It's time to try microneedling. Here's what you need to know.
What is microneedling?
Microneedling is a minimally-invasive procedure that uses a device with tiny, shallow needles that create hundreds of invisible and controlled puncture wounds on the top layer of the skin. (Don't be afraid — you'll be numbed!) These micro-wounds trigger the body to produce new collagen, elastin and capillaries, plumping skin and breaking up scar tissue. This targets fine lines and wrinkles, sun damage, hyperpigmentation, sagging skin and scarring. A series of treatments will result in improved skin texture, firmness and hydration.
Oh, and for those of you who have seen a DIY version that you can buy online, file this treatment under "best left to the experts," like a bikini wax or highlights.
What can I expect during treatment?
It's easy to fit microneedling into your schedule, as it usually takes up to an hour to complete. Your Skin Pharm provider will cleanse and numb your face, prepping you for treatment. Next, your provider will apply a serum packed with hydrating ingredients and antioxidants and begin using the skin needling device to puncture your skin. (Note: since all Skin Pharm providers are medical professionals, they can go deeper than non-medical providers, which means you'll see noticeable results!)
Your skin will turn red and may even bleed a little, but there's minimal discomfort as you're totally numb. The sensation of microneedling feels like a weird combination of a vacuum and a razor. You may feel more pressure around your jawline, and you'll likely experience a tickling sensation around your nose.
After the procedure, your skin will be protected with post-procedure cream and SPF. You'll be sent home with a gentle cleanser and Skin Pharm's incredible Recovery Lotion, which soothes and heals skin by promoting oxygen delivery to skin cells and calming redness. Your skin may be slightly red for the rest of the day. Since your skin is healing, you should avoid exercise, hot tubs and saunas for 24 hours.
What will my recovery be like?
The next morning, your skin may feel a little tight, but you'll notice that redness has faded from the previous day. The micro-wounds heal quickly! You may experience dryness, scaling, redness and swelling, but this is totally normal up to 48 hours after the treatment. Use the gentle cleanser and Recovery Lotion from the post-procedure kit and apply SPF. It's OK to apply makeup 24 hours after the treatment.
Over the next few days, your skin may feel dry and flaky, so continue to use the gentle cleanser and Recovery Lotion along with your SPF. Avoid retinols and brightening ingredients while your skin continues to heal. If your skin is peeling, use a mild exfoliant to remove dead skin. You should be able to resume your normal skin care routine within a week after your treatment.
When will I see results?
Most patients see results 1-2 weeks after their treatment, reporting that skin looks glowing, smooth and hydrated. If you're hoping for further improvement of scarring or sagging, you'll likely need multiple treatments — talk to your Skin Pharm provider about the best plan for your skin.
What is PRP and how does that work with microneedling?
You've probably heard about PRP, or platelet-rich plasma, being added to microneedling treatments. PRP is a great addition for patients who want to be aggressive with anti-aging treatments, or for those who have acne scarring. In addition to blurring fine lines and wrinkles, adding PRP to your microneedling treatment results in buttery soft skin, brighter under eyes and softened scarring.
PRP is taken from your own blood, which is drawn in the office and then separated in a centrifuge. The PRP is applied to your face after the numbing cream and can also be injected beneath the skin’s surface to stimulate new collagen production and promote healing (this is especially effective for deeper lines and creases). Studies show PRP further increases collagen production, and PRP also speeds up your healing time. Despite what you may have seen online, PRP is not blood-red — it's actually a light golden color, which is partially why we call it "liquid gold." It's really known as liquid gold because of its incredible rejuvenating properties in helping skin heal and repair.
Anything else I need to know about microneedling?
Microneedling is a suitable treatment for every skin type and is safe for pregnant women – but always check with your OBGYN first!