Microneedling is a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure used to treat skin concerns via collagen production. Also known as collagen induction therapy, the purpose of treatment is to generate new collagen and skin tissue for smoother, firmer, more toned skin. Microneedling is used on the face to treat scars, wrinkles, large pores and pigmentation. This treatment may also help those looking to reduce the appearance of acne scars and stretch marks.

It’s normal for the skin to lose collagen due to age or injury. The microneedling procedure utilizes multiple-minute pinpricks to cause slight injury to the skin. The skin then responds by making new collagen-rich tissue that is more even in tone and texture.

A consultation is always needed to discuss how to prepare before the procedure in order to have the best possible outcome and least possible after effects. You may need to stop taking certain medications, such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and medication for acne treatment, well in advance of the procedure. You may not be an ideal candidate for microneedling if you are pregnant, have certain skin diseases such as psoriasis or eczema, have open wounds or have had radiation therapy recently.

Before the treatment itself, a topical anesthetic is applied to reduce any discomfort during the procedure. This is done about an hour before your treatment. During the procedure, the doctor makes small pricks under the skin with a pen-like tool. The pinpricks are so small that you likely won’t notice them after the procedure. The doctor will move the tool evenly across your skin ensuring that the newly rejuvenated skin will be even too. The actual microneedling process takes approximately 30 minutes.

The doctor may then apply a serum or calming treatment after the procedure and advise the use of moisturisers and/or depigmenting products.

You may notice skin irritation and redness within the first few days following the procedure. This is a natural response to the small “injuries” made by the needles in your skin. You can go back to work or school after the procedure if you’re comfortable. Some people apply camouflaging makeup during the first few days until the redness dissipates. Your skin will also be more sensitive to the sun during this time, so sunscreen is a must.

After microneedling, your skin works quickly to rejuvenate new tissue. In theory, you should see improvement within a couple of weeks. To obtain the best results, however, you will need several sessions, usually spaced four to six weeks apart, and perhaps other complementing treatments as advised by the doctor.