All The Benefits You Can Expect From Microneedling

Microneedling has been on trend for years now, and if you haven't given it a try, know that it has plenty of benefits. "Microneedling is a procedure in which a bunch of very small little needles are used in a tool, like a microneedling barrel roller barrel or in a microneedling pen, in order to penetrate the skin and pull underneath the surface of the skin to cause trauma so the skin can heal and be tighter and more glowy," board-certified dermatologist Shereene Idriss, M.D., tells Allure.


What sets microneedling apart from other skin procedures is that it's minimally invasive and has a very short recovery time. "The great thing about this treatment is there's no significant downtime," board-certified dermatologist Sejal Shah, M.D., tells Byrdie. He adds that some people will experience redness and "pinpoint bleeding" after the procedure, but within hours, you should look normal and be able to do your typical activities (including regular skincare) the next day.  

However, as with any skincare procedure, you always need to ensure that it's the right choice for you. We always advise that you consult your esthetician or dermatologist before adding any new treatment to your routine, and microneedling is no different. That said, microneedling benefits aren't just for the skin on your face but also for your body.


Microneedling helps lessen the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles

One of the most common reasons people undergo microneedling is to help lessen the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. "The treatment creates micro-injuries in the skin to induce the body's natural healing process. The body will produce collagen [in] that affected area, laying down elastin fibers like a tight web of skin. This fills out wrinkles and lines, improving the look and texture of [the] skin," Sarasota Facial Aesthetics' Kimberly Marlow tells Sarasota Magazine.


According to a study published in The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, microneedling is scientifically proven to help improve wrinkles, and side effects are minimal since the method isn't as invasive as other anti-wrinkle procedures. Per Spotlight on Skincare, microneedling should be done at most every three to six weeks for about three to six months. Microneedling is not only an excellent choice for deep furrows and wrinkles on the forehead but also for wrinkles in places other procedures can't be safely performed (such as wrinkles and fine lines around the eyes and mouth).

It reduces the appearance of scars on the face and body

Apart from wrinkles, microneedling can also do wonders for scars. According to a study published by the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery journal, this procedure is one of the most effective ways to lessen the appearance or completely eliminate scars. According to the study, all participant scars improved by a minimum of 50% after 2.5 treatments.


Since microneedling is done with a handheld device, it is possible only to do it in a desired area. Of course, the amount of times you'll need to do the procedure to eliminate the scar depends on how big and deep it is. "If you're working on acne scarring and you really want to kind of get to the bottom of something, it would be with more regularity, like every month to six weeks," board-certified dermatologist Mona Gohara, M.D., tells Allure. Nobody can ever guarantee that the scar will be gone entirely, but there will undoubtedly be an improvement in its appearance. 

It contributes to promoting hair growth

Thanks to social media platforms like TikTok, microneedling has grown in popularity for hair growth. And while many users showcase how they use a dermaroller on their scalp at home, we recommend going to a professional to get this procedure done because it's much more effective. "There are microneedling pens that you can buy for home, but they are usually less than 1 millimeter. This at-home length is too short to effect change where the hair follicles are, which is usually 2.5 to 3 millimeters deep," board-certified dermatologist Morgan Rabach tells Byrdie.


If you're wondering how microneedling helps with hair growth, Dr. Rabach also explains the process: "Specifically, we use tiny needles that get pushed perpendicularly into the dermis, which causes a healing reaction in the skin. Growth factors that promote healing are released, and these same growth factors may promote hair growth." She adds, "The trauma of the microneedling may also stimulate stem cells to grow, which are helpful to grow new hair." Dr. Rabach suggests this treatment is best done in combination with a topical hair growth product because the microneedling will help it absorb better.

Microneedling increases collagen production

Even those who don't struggle with wrinkles or scars can benefit from getting an occasional microneedling treatment to increase collagen. According to Cleveland Clinic, collagen helps form the middle skin layer, which helps with cell growth, replaces dead skin cells, and gives skin elasticity and structure.


Board-certified dermatologist Mona Gohara, M.D., advises combining microneedling with platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and radiofrequency. "The platelets have this magical little substance called platelet-derived growth factor that helps stimulate both hair follicles and also skin cells to produce collagen and elastin," she tells Allure. According to a study published in the Indian Dermatology Online Journal, increases of collagen types I, III, and VII and newly synthesized collagen and tropoelastin occur after six microneedling procedures done every two weeks. Per Scientific American, collagen production slows down by 1% every year after we turn 20, and that eventually leads to thinner and more fragile skin.


It helps skincare products penetrate the skin better

Since microneedling pokes tiny holes into your skin, it's not surprising that skincare products applied with or on top of it absorb and work better. "The tiny punctures actually act like little channels, allowing topical products to penetrate better and work more effectively," dermatologist Sejal Shah, M.D., tells The Healthy.


