Ever wondered how actor Jennifer Aniston’s face looks the same at 49, as it did in Friends in the ’90s? Or how Kim Kardashian West’s skin is always at its perkiest best? Great genes, you might say, and the latter’s devotion to sepia filters too, perhaps. But it is also the skincare trend the two women have in common: micro-needling or dermarolling, as it is more commonly known.
Though the process isn’t exactly new, and ‘needle’ is probably the last word you’d want to associate with your skincare routine, it’s taken the Internet by storm, thanks to at-home devices called dermarollers. The tool is like a spiky paint roller with semi-blunt needles on its surface. It creates small pricks that trick the skin into thinking it is injured, naturally accelerating collagen growth to facilitate healing. “It’s like getting an extraction during a facial clean-up,” says Dr Harshna Bijlani, dermatologist and founder, The Ageless Clinic, Mumbai. “It’s minimally invasive, works for every skin type, and has close to no downtime; just slight redness or swelling for two to three days for sensitive skin,” she adds.
Double dose: Combine micro-needling with these in-clinic therapies for better results.
1. Radiofrequency Therapy releases waves to boost collagen building
2. LED Light Therapy helps with faster healing.
3. Microdermabrasion can treat pigmentation and sun damage.
If you need numbers: Pinterest’s beauty trend predictions for 2018 report a whopping 345 per cent increase in saves for dermarollers in just the last year. This is also because its benefits are many. “Using it once a month rejuvenates and brightens the skin, and treats pigmentation, acne scars, stretch marks and signs of ageing,” says Bijlani. But with high-tech skincare concoctions, do you really need to poke yourself to roll back the years? “Dermarolling improves the efficacy of products with hyaluronic acid and peptides by helping them sink deeper into the skin,” says Bijlani. However, avoid products with active ingredients like vitamin C and retinol that cause sensitivity to begin with.
While there are some spiffy 14K gold rollers you can buy online, picking the right device for yourself is important. “At-home rollers should have needles under 0.5mm in height to reduce the risk of any infection. Make sure you sterilise the product and replace the head after use,” advises Bijlani. And unless you have hands as steady as a rock, learn to master the right pressure and motion from an expert to avoid scarring.