Microdermabrasion remains to be one of the most popular advanced skin treatments, even in the face of more innovative concepts that promise the same benefits: Chemical peels for deep exfoliation, microneedling for acne scars, IPL skin rejuvenation for wrinkles, and the list goes on. At one point, microdermabrasion was considered THE go-to for all these problems related to skin texture, and – surprisingly so – has never left the radar since its peak popularity in the 90s and 2000s. If you ask the loyalists, they mostly appreciate its effective yet non-invasive and fuss-free approach to smooth, clear, and radiant skin. But for those of you who have yet to join the bandwagon, you may be wondering what the buzz is all about. In that case, we may be able to help you out!
In this article, we bring you the ultimate guide to microdermabrasion. We talk about the benefits, the procedure, the side effects, and everything else you need to know about this cult-favorite. Our customers at Lovoir Skin Body & Beauty continue to stay true to this beauty treatment, and soon, you’ll all be able to enjoy an even better version! Read til the end and we’ll give you a little sneak peek into our latest treatment. But in the meantime, let’s start with this essential question:
What is Microdermabrasion?
Microdermabrasion is a cosmetic treatment that involves a carefully abrasive yet gentle process of exfoliating the outermost layer of the skin, the epidermis. Similar to physical exfoliators and dermaplaning (another trendy treatment!), its goal is to get rid of dead skin cells sitting on the surface to make room for new, healthy ones to take its place. By speeding up this cell turnover process, microdermabrasion gives way to impressive improvements on our skin tone and texture. Science calls it cell renewal, but we personally prefer skin rejuvenation!
Interestingly enough, long before the science behind it was ever discovered, there was this: Ancient Egypt. Although the first microdermabrasion tool was officially developed by Italian dermatologists in the mid-80s, a deeper look into its origins will take you centuries and generations back – to the year 1500 BC to be exact! Our ancestors used a special type of sandpaper to buff the skin and smoothen scars, much like how microdermabrasion is performed today. Proof that rough skin and acne scars were just as common a problem then than it is now! The only difference is we’ve now traded in sandpaper for more advanced tools like diamond-tip wands and crystal particles. Fancy schmancy, huh? Here’s how it works!
Microdermabrasion Procedure: How It Works
While microdermabrasion does involve scraping the top layer of skin, it is considered a non-invasive treatment with the help of special tools. There are generally two ways to do it: Through (1) crystal microdermabrasion, which releases fine crystals to slough off skin cells, or (2) diamond microdermabrasion, which uses a diamond tip to buff the skin. While they vary in the exfoliation method, they both end by suctioning our dead skin cells, similar to how a vacuum cleans up all the dirt on our floors!
Given these sophisticated devices, only a skilled dermatologist or skin therapist can succeed at safely and properly executing this procedure, so keep that in mind whenever you’re tempted to bag one of those at-home microdermabrasion kits! They may have resulted in some success stories, but they can never guarantee the same safety and efficacy as salon services. That said, it is best to give your skin the proper care (and top-notch results!) it deserves. Here’s how our skin therapists do it:
- Consultation. Regardless of what treatment you get, we always encourage our customers to first book a consultation with our skin therapists. Sometimes, the treatment you have in mind may not be the most suitable for your skin condition. By assessing your skin issues, goals, and health history, we can recommend the best treatment for you, whether it be microdermabrasion or one of our other beauty treatments!
- Preparation. Once you’ve gotten the go signal to proceed with your microdermabrasion treatment, now’s the time to prepare your skin for the big day! We usually advise our customers to avoid sun exposure, exfoliation products, facial waxing, and anti-inflammatory medications a week before their session. These no-no’s will ensure that your skin is safe from any rare side effects or risks during the treatment.
On the day of your treatment, make sure to come into our salon bare-faced, makeup-free, and skin-ready! The session will take between 30 to 50 minutes, the entirety of which will be spent laying down and relaxing (or even napping if you wish!). If there is any sensation to be expected, it’s comparable to the feeling of gently scratching an itch on your face. Other than that, there is no pain or discomfort to worry about!
- Step 1: We will begin the treatment by cleansing your face from any dirt, oil, or leftover skincare products.
- Step 2: Our skin therapist will then proceed with the actual microdermabrasion process. We’ll use a diamond-tipped wand with a vacuum suction to buff the dead skin cells off your skin. This will be done throughout your entire face with us possibly going over problematic areas multiple times.
- Step 3: We’ll end by applying a soothing cream and SPF. And that’s it, you’re good to go!
For best results, our skin therapists usually recommend a treatment plan of 6 sessions with a 2 to 3-week break in between. Until then, make sure to follow our aftercare instructions to avoid any unforeseen side effects and risks. That said, there are a few things you should expect, although they are completely normal and part of the process.
Microdermabrasion Side Effects: What To Expect
Right after our microdermabrasion treatment, you may experience slight redness that should disappear within the day. Your skin may also feel sensitive to the touch, but there will be no pain whatsoever. The best practice is to avoid exfoliant products for the next week, as well as sun exposure and public pools for at least 2 days. Overall, downtime and recovery is very minimal and not at all limiting! The procedure will not stop you from getting back to work or continuing the rest of your day-to-day activities. Just keep up a good skincare routine and hygiene habits, and there should be no reason for you to experience bad side effects or risks of infection.
With all the safety measures covered, now onto the fun stuff!
