How SkinPen Works
The SkinPen uses 12 surgical-grade stainless steel needles to create thousands of micro-channels in the treated skin. This fractionated approach allows for two main benefits:
- Temporary (10-20 minutes) micro-channels allow for superior penetration and diffusion of topicals during and post-procedure, allowing for optimal delivery
- Fractionated injuries to the dermal tissues without ablation or introduction of thermal energy allows for quick, safe, and effective percutaneous collagen induction therapy, even in patients with darker skin types.
These benefits allow for the treatment of many skin conditions which may require either collagen remodeling (i.e., photo-aging, acne scarring, stretch-marks), optimization of topical drug delivery (i.e., acne, melasma) or both.
The SkinPen Advantage
SkinPen is the safest, most effective vertical microneedling device that offers state-of-the-art skin rejuvenating technology. By creating a series of hundreds of vertical microscopic channels into the dermis, SkinPen stimulates the natural production of new collagen and elastin.
Advanced Vertical Microneedling Technology
The Difference of SkinPen
Traditional microneedling dermarollers can bend, break, or even rust. As a result, infection or scarring may occur with reuse. SkinPen is different.
Through an optimized micro-channel creation, SkinPen uses straight needles to penetrate at a 90 degree angle to stimulate your skin’s natural ability to produce new collagen and elastin formation, encouraging your skin to look and feel healthier.
The SkinPen Advantage Is:
- Offering results to treat fine lines and wrinkles, acne scars, hyperpigmentation, stretch marks, and skin texture
- A minimally invasive, non-albative treatment
- A skin rejuvenating treatment with a superior safety profile
- An in-office procedure that is quick and simple
The Science Behind SkinPen
Collagen Induction Therapy
Collagen Induction Therapy (CIT), or microneedling, is the procedure by which the body’s natural response to healing is used to increase the amount of extracellular matrix such as collagen or elastin in the skin. The micro-channels created by the SkinPen allow for leakage of blood, serum, and lymph in a controlled and temporary manner. These “injuries” are enough to initiate the wound healing cascade which is composed of three basic phases.
- Phase One: Inflammation: Activated by piercing the dermal tissue, platelets release cytokines and growth factors which act as signals for the body’s immune system. Neutrophils and macrophages cells are sent in to disinfect the wounds, clear the debris, increase the blood supply (a process called angiogenesis), and begin the creation of fresh, new cellular and extracellular materials (the granulation process).
- Phase Two: Proliferation: In this stage, the fibroblasts (cells that make up much of the dermis and create the extracellular matrix) keratinocytes and epidermal cells continue to divide to populate the areas of damage and secrete growth factors and extracellular matrix, such as elastin and collagen.
- Phase Three: Remodeling: At this stage, the wound has been replaced with new dermal tissues and the newly formed vasculature is now matured. The collagen in the newly formed tissue is now replaced with the stronger collagen and the tissue contracts to cause a “shrink-wrap” effect of the skin.
The Versatile Design of SkinPen
The depth of the SkinPen needles can be adjusted from .25 mm up to 2.5 mm in length. This variability allows for the SkinPen provider to adjust treatments based on the patient’s anatomy (skin thickness) as well as the patient’s need (e.g., more penetration required for acne scarring).
Treatments with SkinPen are typically tolerated very well by patients, many reporting that they feel little-to-no discomfort during the procedure. Your SkinPen provider will work with you to ensure your comfort during your procedure. Microneedling is a minimally invasive procedure; however, since the skin is being penetrated there will be some mild effects afterwards. These effects will vary based on needle depth used and intensity of treatment. Typical post-treatment effects are as follows
- Day 1: Mild to moderate swelling and redness, similar to a mild sunburn. There may be some mild bruising as well.
- Day 2: Some persisting redness may be present, but all redness bruising and swelling should be diminishing.
- Day 3: Most redness, bruising and swelling should be nearly gone. Normal appearance with makeup may be achieved.
- Day 4: Appear mostly normal at this point with some minor swelling.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is SkinPen?
