Derma Roller Hair Regrowth - All You Need to Know
With derma rolling hair regrowth is more or less guaranteed, as long as you’re persistent. Here’s all the info on the derma roller for hair.
Hair loss and hair thinning is a very common problem that a large portion of the population deals with. It affects both men and women, albeit in different ways, and it can be caused by a wide range of causes.
Medicine and the beauty industry have been coming up with numerous methods and treatments for preventing and stopping hair loss, as well as hair regrowth methods. The most efficient yet non-invasive treatment they came up with is derma roller hair regrowth.
Here’s everything you need to know about using the dermaroller for hair: how it’s done, how it works, what conditions it can treat, and more.
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What Is Derma Roller Hair Regrowth?
Derma rolling is actually a form of microneedling done with a roller rather than a pen. When used on the scalp, it can lead to hair regrowth in spots where hair is thinning or sparse, or even on bald spots. It creates controlled trauma to the skin and uses the skin’s natural responses to stimulate hair growth.
Derma roller hair regrowth is a non-invasive treatment that can be done by dermatologists or estheticians, or you can do it yourself at home.
Hair regrowth is stimulated by combining the skin’s natural healing mechanism with increased absorption of hair growth products.
Image source: Instagram @tubagunduzguzellikmerkezi
How Is Derma Roller Hair Regrowth Done?
Derma roller hair regrowth is done by rolling a derma roller across the scalp with a hair stimulating product such as an oil or a gel.
The derma roller for hair is a small tool that features a handle and a drum. The drum is covered with super-thin needles made of titanium or stainless steel. It rotates freely as it’s pressed against the scalp, and the needles puncture the skin in countless tiny dots.
These punctures do 3 things.
- As the microchannels are made and the surface of the skin is broken, the product applied onto the scalp gets absorbed into the skin much deeper than with topical application, so its efficiency is increased.
- The needles come into contact with the hair follicles inside the skin, activating the stem cells in the hair bulb, essentially waking them up and getting them to start growing again. The roots of the hair follicles are stimulated by the trauma, but that’s not all.
- As the skin around them heals, the body produces increased amounts of collagen and other growth factors which are built into the hairs. So you get increased hair growth, but the hair that grows out is also thicker and healthier.
- The microtraumas stimulate blood flow into the area, and with blood come nutrients that help the hair grow out thicker.
As a result of all these mechanisms, individual hair strands grow out thicker, and the super-thin strands which previously weren’t visible thicken and become noticeable.
NOTE – Derma Roller Hair Growth Is a Process
Achieving derma roller hair regrowth takes time and patience, though. The collagen induction has to be repeated over and over again to give the desired effects, so derma roller hair regrowth is actually a series of treatments, not a one-and-done.
Most people claim to notice new hair growth within 3-6 months of consistent dermarolling hair.
Image source: Instagram @allskinclinic
Does This Hurt?
If you’re doing microneedling at home, the needles are too short to cause pain, although it won’t be the most pleasant sensation in the world.
If you’re getting a professional service, numbing will be used to eliminate the pain.
Is Derma Roller Hair Regrowth Possible for Any Hair Condition?
Whether derma roller hair regrowth is possible for you depends on the cause of your hair loss or thinning.
It works very well for:
- Male pattern baldness
- Receding hairline
- Female pattern baldness (diffuse hair thinning)
- Stress-induced hair loss, AKA telogen effluvium.
It works for many types of alopecia, but for alopecia areata and universalis, improvement was achieved only by combining microneedling with long needles and aggressive drugs.
Derma roller hair growth is not effective in case of hair loss due to autoimmune disorders such as Lupus.
Generally, the sooner into your hair thinning you start derma rolling, the better the effects you can expect. On people who’ve been bald for years, the results may not be so impressive.
Is Everyone a Candidate for Derma Roller Hair Regrowth?
