Your Guide To At-Home Microneedling

Your Guide To At-Home Microneedling

If the concept of microneedling has you feeling both intrigued and overwhelmed, look no further! Our contributor, Erin Sousa, is here to share an easy-to-follow explanation, tutorial and supply breakdown.

We all want the best skin we can get, and with so many products and services out there, it can be difficult to know what actually works. I’m now officially in my mid-30s (how did that happen?), and I’m looking for solutions that deal with treating dullness and residual acne scaring, as well as keeping fine lines at bay.

Enter: Microneedling.

Microneedling (or collagen induction therapy) is usually performed in a clinic or medical spa. However, a more modest treatment can be done in the comfort of your own space (perhaps while watching “The Bachelor”?). The treatment induces collagen production (the main structural protein found in skin that keeps it looking supple and buoyant) by creating micro injuries to the skin. Like most things, you get the most noticeable results with the professional-level treatment combined with a very stringent at-home routine.

I get regular pro treatments with Glow Dermal Therapy, and I’ve asked my skin guru, Amanda Hlatky (her Medi Facials and MicroNeedling Gold sessions are changing my skin!) to offer her professional tips. So, let’s get started on the ins and the outs of at-home microneedling!

How Does Microneedling Work?

Typically, at-home microneedling is done with a needle depth of .25 to .5 millimeters. At this depth, you are able to create channels for optimal product absorption and activate resident fibroblasts to create collagen. Microneedling in a clinic has a range of depths and speeds, varying from .25 to 2.5 millimeters. These depths activate your fibroblasts, cytokines and growth factors. For best results when targeting aging skin and scarring, it is best to get a series of in-clinic needling sessions, and maintain results with regular at-home needling sessions. 

So, you want me to roll what onto my face? Why shouldn’t I be scared of using needles on my skin?

At-home microneedling—when done correctly—creates micro injury to the skin, and allows actives better penetration to the dermal layer of skin. Better penetration equals better results from products used. Rolling keeps the epidermal barrier intact, unlike some more aggressive, less effective treatments (for example, peels, dermabrasion and even some lasers).

Should you roll dry or with some sort of emollient?

For cosmetic needling, the most important thing is that your skin is clean. I recommend using an antibacterial wipe across the the skin after cleansing. While rolling, you can use a pure hyaluronic acid of pure face mist toner, if desired.

Why should every woman be using a dermal roller—or should they?

Barring any contraindications (open lesions, rosacea, etc.), the practice is an effective way to keep skin looking young and healthy—and isn’t that always the goal?

So, let’s roll! How do you perform the most effective home rolling, and what does it feel like before, during and after?

Wash and sterilize your roller with alcohol before each use. In the evening on a clean face, apply light pressure in an asterisk formation all over your face, taking care to only pass over an area once. You may feel stinging, tingling and slight discomfort, and you may see puffiness and redness post-treatment. With clean hands, apply your serum or treatment directly after rolling. I highly recommend an epidermal growth factor (I like Osmosis StemFactor) to assist in wound healing and collagen production. Perform this ritual once a week for best results!

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Author: Erin Sousa

Erin is the founder & principal of Sparkle Media, and blogs at The Sparkle. Erin lives in her downtown Vancouver condo with her husband, Roberto, and their dog, Ava. Follow on Instagram!