Can I Do a BB Glow Treatment at Home? Here’s Why It’s a Bad Idea

By Emily M.| Last updated on March 28, 2023
bb glow treatment at home is not a good idea
⏱️ 4 min read

The hype around the BB glow treatment seems to fluctuate over time. It’s all the rage for a while, then it gets swept under the rug by some newer, more advanced treatment, then gains popularity all over again.

In any case, as much as some experts speak out against it, the BB glow treatment definitely has fans, and the promise of long-lasting complexion enhancement definitely sounds tempting.

But when clients hear that BB glow is done in several sessions and that each session is priced between $150 and $250, they may get discouraged. So naturally, people started wondering if they can do the BB glow treatment at home.

So, let’s chat about DIY BB glow and why it’s not a great idea.

Is It Possible to Do a BB Glow Treatment at Home?

Technically, it is possible to do a BB glow treatment at home. You can get a BB glow serum kit online and you can even find places that will sell you the microneedling device (derma pen), even though this device isn’t really suitable for use by non-professionals.

But the question is, should you do it?

BB glow is done by implementing pigmented serums into the outermost layer of the skin. It only deals with the epidermis, the layer of dead skin cells which exfoliates itself roughly every 27 days.

The method of implementation is microneedling at a shallow depth, and when the treatment is done by a professional, they pay close attention to how long the needle is and ensure it doesn’t reach the dermis.

When an untrained hand tries to do shallow microneedling, there’s a very high chance the needle will end up going too deep anyway. If you do not have extensive knowledge about skin anatomy and the properties of facial skin in different areas, plus you don’t have a developed sense of assessing skin thickness, you cannot really determine if you’re going too deep or not.

You can find more information on the professional BB glow in this guide.

is it possible to do a bb glow treatment at homeImage source: YouTube Screenshot Tanja Macaya

What Can Happen If I Try to Do a BB Glow Treatment at Home?

We already mentioned that BB glow is done with a microneedling pen. The problem with this device is that it has different configurations and it was designed for trained skin specialists to adjust for different parameters:

  • The general thickness of the skin
  • Varying skin thickness in different spots

On the pen, you adjust the needle length, speed, and you can switch between different needle cartridges. So you have to know the exact configuration suitable for your skin to make sure you’re doing the treatment properly.

The only needle length suitable for BB glow treatment at home is 0.25 mm.

If you try to do a BB glow treatment at home and your needle hasn’t been set properly so it’s too long, or you press the device too hard against your skin, you will go too deep, potentially into the dermis. Not only can this cause permanent damage to the skin, but it can also place the tinted serums too deep.

If the tinted serum goes deeper than the epidermis, the colorant components can cause problems over time. The pigment in those serums is very often titanium dioxide, a type of white pigment that’s not biodegradable. If it reaches the dermis, it will get stuck and won’t be exfoliated out. Over time, it will oxidize and can darken into a greenish or a yellowish.

Plus, the adverse effects of long-term exposure to titanium dioxide are thought to be potentially carcinogenic.

Is There a Way to Prevent This and Do the Treatment Safely?

If you decide to try and do a BB glow treatment at home, even though we strongly advise you not to, your safest bet is doing it with nanoneedling rather than microneedling.

Nanoneedling is a spin-off on microneedling which perforates the skin with tapered pins rather than needles. The pins are attached to a flat disk which stops them from penetrating the skin deeper.

While nanoneedling gives you better control, using it against areas of the skin which are thinner can cause too deep implementation.

how to do bb glow treatment safelyImage source: YouTube Screenshot The DIY Beauty Lab

Hygiene Is Another Matter

Since it involves breaking the surface of the skin, BB glow has to be done in special conditions or you risk getting your skin contaminated and developing an infection.

All the equipment has to be sterile. You have to pay close attention so it doesn’t get contaminated as you’re setting everything up. Your face has to be cleaned and disinfected. You cannot touch any unsterile surface during the treatment or you risk contamination.

As clean as your home may be, it doesn’t meet the hygienic standard of a professional salon, so doing a BB glow treatment at home carries a significant risk of contamination.

Final Notes on Doing a BB Glow Treatment at Home?

The success of BB glow isn’t guaranteed even if you get a professional service, so if you’re doing a BB glow treatment at home, adjust your expectations. Since the tinted serums are deposited into the epidermis, and we know that the epidermis renews itself so frequently, it takes many sessions to build up the color, and even then the complexion enhancement isn’t very long-lasting.

At the end of the day, the risks of performing a BB glow treatment at home definitely outweigh the (short-term) benefits.

Cover image source: Freepik



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