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What is microneedling and why you need to add it to your anti-ageing plan

It’s no secret that many celebrities are pretty keen on their skin care treatments, so it makes sense to keep an eye on what they’re up to. One treatment that’s proving to be very popular among them is microneedling. The line up of stars includes the likes of Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, Kim Kardashian, and Demi Moore, just to name a few. But what is all the fuss about?

So what is it?

Micro-needling (also known as collagen induction therapy) is a procedure that uses a device with a number of tiny needles to puncture the first layer of your skin ( this sounds worse than it actually is!) which creates tiny micro-injuries in it. These micro-injuries trigger the body to create healthy, new, collagen-rich tissue. It has lots of boasts about its results including improving large pores, acne scars, melasma, hyperpigmentation, uneven skin tone, fine lines, and dull skin to name a few. The overall effect is one of a whole face rejuvenation.

Is there any science behind the hype?

Even though it feels like this is a new fad, microneedling has actually been around for quite a number of years and has been refined over time. It initially started out with a single needle being repeated stabbed into the skin and developed from there onto roller devices and more recently the mechanised pen devices. The science looks good too with proper peer-reviewed journals showing improvements to the amount of collagen in the skin after treatments.

There are 2 main types of microneedling; one with a roller device (such as Dermarolla) and one with a mechanised pen device (such as SkinPen). It is generally accepted nowadays that the pen device gives a more controlled and precise treatment.

Does it hurt?

Time for me to step up and do a test run! In short — no it doesn’t. After having some numbing cream on my face for 30 minutes all I could feel as the SkinPen was passed over my cheeks was a buzzing sensation — no pain at all. The needle depth was changed to different settings for different areas of my face for a controlled treatment and it was all finished off with a cleanse and facial products. Because of the open micro-channels from the needling, these nutrient-rich products could really sink into the skin and get to where they needed to.

What do you look like after?

The great thing about this treatment is there’s really no significant downtime. Straight afterwards you will be a bit red of face for the first day and then the next couple of days the skin may be slightly pink or dry but nothing major — you can still do your normal things. A good clinic will recommend a product to use afterwards for the first 24 hours while the needling micro-channels are still open. Normal products might irritate. I was surprised by how soft my skin felt afterwards and how the size of my pores shrunk significantly.

How many treatments will I need?

I typically recommend a series of 3 treatments spread a month apart, although acne scars will require more sessions. Once completed a top up once or twice a year should keep on top of things.

My conclusion…

I admit it. I was really wary of trying this as I didn’t like the sound of needles anywhere near my face but I am glad I gave it a go. My skin feels great and there is a visible difference in the fine lines and wrinkles as well as pore size. I can also see that a scar I have had on my nose since childhood has faded a bit too. My next step is to add in Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) to make it a Vampire Facial! I will let you know how it goes.

(Article written by Alison, a forty-something mum of 4 young kids who doesn’t usually do this type of thing!)

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