When talking about microdermabrasion, it is good to distinguish the term from dermabrasion. The two procedures are very different.
While microdermabrasion exfoliates the outermost epidermal layer only, dermabrasion penetrates deeply, sometimes affecting the dermal layer. Topical anesthesia is not required for microdermabrasion and the potential risks of side effects are reduced to increased skin sensitivity and redness.
Microdermabrasion is generally the more preferred option, as it doesn’t require healing time, and people may immediately return to their daily routines right after the procedure. The above-mentioned facts make the procedure absolutely safe, there is no ‘healing time’ or strict post-treatment care.
Now, let’s go back to how the procedure is performed.
Microdermabrasion is a mechanical peeling method. The upper layer of skin is exfoliated through special sterile microparticles or a rotating diamond tip.
The microdermabrasion apparatus is equipped with a compressor and a pump. Through them, a stream of microcrystals is directed to the skin surface or the diamond tip wand abrades the superficial skin. After the dead skin cells are removed, they are sucked back into the apparatus along with the impurities, sebum and makeup residue.
The vacuum suction function improves blood circulation and deeply cleans pores. Improved blood circulation. In turn, after the simultaneous exfoliation and suction, the stimulation of new collagen and elastin in the dermis begins, leading to tightening and toning of the skin.
There are 3 variations of microdermabrasion
Performed by a specialized dermatologist or a plastic surgeon
Note that microdermabrasion is considered an aesthetic procedure, therefore is not covered by insurance. Scheduling an appointment is required.
When performed by a dermatologist or a plastic surgeon, the procedure is expected to provide deeper skin penetration. The goal is to maximize the effect of microdermabrasion treatment by provoking skin injury. Professional microdermabrasion machines are used during the treatment process. Since the exfoliation is more aggressive, side effects may be more obvious (such include redness, burning sensation, increased sensitivity, and redness).
After that, a process of reepithelialization begins, collagen and elastin levels are boosted and the newly formed skin restores its previous functions.
The procedure is performed at a doctor’s office and lasts about 40 minutes. Depending on the specialization of the doctor, you will have to pay from $75 to $350 per treatment session.
Performed by an aesthetician
Beauty studios that are authorized to performing facials usually offer microdermabrasion. The difference between aesthetician-performed and doctor-performed microdermabrasion is the comfort of not visiting a hospital or a private dermatological office. The MDA machines used are usually the same (professional or semi-professional, depending on the salon you have chosen) and the microdermabrasion session takes as much time. Scheduling an appointment is often required and a professional aesthetician will perform your facial. Prices are between $100 and $250 per procedure.
Performed by yourself
The microdermabrasion machines, intended for at-home treatments are considered less aggressive, compared to the dermatological treatments. Most at-home devices can be used as often as weekly, as they are gentler and the side effects are minimized. Each MDA machine is packed with a user manual where you can find detailed instructions about how to use it. Additionally, you won’t need appointments, as you can perform your facial whenever you like.
At-home microdermabrasion machines are divided into corded and cordless. The corded ones are more powerful, semi-professional or professional devices, which are often used in beauty studios. The effect of a single procedure may last for up to 4 weeks and the prices start from $80 to $250.
Cordless microdermabrasion machines are also portable, you can carry yours in your purse. These are usually battery-powered MDA machines, respectively, the abrasion and suction features are not as intense as the corded machines. The less aggressive performance allows more frequent exfoliations – 1 or 2 times a week is perfectly fine for most devices. The pricing of cordless microdermabrasion machines is another advantage – these are usually less than $150 and there are much cheaper options starting from $60!
Note that all at-home microdermabrasion kits are intended for unlimited treatments, which means that once you buy your machine you can enjoy it every time your skin needs a rejuvenation. Some MDA machines require the additional purchase of filters or refill pads. Additional replacement pieces can be purchased directly from Amazon or the manufacturer.