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What is microdermabrasion?

Microdermabrasion is cosmetic. It involves a skin care specialist who removes a small hand-held device from the top layer of skin.

Microdermabrasion can exfoliate the skin, decrease signs of ageing and make the skin look even more. An individual with any skin color is healthy at the procedure.

Generally a health care provider performs the treatment but some stores sell kits at home.

In this post, we’ll look at microdermabrasion and its consequences for detail. We’ll also explain how to plan, the potential side effects, and the variations between this and dermabrasion procedure.

What is microdermabrasion?

Microdermabrasion can reduce the signs of aging.

Microdermabrasion is a cosmetic process which is noninvasive. With a wand that gently exfoliates the surface, removing the top layer, the specialist sprays or rubs fine crystals on the skin. The aim is to make the skin look youthful.

The treatment is not to be painful. The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) reports it takes the face 30–40 minutes, and the neck 20 minutes. Afterwards, there may be a few days of mild swelling or sunburn-like symptoms.

A person may require between 5 and 16 treatments from a skin care specialist before seeing reduced signs of ageing.

Individuals can have treatments every week, every 2 weeks, or weekly, depending on their type of skin and the reason for the procedure.

Many people ask for microdermabrasion to rejuvenate facial and neck appearance, but a specialist may do the procedure on any skin region.

The results are not permanent.

Uses and benefits

Microdermabrasion’s aim is to make the skin of a person cleaner, lighter, and much more colourful.

Users also call for microdermabrasion to tackle:

  • dullness in the complexion
  • uneven skin tone
  • uneven skin texture
  • age spots
  • dark spots that can form after acne clears up
  • melasma, a common issue that forms dark spots or patches on the skin
  • scars

Dermatologists can also use microdermabrasion to boost the anti-aging or skin-bleaching effects. The procedure can help these products penetrate the skin.

Microdermabrasion vs. dermabrasion

It is less invasive than dermabrasion.

Dermabrasion uses more aggressive techniques to scrape the outer skin layer. A dermatologist may recommend dermabrasion for acne scars, accident scars or surgical procedures or tattoos removal.

Dermabrasion is suitable only for those with a fair skin. Microdermabrasion may suit people with any skin colour.

How to prepare

A lady with her doctor
Dermatologists usually offer people a consultation prior to microdermabrasion.

Speak to a health care provider before having to undergo microdermabrasion. Dermatologists typically give consultations in advance.

The AAD recommend that people ask about the following before committing to the procedure:

  • what results to expect
  • the number of treatments needed
  • potential side effects
  • risk factors
  • the cost of the treatments

People may also ask to see pictures before and after, and talk to someone at the clinic who has had microdermabrasion.

After the appointment, a dermatologist will usually inspect a person’s skin to make sure microdermabrasion is necessary.

Risks and side effects of microdermabrasion

People who have taken isotretinoin from the acne medication in the last 6 months can need to wait until they have microdermabrasion. You have an elevated chance of including scarring complications.

Speak to a doctor about any skin spot or patch which develops, bleeds or changes in some way. These may indicate skin cancer.

For a few days after microdermabrasion, a person may notice:

  • skin swelling
  • skin redness, similar to sunburn
  • bruising
  • a burning or stinging sensation
  • increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight

Use sun protection, after the procedure. This will help ensure the best possible outcomes and reduce the risk of side effects. Microdermabrasion may not suit people who are easily scarred or have cold sore breakouts.

Recovery time

After microdermabrasion most people don’t need time to heal. If a person has side effects they seem to disappear after a couple of days.

For most cases, the skin should heal enough within a week for another session of microdermabrasion.

Cost of microdermabrasion

The estimated cost of microdermabrasion in 2017 was $137 according to figures from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

Prices vary, depending on:

  • the expertise and qualifications of the specialist
  • the number of sessions
  • the type of microdermabrasion
  • the location of the clinic, for example, within the United States

Even if the procedure is performed by a dermatologist, an insurance provider usually does not cover the cost.

Can you do microdermabrasion at home?

Many home microdermabrasion kits are available in stores or online. The treatment is also offered at spas and salons.

The AAD suggests that people consult with a dermatologist before taking the treatment outside of a clinical setting.

This is to ensure that the skin of the individual is appropriate for microdermabrasion, and that complications are not likely to occur. They’ll also tell the individual how to treat any side effects that might occur.


Microdermabrasion is cosmetic. The goal is to make the skin of a individual even and smoother in texture and colour.

It usually requires a series of sessions, during which a specialist removes a small hand-held device from the top layer of skin.

Many people use microdermabrasion to decrease the visible effects of aging or to remove acne-left patches.

The procedure is non-invasive but can result in side effects. These include burning, stinging and swelling, and increased sunlight sensitivity.

Microdermabrasion is usually performed by a dermatologist or skin care specialist although home kits are available. Talk to a dermatologist before being subjected to microdermabrasion outside of clinic.