What is micro needling?
Safe for nearly all skin types, micro needling helps activate skin renewal to help the skin appear fresher, firmer and younger. It is a skin rejuvenation treatment that naturally helps trigger collagen and elastin synthesis within the skin. Tiny channels are created in the skin while still keeping your epidermis intact. This controlled wounding process produces growth factors to help the body rebuild skin density and integrity. Similar to the way you “aerate” a lawn to feed it nutrients, micro needling helps to enhance penetration of corrective serums or light chemical peels to give you smooth, even texture, fade pigmentation spots, and healthy, glowing skin. You will see results that are similar to laser resurfacing, without the expense, pain, heat, or extended recovery time.
What is the difference between micro needling and derma-rolling?
Micro needling is performed with a pen-like instrument that has a detachable needle cartridge with varying numbers of needles (I’ve seen anywhere from a single needle up to 36 needles). Permanent make-up guns or tattoo guns are also commonly used for micro needling, with a similar cartridge piece containing any number of needles. The cartridge needle depth can be easily adjusted on the handpiece, depending on the condition being treated and skin thickness.
Derma-rolling is performed with a roller instrument that contains multiple rows of tiny needles that “puncture” the epidermis when rolled across the skin surface. The needles on a derma roller are one uniform length, so if a different depth of needle penetration is needed to obtain the proper end-result, a new roller must be used.
Both types of needling treatments allow the needles to penetrate the skin surface from 0.2mm up to 3.0mm. Derma rollers and micro needle cartridges are generally one-time use items (unless you are using a home derma roller), and are safely disposed of after each client visit.
At Face Perfection, I use a corded pen with disposable needle cartridges containing 12 stainless steel needles. I prefer corded over battery-powered for stronger, more consistent energy.
What types of skin conditions are improved with micro needling treatments?
Micro needling is best suited to treat:
- fine lines and wrinkles
- uneven or rough skin texture
- mild acne breakouts
- acne scarring or other types of (healed) scarring
- unwanted pigmentation spots and sun damage
- stretch marks
Does micro needling help at all with skin sagging?
Honestly, if you are trying to avoid surgery but you are frustrated with sagging skin, it would take a combination of non-surgical alternatives, plus a lot of commitment and patience, to see a true visible difference in skin that is lax or sagging, created by gravity and loss of elasticity. Skin sagging can be helped – to a degree – non-surgically, but the combination would have to include not only micro needling, but also a professional skin care regimen at home, LED therapy, regular chemical peels, along with a series of radio frequency or microcurrent treatments.
Which skin types or conditions should NOT be treated with micro needling?
The following conditions should avoid micro needling: excessive redness, broken capillaries, pustular or nodular rosacea, active inflamed acne, or a history of severe histamine reactions or allergies.
Can I micro needle if I have Botox or filler?
Yes. Try to schedule your micro needling appointment just before your Botox or filler appointment and you’ll see some Wow! results after you’ve healed. If you already had an injection recently, you need to wait at least 48 hours after having Botox, and one week after a filler injection.
Does micro needling hurt?
A numbing cream is used before the treatment, so discomfort, if any, is minimal. The most sensitive areas tend to be the forehead and upper lip.
What kind of recovery time is needed after a micro needling treatment?
Usually only a day or two is all it takes before your skin returns to “normal” or you can start wearing makeup, depending on the depth of the treatment. The deeper the needles penetrate into the skin can mean a longer recovery time and you may see some light peeling, but you are able to wear sunscreen and makeup the day after treatment.
How do I take care of my skin after micro needling?
On the day of the treatment, a barrier repairing cream is applied to help relieve inflammation and begin the repair process. You may re-apply this barrier repairing cream as often as you wish to relieve any discomfort, but you may not wear anything else on your skin, not even sunscreen, after treatment the first day. On day two, you may use your normal cleansing routine, but if you are feeling any sensitivity, you will probably skip any active serums or treatment products until you are no longer sensitive. Sunscreen is always a must, beginning the day after treatment.
How many treatments does it take to see results?
Results are uniquely different for everyone. It really depends on what you are treating, and how you are taking care of your skin at home. You will notice smoother skin texture after your first treatment, with even better improvement after the second. Best visible results are seen with a series of at least 4 to 12 treatments, spaced 3 to 6 weeks apart. Limited improvement is expected if you don’t follow recommended home care, which may include a home derma rolling routine to supplement your in-office services.
