Microneedling with Platelet-Rich Plasma – The Vampire Facial
The PRP Vampire Facial was first popularized by Kim Kardashian in 2013. It combines two treatments, PRP and Microneedling, with the goal of improving skin quality, texture, and tone. It is often used to help treat acne scars and sun damage, but can also help with rosacea, melasma, fine lines, uneven texture and overall skin quality.
How does the Vampire Facial work?
A sample of blood is taken at the start of the procedure and processed in a centrifuge with a double spin technique in order to obtain a high concentration of platelet rich plasma (PRP). After the PRP is concentrated to optimal levels (5-8X over baseline), it is applied into the skin using a precision microneedle device, the SkinPen™.
Sometimes the Vampire Facial is combined with additional, activated PRP (a-PRP), injected into other problem areas, such as depressed acne scars or underneath the eyes in the infraorbital area to treat dark circles or crepey skin.
What are the benefits of the Vampire Facial?
Patients report that improvement starts with smoother, softer skin with beautiful glow, followed by weeks to months of gradual improvement in skin quality, texture and tone, thanks to the powerful growth factors and cytokines in the highly concentrated PRP. The improvement is natural and beautiful, guided by the body’s own DNA.
How many treatments are recommended?
For best results with the Vampire Facial, a series of 3 treatments is recommended, with aobut 4-6 weeks between treatments. If treating severe acne scars, more treatments may be necessary.
How much does the Vampire Facial Cost?
The initial treatment is usually 800, which includes high concentration, double spin PRP and microneedling with SkinPen.
Subsequent treatments usually cost less and there are packages available which combine various treatments which can be done during the same visit, thus lowering the overall cost.
Does the Vampire Facial hurt?
The PRP Vampire Facial is well tolerated, with the use of the included prescription grade compounded numbing cream. There is a vibrating sensation during the treatment, which is usually very relaxing. On average, there will be 1-2 days of downtime with increased redness and often some light flaking of old skin.
Pre-Treatment Instructions for the Vampire Facial?
Be well rested and stay hydrated on the day of treatment. Avoid fatty meals up to 6 hours prior to the procedure. Avoid smoking and alcohol up to 5 days before and after the procedure as they can have a negative affect on platelet function and blood flow. Avoid over the counter medication, (eg. advil, ibuprofen), and supplements (eg garlic, ginseng, ginger, green tea, fish oil, Vitamin E) which may also interfere with platelets . Do not stop any medication which has been prescribed by your doctor.
Please do not wear any makeup or sunscreen on the day of treatment so that your skin is clean and dry. A light moisturizer is okay if you usually use it.
Post-treatment instructions for the Vampire Facial
After treatment, the doctor may recommend a non-irritating cream to help with healing. It’s very important to protect recently treated skin from the sun as it is more sensitive to UV radiation, which can lead to post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation (PIH). Try not to touch the treated areas, but it will be okay to wash with lukewarm water and or a mild cleanser after several hours (at least 4-6 hours preferably).
Cautions about the Vampire Facial
The PRP Vampire Facial Microneedling treatment should only be done by a trained professional, otherwise it can worsen skin condition, even leading to scars. There are many cheap microneedle devices on Amazon and eBay which can make your skin worse by causing traumatic injury due to poor quality needles or being too aggressive during the treatment.
Make sure your provider is well trained and experienced. Ensure they are using a high quality PRP preparation method and that the microneedling system is safe and approved by Health Canada, and that there is no risk of cross contamination.
The SkinPen is the only microneedle device approved by Health Canada as a Class II medical device, shown to be safe against cross contamination and also effective for treating scars and melasma.