Sticking to our treatment plan and aftercare instructions will reward you with tons of benefits for your skin to enjoy! Each session helps in improving cell turnover and enhancing skin health, and these crucial functions ultimately manifest as visible improvements on your skin. After all, there is a reason why microdermabrasion has turned curious customers to solid converts, and it’s mainly due to these amazing benefits.
An obvious benefit of any exfoliation treatment is deep cleansing. With microdermabrasion, in particular, the buffing motion helps slough off those pesky dead cells that weigh down your skin. In effect, getting rid of them will cleanse and unclog your pores from any deep-seated dirt, oil, and other impurities trapped inside. Nasty! With this clean and fresh slate in place, microdermabrasion also enhances product absorption and allows your skin to respond better to your daily skincare routine and other beauty treatments.
Smoother skin texture
Improvements on your skin texture is by far the biggest benefit of microdermabrasion treatments. The most immediate sign is the look and feel of smoother and softer skin! Then of course, that’s a given after removing dead skin cells. Apart from dry and rough spots, this treatment is also known to help more specific skin texture problems like acne scarring and stretch marks. Keep in mind, though, that it may be a gradual process to notice visible improvements, especially since it involves stimulating new skin cells. Just be patient and you’ll see results eventually!
That said, for more serious skin concerns like deep acne scars and deep wrinkles, microdermabrasion may not be the most effective solution. They typically happen in deeper layers of our skin so you may want to explore more advanced (and slightly more invasive) treatments like IPL or microneedling.
Reduces visible signs of aging
Another common skin texture issue: Fine lines and wrinkles. As we get older, the amount of collagen in our skin decreases, and with that, our natural cell turnover slows down as well. Microdermabrasion works to address both – stimulate collagen production, and consequently, improve our cell renewal process. At the risk of sounding too boring (and science-y!), just picture this: These new collagen fibers fill in the gaps in our skin, thus reducing the overall appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Phew, we hope that wasn’t too hard to take in but you get the picture! Basically put, internal skin health at its finest!
Reduces dark spots and hyperpigmentation
Apart from improving our skin’s texture, microdermabrasion also offers benefits for our skin tone and complexion, the biggest one being hyperpigmentation. Whether you have dark spots, sun spots, age spots, melasma, or all of the above, exfoliating the outer layer of your skin will help reduce discolouration and bring about new skin that is generally lighter and free from clumps of pigment. Additionally, collagen helps to heal dark spots and replaces them with new skin tissue.
With your skin all buffed, clean, and healthy, sporting an overall brighter complexion is a no-brainer at this point! By reducing dryness and discolouration, you’ll notice a skin glow that could only come from new and improved skin.
Common Questions About Microdermabrasion
Is it a safe procedure?
Because the name itself includes the word “abrasion,” some people assume that microdermabrasion can be damaging to their skin. Irritation, pain, and thinning skin are among the most common misconceptions. To that we say: Microdermabrasion is completely safe! – so long as it is done by trained professionals.
For one, they are trained to handle these special tools with your safety in mind. But more importantly, a professional will be able to give you a proper assessment of your skin condition before recommending microdermabrasion in the first place. That said, while the treatment is generally safe for all skin types and colours, it is typically not recommended for certain people including:
- Those with more mature or older skin, especially those with deep-rooted signs of aging
- Those with rosacea or broken capillaries
- Those with severe acne, active acne, cystic acne, open wounds, or cold sore breakouts
- Those who scar easily
These people typically have more sensitive skin and may benefit more from other treatments. That said, it is crucial to seek our skin therapist’s advice first. That way, we’ll be sure to recommend the safest and most suitable treatment for you.
How long does it take to see results from microdermabrasion?
We’ll be honest: Microdermabrasion is not a magic treatment that will automatically transform your skin with a flick of a wand (quite literally). So if you’re looking for a significant improvement on your skin condition, especially for acne, dark spots, or fine lines, you will not see results immediately. On the contrary, it is a gentle and mild process that requires multiple sessions to deliver noticeable results, which is actually a good thing! It is much more rewarding than seeing instant yet mediocre results. Plus, it goes to show that these changes come from your skin’s natural processes and aren’t just superficial results. Once the benefits on your skin become evident, you’ll find that everything was worth the wait!
How long do microdermabrasion results last?
At this point, it is important to remember that our skin is a living organ. This means that it will inevitably evolve, change, and react to the external factors around us. That said, skin improvements from microdermabrasion should last for at least one month, ideally longer if you take good care of your skin. Whatever the case may be, we usually encourage our customers to get regular facials to keep their skin healthy and functioning at its best!
How often should you get microdermabrasion?
As mentioned, the ideal treatment plan typically includes 6 sessions with a two to three week rest period in between. After completing the full course, you’re free to come back for more once you feel like your skin needs a boost! But if you’re able to maintain your impressive results with a good skincare routine, then you should be able to last months before your next course.
Book Your Treatment With Lovoir Skin Body & Beauty
Now that you’re up to date with all there is to know about microdermabrasion, you’re just a click or call away from experiencing the benefits for yourself! You can book a microdermabrasion facial here. Apart from that, we will soon be offering our latest skin wonder: Hydradermabrasion. It will further enhance this exfoliation method by adding special hydration products to your facial! Reach out to our skin therapists to ask us anything about our treatments, and we’ll recommend the best option for your skin concerns.