If you’re considering microneedling to improve the appearance of your skin, you’re not alone. This relatively new treatment is gaining popularity due to its ability to treat various skin conditions, including acne scarring, wrinkles, and fine lines, with no active downtime.
But what is microneedling, and how does it work?
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at this collagen induction therapy treatment (CIT) and discuss everything you need to know before deciding if it’s right for you.
What Is Microneedling?
Microneedling is sometimes referred to as collagen induction therapy (CIT) or percutaneous collagen induction (PCI). It’s a safe and effective treatment for all skin types and can be used to improve the appearance of acne scars, wrinkles, fine lines, stretch marks, uneven skin tone, and textural irregularities.
Microneedling is a minimally-invasive cosmetic procedure that uses fine needles to create tiny punctures in the top layer of skin. This stimulates the body’s natural healing processes, which promotes collagen and elastin production, resulting in firmer, smoother, and younger-looking skin.
In addition to increasing collagen and elastin, microneedling also helps to:
- Improve texture and tone
- Reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
- Decrease pore size
- Remedy an acne scarring
- Treat hyperpigmentation (melasma)
Microneedling can be done on the face, décolletage (neck and chest), scalp, and hands. This procedure may help to improve the effectiveness of cosmetic products such as serums or creams by encouraging better absorption.
Furthermore, compared to other procedures, such as laser treatments, microneedling is more affordable and has fewer side effects!
The Science Behind Microneedling: How It Works
Microneedling stimulates the body’s natural healing processes and can be performed using a manual device with a roller covered in fine needles or an electronic device with multiple microneedles that penetrate the skin at high speed.
In a microneedling treatment session at a medical spa, a nurse practitioner typically uses an electronic handheld microneedling tool (generally in the shape of an oversized pen) to create thousands of microchannels in your skin.
When the top layer of skin is punctured with fine needles, it signals the body to produce new collagen and elastin fibers to repair the damage. These components help repair your skin with healthy tissue and lead to younger-looking firmness!
Moreover, as your body heals from these controlled micro-injuries, everything tightens. This process not only improves the appearance of existing skin conditions but also reduces future signs of aging.
Microneedling using small needles is enough to trigger the body’s natural repair response. But with longer needles, it can penetrate beyond the upper layer of skin to help repair deeper issues like stretch marks and wrinkles.
Being Pricked By Tiny Needles Seems Painful, But Is It?
Microneedling may not be a pain-free procedure, but it is less painful than it sounds.
A numbing cream is applied to the skin before treatment to minimize discomfort. The numbing effect typically lasts for about 20-30 minutes.
For most people, the discomfort is minimal and tolerable when done right. During microneedling, some patients report a mild prickling sensation as the needles puncture the skin, but it shouldn’t be too painful.
Some people may compare it to mild sunburn or the feeling of sandpaper gently rubbing against your skin.
Pain levels may vary depending on the area where microneedling is done. For example, the cheek area may be less painful than the forehead because of the cheeks’ natural “cushion” between the skin and bone.
After treatment, you may expect some redness and swelling, but this usually goes away within a day or two.
Are There Any Side Effects?
Microneedling is a safe procedure with much lesser side effects than other aesthetic procedures such as laser treatments.
The most common side effect is temporary redness and swelling of the skin, which typically subsides within a day or two. Other possible side effects include bruising, dryness, peeling, flaking, and itching. These side effects are usually mild and resolve independently within a few days.
It’s crucial to note that microneedling may aggravate existing breakouts. Individuals with active inflammatory acne or similar skin disorders should not be treated with it until the lesions have cleared.
It is best to consult with a nurse practitioner if you have any concerns about taking the microneedling treatment or what preparations you should make prior.
Most people see noticeable improvements in their skin after just one microneedling treatment. However, optimal results are usually achieved after 3-6 treatments spaced 4-6 weeks apart. Microneedling effects are cumulative, so you’ll continue to see improvements in your skin over time.
In general, you can expect the results of microneedling treatments to last for about three to five months. With proper post-treatment care, your microneedling results can last for years.
The results you experience from microneedling will depend on how your skin responds to new collagen production and the severity of your skin concerns. However, this treatment is safe for most people and provides significant benefits at an affordable price.
How Much Does It Cost?
The cost of microneedling will vary depending on the size of the treatment area and the number of sessions required. The number of sessions needed will vary from person to person, but most people see optimal results after 3-6 sessions.
Microneedling treatments usually cost between $200 and $800 per session.
Is it worth it? — Yes, it is definitely worth considering!
When microneedling is offered at or near its minimum average price, it’s an easy decision to make because of how effective it is.
Is Microneedling Right for You?
Microneedling is a popular and effective treatment for many skin concerns with little to no downtime, but it may not be right for everyone.
Microneedling might be suitable for you if:
- You have acne scars;
- Rejuvenation is something you’re interested in;
- You notice fine lines and wrinkles appearing on your skin;
- Your current skin texture and tone could use some improvement;
- Large pore size is an issue for you; or
- You want a natural look that’s minimally invasive.
If you have open wounds, active infections, or other inflammatory skin conditions, microneedling might worsen these problems. You should avoid the procedure in this case.
Before deciding if microneedling is right for you, schedule a consultation with a certified nurse practitioner at a medspa near you to discuss your goals and expectations.
At Mind & Body Medspa, we can determine if microneedling is the best treatment for you or if another procedure would be more effective.
Speak with us today and enjoy a free consultation!