How soon will I see results?
After you have completed your series, it does take time to really see the difference the micro needling has made in your skin. Final results won’t be noticeable from three to twelve months after you have completed your service series, because boosting collagen and elastin within the dermis does not happen overnight. As well, the series may need to be repeated in order to see the visible results you want to see.
What sort of training is required to perform micro needling?
This is a very scary fact: There is no certification or training required to perform micro needling services, which has the FDA watching needle device manufacturers and distributors very closely. Along with the nerve to puncture someone’s skin with a dozen tiny needles, all one needs is a pen and a needle cartridge and a person willing to let her (or him) do it.
Ideally, experienced skin professionals, and permanent makeup or tattoo artists who offer micro needling services, have had hands-on, in-person training with certification by a recognized training organization. They have done extensive research on different needling devices and needle cartridges and made the safest, most effective choice for their clientele. They know exactly what can and cannot be used on the skin before, during, and after the micro needling procedure, and can handle any unwanted issues that may happen after a micro needling. As well, they should have professional liability insurance that covers any unforeseen circumstances. If you don’t see a micro needling certification on the wall, ASK for training credentials.
What are the qualifications to micro needle in Idaho?
There are no specific qualifications required in Idaho for micro needling at this time. Other states, such as California, allow only licensed medical professionals or practitioners with a permanent cosmetic license to perform micro needle treatments. Idaho does not have licensing requirements for permanent cosmetics.
At Face Perfection, I have been performing micro needling services as a licensed esthetician since 2014. After extensively researching and studying prior to purchasing my device, I completed two in-person training courses, with training certificates from the AAMM (American Association of Medical MicroNeedling) and Dr. Lance Setterfield’s online study course, based on his book, The Concise Guide to Medical MicroNeedling. I am aware of my scope of practice as an esthetician and do not go beyond the recommended parameters for safety, as outlined in my training.
How do I choose which treatment is better for me: Micro Needling or Perfect Derma Peel, or should I try Laser Resurfacing instead?
There are several different factors to consider.
- You want an alternative to laser treatments that work as well, but are less expensive and less painful, with reduced recovery time.
- You have allergies or sensitivities to the ingredients of the Perfect Peel.
- You are happy and patient with a “less is more” approach (you may need 4 or more treatments, depending on what you are treating)
- You need results with reduced recovery time, and you are not going to spend the next week with prolonged periods of sun exposure.
- You have melasma, which should not be treated with laser or IPL, or any devices that heat the skin.
- You don’t mind spending up to 2 hours on a skin service.
- Your skin color is too dark for laser or IPL.
- You desire better visible improvement for specifically targeted areas of deeper wrinkles, pigmented spots, indented scars, or stretch marks.
- You would like to boost/maintain your Perfect Peel results in between treatments.
- You have reached your limit on Perfect Peels for the year (you may have up to 4).
- You no longer peel after having 3 or more Perfect Peels.
- You have no allergies or sensitivities to the ingredients of the Perfect Peel.
- You prefer a “more is better” approach.
- You don’t mind the recovery time, and you have no “big events” in the next week or two.
- You have melasma, which should not be treated with laser or IPL, or any devices that heat the skin.
- You have only 30 minutes or less to spend on a skin service.
- Your skin color is too dark for laser resurfacing or IPL.
- You are looking for deeper, overall skin rejuvenation.
- You need a quick, easy, “kick start” to help improve pigmentation, acne breakouts or superficial scarring.
Choose Laser Resurfacing if:
- You don’t have the patience for “less is more,” you want to see faster visible results (although you will still need a series of treatments).
- The cost, discomfort, recovery time are not an issue.
- You DO NOT have melasma.
- Your skin color is not prone to hyperpigmentation (dark spots or scars) or hypopigmentation (the absence of color).
- You are treating redness (rosacea, broken capillaries) in the skin.
- You completely trust that the laser technician is thoroughly trained and is prepared to handle any and all risks of laser treatment.
Ultimately, your skin care professional should help you make the right decision which treatment series will work best for your unique skin needs and goals.