From lip-plumping injectables to spot-blasting lasers, there?s a wealth of options for those who want to look more youthful, and if money were no object, we?d probably try them all. Alas, we are not Oprah. But we did discover a middle-of-the-road treatment that delivers similarly glowing results for much less--and you can do it yourself.
What it is: Microneedling (also known as dermarolling) involves taking a small paint-roller-looking device embedded with hundreds of tiny needles and rolling it across your face and neck to create microscopic holes in your skin to stimulate new collagen growth. We assure you, this is far less painful than it sounds, as the needles are super-small (we?re talking 0.2 mm or less) and feel slightly prickly at most. Now, there are plenty of cheap rollers available (say, $19 ones), but we felt a little more comfortable getting ours ($100) from a dermatologist's office, along with detailed instructions on how to use the thing. (It is our face, after all.)
What you do: Once a week, after washing and toning your face (you want it to be as clean as possible), gently roll the tool over your skin in horizontal, vertical and diagonal patterns as instructed. Start at your forehead and work your way down to your neck and décolleté. Then proceed with the hydrating portion of your skin-care regimen.
Why it works: The needle pricks send your skin into ?repair mode,? which stimulates the growth of new collagen (much like pricier laser treatments do) and helps fade the appearance of acne scars, sunspots and fine lines. While the small needles won?t do much for deeper scars, they can help with some of the surface-level ones, which will even out your overall tone and texture. But mostly the tiny holes allow for deeper absorption of your serums and creams.
What to be cautious of: Breakouts. If you?re dealing with an active blemish or two, you should sit that week?s treatment out, since puncturing a healing pimple (and spreading bacteria) is clearly not a good idea. Once you?re back in the clear, though, get to needling. It?s weirdly rewarding.