Can Microneedling Help With Acne Scars?

While you might want to prevent scarring caused by pimples, you might also be aware of the fact that dealing with more persistent acne can sometimes require going beyond face wash or other simple skin care options. In that case, you might want to consider microneedling. A cosmetic procedure that's been around since 1995, you may have heard of it more recently thanks to social media, according to Elle.

Even if you're not overly familiar with the treatment, the name itself gives away what microneedling involves. By using small needles that are inserted into your skin, enough (minor and temporary) damage is done to trigger both collagen and elastin to come to the rescue, according to WebMD. That's why it is also sometimes known as collagen induction therapy. When the collagen and elastin go into action and attempt to repair the little puncture marks that are made by the needles, they can also leave you with other pleasant results. Indeed, microneedling can help improve everything from dark areas on the skin and wrinkles to stretch marks and hair loss.

That surely leaves you wondering if it can also help with acne scars and, if so, what you might expect if you have microneedling done.

Microneedling works best on a certain kind of acne scar

If you're considering having microneedling done in an attempt to reduce the visibility of your acne scars, then the chances are you'll be pleased with the outcome. Indeed, according to a study completed in India that saw 36 patients give microneedling a try (and who stuck with the full treatment), 34 participants were left with less noticeable scars. They also avoided any unfortunate potential side effects and were apparently left feeling pretty darn happy about their experience. Because of that, those behind the study concluded that microneedling was an ideal option for dealing with acne scars.

However, before you give microneedling a try for yourself, it's important to know that you'll likely see more noticeable results on acne scars that are sunken, according to the American Academy of Dermatology (via Healthline). That's as opposed to scars that are puffed up a bit. That puffiness is due to collagen, meaning that stimulating more collagen to rush to the scar by microneedling won't make much of a difference.

Granted, if you have sunken acne scars and are getting eager to give microneedling a try, you'll definitely want to be aware of what the results will be when you get it done.

This is what you can expect after microneedling your acne scars

When you walk in to have a cosmetic procedure done, it can be smart to have an idea of what you can expect to face when you walk out. When it comes to microneedling, board-certified dermatologist Dr. Sejal Shah told Byrdie, "The great thing about this treatment is there's really no significant downtime."

"Afterward, there's a little bit of redness and might be some areas of pinpoint bleeding, but really, it's a no-downtime kind of treatment, so most people leave here a little bit red," Shah added. Beyond that, Shah explains, "A couple of hours later, you're pretty much back to normal, and the next day, you can resume your normal skincare and normal activities."

Although you need to have microneedling done more than once in order for it to be truly effective, dermatologist Macrene Alexiades, MD, Ph.D. told Elle that there will be both inflammation and swelling afterward, although that shouldn't be overly intense and won't last too long. Alexiades added, "From microneedling alone, you will look plump, pink, and luminous for a couple of weeks." Then, once your procedure is done, you can get back to a minimalist skincare routine and perhaps even try dopamine dressing to further boost you high spirits.