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Microneedling stimulates collagen production in the skin to reduce acne scars, fine lines, and hyperpigmentation.  It’s relatively affordable, non-invasive, and is generally easy to do. However, some may make these common microneedling mistakes that hinder progression. 

Here’s a list of common microneedling mistakes to avoid.

  • Using Low Quality Derma Rollers 
  • Apply a serum containing fragrance or high amounts of preservatives after
  • Microneedling too often.
  • Using the wrong needle size.
  • Not using sunscreen.
  • Microneedling over skin infections, active acne, or sores.
  • Applying irritating skincare like retinol, BHA and AHA after microneedling
  • Microneedling Too Aggressively
  • Not replacing your microneedling tool often enough
  • Not Sanitizing Your Microneedle Tool Before Use
  • Not Being Consistent

Mistake 1: Using low-quality Derma rollers

Rollers on eBay, Amazon, or any other online marketplace are generally low quality especially if they are sold at a low price point and are there to make a quick buck before moving on to the next trendy item.  

If you do however believe to have found yourself a quality roller or microneedle tool, inspect the needles for bends and test the roller slightly on the top of your hand to test if the needles are dull and make sure it doesn’t catch on your skin. Bent and dull needles may cut the skin.  Make sure to read reviews and email if necessary. Luckily, the folks at Banish provides a quality patented microneedling tool that is designed, developed, and tested by the team at Banish. They also closely examine each Banisher before shipping out.

Mistake 2: Using a serum containing fragrance or high amounts of preservatives after

There’s been 3 cases of granulomas which is a type of skin inflammation that occurred after getting professional microneedling done at a med spa and applying the same serum. That the study concluded a fragrance or preservative component of the serum most likely caused the reaction.    

Generally in skincare people are more likely to have a reaction to fragrances or preservatives, so avoid applying a serum or skincare product with high amounts of it after microneedling.  So when microneedling at home, only apply a serum that you know you aren’t allergic to without fragrance and as little preservatives as possible.   Preservatives are still important in skincare because it keeps the product from growing bacteria and mold quickly. 

Mistake 3: Microneedling Too Often

Microneedling too often is probably the most common microneedling mistake. It is crucial that you give your skin time to heal and recover after every treatment. Failing to do so can slow healing, increase irritation, inflammation, and slow results, which we don’t want to do to our skin.  Studies show that collagen is still formingin the skin up to 1 month later after microneedling, so be patient. 

If you are using a derma roller, you want to give your skin at least two weeks to heal. For longer needle sizes, you should give even more time for your skin to rest, but you shouldn’t even be using large needle sizes at home ( 1mm + ) anyway because they can be more dangerous if not handled by a professional.

When needles are rolled, they don’t enter the skin at a straight angle and are rolled onto skin instead, so the micro-hole it creates tend to be wider shaped cones, which is why giving 2 weeks between each session is ideal.

If you want to microneedle at home, try the Banisher 2.0.  The downtime is less so you can use this up to once a week.

Mistake 4: Using The Wrong Needle Size

A lot of people think that a larger needle size means better results and although it may be true for deep severe scarring, longer needles have a greater risk and these should be handled by a professional.  Microneedling tools that reach 1mm or more require more downtime and aftercare, and the needles can reach the blood vessels and nerves of the skin depending on depth and areas of the skin. I’d say that the safest size I would recommend for others to use at home is the 0.5mm which is what Banish has and is the minimal size for stimulating collagen. 

Other people might use ones that are even shorter in length. These smaller needle sizes are good for product absorption and mild exfoliation, but not as effective for collagen production needed to remove acne scars

Mistake 5: Not Using Sunscreen 

Another common microneedling mistake is not wearing sunscreen after microneedling.  Whenever you do a microneedling or derma roller session, sunscreen should always accompany it. Sun exposure increases the risk of hyperpigmentation, and the risk is higher when your skin is recovering after microneedling.  Wear sunscreen daily even if it’s been a few days after microneedling since UV damage can still occur.  

Use a full spectrum sunscreen that protects against UVA and UVB with SPF 30 or above. Mineral sunscreen is recommended.  Apply a Vitamin C product before the sunscreen because the layer of vitamin C increases the sun protection from the sunscreen and it creates a buffer between your skin and the sunscreen.  Reapply sunscreen every 2 hours.

I typically recommend to not go out the next day after microneedling because your skin may still be red and a little irritated, but it is still fine to do so with the right sun protection!

Mistake 6: Microneedling on open sores, acne, and skin infections

Don’t make the mistake of microneedling over active acne or open sores. To keep yourself protected against the spread of infection, avoid derma rolling near any acne, open sores, psoriasis, wounds, warts, and other bacterial or active viral or fungal skin infections. 

