How Does Dermarolling Work?
Heard of dermarolling but you’re not sure what it is? We’re here to tell you what it is and all its perks.
If you weren’t aware, dermarolling is basically another form of micro-needling, a popular in-clinic treatment which gained much traction in the beauty community. It’s a skincare technique which involves plunging thousands of tiny needles into your face repeatedly, boasting wrinkle reduction and lightening pigmentation. Intrigued and a little terrified? Ahead is everything you need to know to determine whether micro-needling is right for you.
To start, no, at-home dermarolling isn’t supposed to be painful as the needles on the roller are smaller than the ones used in the dermatologist’s office. When rolled over the skin, the dermaroller has two main benefits.
First, it allows for better penetration of your products; the tiny needles that prick your skin allow your products to seep deeper into the skin. Second, the pricking causes micro-injuries in the skin, which send signals to your brain to go into repair mode, producing and delivering collagen to the epidermis, the outermost layer of the skin. More collagen production equates to healthier, bouncier skin.
Are there any risks?
The first thing to know is that you should absolutely, never use dermarollers on irritated skin, be it sensitive with eczema or breakouts. Dermarolling on any form of acne—especially cystic—is not recommended. Rolling over active acne could spread bacteria around your face and increase the risks of a major infection.
Those with sensitive skin are also recommended to do a patch test of all products you wish to apply after dermarolling, as the active ingredients penetrate into your skin, the risk of irritation goes up, resulting in redness or irritated, flushed skin.
The process of dermarolling
To ensure that you aren’t causing any real injury to your skin, at-home dermarollers shouldn’t have needles larger than 0.5 millimetres. You can use it once every three weeks. If possible, beginners should start with even smaller needles.
Before you begin, properly disinfect your dermaroller. Your dermaroller should be sterilised with alcohol before and after every use so that you don’t run the risk of infection. Also, your dermaroller should be replaced after about 10 to 15 uses when the needles start to dull.
After proper sterilisation, cleanse your face thoroughly. Start rolling using very light pressure, over each section of your face three to four times in one direction before repeating in the other direction. It’s helpful to divide your face into sections, starting with the forehead before moving on to the cheeks and the lower face area. Avoid the eyes since the skin is more delicate, as well as the nose, since you should only be rolling over flat surfaces. After that, wash your face again and disinfect the roller.
Now it’s time for the patch test. Choose the serum that you’d like to use, and apply a pea-sized amount on your forehead or cheek. Wait 24 hours. If your skin doesn’t react, you can apply it all over your face the next time you use the roller. Applying a serum that contains active ingredients like hyaluronic acid or vitamin C is also recommended (try Skin Inc’s Hyaluronic Acid Serum, SGD68, or Kora Organics Noni Bright Vitamin C Serum, SGD89).
Avoid products with retinol or AHA as they can cause irritation. Dermarolling should be done as part of your nighttime routine, so you’re not exposed to the sun when your skin is vulnerable.
When will you see results?
Dermarolling shows rather subtle changes in the beginning. Collagen takes a couple of months to grow, so the changes will be more visible within a month.