Many have found that microneedling, dermaplaning, dermarolling, and dermastamping are effective at keeping their acne flare-ups at bay. They’re also quite effective at removing acne scars.
These little devices are pretty easy to use at home, and bring substantial benefits. But after staring at acne scars for what seems like forever, you may be asking “How many microneedling sessions for acne scars?”
Below, we’ll answer this question and better explain how the process works and how often you should use a microneedling device to get rid of acne scars.
Dealing with Acne and Acne Scars
Acne is one of the most common, irritating, and embarrassing skin ailments known. To. Man.
The FDA estimates that 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 experience a breakout at least once during their lifetime. Acne isn’t just limited to teenagers, either. Albeit a smaller percentage, many adults also suffer from periodic acne breakouts.
Acne can be caused by so many different factors that it can be hard to identify exactly what’s causing it. Some common causes of random breakouts may include:
- Hormonal fluctuations.
- Change in diet.
- Lack of sleep.
- Skincare products or makeup.
- Dirt and oil on your skin.
- Smog and pollution.
- …and a LOT more!
The good news is that acne is almost never permanent. Outside of a few rare cases, most people are able to treat their acne and get it under control. Light Therapy can help.
The bad news is that sometimes our battle with acne can leave our faces pitted with acne scars. While these scars can be hard to get rid of, they’re not impossible to treat! Many have had great success using dermarollers to treat issues like stretch marks and acne flare-ups.
How Does Microneedling Work?
In 1905, German dermatologist Ernst Kromayer began experimenting with a revolutionary new concept that he invented- microneedling. He gathered a group of people who had scarring and stretch marks that they were interested in getting rid of.
His theory was that by puncturing the surface of the skin with small needles, he could effectively heal and reduce old scars.
Although the process required some painful trial and error, he made great strides and was able to prove that microneedling did indeed work and was able to completely remove old scars in many of his patients.
Underneath all of your skin is a layer of collagen. This collagen is a protein-rich tissue that determines the appearance and shape of our skin. In general, the more collagen we have, the tighter, younger, and healthier our skin looks. The less collagen we have, the more saggy, loose, and formless our skin looks.
As we age, our bodies produce less collagen, which is usually what leads to our first signs of aging. One of the most popular anti-aging cosmetic surgeries involves injecting collagen into wrinkled or sagging skin to make it look healthier.
However, this treatment can be expensive, often comes with unwanted side effects, and may require extensive recovery.
Microneedling works by causing our bodies to produce their own collagen. When the small microscopic needles stamp or roll across the surface of our skin, they pierce the upper layers of the dermis. This activates the body’s automatic healing response.
As the healing process begins, collagen-rich tissues begin to develop wherever the needling was performed. The introduction of new, naturally-produced collagen in our skin causes the old scars and deformities to fill-in and heal. With enough treatments, the old scars and markings may be completely healed and replaced with fresh, healthy skin.
Does Microneedling Work On Acne Scars?
In clinical studies, microneedling has been shown to be an effective treatment for a number of different topical skin problems. Microneedling and dermarolling can help treat some of the following complaints:
- Acne scars.
- Enlarged pores.
- Stretch marks.
- Clogged pores.
- Lack of facial hair growth in men.
The best part about microneedling is that it’s scientifically proven to be effective. Unlike many of the other “fads” that the health and beauty market is consumed with, this process has been tried and tested for well over a hundred years.
Up until recently, it was mainly performed by doctors working in cosmetic surgery centers. However, modern dermarollers and dermastampers allow people to perform these treatments in the safety and comfort of their own home!
These devices are quite affordable as well, so you don’t have to be a Hollywood actor to buy one.
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Let’s take a look at exactly how microneedling gets rid of acne scars.
Acne scars typically stem from old cysts and large pimples that were messed with and picked at.
This is why most dermatologists always say never pick your pimples. The more you mess with them, the more likely it is that you’ll be left with a lasting scar. It could be a simple brown spot or it could be a visible indentation on the surface of your skin.
As we discussed above, microneedling sessions involve inserting lots of tiny little needles into the surface of your skin. These needles can range anywhere between .25-millimeter long and 2-millimeters long.
The most common needle sizes used to treat acne scars are .75-millimeter and above, as these are able to penetrate deep enough to cause real healing and stimulate collagen production.
As your skin begins to produce more collagen, it will start “filling in the holes.” The collagen your body produces will help return the surface of your skin to its original genetic structure that’s flat, plump, and even-toned. Once your skin has recovered from the microneedling treatment, it’s a good idea to exfoliate.
Microneedling can also get rid of sunspots and other areas of skin discoloration! See our article on hyperpigmentation for more information.
Better Acne Product Absorption
Apart from healing the surface of your skin, microneedling also enhances product absorption by the surface of your skin. One of the reasons why many people find that acne and scar treatment creams don’t work is that your skin cannot absorb them properly.
By microneedling your skin, you create small, microscopic openings in your pores and hair follicles. This, in turn, allows your skin to absorb any products and creams that you put on it. As you can imagine, this means that your scar treatment cream or even your everyday moisturizer will penetrate better and have a more noticeable effect!
If you’re just looking to achieve better product absorption into your skin, then a .25-millimeter dermaroller should be significant enough to get the job done.
How Many Microneedling Sessions For Acne Scars?
Like most of the good things in life, though, you’ll need to be consistent if you want to achieve lasting results. Microneedling is not an overnight treatment.
Even when it’s performed in a clinical setting by professional dermatologists, you’ll need to receive multiple treatments spaced out over a certain period of time.
The same applies to dermarolling and needling at home.
Levels Of Severity
How many microneedling sessions for acne scars will depend heavily upon how severe your scarring is. If you just have a few areas of discoloration or brown spots, you may be able to get rid of them with only a month’s worth of treatments.
On the other hand, if you have deep “icepick scars” caused by years of cystic acne, then you may have to microneedle for up to a year to achieve great results. Although it may take a year for severe scarring to completely heal, you should see steady improvement with each session you perform.
Your first few sessions will start to get rid of smaller marks and scars, and the more you do it, the more your larger scars will start to fill in and shrink. Eventually, though, even the large acne scars may be able to be completely removed through microneedling!
Remember, your scars didn’t form overnight, so they’re not going to disappear overnight either.
How Many Times Should I Use A Dermaroller Per Week?
This is an important topic that needs to be addressed. If you don’t follow the right procedure for dermarolling and microneedling then you can actually damage your face and cause yourself a lot of pain.
Always follow the instructions on your specific roller, but these are general guidelines. In general, shorter microneedles can be used more often, while larger microneedles should be used less often.
For example, if you’re using a short .25-millimeter dermaroller, you can likely use it multiple times a week or every other day. If you’re using a .5 or .75-millimeter dermaroller, though, you may only want to use it once a week.
If you’re using anything over 1.25-millimeters, then you’ll want to give your face at least ten days between sessions.
The deeper you penetrate the surface of your skin, the longer it takes for it to heal and for dead skin to come off. By giving your skin time to heal between sessions properly, you’ll get better results and allow the collagen enough time to fill in your acne scars. Wait a little while to wash your face after microneedling.