Microneedling: Everything you need to know

Does it actually work?

Micro-needling is a safe way to achieve visible skincare results with little downtime. I explain it to my guests as an alternative to invasive treatments such as injectables, or deep chemical peels.

Micro-needling works in two main ways. Firstly, by creating microscopic punctures, which stimulates the bodies own wound-healing response. This is called controlled trauma and it kick-starts the skin, making it work extra hard to ‘heal’. This process releases growth factors, lays down collagen and increases cell elasticity and regeneration. The reason I’d choose microneedling over other forms of controlled trauma (like dermabrasion or intense acid peels) is that it preserves epidermal integrity, providing an ideal balance between optimal results and minimal downtime.

Secondly, Microneedling creates a direct channel for products to penetrate into the deepest part of the epidermis/dermis. Specilaised, concentrated products called Meso’s (or Mesotherapy) are designed for this. Meso’s increase the efficacy of the basic wound-healing response as well as allowing us to tailor the treatment to specific skincare concerns.

When used in this way, microneedling has shown to be highly effective in smoothing fine lines, wrinkles and crepey skin; treating acne scarring, and improving hyperpigmentation.

Who’s it for?

Increased cell renewal & collagen production will benefit most individuals. Significant results can particularly be seen on those suffering with acne scarring, pigmentation or lines / wrinkles. Prior to treatments, a consultation process takes place to establish if the guest is suitable (there are a few medical conditions that contra-indicate the treatment). That aside, Micro-needling is quite universal because it stimulates the bodies own wound- healing response. It can therefore be used on all skintypes (Fitzpatrick 1 – 6) and for most skin conditions.

How many sessions will I need?

Courses vary depending on what you’re trying to achieve. Visible results can be determined from as little as 1 – 2 treatments. However, to really reap the benefits of Micro-needling, I’d suggest a course of 4 treatments; 4 – 6 weeks apart. In severe cases of pigmentation or scarring up to 6 sessions may be required

.but I’m afraid of needles…?

I believe the word needling mis-represents this treatment a little. Yes, needles are of-course used, and it’d be disingenuous to mask that. However, this is unlike any needles you’ll have experienced in medical settings before. For a start, the needles are concealed and controlled in a pen-like device that glides smoothly over the skin – so you don’t see the needles. They’re grouped into a set of 12 and are very short so as to only penetrate 1mm into the skin. Whilst the treatment can be a little uncomfortable, it’s easily tolerable and resembles the feeling of ‘pins & needles’ as opposed to a ‘jab’. The needles themselves are manufactured from surgical grade stainless steel, suitable for even the most allergic of skins; they’re gamma-sterilised & individually packaged for ultimate hygiene & safety,

Will it hurt?

Micro-needling has been on a journey over the last 10years and you may link it in your mind with images of tv presenters laying victim to dermal-rollers until their faces were grazed & bleeding! Nowadays, many practitioners are moving away from rollers completely and replacing them with Micro-needling devices. These are first and formost less painful due to the angle at which the needle penetrates into the skin. It’s also widely accepted that collagen induction & cell renewal can take place with a much shorter needle than originally used in the derma-rollering days. 0.5mm – 1.0mm needle-lengths have produced excellent results and are easily tolerable. In addition to this, the efficiency of the latest devices means the treatment is over very swiftly (within 8 – 10minutes). Even so, some guests still prefer to apply a topical anaesthetic before they arrive (f you choose to do this please tell your practitioner before the treatment begins). I find the numbing of anaesthetic more undesirable than the needling-treatment itself, but that’s a personal opinion.

How long will it take to heal?

It’s thought that the microscopic channels close up somewhere between 10 – 60 minutes after having the treatment but the skin will remain sensitised for 24 – 48 hours. Expect dryness and maybe a teeny bit of peeling following this – I recommend Hyalauronic Acid to rehydrate and plump out the skin during this phase. Day 2 – 21 is when the skin works hard to heal itself and from day 20, for up to 24 months, the collagen will continue to strengthen (mature from type 3 collagen to type 1).

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