When I was younger, Spice Girls were all the rage, and I firmly identified as Sporty Spice. I was a bit of a tomboy, I loved wearing sneakers, and I could not have cared less about makeup, beauty products, or fashion. Now, as an adult, I’m Posh Spice through and through. The outfits, the hair, even the resting bitch face — it’s me to a T. While I never looked up to Victoria Beckham growing up, as an adult, she’s become my fashion and beauty icon. The new Netflix docuseries “Beckham” has only fueled my obsession.
Recently, Beckham shared a treatment she dubbed “amazing” on her Instagram Stories, and, of course, I went into full research mode. It turned out to be something called SkinPen, which I was unfamiliar with. However, Beckham’s seal of approval was enough to get me to book an appointment to test it out for myself.
So, what is SkinPen, and how does it work? Put simply, it’s an FDA-cleared handheld microneedling device. Microneedling is a minimally invasive procedure that aims to improve skin texture and stimulate collagen production. The device is moved over your skin in sections, usually starting with the forehead and working down to the neck. “The needles range from 0.5 to 2.5 millimeters and rotate over the skin,” dermatologist Elizabeth Bahar Houshmand, MD, tells POPSUGAR. “[This] creates tiny wounds that breach the topmost layer of the skin to reach the epidermis and the deeper dermis, [which] helps to promote collagen formation.”
The benefits of a SkinPen treatment include helping diminish the appearance of fine lines, texture scars from acne, and hyperpigmentation. As for pricing, Dr. Bahar Houshmand says it will vary by practice and depends on who is performing the procedure, but the typical range is anywhere from $500 to $800 for a full face.
I visited Sev Laser Aesthetics in Los Angeles for my treatment and saw Madison Soto, RN, BSN. Since this was my first time doing microneedling, I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. We started out by taking before photos, and then Soto applied a numbing cream all over my face, which she let sit for about 30 minutes.
Once my face was completely numb, we went into a private room where Soto performed the treatment. She took the SkinPen device and slowly worked it over my entire face. She started out at my forehead, then moved to my cheeks, my chin, and last, my neck. Since my face was numb, I didn’t feel much, although there were a few sensitive spots where I could feel tiny pricks around the uppermost area of my forehead.
The entire treatment took a little less than 30 minutes. When we were finished, Soto gave me some aftercare products and advised me to avoid direct sunlight for at least a week, although I was allowed to apply makeup 24 hours after the procedure using clean brushes.
I left the office looking extremely red — like, tomato-level red — but I wasn’t uncomfortable at all. By day two, the redness had subsided completely, and by day three I was out to dinner with my girlfriends and wearing a full face of makeup. However, by day four, I noticed I was peeling quite a bit, mostly around my neck and forehead. I had also started to purge and noticed a few pimples on my cheeks and on the side of my nose, which Soto said could happen.
It took a few days for the peeling to stop, but I used a physical exfoliant to gently buff away the dead skin from my face to speed up the process.
While Soto informed me that it typically takes a full four weeks to see the full results of a microneedling treatment, I’m on week two, and I can already see a difference. I do still have a large pimple taking up residence on the side of my face, but other than that, my skin is glowy, smooth, and softer than it’s felt in months.
I’m planning to continue doing these treatments in an effort to completely rid my skin of my hyperpigmentation, and I can’t wait to see what else the results bring.