A Guide to Safely and Effectively Using a Derma Pen Under Your Eyes

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The quest for youthful, radiant skin often leads individuals to explore various skincare treatments and tools. One such tool that has gained popularity for its potential to improve skin texture and reduce signs of aging is the derma pen. The derma pen, also known as a micro-needling pen or micro-needling device, uses tiny needles to create controlled micro-injuries in the skin, stimulating collagen and elastin production. While it can be an effective treatment for various skin concerns, using a derma pen under the eyes requires special care and attention due to the delicate nature of the skin in this area. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore how to safely and effectively use a derma pen under your eyes to achieve youthful and refreshed skin.

Understanding the Derma Pen

Before we delve into the specifics of using a derma pen under the eyes, let’s understand how this device works and why it is becoming increasingly popular in the realm of skincare.

A derma pen is a handheld device equipped with fine needles that vary in length. These needles create micro-injuries or micro-channels in the skin when the device is gently rolled or pressed onto the skin’s surface. These controlled injuries trigger the body’s natural healing response, leading to the production of collagen and elastin. As a result, the skin becomes firmer, smoother, and more youthful in appearance.

Micro-needling with a derma pen is known to offer several benefits, including:

  1. Reduced Fine Lines and Wrinkles: Micro-needling can improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, particularly when used consistently.
  2. Improved Skin Texture: It can help with issues such as uneven skin texture, enlarged pores, and acne scars.
  3. Enhanced Product Absorption: The micro-channels created by the derma pen allow for better absorption of skincare products, making them more effective.
  4. Skin Tightening: Micro-needling can lead to skin tightening, which can be especially beneficial under the eyes.

Safety Precautions Before Starting

Before using a derma pen under your eyes, there are some important safety precautions to keep in mind:

  1. Consult a Professional: It is highly recommended to consult a dermatologist or licensed skincare professional before attempting any micro-needling treatment, especially in sensitive areas like under the eyes. They can assess your skin and recommend the most appropriate treatment plan.
  2. Choose the Right Needle Length: Derma pen needles come in various lengths, typically ranging from 0.25mm to 2.5mm. For under-eye micro-needling, it’s crucial to select the shortest needle length possible, typically around 0.25mm to 0.5mm. Longer needles are not suitable for this delicate area.
  3. Practice Proper Sanitization: Ensure that both your derma pen and the area being treated are thoroughly cleaned and sanitized. This reduces the risk of infection and complications.
  4. Perform a Patch Test: Before using the derma pen on a larger area, perform a patch test on a small, inconspicuous part of your skin to check for any adverse reactions.
  5. Avoid Active Skin Conditions: Do not use a derma pen if you have active skin conditions such as acne, eczema, or psoriasis. Wait until these conditions have cleared up before proceeding.

Step-by-Step Guide to Using a Derma Pen Under Your Eyes

Now that you’ve taken the necessary safety precautions, let’s walk through the steps of using a derma pen under your eyes:

Step 1: Cleanse Your Skin

Start with clean, makeup-free skin. Use a gentle cleanser to remove any traces of makeup, dirt, or impurities. Pat your skin dry with a clean, soft towel.

Step 2: Prepare the Derma Pen

  • Ensure the derma pen is clean and sanitized. If the device has disposable needle cartridges, use a new, sterile one.
  • Adjust the needle length to the appropriate setting, which should be no more than 0.5mm for under-eye treatment.
  • Power on the derma pen and ensure it is functioning correctly.

Step 3: Apply a Topical Numbing Cream

The skin under the eyes is sensitive, and micro-needling can be uncomfortable without numbing. Apply a topical numbing cream with the guidance of your dermatologist or skincare professional. Allow it to sit for the recommended duration to ensure the area is adequately numb.

Step 4: Start Micro-Needling

Here’s how to micro-needle under your eyes:

  1. Hold the derma pen like a pencil, with a light grip.
  2. Gently stretch the skin under your eye taut using your free hand. This helps create a smooth surface for the derma pen to glide over.
  3. Start at the outer corner of your eye and move inward. Glide the derma pen horizontally, vertically, and diagonally in small, overlapping passes. Be gentle and use even pressure.
  4. Avoid going too close to the lash line or directly over the eyelid. Stay within the orbital bone area.
  5. Repeat the process on the other eye, being cautious and methodical.

Step 5: Apply a Soothing Serum

After completing the micro-needling session, apply a soothing and hydrating serum specifically designed for post-micro-needling care. Look for serums that contain ingredients like hyaluronic acid or peptides.

Step 6: Follow with Sunscreen

Sun protection is crucial after micro-needling, as your skin will be more sensitive to UV rays. Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 to protect your skin from the sun.

Step 7: Post-Care and Healing

In the days following your under-eye micro-needling session:

  • Avoid makeup on the treated area for at least 24 hours.
  • Refrain from using products with active ingredients like retinol or alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) for a few days.
  • Continue using gentle and hydrating skincare products.
  • Avoid swimming pools, saunas, and hot tubs for 48 hours.
  • Do not touch or scratch the treated area to prevent infection.

Benefits and Expected Results

When performed correctly, micro-needling under the eyes can offer the following benefits:

  1. Reduction of Fine Lines and Wrinkles: Over time, you may notice a smoother and more youthful appearance as fine lines and wrinkles are minimized.
  2. Improved Skin Texture: The micro-injuries stimulate collagen production, leading to improved skin texture and reduced scarring or unevenness.
  3. Enhanced Skin Tightening: Micro-needling can promote skin tightening, reducing sagging or puffiness under the eyes.
  4. Brighter and More Radiant Skin: The skin‘s natural healing response can result in brighter and more radiant skin.

Potential Side Effects and Risks

While micro-needling can be highly effective, there are potential side effects and risks to be aware of:

  • Redness and Swelling: Mild redness and swelling are common immediately after the procedure and typically subside within a few days.
  • Skin Sensitivity: Your skin may feel more sensitive for a few days post-treatment.
  • Bruising: Some individuals may experience bruising, which can take several days to fade.
  • Infection: There is a risk of infection if proper sanitation and aftercare are not followed.
  • Hyperpigmentation or Hypopigmentation: In rare cases, changes in skin pigmentation may occur. Proper sun protection can help mitigate this risk.
  • Scarring: If the derma pen is not used correctly, scarring is a potential risk.


Using a derma pen under your eyes can be a safe and effective way to rejuvenate the delicate skin in that area. However, it is essential to take proper precautions, follow a meticulous procedure, and consult with a skincare professional or dermatologist to ensure your safety and achieve the best possible results. When done correctly, under-eye micro-needling can help reduce the signs of aging, improve skin texture, and leave you with a more youthful and refreshed appearance. Remember that patience and consistency are key to achieving the desired outcomes, so be prepared for gradual improvements over time.