The 5 Best Serums to Use Before and After Derma-Rolling
Whether you call it derma-rolling or micro-needling, the practice is to skincare as coffee is to a weekday: It may not be necessary for survival, but it sure helps. Just ask Byrdie's news editor, Victoria Hoff, who swears by the power of this spiky skincare tool—it banished her dark circles and under-eye bags, two skincare woes that are pesky at best and daunting at worst. Watch her video tutorial for how to use a derma-roller below!
Focusing on skincare over makeup to address dark circles and other issues is something we're all trying to do right now. A few months ago, I purchased my first derma-roller to witness the majesty firsthand. Amazingly, it didn't stop at the under-eye circles—it also targeted dark spots, acne scars, and tired skin. Needless to say, I'm now a loyal devotee.
Learning how to use a derma-roller is the first step, and to go with it, you also need a serum. Using a derma-roller increases product absorption by up to 90%, making your favourite skincare products even more effective than normal. But what serum should you choose? Whether your issue is general ageing, hyperpigmentation, dryness, or dullness, there's a serum out there to fix it. Keep scrolling to find the best serum to use with your derma-roller!
Skin Concern #1: Hyperpigmentation and Dullness
Alpha-H Liquid Gold ( $59 ) ($50)
Sunday Riley's C.E.O line is a Byrdie-editor favorite. The stable vitamin C unveils a clear, bright complexion after a single use. Use it before and after derma-rolling for an ultra-effective result; the micro-needles will push the product into the skin, meaning dark spots and dullness will disappear from the bottom up.
However, those of us with sensitive skin should be wary. Vitamin C, like retinol, can sometimes prove too harsh for micro-needling. We recommend you use a vitamin C serum with a derma-roller only if you have no previous history of sensitivity. You can't be too careful, so patch-test first!
Skin Concern #2: Dryness
Josie Maran Pure Argan Milk Intensive Hydrating Treatment ($81)
When used with the right serum, derma-rolling will cure your dry, flaky skin, as the micro-needles push hydration deep into the subsurface layers of the dermis. Try this one from Josie Maran, which contains suspended micro-droplets of 100% natural argan oil.
Pro tip: If dry lips follow you around like a shadow, spread a thin layer around your lips, and you can derma-roll there too. The process works wonders to hydrate your pout, allowing you to finally leave that chapstick at home. Plus, it enlarges your pucker like crazy.
Skin Concern #3: General Aging and Wrinkles
Kate Somerville Wrinkle Warrior ($138)
Your skin responds to the micro-injuries caused by derma-rolling by producing more elastin and collagen. That means crepey, wrinkled skin is plumped right up. So just by having a derma-rolling routine, your wrinkles will improve. But bolster that routine with this serum, and you'll see drastic changes. It's formulated with high levels of hyaluronic acid, a molecule that attracts water like a magnet, filling up wrinkles and making saggy skin appear youthful and bouncy.
Skin Concern #4: Red and Sensitive Skin
It's Skin Redness Reducing Power 10 Serum ($26)
As someone with rosacea, derma-rolling isn't exactly calming to my sensitive skin. But Korean skincare brand It's Skin formulates this serum with licorice root, an ingredient proven to calm redness and inflammation. Backing up my routine with an anti-redness formula like this allows me to reap the benefits of micro-needling without the consequences.
Skin Concern #5: Oiliness and Blemishes
The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% ($11)
Say it with me: Never derma-roll over inflamed skin or acne. Doing so will only make things worse, interrupting your skin's natural healing process. That being said, if oiliness and blemishes are a concern for you, but you still want in on the micro-needling action, reach for this serum. Gently roll it onto the parts of your skin that are calm and blemish-free. (Blemish-prone skin is fine; broken-out skin is not.) This budget-friendly pick from The Ordinary balances sebum production in the skin, helping to control inflammation and oiliness. To clarify, you can still use the serum on breakouts, just not the derma-roller, capisce?
Whether you're a novice or a seasoned veteran, next up, read one editor's ultimate guide to derma-rolling. It has everything you need to know!