Essentially, a dermatologist should be consulted before you decide to start using a dermaroller for hair regrowth. They can evaluate your hair loss and determine its cause, plus review your medical history and decide whether you’re a candidate or not.
Image source: Instagram @philings_ulviyya
Can I Perform Derma Roller Hair Regrowth Myself?
Unlike some other skin treatments, DIY derma rolling has been approved and proven to work, although it may not give as striking effects as the professional service.
The main difference between professional and at-home derma rolling hair regrowth is the length of the needles.
The needles on derma rollers that can be bought for at-home derma rolling are around 0.5 mm in length. Needles longer than that are not safe for use at home because there’s a high chance of going too deep into the skin, which can damage the bulb of the hairs and cause permanent scarring, which can disable hair growth.
These short needles can definitely stimulate hair growth, but it will take more sessions to see an improvement.
Professional microneedling can be done with needles as long as 2.5 mm.
Professional microneedling can be done either with a derma roller or a derma pen. The derma pen is a small electric device that ends with a cluster of needles that go in and out of the skin in a stamping motion.
The derma pen is not suitable for at-home use as the needles are too long.
Which Is Better, Professional or At-Home Derma Rolling for Hair?
As we said, professional derma rolling is done with longer needles, so the results come somewhat faster and are more prominent.
A professional service also means the treatment can be combined with other treatments like PRP or injections, or prescription medications.
Generally, a professional service will give better results, but it’s also much more expensive than buying a derma roller and using it over and over again. A session with a microneedling professional is priced between $200 and $800.
If the cause of your hair loss is androgenetic alopecia, you should know that the further it’s advanced, the thinner the skin on your scalp will be. If your skin has already thinned out significantly, you will need shorter needles to reach the proper needling depth. Consult a dermatologist and have them assess your scalp.
Image source: Instagram @antiagingkw
How Do I Prepare for a Derma Roller Hair Regrowth Session?
If you have no hair on your head, don’t expose your scalp to sunlight for 5 days before the procedure. Your scalp will be too sensitive.
On the day of the treatment, avoid caffeine, alcohol, ibuprofen and similar blood-thinning medications and supplements. You’ll bleed more.
What’s a Dermarolling Hair Treatment Like?
Generally, derma rolling for hair is a safe, non-invasive painless procedure that can be done as a professional, medical service, or at home. The process is more or less the same, the only difference is that a professional service implies numbing, and it may be combined with other treatments.
Let’s go through each step of the treatment.
Step 1 – Optional Numbing
As we said, professional derma rolling for hair usually implies numbing, since the needles used are longer and it can get painful. A numbing cream is applied to the area that will be treated, and left on for 15-45 minutes. Once the area is numb, the cream is washed off.
If you’re using the dermaroller for hair growth at home, the needle length isn’t enough to cause pain, so there’s no need for numbing.
Step 2 – Disinfecting the Derma
Roller If You’re DIY-ing It
Since the needles of the derma roller will be penetrating your skin, they need to be sterile. Clean your derma roller with alcohol or dip it in boiling water. Let it dry.
Step 3 – Cleaning the Scalp
Since the skin will be broken, your scalp needs to be cleaned of sebum and product residues. If you’re doing derma roller hair regrowth yourself, you can wash your hair with just shampoo, without applying any products onto it, and then use an antiseptic.
If you’re getting professional treatment, your tech will disinfect the area by wiping it with special formulas.
Step 4 – Microneedling
If you’re getting professional microneedling, your technician can use either a derma roller or a derma pen. If you’re doing it yourself, you only have the option of the roller.
The area that will be rolled over is covered with a serum or oils that stimulate hair regrowth and is safe for microneedling. Hyaluronic acid is the go-to, but many people claim castor oil works great.
The rolling (or stamping) starts. The area should be gone over several times, in different directions.
Pinpoint bleeding and mild to moderate redness are normal and to be expected.
Step 5 – Cleaning
The serum/oil residues can be absorbed with a clean cloth or paper towel, but you shouldn’t wash your hair for at least 6 hours after microneedling. It would be ideal to wait 24 hours, to make sure the microchannels have closed up completely.
