At Boulder Plastic Surgery in Boulder, CO, we are passionate about helping our clients look great and feel great, whether they are looking for dramatic results with one of our minimally invasive skin lifting procedures or a quick treatment session with the revolutionary Skin Pen device. So, exactly what does the Skin Pen do? That’s what we look at today.
What Does the Skin Pen Do?
One of the most frequently asked questions we get is what does the Skin Pen do?. A better question is what doesn’t it do! Treatment with the skin pen is known as microneedling or collagen induction therapy. And years of research have proven that collagen induction leads to cellular rejuvenation and cellular turnover. This means that you can address just about any skin concern imaginable.
The best part is that, unlike deep chemical peels, this can safely be used more than once in your life. For example, if you lose a significant amount of weight when you’re 25, you can come in and have your stretch marks erased. If, when you’re 30 or 40, you have inelastic skin, sun spots, age spots, hyperpigmentation, or ruddy skin, you can come back in and correct that problem.
Does the Skin Pen Tighten Skin?
One of the most common follow-up questions to what does the Skin Pen do? is does the Skin Pen tighten skin? The answer is a resounding, “yes.” Collagen induction therapy with the Skin Pen device absolutely tightens the skin. Collagen induction therapy does exactly what it sounds like it does. It encourages your skin to produce collagen.
How Does the Skin Pen Tighten Skin?
The Skin Pen device is the only FDA-approved dermal roller for skin tightening. This is achieved by creating dozens of micro-injuries when the very fine needles penetrate your skin. These “wounds” trigger your skin to produce more collagen: a special type of protein that keeps your skin tight, young, and healthy.
How Long Does it Take to See the Final Results of Treatment?
After treatment, your skin produces its own collagen to keep itself tight, young, and healthy. Therefore, it will take roughly four to six weeks after your first treatment session to notice drastically tightened skin.
You will notice an immediate initial tightening. However, it takes around a month to see the final tightening results because that is how long it takes your skin to finish producing all the new collagen. If you’re treating deep scars or stretch marks, you may not see the final results for 9.5 months depending on how many sessions you need.
Other Skin Pen Effects
Collagen induction therapy with the Skin Pen device isn’t just good for lifting sagging skin. It also smooths away fine lines, moderate wrinkles, and even deep folds. Keep in mind that you’ll need to come in for an initial consultation to determine if the lines, wrinkles, and folds are caused by collagen loss and can be corrected with microneedling.
In some cases, moderate-to-severe wrinkles and folds are caused by hyperactivity of the underlying muscle structure of your skin. In such cases, Botox must be used to address skin texture issues. Botox is a neuromodulator manufactured by Allergan that has been tested in both sponsored and third-party clinical trials. There is no safer, more effective neuromodulator treatment.
There are several reasons why Skin Pen is good for acne. First, it unclogs your pores, which makes topical acne medications more effective. Second, it shrinks enlarged pores and prevents your skin from producing too much oil, meaning that acne caused by oily skin is treated. You really can’t lose, regardless of the cause of your acne.
Moreover, treatment with the Skin Pen device is excellent for treating acne scars. Because all this extra collagen production encourages cellular turnover, the dead skin cells that make up the upper layers of your skin are replaced with fresh, young, healthy skin cells. This includes the discolored skin cells scarred by acne.
How Long Do the Results of Treatment Last?
The duration of your treatment results depends on several factors, including how healthy your collagen and elastin are, how well you keep your skin free from pollutants and other irritants, how hydrated you are on a regular basis, and how regularly you consume alcohol and tobacco products. Keep in mind that these are just a few factors that affect the duration of your results.
How Should I Prepare for Treatment?
Unlike more invasive treatments, there isn’t a lot of preparation required for microneedling with the Skin Pen device. If you have thin blood, we will ask you during your initial consultation to stop taking anything that can thin your blood even further in the two weeks leading up to your treatment. Examples include garlic supplements, NSAIDs, and MAOIs.
You should also stop taking topical retinoids and topical acne medications in the 14 days leading up to your treatment. Finally, you should stop consuming anything that can elevate your blood pressure, such as alcohol, tobacco products, caffeine supplements, or over three grams of salt per day. For the best results, drink around a gallon of water the day before your session.
What Can I Expect During Treatment?
One of the most compelling benefits of treatment with this device is there is absolutely no pain or discomfort. The needles used are so fine that you will feel them penetrate your skin. However, it feels nothing like being stuck with a couple of heavy-gauge needles! However, if you’re concerned about the treatment, we can apply a topical anesthetic to numb the treatment area.
Regardless of whether your treatment areas are numbed, your treatment will start with an alcohol-based cleanser to sanitize the treatment areas. If you’d like, we will apply a topical numbing cream or ice to numb the treatment area. Then, we will roll the Skin Pen device over the treatment area until enough micro-injuries have been created.
What Can I Expect After Treatment?
After treatment, you are free to apply makeup as you see fit and return to school or work. However, you will need to apply a broad-spectrum SPF 30+ sunscreen to your treated skin every four hours you are outside for the first couple of weeks after your treatment.
This is because the upper layers of your skin are being replaced with fresh skin that is far more sensitive to the sun’s damaging UVA and UVB rays. Remember: you can still get a sunburn through your clothes. You can still get sunburnt on overcast days. You can still get sunburnt through the window of your office. And tanning beds also emit UV rays.
