As dermarolling begins to become increasingly popular, it's important to be informed on proper microneedling practices for best results. While the internet swims with dermaroller do's and don'ts, I'm here to give you the final say on what exactly you should be doing for your dermaroller skincare, and what you absolutely should not.
1. DO Disinfect Your Dermaroller Before and After Use
Disinfecting your dermaroller is a must. First off, sanitizing your dermaroller prior to rolling will ensure that bacteria and pathogens are removed from the dermaroller before applying to skin. But let's say you forget to disinfect. All it takes is a single bacteria to infiltrate the microscopic puncture wounds inflicted by the dermaroller's needles to cause a possible infection. Not good.
Getting into the habit of disinfecting your dermaroller is a great habit that will keep your needles sterile, safe for use, and protect your skin. Disinfecting post-use is useful too, as it immediately rids the needles of any pathogens, oils, or dead skin that it picked up from application.
Not sure how to disinfect your dermaroller? Check out this video.
2. DON'T Use Too Large of a Needle Size
Everyone wants quicker results in less time, but sadly, this just doesn’t work for skin. Think of it like going to the gym. Getting fit and tone doesn’t magically happen in two flash sessions in the weight room. It’s all about consistency, consistency, consistency. So if you’re using a bigger needle size to get results in half the time, I’m sorry to break it to you, but it just doesn’t work like that.
In fact, using too large of a needle size right away can lead to a lack of visible results, damaged skin, and premature aging. Yikes.
My advice? If you’re a true beginner, start with the smaller size dermaroller, 0.25mm, for a couple of months, then increment the size. I have a YouTube video on this as well, if you want all of the details on how to do this the right way.
3. DO Roll and Lift
Rolling back and forth with the dermaroller is a common mistake that a lot of first-time users make. Rolling back and forth causes inconsistency, can increase the risk of cuts, and is a bad habit to form.
Best practice? Roll forward, lift, and repeat from the starting point. This ensures an even amount of punctures across a specific area of skin and prevents overworking, irritation, and possible bleeding.
4. DON'T Dermaroll Longer Than Five Minutes
This is another huge one and I can't stress this enough. Just because you’re dermarolling for thirty minutes at a time doesn’t mean it’s producing additional benefits or getting you results any faster.
This is one of those less is more situations. Try to make your sessions last no more than 5 minutes for your first four to five times. After 1-2 months, you can bump this timeframe up to 7 minutes, then at the sixth, seventh, or eighth month, go ahead and shoot for 10 minute sessions. In all honesty, I see no reason you should be dermarolling longer than 10 minutes at a time. NOTE: if you consider yourself to have sensitive skin, I’d recommend dermaroller sessions last no longer than 2-3 minutes.
5. DO Use Real-Needle Dermarollers
When it comes to dermarolling, I push quality over quantity. No matter how many needles a dermaroller brand may claim to have, if they’re using fake needle wheels, you’re putting your skin at risk by using their product. Do you know how to tell the difference between a fake and real dermaroller? You should, if you want to avoid blemishing and scarring your skin.
I go into depth about this in my YouTube video, where I place fake and real dermarollers under a microscope to determine the shape of the hole their needles make. Needless to say, the fake dermarollers form a nasty gash-like wound, while legitimate needles form a clean, circular puncture.
And for the record, my 192-real needle dermarollers contain 100% medical grade stainless steel needles and are CE certified, meaning they adhere to some of the strictest health standards out there. You can browse or shop for them here.
6. DON'T Skip the Aftercare
Radiant skin doesn’t just happen with a few back and forth rolls of the dermaroller. How you treat your skin prior to and following your dermarolling routine has a major impact on the results.
Make sure to use a high-SPF sunscreen if you plan on going out, and try not to expose your skin to harsh sunlight for at least 48-hours. Don’t workout or sweat for at least 24-hours after dermarolling, and don’t exfoliate or use acids for at least 3 days. Wait until your skin has HEALED. And if you exfoliated harshly the day before, DON’T dermaroll. Take the necessary precautions and give your newly dermarolled skin the tender love and care it deserves. I promise you, your results will be magical. It just takes a little attention to detail and safety.
7. DO Take Before and After Pictures
Results can be measured and what better way to inspect the quality of your results than taking before and after pictures for your own reference? Checking up on your progress is one of those psychological support techniques that let you know you're getting somewhere.
Because nothing's worse than dermarolling diligently only to look in the mirror and think is this even working? Pictures are hard proof that you're achieving/lacking results. Whether it's acne scars, wrinkles, or fine lines, make sure to document the journey and you'll be feeling a warm fuzzy somewhere in the naval area in no time.
8. DON'T Be Inconsistent
Dermarolling is all about repetition, repetition, repetition. Dermarolling for one week, skipping the next, and then picking up a few days the next is going to do nothing for your results.
Again, I compare beautiful skin to the gym. Losing weight isn't easy, but with consistency, diet, and exercise, you'll begin to see the fat melt away. But if you were inconsistent in the gym, only went a few times a week, skipped the next week, ate healthy only intermittently, and didn't commit, well then it's easy to see how results would become stifled.
Make a plan and stick to it. You may not see results right away (and this is more than likely), although everyone's skin is different. Some see results in as little as a week, but some take as long as six months. It's all about your end-goal and your commitment to a rock-solid dermaroller routine. Trust me, the payoff is worth it.
9. DO Apply After-Products
A key element a lot of first-time dermarollers miss out on is the importance of making sure your skin is moisturized post-rolling.
I personally like to use three products after my microneedling sessions.
While hyaluronic acid provides moisture and hydrates the skin, Vitamin C Serum brightens and provides further anti-aging benefits, while Vitamin C Cream repairs the skin and provides further benefits.
10. DON'T Dermaroll Over Active Acne
This one should be an absolute no-brainer, but you'd be surprised how many people try this with horrific results.
Acne is irritated, inflammed, and not suitable for dermarolling whatsoever. Dermarolling over acne can cause bleeding, further irritation, and puncturing of pus-filled pimples that can ruin your complexion even more. While dermarollers are definitely a powerhouse against acne scars, under no circumstances should you use needles over active acne.
And there you have it! Some of the most important do's and don'ts of dermarolling! I hope some of these shed light on the importance of some basic elements of microneedling and provided useful tips for first-time users! Be sure to drop a comment and check out my Instagram! Until next time, Amber Babies!