The dermaroller is a popular item among some beauty enthusiasts. Also known as “skin roller,” the dermaroller is a small handheld tool used in micro-needling, skin needling, or collagen induction therapy (CIT).
The dermaroller is covered with thousands of thin and tiny microneedles. When rolled on the skin, it creates tiny punctures on the skin’s epidermis—these micro-punctures trick the skin into regenerating, because the body thinks that the skin has been injured. As the dermaroller creates those tiny punctures, it stimulates the formation of new natural collagen and elastin, which helps in rejuvenating the skin. The tiny infiltration channels also allow faster and more effective absorption of active ingredients applied on the skin.
But as with most things, there is a limit to the use of the dermaroller. Otherwise, too much rolling won’t render it effective any longer. So, how to tell when it is time to replace your dermaroller? How long does it last? It depends on a lot of factors, so let’s dig a bit deeper.
How Will You Know That the Dermaroller is in Good Condition?
First of all, it is important to note the time since you have bought the instrument and how many times have you used it since. Frequent usage tends to wear out the needles, and they do not remain sharp enough to be effective. Most experts suggest that with careful handling and usage, a dermaroller is effective for 12 to 15 treatments at home. When the roller’s motion no longer remains smooth and becomes jerky, you know it is time to replace. Also, pay attention to the condition of the needles; worn-out tilted needles are not recommended for use on the skin.
The following factors tell you when it is time to replace your dermaroller.
The Manufacturer’s Instructions/Frequency of Use
One of the most important factors to consider is the manufacturer’s instructions. For example, Dr. Roller’s manual says that the dermaroller should be disposed of after six months of use. But then, it depends on how often you are using it. If you use it too much, the needles will start to lose their original sharpness, and dull needles are ineffective in making micro-penetrations in your skin’s outer layer. This also depends on the size of the needles. The rollers with the smallest needles are used more frequently and the criteria to change them is then the number of usages. The larger ones are used only a few times a month, and as they may be used by the user for six months to even a year.
However, the length of the microneedles determines how quickly they degrade. The longer the dermaroller needle is, the more necessary it is to change it often; since the longer needles tend to de-shape earlier.
The dermaroller can be used in different areas of your body for the treatment of various conditions. The age of a dermaroller depends on how large an area are you treating with it. Moreover, it also depends upon the area that is under treatment since some parts of the body have thicker skin, and they cause the needles to wear out sooner than later. Additionally, if the needles are longer, they lose their sharpness and become unusable more quickly.
Aggressiveness of Treatment
Some people prefer to keep the dermaroller’s motion on the skin very light and prefer a gentle treatment, while others go for more aggressive treatments if they have a higher threshold for pain. They may also use it more often, letting the roller wear out quicker. In such cases, the dermaroller must be replaced sooner than the average lifespan as said by the manufacturers or professionals.
The Quality of the Dermaroller
The price point of the dermaroller can also be a good determinant of its quality. Usually, the more expensive the dermaroller, the higher quality it has – and therefore, the longer it should last. Higher quality dermarollers should have needles that are constructed from excellent materials. Most needles are made from medical-grade stainless steel, but others are made from titanium alloy. While titanium is more durable than stainless steel, stainless steel has its own advantages, particularly the fact that it is more sterile.
The following are some pros and cons of stainless steel and titanium microneedles:
Stainless Steel Microneedles
- Extremely sharp
- Extremely hygienic
- Easy to clean and to sterilize
- Not as durable as titanium
- Prone to wear and tear
Titanium Alloy Microneedles
- Extremely durable and robust
- Highly resistant to wear and tear
- Highly resistant to bending
- More aesthetically pleasing, particularly the gold-plated varieties.
- Requires more cleaning and sterilizing
- Needles not as sharp as stainless steel
Usage and Maintenance
Another factor that determines a dermaroller’s useful life is the way you use and maintain it. Clean and sterilize your dermaroller regularly (before and after use) and do not leave it lying on dirty surfaces. These tips will help extend the life of your dermaroller.
A dermaroller is a delicate instrument that needs careful handling and maintenance between the sessions. Accumulation of grease and dirt may make the motion of the roller jerky, and keeping it on rough and untidy surfaces damage the needles. Regular cleaning and proper storage can give your dermaroller a prolonged life. A dermaroller should be kept in a clean and dry place after use.
After using it, clean the dermaroller with alcohol to remove any grease or debris, dry it up properly and place it safely in its plastic case. It must be dried up to prevent rusting and bacterial growth. Furthermore, you should sterilize it before and after using it to prolong its life.
If You Drop The Roller
Some experts say that if you drop your dermaroller, it should be replaced at once and never used again for dropping may damage its needles and render it more harmful than useful for the skin. It sure sounds expensive, but the health of the skin is more important than anything.
You do not need to buy the whole roller every time. There are rollers in the market for which you can simply replace the head when you deem it unfit for use. This is a more affordable option and helps you save a lot of money and time.
Though dermarollers have proven very effective for not only increasing product penetration for the skin but also giving you fresher and healthy-looking skin, they must be used with care. You must take care not to use a worn-out roller, and must not share it with anyone, since it creates micro penetrations into your skin, and runs the risk of contamination.
Therefore, replacement is necessary once you find it unfit for use. Replace your dermaroller, keeping in mind the factors given above, and in accordance with the usage of your instrument.