It is a well known fact that you have to cause some minor tearing and rebuilding of muscles to make progress at the gym. It’s basically muscle ‘micro-injuries’. You may know where I am going with this. There is a treatment I have been having success with over the last ten years that I often talk to clients about. Makeup helps but it can only do so much. Doing consistent but light microneedling over the last decade has allowed me to wear makeup more for fun and natural protection from the elements. I don’t think it is for everyone, just like any treatment. I appreciate that even if it is done professionally in a clinical setting, it is not as expensive as the alternatives and one of the least invasive. I have a few clients who have traded botox and injectable filler for this treatment. It may not produce as dramatic results and requires diligence, but it is an impressive alternative.
WHAT IS MICRO-CHANNELING/MICRONEEDLING?
microneedling works in much the same way as acupuncture except we are only targeting one major organ: the skin. The goal is to stimulate the skin to rejuvenate by producing more collagen; in essence, reproducing the healing effect the body goes through when you have a cut. This process results in a more youthful appearance as wrinkles, lines, scars, and discolourations are diminished. Furthermore, enzymes called collagenase are stimulated. These enzymes break down the old and misaligned collagen present in wrinkles, scars and stretch marks, and replaces this old collagen with new collagen.
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ACUPUNCTURE AND MICRO-CHANNELING/MICRONEEDLING?
- Both produce micro-injuries to the skin, which leads to the body’s natural healing process kicking in.
- One of the main differences is time. microneedling are tiny, super-fast pin pricks to the skin; whereas, acupuncture relies on needles staying in the one spot for about 20 minutes.
- microneedling treats the whole face; acupuncture only treats the areas where a blockage of energy is perceived.
- microneedling not only affects the face but the any area of the body once the blockage is released, Acupuncture also treats the whole body, boosts your mood, and improves your overall well-being.
- another tool that can be used to produce the same effects as micro-channeling/microneedling and acupuncture is the plum blossom, which is used like a tiny hammer. I created my own version of this which is perfect for the delicate area around the eyes and does not require the ‘hammering’ action. It is my gold-coated microneedling stamp. It can be filled with the coverage-free version of my molecular hydrogen + sugarcane serum and used in conjunction with my 8-in-1 pen, allowing one to lightly deposit product on the skin with just one hand (so convenient and mess-free!).
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is believed that your face is the gateway to the soul. Changes in the face can be indicators of something else wrong with the body. Facial or cosmetic acupuncture is in essence the same as traditional acupuncture as the effects are the same. There is virtually no down time with acupuncture except perhaps a bruise where the needle was. It has been proven that the plum blossom treatment lifts depression and I have no doubt that micro-channeling/microneedling does the same.
In microneedling, your face also can be the gateway to the soul. After all, if you feel healthy and well, your face will reflect it. You’ll smile more and be happier and lead an overall content life. microneedling leaves your face with a reddish tinge for a few days afterwards, but with little other side effects. You know how I love multitasking when it comes to makeup, skincare, and wellness. I wanted to create a micro-channeling pen that also provided photo light therapy for the skin. What’s really cool about my 8-in-1 pen is that when you are creating these tiny micro-channels in the skin and also treating the skin with photo light (red, blue, green, yellow, pink, orange, and white, tbecause of the micro-channels that have just been created, that healing light is readily absorbed into the tiny capillaries in your skin. So it is comparable to red light IV therapy which is done with an IV needle and in a professional setting. red light or irradiation therapy is extremely beneficial for whole health but also expensive and much more invasive. I recommend taking your time with your treatment on the red light setting of the 8-in-1 pen around the nose area because the tiny veins in your nose are closest to the surface of the skin, which is why it does not always take much to get a nose bleed.
There are different levels of microneedling
Nano needling delivers pure ingredients like hyaluronic acid into the skin with silicone tips. There is no downtime
cosmetic needling treats fine lines, hyperpigmentation, and some melasma, stretch marks, and scarring, depending on how deep the colour or scar is in the skin. If you have a lot of deeper scarring it is best to see a professional. There is a day or two of mild redness and the feeling of a light sunburn, depending on the individual. No numbing is required. If one feels the need for numbing cream, I would recommend a professional setting for the treatment as numbing cream can come with side effects. Keep in mind that an acupuncture treatment can have profound effects without any numbing cream or bleeding. The same goes for microneedling. I have noticed personally that I get a burst of energy after a treatment with my 8-in-1 pen similar to what I would feel after an acupuncture treatment.