Wait for the skin lesion or infection to completely heal, before using the Banisher to microneedle or avoid going near it all together. 

Mistake 7: Applying Irritating Products Like Retinol, AHA, or BHAs  After Microneedling

Apply the wrong skincare after microneedling is another common mistake to avoid. Derma rollers and microneedling enhance the absorption of products because Microneedling or dermarolling creates microchannels which lets topical products absorb anywhere from 5-20x times more. This can mean good and bad.

If you are applying skincare products that tend to be irritating or are designed to exfoliate skin right after, like retinol, and exfoliating acids, it may do more harm than good.

Avoid applying products that contain salicylic acid, glycolic acid, or lactic acid after microneedling with the Banisher.

Do not apply makeup for at least 24 hours after microneedling.  If your skin is sensitive, a basic moisturizer is all you need until the next day. 

Other products to avoid putting on the skin after the Banisher

If you have acne prone skin, I would steer clear of any petroleum-based, mineral oil, propylene glycol, silicon-based creams, oils, or serums as they can be pore clogging or irritating if you have acne prone skin. 

When can I use my exfoliating products after microneedling?

Use your exfoliating products that contain AHA’s like lactic, glycolic, or mandelic acids either the day before you want to derma roll or microneedle, and at least 2 days after a session. 

Mistake 8: Microneedling too Aggressively 

When you are rolling or pressing with the Banisher, you do not want to be applying too much pressure at all. Many think that the harder you roll or stamp on your skin, the better the result. You are simply a guide for the tool and any extra exerted pressure may cause unnecessary damage.  Rolling back and forth aggressively with a dermaroller could increase risk of a side effect of tram track marks on the skin.  You don’t need to be bleeding to see results. 

As long as the microneedles penetrated through your skin, you can expect collagen growth.  The Banisher 2.0 has 0.5mm microneedles which are enough to stimulate collagen to fade scars, without the risks associated with longer needles. 

Mistake 9: Not Replacing Your Microneedle Tool Enough

Another microneedling mistake that is pretty common is not replacing your tool. It’s important to replace your microneedle tool no matter what company it came from, because the needles can become blunt after several uses. Over time, your dermaroller’s needle can accumulate bacteria that alcohol can’t disinfect as well. 

Remember that we only want to use sharp, straight needles to prevent unnecessary skin traumas and blunt ones will become ineffective. Additionally, there can be higher risk of infection when using old tools as bacteria may have built upon it.  Make sure to never share microneedle tools too! 

The Banisher 2.0  has 24k gold plated titanium needles that are strong and resistant to bacteria, but they still need to be replaced after 10 times of use,  Cleaning the Banisher with alcohol is a great preventative measure, but there’s no way to guarantee that all bacteria are killed in between the needles.

Mistake 10: Microneedling Over Keloid Scars

We know that microneedling does help in collagen and elastin production which greatly helps with different types of acne scars but sadly, not keloid scars.  

It is not recommended to use a dermaroller or microneedling treatment on keloid scars or if you are prone to having one since this may aggravate the situation more. Keloid scar formation is considered to be one of the contraindications of microneedling. A keloid scar is a skin condition where an excessive amount of collagen growth happens during the healing process after an injury to the skin.

How can you tell if you have a normal raised hypertrophic scar versus a keloid scar?  Hypertrophic scars stay within the area of the injury and don’t get bigger over time.  Keloids can spill over and start to spread outside of the wound area, and grow larger over time.

Mistake 11: Not Sanitizing Your Microneedle Tool Before Use

This is the simplest step yet with our busy lives, easy to skip. It’s important to always sanitize your microneedling tool before every use, even if you cleaned it after storing it. Always make sure to have freshly cleansed skin before microneedling too.  Not doing so could spread debris and bacteria deeper into the skin potentially leading to more breakouts which is the last thing we want. 

Mistake 12: Not Being Consistent

Consistency matters. Seeing results from microneedling takes time so don’t expect results overnight, though some may even find that they do see results the next day which is usually more of a temporary plumping effect. It takes an average of 1-3 months for most people to notice long term results from microneedling.  Keep going, stay consistent and as long as you follow these simple guidelines as well as the instructions with your microneedling kit then you are guaranteed results.

As a summary, we hope that these tips will help you with your microneedling progress on acne scars! Check the list below for a short summary on the common microneedling mistakes to avoid making. 

microneedling mistakes that slow your results infographic

Purchase a high quality home microneedling tool

Banisher 2.0

Below is prettyprogress23’s result with Banish

prettyprogress23 banish kit results


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