What exactly is a microneedling treatment?

SkinPen® by Crown Aesthetics is the first FDA-cleared microneedling device to treat facial acne scars for ages 22 and up.  Microneedling has actually been in use since 1995 but has greatly evolved and grown increasingly popular in the last few years. You may have seen personal dermal rollers in magazines and beauty blogs, which are handheld rollers with tiny needles on them.  These cause minimal improvement when used, as the needles only slightly penetrate the skin.  They also don’t penetrate straight down, as the rolling action causes the needles to go into the skin at an angle, risking tears in the skin.  The SkinPen® medical microneedling device penetrates much deeper to cause uniform micro-wounds in the epidermal and dermal layers, depending on the selection of needle length.  The disposable cartridge of tiny sterile needles penetrates quickly at a vertical angle to create small holes, or micro-channels, in the skin while minimizing cellular damage.  This action kick-starts your skin’s natural healing process by producing new collagen, which improves the look of fine lines, wrinkles, scarring, texture, stretch marks, and overall rejuvenation of the skin.  The surface of your skin will appear smoother, more even-toned, and polished over time.  This treatment is safe to do on a regular basis as part of an overall maintenance program for healthier, glowing skin.  A series of treatments spaced 4-6 weeks apart is recommended, as new collagen production is a gradual process, and your results will continue to improve even after your treatment is done.

What should I expect during my treatment?

After assessing your skin and screening for any conditions that could rule out treatment, your skin will be gently cleansed, then a topical numbing cream will be applied to reduce your discomfort during the treatment.  We ask that contact lenses be removed prior to your visit.  After all traces of numbing cream have been removed and your skin is thoroughly cleansed, your technician will apply the Skinfuse® Lift HG and begin your SkinPen treatment.  Although this procedure is very tolerable, you may at times feel some slight discomfort as the SkinPen glides over your skin, especially over more bony prominent areas such as the forehead, nose, or jawline.  The treatment itself is fairly quick, so any discomfort doesn’t last too long.  Your technician will monitor your skin and ask for feedback and can adjust the needle length if necessary.  After all, areas have been treated, your skin will be lightly wiped down, and additional Skinfuse® Lift HG will be applied before you leave.  You will need to avoid direct sun exposure immediately and for the next few days after your SkinPen® treatment.

How do I prepare for my treatment?

All anti-aging or acne treatment products that you are currently using should be discontinued at least 5 days prior to your scheduled appointment, such as topical acne medications, retinoids, and products containing alpha or beta hydroxy acids.  If you are experiencing an acne breakout, you may need to wait for your skin to clear up before having your microneedling treatment.  Prolonged sun exposure should be avoided for a minimum of 1 week before and 3 weeks after your treatment.  In addition, do not wax 1 week before or after your appointment, as this can remove a layer of skin cells and increase your chance of adverse reactions.  Please arrive with minimal or no makeup.  If you have an active cold sore, your appointment will need to be rescheduled until it is completely resolved.  Contact lenses should be removed prior to your visit.

How will my skin look after treatment?

Most patients will experience some mild to moderate redness that may last for the rest of the day.   If you are fair-skinned, redness will be more apparent but should begin to fade as the day goes on.  Some pinpoint bleeding is normal, and it is not unusual to see visible lines or tracking marks on your skin for the first couple of days.  Also, you may experience discomforts such as dryness, itching, burning, and tightness similar to a sunburn, but these can be relieved with the application of soothing hydrating serums and moisturizers and by avoiding excessive exercise or exposure to heat, as that may make your skin sting and feel uncomfortable.  You may experience some acne breakouts in the days following your treatment, as the skin cells begin to turn over and congestion is purged from your skin.  It very important that you do not pick at your skin and use only plain, gentle cleansers and moisturizers for a few days after your treatment so that your skin can heal properly.  Most of these after-effects resolve within a few days, but please contact our office if they do not.  A broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher is required daily between appointments to protect your skin, as treated areas will be more sensitive to the sun.

How do I care for my skin after a microneedling treatment?

Since the microchannels in your skin can remain open up to 24 hours after your treatment, you will need to exercise caution when touching your skin, especially for the first 6 hours, after which you can cleanse your skin with a gentle cleanser and apply any additional Skinfuse® Lift HG left over.  Also, as your skin may be more sensitive to anti-aging or acne products, we recommend that you wait a minimum of 3 days after treatment to resume use of them, but you may need to wait longer. Typically, within 2 days most patients will experience mild peeling as the skin exfoliates.  Your skin may feel a little rough to the touch and dry.  A gentle cleanser and hydrating serum or mild moisturizer are recommended to ensure that you don’t cause additional dryness or irritation as your skin is healing and repairing itself.  Any issues such as scabbing or blistering after your treatment should be reported to our office immediately.  It is extremely important to not pick at or peel off any skin that is starting to flake or peel, as tempting as that is.  If the skin underneath is not entirely healed, you can risk causing a raw area that could take longer to heal, become infected, or leave a dark spot that can take time to resolve.  Facial brushes and scrubs to remove peeling skin are a no-no as well, as they can cause irritation and interfere with the healing process.  And remember, broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher must be worn daily, and excessive sun exposure is discouraged during your series of treatments.  This will ensure you are protecting the investment you are making in your skin, and to help discourage the formation of more sun damage and discoloration in your skin.