If you have longer hair and you’re doing your derma roller hair regrowth at home, it might be a good idea to do it on wet hair. Dry hair can get tangled in the roller.
Image source: Instagram @lift.aesthetics.beauty
How Often Should I Repeat Derma Roller Hair Regrowth Sessions?
This depends primarily on the length of the needles. The longer the needle, the further the sessions should be spaced out.
Since long needles imply a professional service, the sessions should be booked 4-8 weeks apart.
If you’re doing it yourself with 0.5 mm needles, you should start slow nevertheless. Dermatologists advise starting with once every 2 weeks, to see how your scalp reacts, and if there are no complications, switch to once a week.
The best practice is to consult a dermatologist and have them determine how often to use the dermaroller for hair.
How Fast Can I Expect the Results?
It will take 3-6 months of consistent derma rolling to notice a difference.
Is Derma Rolling Hair Regrowth Safe?
Generally, yes, but you should be aware of the following risks:
- Infection. Any time the surface of the skin is broken, there’s a chance of contamination and subsequent infection. That’s why the tool used must always be sterilized properly, and the area should be left alone for a few hours, without touching it or applying any products on it.
- Allergies. Products used during the derma rolling hair regrowth treatment may cause an allergic reaction, especially the numbing. That’s why a patch test should always be done beforehand.
- Scarring. If the needles are too long, they can damage the deeper layers of the skin. If scar tissue is formed, the hair stops growing, so you should never use long needles yourself.
Are There Any Side Effects?
Dermarolling hair causes microdamage to the skin, so you can expect a response from it. The normal side effects include:
- Pinpoint bleeding
- Mild to moderate redness which may last for a while
- Minor swelling
- Minor bruising
- Itching (if it’s extreme, it may point to an allergic reaction)
- Temporary hair thinning – the needles of the derma roller can cut the hair strands and make your hair look like it’s thinning, but don’t worry, it will grow back out even thicker and stronger.
Image source: Instagram @lovelybeautybonn
Is There Any Aftercare?
After a derma rolling session, the area can be sensitive and prone to infection, so it’s best to do the following for 24 hours:
- Don’t put ice or any cold compress onto the area.
- Don’t pick at, scratch, or rub the area.
- Don’t touch the area with unclean fingers or any other unsterile surface for as long as possible to prevent infection.
- Don’t wash your hair for at least 6 hours, ideally wait a full day.
- For at least 48 hours, try to avoid sweating, so no working out, no hot showers, jacuzzis, saunas or steam baths. Sweat and steam can irritate the area.
- If you’ve been prescribed additional products to use between derma rolling sessions, use them regularly, according to the prescribed schedule.
- If you don’t have hair to cover your scalp, wear SPF on your head.
How Much Does Professional Derma Roller Hair Regrowth Cost?
Professional derma rolling is usually charged per session. The price of a session can go from $200 to $800, depending on many factors such as location and the exclusivity of the salon or clinic. Obviously, if derma rolling is combined with other treatments, the price will be higher.
What If It Doesn’t Work?
Unfortunately, in some cases the hair follicles are so damaged that derma rolling can’t result in growth. If you don’t get any extra growth from microneedling your scalp, you can look into scalp micropigmentation, a form of cosmetic tattooing for the head.
Read all about it here.
Derma Roller Hair Regrowth – Main Takeaways
Using a dermaroller for hair growth is a very simple, easy and practical way to reverse the effects of hair thinning and loss due to a number of causes. It’s a non-invasive treatment that can be done at home or professionally and even combined with other methods of reversing hair loss.
What’s important to know though is that achieving results with dermarolling hair takes time and consistency, and it can take up to 6 months. But after that, the results can be successfully maintained.
Derma rolling, or microneedling, is a versatile treatment that can be used for a number of other purposes. To find out what they are, head over to this guide.