For this purpose, microneedling can be done safely at home with a dermaroller, as long as you ensure that your skin is clean and your dermaroller is disinfected. "I love using a hydrating serum with hyaluronic acid with a dermaroller," dermatologist Mona Gohara, M.D., tells Elle. "I revel in the opportunity to drive in hydration. Antioxidants and niacinamide are favorites as well." However, be wary that not all skincare products should be used with a dermaroller. Per Healthline, avoid anything harsh, such as chemical exfoliants, retinols, and vitamin C serums — those can irritate your skin too much, leading to a damaged skin barrier.

It helps lessen the appearance of stretch marks

There's a misconception that microneedling is a procedure that can only be done on the face, but in reality, microneedling certain areas of your body can have a variety of benefits. Another thing microneedling can help with is stretch marks. Dermatologist Amy Kassouf, M.D., tells Cleveland Clinic that while the popular treatment is still mostly done on the face, it can be used to smooth out stretch marks on different body parts.


Similar to how the minimally invasive treatment works on scars and wrinkles, it can also tackle your tiger stripes if you haven't embraced them quite yet. According to Sculpt MD, stretch marks disrupt collagen production — and microneedling can reset this. While the number of treatments varies from person to person, the recommendation is three to six treatments over four to six months. And yes, microneedling is safe to do on your thighs, stomach, or any other body part with stretch marks.

Microneedling helps even out skin tone

If you're looking for a way to permanently get rid of sun spots, age spots, and freckles, microneedling might be an option. Hyperpigmentation is the discoloration that occurs due to high melanin levels in certain spots of your skin. As previously mentioned, microneedling stimulates collagen production and helps replace old skin cells with new ones. In this process, the breakdown of melanin clumps occurs, which leads to a more even skin tone (via Lovoir Skin Body & Beauty).


While there has been controversy around microneedling darker skin, dermatologist Corey Hartman, M.D., assures that the procedure is safe regardless of skin tone. "The whole point of it is to stimulate collagen production and produce an even skin tone," he tells Refinery29. "It's interesting that people think it isn't safe for dark skin because when I see skin lightening for reasons like a tattoo removal or excessive peeling after a chemical treatment, my go-to method to get color back to the skin is microneedling."

It helps improve rosacea

Those who suffer from rosacea know just how annoying and persistent the skin condition can be. "It most often involves the central face (nose, cheeks, forehead, chin) but can also spread to the ears, neck, chest, and back," board-certified dermatologist Christine Choi Kim, M.D., FAAD, tells Byrdie. "It is characterized by redness of the face and a tendency to flush and blush." Dr. Kim adds that men, women, and people of all skin colors can experience rosacea, but it is more common for women with lighter skin types over the age of 30. 


According to a study in the official scientific publication of the Brazilian Society of Dermatology, microneedling can help with rosacea, making the flare-ups less prominent and improving the skin's texture. The study concludes that microneedling can improve mild to moderate rosacea, but it works best in combination with a topical treatment (via National Library of Medicine).

It helps decrease cystic acne breakouts (but shouldn't be done on active breakouts)

If you suffer from acne, make sure you consult your dermatologist before you try out microneedling — and certainly stay away from at-home dermarollers. According to Melanie L. Adams, M.D., P.A., microneedling reduces the production of sebum, which leads to less cystic acne. Apart from preventing breakouts, as previously mentioned, microneedling will also take care of acne scarring.


While microneedling can help prevent acne, it should never be done on active breakouts. "Microneedling overactive, inflamed acne or an infection can actually spread the bacteria and make things worse for your face, which can have long-term disfiguring effects," board-certified dermatologist Shereene Idriss, M.D., tells Allure. "Wait until your skin is more clear before attempting the procedure," says dermatologist Dr. Tsippora Shainhouse (via Healthline). 

Since microneedling technically damages your skin by poking tiny holes in it, ensure you stay away from your usual anti-acne products for a couple of days, as those can be too harsh on your skin immediately after the procedure. Instead, opt for barrier-restoring and moisturizing skincare products post-procedure.


Microneedling around the lips makes them appear plumper

If you're looking for a way to enhance your lips without invasive procedures, microneedling might be a good choice. However, microneedling shouldn't be done directly on your lips, as it's painful and won't really make your lips appear any bigger permanently. "Microneedling the lips is an exceedingly painful process, and the results look distorted and unnatural and go away within a few days," dermatologist Judith Hellman, M.D., tells Glamour. The skin on your lips is also much thinner, and your lips have a lot more blood vessels, making the experience of microneedling unpleasant. While your lips would look plumper from it, the results would only last a very short time (via PMUHub).


