In recent years– and throughout 2020 especially– many beauty treatments that were previously reserved for a spa setting have become more accessible to DIY. One trend I’m seeing take over consumer skin care: microneedles. From patches to dermarollers, it’s easier than ever to reap the skin benefits of microneedling at home.
“Microneedling is a type of skin procedure that uses small needles to pierce tiny punctures into the skin,” explains Dr. Lucy Chen, Board Certified Miami Dermatologist of Riverchase Dermatology. “This creates a healing process on the skin which helps stimulate collagen production, yielding improvement in skin texture, firmness and fine lines/wrinkles.”
Basically, your skin recognizes small punctures on the face as something it needs to heal, and rushes extra resources there to repair and replenish the surface with new cells. Rolling or pushing needles into your skin at home may seem scary, but it’s a relatively painless procedure, only piercing through the surface-level of your skin with a prickly sensation. Most microneedling products also claim to enhance absorption of your favorite skin care products, as they create a channel for serums and mositurizers to sink deeper into.
One of the draws of microneedling is that it satisfies the need for instant gratification when many skin care regimens take time to see results. Just the act of microneedling will leave your skin looking more plump and glowy. Get even more noticeable, long lasting results by pairing serums and actives to target specific skin concerns and sticking with it for at least a month.
The most budget-friendly microneedling tool would be a simple dermaroller, which you can find as cheap as the $10 Equate Beauty Facial Microneedle Dermaroller at Walmart.
Other brands have enhanced the experience to offer even more benefits, such as BeautyBio’s GloPRO Microneedling Tool (pictured above), which combines microneedling with vibrations that stimulate deeper layers of the skin, plus LED red light therapy which helps with inflammation and collagen production. The GloPRO comes in a kit along with a handful of the brand’s skin care and tool maintenance products in travel sizes for $199. I always love the idea of stacking multiple benefits in one tool, so sometimes the splurge is worth it… especially if it’s something I can do at home multiple times versus the rare expensive facial appointment.
The best part about microneedling is that it’s not a lengthy step to add to your existing routine. A dermarolling routine only takes about a minute a day. After cleansing and toning, move the dermaroller over the face in vertical, horizontal, and diagonal directions for 60 seconds, then apply your serums and moisturizers. It’s imperative to sanitize your dermarollers using at least 70% isopropyl alcohol after each use, and it’s recommended to replace them every 3 months. In the case of the GloPRO tool, you can buy new attachment heads instead of replacing the whole tool.
An even more convenient way to take advantage of this skin care trend is through microneedle patches. At the drugstore, I love the Miss Spa Banish Microneedle Spot Treatments ($7.99), which use dissolving microneedles that penetrate pimples with 0.5% salicylic acid to treat acne overnight. Pop it on before bed, go to sleep, then remove and toss the patch in the morning. I personally feel like these help stop zits in their tracks and reduce their appearance way faster than a cream spot treatment. I’m also a fan of the Skyn Iceland Dissolving Microneedle Eye Patches ($14) which deliver hyaluronic acid and peptides to help smooth the appearance of fine lines and plump up the under eye area. When I wear these overnight, I wake up looking much more… alive. No dark circles or sunken-in undereyes!
The benefit of pairing the microneedle method with an active treatment and a patch is a common concept in Dermatology. “[We instruct] patients to apply their medication under occlusion, which usually means underneath a bandage, gloves or tape. The idea is that the topical medication has enhanced absorption under occlusion,” says Dr. Chen. However, she warns of the over-the-counter microneedle patches that “there is no exact science of how much medication is actually getting absorbed. So, I’d advise exercising caution with leaving these on longer than the recommended time as excess medication could lead to potential allergy or superficial burn.”