Medical needing is at a depth of 1mm+ In a professional setting and requires numbing cream for the pain. It’s the heavy weight lifting of microneedling where there is more of a risk if not done correctly. It treats very deep scars, lines, and deeper melasma. This is also custom done in a treatment often called the Morpheus 6 (depending on the machine used) which treats the deeper layers (3mm deep) of skin with radio frequency. A noticeable glow and tightening is almost instant and there is little more downtime than cosmetic microneedling. I like to treat my skin with an at-home version of rf microneedling (which can around $2000 in a professional setting) by doing a cosmetic needling all over my face and immediately following with my 6-in-1 device, which not only provides radio frequency but also red light therapy too soothe and heal inflammation.
Microneedling can be done anywhere on the body. I like to use the 8-in-1 pen for the body as well as for the face. For skin issues like stretch marks, you may receive results sooner with the pen than a manual stamp or roller because the application of the treatment is more thorough on a smaller area. On the face I find that the pen works very well, just like the stamp, but again, the pen covers a more solid surface area if you are dealing with a solid patch of melasma or sunspots. The tiny microneedling stamp that I carry is safest for around the eye area. I like to show more before and afters of various age groups but often mature skin types like mine are not as open to showing all their photos on the world wide internet. So I will link a video below which shows in detail the journey that someone took in her documentation of microneedling results. She was very thorough and pays attention to detail.
There are a few things I have noticed with aging that no one told me about. One is that our nose gets puffy, like it is growing larger, and our face as a whole gets puffy. To me it looks like all-over inflammation, maybe due to a sluggish lymph. Microneedling does promote collagen production but at the same time, it seems to slim the nose and face. You will see that yourself in before and after photos, especially now that I have pointed it out. This influencer also noticed (skip to 3:00 if you just want to see the photos):
Skin conditions that can be treated with microneedling:
- Acne Scarring (especially depressed acne scars)
- Surgical Scars
- loss of collagen
- puffiness to nose and face
- Wrinkles (especially around the mouth, frown lines, and crows feet)
- Improving skin texture and tightness
- Loss of skin pigment (hypo-pigmentation) as a result of scarring
- Sun damage, Age Spots and Pigmentation issues
- Thread Veins
- Stretch Marks
- + many more
less time spent caring for your skin + more results
…and more time for gardening and baking! It was my goal to create makeup products that multitask as skincare too. I caught the travel bug in my early twenties and wanted to find a way to reduce the size of my carry-on by merging my makeup with my skincare. I have since worked to merge my makeup + skincare + wellness products. So when it comes to masks and other skincare treatments I wanted to do the same by finding something that creates the level of results you would receive in a professional setting. Microneedling can be used on all skin types from light to dark. With this being said, it is important for all skin tones to take the appropriate measures when it comes to natural sun protection, especially during the healing phase. A more light, cosmetic level microneedling treatment can be done every 2-4 weeks, and then you can relax in the evening, skip the seven step skincare routine, and admire the consistent positive changes from week to week as your collagen is induced. I wanted to create a few options which required less time but more results and I am so excited to have found it with micro-needling Even after discovering this treatment years ago, I am continuing to learn more and more about the simplicity of microneedling and the healing of the skin in general.