Instead, microneedling can be safely done around the lips to tighten the skin, which can result in a more plump appearance. "Microneedling for the lips would be best on the skin above and below the upper and lower lip for smoker's lines. The treatment hurts, so a topical numbing cream is a good idea," Dr. Hellman adds (via Glamour).

Microneedling helps shrink pores

Rebecca Fitzgerald, M.D., believes microneedling is an excellent choice for anyone looking to shrink the appearance of big pores. My Cosmetic Clinic explains that when collagen production increases in a particular area, the skin there smooths out and tightens, which ends up making the pores appear noticeably smaller. Since the microneedling device is relatively small, it can be safely performed on and around your nose — the area in which enlarged pores tend to be most prominent.


Celebrity esthetician Renée Rouleau tells Byrdie that "blackheads are large, open pores containing hardened sebum, or oil, that has oxidized from the air causing it to turn dark gray in color." Since blackheads are just gunk-filled pores, microneedling can also help you minimize their appearance. However, keep in mind that the size of your pores is mainly determined by genetics; hence it isn't something you can permanently change. However, you can change their visibility, which is something that microneedling does (via Cleveland Clinic).

Regular microneedling helps reduce excessive sweating

Those who suffer from excessive sweating can also benefit from microneedling. "Radiofrequency microneedling can also be used as an in-office treatment to ablate the eccrine glands in the axilla for a more durable reduction in sweating," board-certified dermatologist Brandan Camp, M.D., tells Byrdie. After the procedure, patients can return to their daily activities — no recovery time is necessary.


According to a study published in The Indian Journal of Dermatology, this treatment is considered very effective (via National Library of Medicine). Even after one year, most people have still reported reduced sweating. However, those with a higher BMI have experienced the return of excessive armpit sweating. Luckily, radiofrequency microneedling is minimally invasive, and it can be repeated yearly to ensure excessive sweating is handled. A study published in the European Journal of Plastic Surgery reveals that 80% of the study subjects had a decrease in sweating of over 50% — making radiofrequency microneedling one of the safest procedures for excessive sweating.

It helps tighten skin

Since our skin produces less and less collagen the older we get, microneedling is a great way to tighten it. According to board-certified dermatologist Rosemarie Ingleton, M.D., "microneedling RF [radio frequency] devices ... poke tiny holes into the skin and then deliver RF heat to the deep layers of the skin to stimulate skin tightening over time" (via Allure).


The skin-tightening effects can be seen relatively quickly after the procedure. "When the skin feels these pinpricks, your body will naturally rush to heal them, resulting in a plumped, more youthful appearance," dermatologist Macrene Alexiades, M.D., Ph.D., tells Elle. Of course, getting regular microneedling treatments is best if skin tightening is your concern — since our skin sheds regularly. According to Sundree, in our 20s, cell turnover occurs every 24 to 30 days, but with age, it slows down. By the time we're 40, the cell turnover cycle happens every 45 to 60 days.

It enhances growth in existing eyebrows

Since microneedling helps with hair growth, it can also be safely used on your eyebrows. However, keep in mind that it can't help create new hair follicles; it can only help if some of the follicles have stopped growing. "If you were never born with full brows, microneedling the brows will never result in creating a full dense brow if you never had one. People that may have spent years waxing or tweezing could experience some old-growth come back again," brow specialist Kendra Bray tells Byrdie.


Using a dermaroller in combination with an eyebrow serum is a great way to enhance brow growth at home. As always, make sure that your eyebrows are clean and your dermaroller is properly disinfected. "Piercing the skin by any means creates an open channel, thereby increasing one's chances of getting an infection," board-certified dermatologist Dendy Engelman tells The Zoe Report. Soaking your dermaroller in 70% isopropyl alcohol for 5 to 10 minutes will clean the roller and make it safe for use (via Healthline).

Microneedling helps reduce the appearance of cellulite

According to Cleveland Clinic, between 80% and 90% of women have cellulite, which is why it's time to normalize its appearance. Some lumpy or dimpled skin should never stop you from rocking a bathing suit or those hot pants at the back of your closet. However, microneedling is a treatment that can help with the appearance of cellulite. Even though it won't get rid of the cellulite completely, the procedure might just give you that boost of confidence you're looking for.


Since microneedling increases collagen and elastin, it ends up making your skin firmer and smoother. This can help make cellulite on your thighs, buttocks, upper arms, or stomach less visible (via Optima Medical Spa). Apart from the reduced appearance of cellulite, you will notice that the skin in the areas that were microneedled is also much softer. Microneedling can help minimize cellulite, but it won't permanently make it disappear. To maintain the results, you will need to repeat the procedure regularly.