From fillers to Laser therapy, keeping up with the latest beauty regimen and cosmetic trends may seem to be a daunting task. It can quickly get confusing to figure out which methods to use for your skincare, when to use it and how to do it. And just when it seems like you’re getting a hang of other treatments, someone mentions something about microneedling and all its exciting goodness. Sigh, what the heck is that?
Collagen induction therapy (CIT) is a process that involves the use of very small needles (micro needles) to make hundreds of tiny holes in your skin. While the technique may sound like the latest trend in cosmetic treatment, beauty and skincare, the earliest forms of the procedure can be dated to as far back as 50 years ago. People who have gone under the needle claim that this technique treats everything. From stretch marks to hyperpigmentation and wrinkles, it has been proven to provide tremendous results in skincare treatment and even facial scars. If you’re thinking of taking a treatment (and you should), here is all you need to know before opting for a treatment.
What is it?
As earlier mentioned, the procedure entails the use of very small needles to puncture hundreds of holes in the skin, ouch! But slow down a minute, granted, the thought of small needles making hundreds of holes on your body may sound like some terribly painful ordeal, but the procedure is surprisingly tolerable while some patients have even recounted painless procedures that are professionally completed in a jiffy.
The purpose of the procedure is to allow effective penetration of skincare products, potent serums into the deeper layers of the skin through the tiny holes and micro channels to deliver more powerful results. The action of these microneedles also serve as means of creating small injuries to the skin that stimulates a healing process by the body and prompts the skin to produce elastin and collagen.
Essentially, the treatment is done with the sole aim of healing the outermost layer of the skin and delivering youthful results by plumping the skin and improving the appearance of wrinkles, scars and fine lines. It also opens up the skin pores for better absorption and effective cosmetic treatment.
How is it done?
The process of microneedling typically takes 20 to 30 minutes to complete. There are a wide variety of techniques, each specially employed for different skincare needs of the patients. Generally, the process begins with the dermatologist applying some sort of numbing cream to the area of the skin to be treated. Next, the dermatologist will either use a dermapen to work around the desired areas of the face to create tiny holes in the surface of the skin or use a dermaroller over the skin’s surface in a couple of different direction.
When it comes to the procedure, the steps and the tools themselves, the diameter or size of the needles is important and while we know the thought of your looking right at needles can be shuddering, the process is painless and definitely unlike the ouch factor of facial tattooing you’ve been mentally comparing it to.
After the completion of the process, patients may experience some redness for a couple of days following the skin stimulation. No worries however as this symptom quickly disappears as soon as the healing begins with the results being a supple, radiant and youthful skin.
In order to get optimal results, experience has shown that more than a single treatment is required to ensure the continues build of elastin and collagen proteins. As a skin care technique, it also boasts of just as many celebrity influence as other popular forms of skin care and dermal solutions. Popular faces like Kim Kardashian and Bar Refaeli have employed this technique from time to time to reap the benefits of a smoother, supple and youthful radiance. Many celebrities have also come up with several versions of the treatment with the “Vampire facial” a popular trademark for Kim K using dermapen and specially formulated platelet-rich plasma.
What are the benefits?
The treatment comes with a plethora of benefits asides the stimulation of skin towards becoming more receptive towards beneficial skincare products, serum and treatments. In 2009, a study carried out with 37 patients that undertook the treatment to treat sunken facial scars resulting from acne, chicken pox, smallpox and the likes reported that 80 percent of the patients experienced a reduction in scarring and described their treatment as excellent.
It visibly reduces the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines, crow’s feet and other lines across the face due to the increased skin firmness and elasticity. It has also been observed that mild and deep scars fade out after multiple effective treatments.
The procedure also reduces the appearance of large pores and results in the production of higher amounts of collagen, stretch marks and other skin inconsistencies may also be removed after a couple of derma needling treatments. The multiple puncturing of the skin also promotes the nutrient absorptivity, clears clogged pores and ensures that enough vitamins and minerals effectively penetrate the dermis to reach the necessary cells.
Asides being a safer technique than other non-invasive treatments, it stimulates the skin to heal itself more effectively and enhances collagenesis.
How often should you go?
The frequency of sessions is dependent on the intensity of each treatment. Collagenesis, the production of collagen is optimal two weeks after each treatment, which is why a period of 14 to 30 days is usually advised between treatments. If the undergone treatments are mild, several sessions can be repeated every fortnight or monthly. Deeper treatment including scars can be repeated in 4 to 6 weeks.
If your skin is generally fine and well catered for, you may only need to microneedle every 2 to 4 months.