Microneedling vs Dermal Rolling
The dermal roller was the precursor to pen Microneedling – the dermal roller is a simple mechanical device whose primary use is Percutaneous Collagen Induction (PCI) therapy. Results are noteworthy, to say the least. The problem is that while the micro needle concept is executed with dermal rollers, compared to the pen it is quite painful, and any post-treatment erythema (redness) and/or edema (swelling) tends to last about four to seven days, creating unwanted downtime. The micro wounds seen with the dermal roller are much more traumatic to the skin; instead of a rapid vertical needle insertion and withdrawal of the pen, dermal rollers enter into and leave the skin at an angle so creating more of a tearing wound, this may be responsible for the longer downtime. Also, the relatively small size of the pen tip makes it capable of treating smaller, more inaccessible areas such as the upper lip much easier, areas that a dermal roller cannot easily reach. From a clinical standpoint ensuring sterility is essential, and with the pen it is accomplished with the simple swapping of disposable tips. A dermal roller must be manually sterilized between users. I was surprised when I went from the derma roller to the pen and microneedling stamp as to how much the pain level went down.
post treatment skincare
It is really important to be careful what you apply to your skin when it is in a vulnerable state, no matter what the treatment. Clean makeup without irritants (with the least amount of rubbing and blending) will protect your skin from the sun after one or two days of healing. I like to keep my skincare simple through the healing phase by applying a little raspberry elixir and that’s it. You want to stay away from any type of exfoliating cleansers like my glacial clay cleanser + mask for one to two weeks while your skin is healing. Instead, I apply a few spritzes of my supernatural time traveler and leave it on the skin for a few minutes before carefully rinsing, as hypochlorous acid not only purifies skin but also speeds healing. This product can also be used to sanitize your microneedling pen/stamp. Let it sit on the fully exposed needles of the stamp for a few minutes and then rinse.
Microneedling is also a popular remedy for hair loss
This goes for brows too! The goal is the same for the scalp as for the skin – create tiny punctures in your scalp in order to stimulate stem cells, circulation, collagen production, and, hopefully, increase the growth and thickness of new hairs. I think two of the most frustrating conditions for men and women are hair loss and melasma. I am so intrigued that this treatment could help reverse those two more complicated issues. I do not like to see people shelling out thousands of dollars and still not receiving the results they expected, so why not try a less expensive treatment first.
This treatment is like microneedling results X10:
If you have tried microneedling and have not received the results you were looking for, there is another treatment that must be done in a professional setting, which addresses all the same issues and results are even more dramatic than with microneedling. Plasma fibroblast creates tiny, controlled burns on the surface of the skin with a plasma arc. For this treatment, numbing cream is required. Again, the treatment is not for everyone, but again, it is much less invasive than other treatments with very noticeable results, even with one treatment. It is an alternative to surgery when it comes to drooping on the eyelid. The healing phase takes a week or more so again, the supernatural algae mask + raspberry elixir would help speed the healing, while at the same time, protecting skin. The one downside I see in this treatment is that those with deeper skin tones cannot be treated. With micro-channeling/microneedling it is safe for all skin tones. If you are thinking about plasma fibroblast and have a medium to dark skin tone, always request a patch test from the professional technician first.
my other favourite home treatment to pair with microneedling
A more subtle form of plasma fibroblast with zero downtime is jet plasma. The treatment goes by a few other names like plasma shower, jett plasma, plasma stamp, plasma inhibitor therapy etc, It can be done just once a week for 20 minutes with noticeable results. Instead of using a hot plasma arc, it is cold plasma so there is no pain involved and no downtime. I actually received a demo treatment using this device about fifteen years ago. she did one side of my face, including one eye brow, and the difference was so noticeable that my friend and I burst out laughing. It looked like I had gotten a brow lift on only one eyebrow. It is a very successful treatment when it comes to acne and premature aging around the eyes. It can also be used on different areas of the body and has a very significant tightening effect. The jet plasma device is a great follow-up treatment to speed skin’s healing after a 8-in-1 pen treatment
before + after microneedling treatments
before + after jet plasma treatments
more micro-channeling/microneedling for face + body:
underlying causes of hyperpigmentation/melasma
In studying the before and after photos with microneedling, jet plasma, and plasma fibroblast, I notice that a lot of us are dealing with skin ‘age spots’ at younger and younger ages. I also see a lot more darkness around the eyes as well as the swelling of the nose and the entire face as I mentioned above. This made me want to look into hyperpigmentation and melasma more. From my own experience with hyperpigmentation, I believe now that issues on the skin and skin inflammation are a reflection of something more serious going on internally, like an overburdened liver and a sluggish lymph drainage system. It seems to happen so slowly and with our busy lives, it is like you wake up one day and how you feel on the inside doesn’t match the outside anymore. You still feel like you are in your twenties…well, maybe thirties, and yet you are dealing with what seems like accelerated aging. I think very little actually has to do with aging and has more to do with nutritional deficiencies, toxicity due to clogged drainage pathways, and imbalances which can come just from stress alone. If we address these issues on a surface level only, the skin, the issues may return sooner than expected because it is not in fact, natural aging.
what is it, really?
