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Microneedling: Why Not All Treatments Are Created Equal

Often, guests will tell us that they have tried certain clinical procedures before, without success. The biggest takeaway from this is that the beauty industry has many “copycat” treatments, or less expensive options, which may not always deliver the expected outcome.

Not all “microneedling” is created equal. Devices such as Eclipse MicroPen and eDermastamp are Health Canada-approved medical devices. They give us the ability to alter the depth of the surgical grade needles, as well as control the number of repetitions per second. Homecare rollers, or “manual derma rollers” create fewer and shallower injuries. Therefore, they require frequent use over long periods of time in order to come close to the result that even one electrical device can achieve.

Many other factors come into play when comparing a medical device to a homecare roller. The technician’s level of training and experience will greatly impact the overall result, as will the products being used alongside the microneedling treatment.

So how can you weed out the bad from the good, the mediocre from the miraculous? Well, it’s not always easy. Going to a medical clinic and knowing the right questions to ask can set you up for success.

Here are six things everyone should know before trying microneedling:

1. The obvious – what is it?

Microneedling is a treatment that involves a device with super-tiny needles, which can be adjusted by a professional between 0.25 and 3 millimeters. Microneedling is a form of collagen induction, or collagen induction therapy. The treatment creates micro-wounds in your skin. This triggers your body to sends fibroblasts to create more collagen in the affected area. We are basically tricking your skin into thinking it has been wounded, but as a result, we’re thickening the skin and improving its texture.

2. What does it treat?

Microneedling works best as an age-management option to stimulate your own collagen and elastin. It can also be used to treat a variety of scars and textural issues, however combination therapy always works best when treating particularly old or deep scars.

3. Buyer beware:  watch out for imitations!

Sometimes we like to say things to ourselves like, “Oh well, I can get that online for a fraction of the price.” The truth about medical devices is that prices are regulated. Companies cannot just buy them in bulk and sell them for pennies on the dollar. So, when shopping for a homecare roller, avoid anything that isn’t Health Canada or FDA-approved and know that the best deal is not always the best device. Real devices will cost you real dollars, and the results will be worth it.

4. The best treatments use single-use medical grade sterile needles.

When examined under a microscope, cheaper needles will appear rough and uneven in shape. While other scar treatments and anti-aging treatments are ablative (destroying tissue), the eDermaStamp® by Dermaroller® respects the integrity of the epidermis and dermis, using atraumatic (non-traumatic) perforations to gently trigger the generation of new tissue.

5. More needles do not always mean better treatment.

Don’t be misled by imitation rollers that boast “the most needles”.Though we want to maximize the number of perforations, too many needles can compromise the safety and comfort of the treatment. Imagine a bed of nails: while it can easily support your body weight without a nail perforating your skin, a single nail would easily penetrate your skin under the same pressure. Similarly, a roller with too many needles will require dangerous and uncomfortable amounts of pressure in order to penetrate the skin to the appropriate depth.

6. The better the topical products used, the more benefits you will reap.

Using a cosmetic grade hyaluronic acid and vitamins will not provide you with the same results as medical and pharmaceutical grade products. Pharmaceutical grade uses only the purest form and highest concentration of ingredients. As microneedling creates thousands of small channels in the skin, the topically-applied product will be pushed into the deeper layers of the skin. Injectable grade hyaluronic will create a larger plumping affect and pharmaceutical grades vitamins will provide the highest benefits, and speed up healing.

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