening, and scar remodeling. It offers a simple and effective treatment for photo aged skin with minimal side effects and downtime.
It’s a bit counter-intuitive, but microneedling doesn’t actually enlarge pores as you might imagine piercing your skin hundreds of times would. Rather, one major microneedling benefit, or benefit of using a dermaroller, is that it helps pores appear much smaller. Microneedling stimulates collagen in and around your facial pores, which causes them to plump and appear shrunken, if not closed.
The author is the founder of House of Beauty, a skincare line