You may know melasma as cholasma, is a hyperpigmentation disorder of the skin that generally occurs more in women than men, though 1 out of 20 men will also get this disease. Commonly appearing on cheeks, upper lip, shoulders, back and arms; melasma creates dark patches on the skin.. But what causes this skin disorder?
One of the underlying causes of melasma is the variation of the levels of estrogen and progesterone, hormones found in women’s bodies. The fact is that when a woman has Adrenal fatigue, the body’s response to the stress originated in the brain is that the hypothalamus sends signals to the pituitary gland warning of stress. The natural response to this warning is that this gland releases cortisol, which in turn blocks estrogen and progesterone production, meaning that their levels decrease, which in turn causes skin darkening.
Secondary effects of birth control
Again, another reason that can create a hormonal imbalance in women is the use of birth control pills. As you may know, birth control pills have a number of side effects, including the appearance of melasma, due to the imbalance of estrogen and progesterone levels too. Melasma in women who are taking birth control pills appears in 5% of women.
Other hormone treatments such as hormone replacement and intrauterine contraceptives may also cause this condition.
the sun + nutrition
Melasma can also be a sign of poor liver health and inadequate nutrition in some cases. Also, the ultraviolet radiation that the sun emanates can trespass the layers of the epidermis, reaching and causing melanocytes to darken, especially if you have high melanin production. This can be easily solved by always using a natural spf like my raspberry elixir at all times, especially if you live in a warm climate. And once you have successfully treated your melasma and received the results you wanted, you want to maintain that brightness.
One third of people suffering from melasma will find the underlying cause in genetic factors. The over-activity of melanocytes found in certain skin types means that there are people who are more prone to develop melasma than others.
- People with darker skin types: People with African, Hispanic, Indian and Asian descent who have dark skin types have a genetic predisposition to melasma.
- People with light skin types living in warm climates: People with German, Russian, Asian or Jewish backgrounds who currently live in sunny climates are also prone to melasma.
The last of the hormonal changes a woman can experience that causes melasma is due to pregnancy. As you may already know, pregnancy affects women’s bodies by making hormones produce more natural oils in the body than those that are usually necessary. This in turn may block the woman’s pores and boost the chances of getting melasma.
One of the possible symptoms of Hypothyroidism is precisely melasma, but why? Hyperthyroidism is a condition that creates a hormonal imbalance, lowering the levels internal circulation of the thyroid hormone. This may trigger or high levels of MCHA, which in turn alters the levels of estrogen and progesterone. I have written a four-part to a blog post about hormone imbalance, as it can significantly change the way we look and how we feel and it is often confused with aging.
Does melasma affect people in the same way?
No, melasma has several levels and may appear in different levels depending on the underlying cause of this condition and its severeness. It’s important to detect the level of melasma you have in order to treat it effectively. In this article we talk about how to get rid of melasma’s dark marks.
- Epidermal melasma: This type of melasma is characterized by a dark-brown color that has a defined border. You can easily get rid of it with home remedies under your doctor’s supervision.
- Dermal melasma: You’ll notice you have dermal melasma if the borders of the marks are not very well defined. You’ll notice that they have a very light brown or blue tinge. It is more difficult to get rid of this type of melasma. Consult a dermatologist as you may need chemical peeling sessions to help it retreat.
- Mixed melasma: The most usual type of melasma can combine the two types of melasma mentioned above. It can improve partially when treated continuously through time.
I see the exact same levels as above with hyperpigmentation. Sun spots, liver spots, age spots, freckles, hypopigmentation -some of it is right at the surface and some is more smudged or faded because it is a few layers down, just like different types of scars. As always, if you are not sure about the safety of a treatment, consult your doctor first. I hope this information is interesting and educational.