How Long Does Treatment Take?
Another common question that follows up what does the Skin Pen do? is how long does treatment take? On average, the microneedling session itself takes only half an hour. However, if you are treating a larger area, like your chest, back or abdomen, your session may take closer to 45 minutes.
Furthermore, if you are looking for more dramatic results, we will have to pass over the treatment area more times. In such cases, even if you are treating a smaller area, like your face, your session will take around 45 minutes. Also, keep in mind during your initial consultation when you are considering a topical anesthetic that it may take up to 15 minutes to take effect.
What Areas Can Be Treated With This Device?
Another incredibly compelling benefit of treatment with this device is that it can be used to correct virtually any part of your body. For instance, if your goal is to erase deep stretch marks, treatment with this device can be performed on your inner or outer thighs, lower abdomen, lower back, or chest.
If your goal is to treat acne scars, this treatment can safely and effectively be performed on your upper back or face. Got wrinkles? We can treat your chest, hands or face. Got loose, sagging skin? We can target your buttocks or upper arms with ease. To determine if your trouble areas can benefit from this treatment, book an appointment.
How Many Treatment Sessions Will I Need?
The number of treatment sessions you will need to achieve your aesthetic goals depends on several factors, including what you are trying to treat. For instance, if you are trying to erase stretch marks or certain types of scars, you will probably need between six and eight treatment sessions. To tighten loose skin, you may need two to four sessions.
During your initial consultation, we will review your current aesthetic and aesthetic goals to determine how many sessions you will need to achieve your aesthetic goals. These sessions will be spaced roughly four to six weeks apart.
Can I Save Money With an At-Home Dermal Roller?
Nothing compares to the Skin Pen device. It is the only FDA-approved dermal roller for safely and effectively correcting skin concerns. While you may think that an at-home dermal roller will save you money, buying one and trying to use it is actually throwing money down the drain. There are several reasons why you should not try this treatment at home.
First, you cannot customize the gauge of the needles. Second, without months of extensive training and years of hands-on experience, you will not be able to adjust the penetration levels of the needles appropriately to achieve your desired aesthetic. Third, you are at a significant risk of infection because your bathroom likely isn’t a sterile environment.
Am I a Good Candidate for Treatment With This Device?
The only way to determine if you are a good candidate for treatment with this device is to come in for an initial consultation. During this initial consultation, we will review your medical history, current health, aesthetic goals and the structure of your underlying tissues.
Generally, the best candidates for treatment with this type of device have aesthetic goals that can be achieved with this device. While people with little melanin in their skin seek microneedling all the time, it is most beloved by men and women with more melanin in their skin. Such people are poor candidates for chemical peels and laser treatments.
What Treatments Complement Microneedling With the Skin Pen Device?
As stated previously, some wrinkles cannot be treated by encouraging collagen growth and must be treated with a neuromodulator, such as Botox. If you have wrinkles caused by both collagen loss and muscle hyperactivity, we can safely and effectively combine these two treatments.
Keep in mind that Botox treatments for wrinkles take a mere three to five minutes per area. Therefore, if you are treating three areas of wrinkles for muscle hyperactivity, you will only add nine to 15 minutes to your total treatment time. Again, the needles used are so fine that you will feel no more than a pinch, and you will not need anesthesia.
Dermal Filler Treatments
If you have a wedding, school reunion, family reunion, or important meeting, you may not be able to wait several weeks for perfectly smooth skin. In such cases, dermal filler injections are perfect for you. When those needles penetrate your skin, your skin is encouraged to produce collagen. In the meantime, you get an instant boost with hyaluronic acid.
The initial results of dermal filler treatments can be seen immediately. Within 24 to 72 hours, you will see the final results of your treatment. Your skin will be smooth and wrinkle-free. So much research has gone into these fillers that the hyaluronic acid wears off at the same rate as your body produces collagen so you will not see diminished results for around two years.
If you smooth your face and chest, there is a good chance that you will want to smooth your neck, too. Whether you have been overweight in the past, are currently overweight, or just have bad genes, you may suffer from submental fullness. Submental fullness is a condition characterized by the appearance of excess fat under the chin.
A side effect of this condition is the appearance of deep bands of fat around the neck. Kybella is an injectable featuring the active ingredient deoxycholic acid. This acid is typically found in your gut and usually processes dietary fat for excretion. When injected into your neck and chin, it processes the excess white fat cells and flushes them out of your body.
You’ve probably heard of the “Vampire Facial.” This treatment combines microneedling with the Skin Pen device with PRP therapy. It only takes a minute to draw your blood and only five minutes to process your blood through a centrifuge to get the PRP.
But this simple addition to your microneedling treatment will hasten the onset of the results, making them more dramatic and helping them to last longer. This may mean that you need fewer sessions to achieve the tight, young, attractive skin you desire.
Schedule Your Initial Consultation Today
Remember, the right question isn’t what does the Skin Pen do? The right question is what doesn’t the Skin Pen do! To determine if collagen induction therapy is the right skincare treatment for you, please contact us today at Boulder Plastic Surgery in Boulder, CO to schedule your initial consultation.
We can’t wait to meet you and tailor a treatment plan to help you achieve your unique vision of an ideal aesthetic. Whether you’re looking to treat active acne, acne scars, loose, sagging skin, wrinkles, or other aesthetic concerns, we will help you look younger and healthier than you have in years.