Microdermabrasion Facial vs. Microneedling: Which is Right For You?

woman looking in mirror to illustrate microdermabrasion facial
Medically Reviewed
July 11, 2022

Have you felt like your spa visits have been missing something? Are those peels and extractions just not getting you the results you want anymore? Although spa facials have benefits, sometimes getting the fresh, smooth skin you desire takes more than a spa facial. That’s where a microdermabrasion facial and other treatments like microneedling come in.

So if you’ve been on the hunt for something more and are trying to figure out whether a microdermabrasion facial or microneedling is the better choice, then you’ve come to the right place!

Microdermabrasion vs. Micro-needling

Microdermabrasion has been a go-to option for skincare since the 1990s, but microneedling has quickly become a popular choice for improving the overall condition of your skin. Although they have some similarities, their differences are significant. Before diving into their similarities and differences, let’s first explore the two procedures.

What is Microdermabrasion?

Microdermabrasion is a non-surgical procedure that increases circulation and resurfaces your skin by removing dead and dull skin cells. It reduces the appearance of pore size, age spots, acne scars, stretch marks, and fine lines and wrinkles. You can have the procedure at home, but medical microdermabrasion provides better and safer results.

How does microdermabrasion work?

A trained provider uses a mechanical device with a rough material like sodium bicarbonate crystals to exfoliate your skin surface. The device scrubs off dead and dull surface skin cells while simultaneously suctioning the skin.

The process doesn’t hurt, takes about an hour, and requires no downtime. The results include smoother, brighter-looking skin. Microdermabrasion is suitable for most skin types, but not all.

Overall, a microdermabrasion facial is perfect for:

  • Reducing the appearance of large pores
  • Treating fine lines and wrinkles
  • Getting rid of stretch marks
  • Reducing acne scars

What is Microneedling?

Microneedling, on the other hand, is a cosmetic procedure that’s a minimally invasive process for improving fine lines and wrinkles, pore size, and acne scarring. It can be used in many areas, including delicate areas of skin around the eyes, on the hands, and neck. The procedure takes about two hours, and you’ll see results within a few days.

However, you may need four or more treatments for optimal results. At-home microneedling equipment is available, but it’s safer – and gets better results – when a trained professional administers it.

How does microneedling work?

Microneedling reaches below the skin surface by making tiny punctures in your skin’s outer layers. Then, a trained professional uses a derma roller to trigger your skin to repair itself.

A derma roller is a small wheel with rows of tiny needles pointing out. Your practitioner rolls the derma roller across your skin to create tiny holes. The skin senses this as damage and begins a wound healing response. This boosts collagen and elastin production and creates fresh new skin.

The healing process can take a few days. During this time, your skin might be red, swollen, oozing, or scabby. However, these after-effects will disappear entirely once your skin has healed. Microneedling is effective for all skin types.

Microneedling is perfect for:

  • Burn Scars
  • Acne scars
  • Stretch marks
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Reducing pore size
  • Chicken pox scars
  • C Section scarring
  • Sagging skin
  • Hair Loss

The Two Primary Similarities Shared By Microdermabrasion Facials and Microneedling

1 Both microneedling and microdermabrasion procedures usually require more than one treatment to get desired results.

2 Both treatments can treat acne scars, uneven skin tone, fine lines, and wrinkles.

The Difference Between Microneedling and Microdermabrasion Facials

One difference is that microneedling can also help treat skin conditions like alopecia, burn scars, stretch marks, and hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating). Microdermabrasion, on the other hand, can help treat age spots and dull complexions.

Think of it like this: Microdermabrasion is like getting the surface of your skin polished, whereas microneedling is like refinishing your skin.

Another difference is that microdermabrasion coverage is limited to the face and body, whereas microneedling can treat the face, scalp, hands, and body.

Microneedling results are also longer-lasting than microdermabrasion results.

You may be wondering which is better for scars.

Microneedling and microdermabrasion can both be used to treat acne scars. In addition, they both work best on depressed scars rather than raised scars. However, microneedling is better for deeper scars because it goes deeper into the skin than microdermabrasion.

Aftercare: Microdermabrasion vs. Microneedling

Microneedling and microdermabrasion aftercare recommendations are relatively similar initially. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Your skin may be sensitive for a few days following each procedure.
  • You should avoid sun exposure for at least 24 hours.
  • It’s important to avoid sweating or wearing make-up for at least 24 hours to prevent further irritation.
  • You need to drink lots of fluids to keep your skin hydrated and support its healing.

However, you will likely need to take care for longer after microneedling. So also bear the following advice in mind:

  • Avoid touching your treated skin and use gentle cleansers to keep it clean.
  • Avoid hot baths or soaking the skin until it is fully healed.
  • Use a cold compress to relieve any irritation if needed.
  • Use medicated creams or prescribed medication as directed by your healthcare provider.

Can You Combine Microneedling and Microdermabrasion Treatments?

Here’s some great news! You don’t have to decide between microneedling and microdermabrasion. You can get both treatments and enjoy the benefits of each of them.

How so? Because luckily, the differences between microdermabrasion and microneedling are significant enough that your skin could benefit from combining the two! Combining the two procedures can get you the “best of” both treatments: increasing collagen production, improving the appearance of wrinkles, reducing inflammation, redness, and swelling in the skin, and diminishing the appearance of pores and scars.

We Can Help You Glow!

Imagine looking as glowing and fresh on the outside as you feel inside! Restore a youthful look and increase your confidence with an aesthetic treatment at NAVA. We offer microneedling and an upgrade to the microdermabrasion facial called HydraFacial.

HydraFacial is microdermabrasion technology that uses vortex technology to cleanse, extract, hydrate, and infuse skin with intensive serums. Want to learn more? Contact us for a consultation!

Image attribution

Article Name
Microdermabrasion Facial vs. Microneedling: Which is Right For You?
When spa visits are not enough, a microdermabrasion facial or microneedling can restore your youthful looks. You can combine both and even upgrade to our HydraFacial!