SkinPen by Bellus Medical is a medical grade, state of the art micro-needling tool available through skincare professionals only. SkinPen is designed to stimulate your skin’s natural ability to produce new collagen formation creating healthier skin, and can be used to improve the appearance acne scars, hyperpigmentation, stretch marks, skin texture as well as, fine lines and wrinkles. The repair process of your skin is accelerated by SkinPen through the creation of microscopic channels, which also allow products to penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin resulting in better product outcomes.
How does SkinPen work?
The concept of micro-needling has been around for a while and is based upon the skin’s ability to naturally repair itself when injured. Immediately following an injury, our skin begins the process of dissolving tissue damage and replacing it with new cells. Micro-needling allows for controlled induction of the skin’s self-repair process by creating precise, micro-injuries in the skin, which automatically trigger new collagen synthesis without causing scar tissue formation. The micro-injuries also create channels that allow product to penetrate deeper into the skin resulting in better product efficacy.
What are the benefits?
There are numerous benefits received through use of SkinPen because new collagen production can reverse years of sun damage, improve the appearance of acne scars, stretch marks, and hyper-pigmentation as well as enhance the overall appearance of aging skin.
Who is a candidate?
One of the most exciting things about SkinPen is that it can be used on all types of skin and can be used to address a wide range of problems such as acne scars, stretch marks, fine lines and wrinkles.
What areas of the body can I treat?
SkinPen’s variable needle depth allows for versatility and therefore it can be used on many parts of the body, including the face, neck, décolleté, arms, hands, legs, abdomen and back.
What does it feel like?
The unique design of SkinPen allows for individualized settings, which makes the treatment very comfortable for most patients.
How long does the procedure take?
The procedure typically takes 30 minutes depending on the size of the area treated, number of areas and the severity of damage on the skin. Following your consultation, your SkinPen provider can give you a better idea of what to expect.
What is the downtime?
The total healing time depends on the severity of the damaged skin and the depth of repair process required. On average, patients have some slight redness/pinkness (like a mild sunburn) for 2-4 days. Some patients may heal completely in 24 hours.
When will patients see results?
Many patients notice healthier looking skin immediately. However, the natural repair process of your own skin continues to progress over the course of several weeks. Keep in mind dermal collagen remodeling takes place over time it is not realistic to expect damage that has occurred over an extensive period of time to disappear immediately. You may not see the final result until up to 3-6 months following your final session.
How many treatments are recommended?
The number of treatments required will be determined by your skincare professional based upon your individual treatment goals and the health of your skin. However, it is recommended for most patients to receive a series of 3 treatments spaced about 4 weeks apart. For patients with deep wrinkles, advanced photo-aging, stretch marks or acne scars it is recommended to receive 6-8 sessions at 4-6 week intervals.
We also recommend developing a maintenance plan with your skincare professional to help maintain the glow and rejuvenating effects of your personalized SkinPen treatments.
Do I have to use a certain product line with SkinPen?
One of the many benefits to utilizing SkinPen is the versatility. You can use any product line of your choice. Please consult your skincare professional on which products will best aid in getting optimal results following your SkinPen treatment.
What are common reactions following the first treatment?
Most patients only experience some slight redness/pinkness (like a mild sunburn) for 2-4 days. However, the reaction to treatment depends on the severity of the damaged skin, the depth of repair process required, and how aggressive the treatment is performed.
Can I get a SkinPen treatment if I’m pregnant?
SkinPen is not recommended for pregnant women because the micro-needles produce micro-injuries on the skin, which naturally causes a repair process to begin. This healing process and production of new collagen requires vitamins and nutrients to be utilized that would otherwise be reserved for the unborn child.
Can SkinPen be used on all Fitzpatrick skin types?
Yes! In fact, this is a big advantage offered through SkinPen’s technology. SkinPen treatments can be performed on all skin colors and types.
Is there anyone who should not use SkinPen?
Use of SkinPen is contraindicated for patients with: A history of keloid scars, scleroderma, collagen vascular diseases or cardiac abnormalities; a hemorrhagic disorder or hemostatic dysfunction; or an active bacterial or fungal infection.
Can I wear make-up immediately following a procedure?
Typically, patients can resume their normal makeup and skin care regimen 2-3 days following their SkinPen treatment. As this may vary based on the area and type of treatment performed, make sure to consult your SkinPen provider for their recommendation.