What other procedures does microneedling pair well with?

Microneedling with SkinPen® can be alternated with other treatments including facials, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, dermaplaning, Laser Genesis, and IPL Photofacial, and can be part of a facial rejuvenation plan including injectables such as Botox or Dysport, and facial fillers like Juvéderm or Restylane.  Let the team here at Tru-Skin Dermatology help you formulate a treatment plan to put your best face forward!

Microneedling FAQ:

Who can benefit from a SkinPen® microneedling treatment?

Both women and men who want an effective way to rejuvenate their skin are the perfect candidates for microneedling, as all skin types can be safely treated.  This treatment is a perfect procedure for those looking for ways to improve signs of aging, acne scarring, melasma, dull-looking skin, large pores, and the look of stretch marks.  Glowing skin can easily be achieved through a series of treatments.

Who is not a good candidate for a microneedling procedure?

Almost anyone is a good candidate for microneedling with the exception of patients who are pregnant or nursing.  Also, if your skin is thin or extremely sensitive due to age or certain medications, you may not be a good candidate.  In addition, if you have been using isotretinoin (Accutane) within the past 12 months, please advise your technician, as this medication can interfere with your skin’s ability to heal itself.  If you have a history of keloid scarring, you may not be a good candidate for microneedling with SkinPen®.  If you are prone to cold sores, we recommend taking anti-viral medication prior to your appointment.  Patients with melasma, severe acne scarring, or more advanced signs of aging may require several microneedling treatments combined with therapeutic skincare products to see results.

How many microneedling treatments will I need?

SkinPen® microneedling treatments can be performed initially in a series as often as 4-6 weeks apart, depending on how quickly your skin recovers.  Most patients have a series of 3 or more performed every 4-6 weeks, to begin with, as some skin conditions such as acne scarring or stretch marks require multiple treatments for improvement.  You may also want to continue with treatments once every 3-6 months as part of a maintenance regimen.  Your technician can help determine what course of treatment is best for your individual needs.  Results may be cumulative and take time, and you will notice increased improvement with each treatment.

How long does each treatment take?

Depending on the areas being treated, most sessions take about an hour with numbing included.

How much downtime will I have?

Downtime can vary between different patients and skin type.  Generally, the fairer and more sensitive a person’s skin is, the more visible redness that person may have compared to a person with a darker skin tone.  Redness will usually resolve later that same day, but it is not unusual to still be red or have visible evidence of your treatment in more sensitive areas for the next day or so.  Your skin will most likely feel as if you have a sunburn for a day or two as well, and be more sensitive.  Most patients will have some slight roughness to their skin and light peeling within a couple of days, but it is usually very minimal and not noticeable.  This can be reduced with the use of hydrating serums and moisturizers.

What areas can be treated with SkinPen® microneedling?

The face is the most commonly treated area, but microneedling can be used on the neck, upper chest, backs of hands, or any area of the body where improvement in your skin is desired.  SkinPen® can be very effective in the treatment of acne scars, scarring, and stretch marks, but it may take several treatments to obtain the desired results.  It is important to note that the skin on the face is different from the skin on the rest of the body, so healing times usually take longer for areas other than the face, and the degree of improvement can vary widely.

What type of microneedling treatments does Tru-Skin Dermatology offer?

We offer three different types of SkinPen® microneedling treatments for our patients.  This allows us to customize treatments specifically for our patients and their individual skin types and needs.  There is the basic microneedling treatment with Skinfuse® Lift HG; the SkinPen® Plus treatment that includes a soothing, hydrating mask for aftercare; and the SkinPen® with PRP treatment, which involves using the patient’s own platelet-rich plasma to enhance results.  We here at Tru-Skin Dermatology are ready to customize your procedure plan for optimal results.

How much does a SkinPen® microneedling treatment cost?

You can purchase an individual treatment if you wish, but as a series of treatments is recommended for best results, packages of 3 treatments are available and affordably priced.  If you purchase any package of SkinPen® microneedling treatments, a Pre and Post-procedure kit is included in the price.  Our menu of services with pricing for different options can be found HERE.

How long will my results last?

Depending on the person and the skin conditions being treated, results usually last anywhere between 3-6 months but may last longer in some cases.  For the best results in retaining the benefits of microneedling treatments, daily sun protection, and the use of medical-grade skin care products are recommended.  Tru-Skin Dermatology can help you set up a customized skin care regimen to target your individual needs.  We carry several lines of professional products to help you achieve your best skin possible.  Call us today to start your journey to healthier-looking skin!


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