Micro-Needling vs Sublative RF: What’s the Difference? | b clinic Skip to content

Micro-Needling vs Sublative RF: What’s the Difference?

Micro-needling and sublative RF are popular rejuvenation treatments. They can both improve the texture and appearance of your skin with little to no downtime. 

But there are plenty of differences in what the treatments involve and the skin concerns they can improve. 

In this post, we’ll compare micro-needling vs sublative RF to help you decide which is the better skin rejuvenation treatment for you. 

What Is Sublative RF?

Sublative RF is a skin rejuvenation and resurfacing treatment. Your clinician uses a handheld applicator to apply fractional delivery of radiofrequency energy in a series of grid patterns across the treated area. The procedure causes micro-ablative injuries to the deeper layers of skin, stimulating the body to produce more collagen and elastin and generate healthy new skin cells.

The treatment targets the dermis, triggering a strong healing response while minimizing the impact on the top epidermal layers. 

Sublative RF is a powerful anti-ageing treatment that can be effective for a range of skin concerns. The procedure is often combined with Sublime TM, an infrared light and bipolar radiofrequency treatment to improve skin laxity and texture.

Sublative RF Results:

After the first treatment, you will see an improvement, with results becoming more noticeable over time as the body produces new collagen and elastin. Most clients require 3-6 treatments to achieve their desired results, with a gap of at least 4 weeks between each session.

What Are the Benefits of Sublative RF?

Sublative RF treatments offer a range of rejuvenating benefits, including:

  • Reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Effective treatment of crow’s feet
  • Restoration sun-damaged skin
  • Thickens and tightens the skin 
  • Improved skin texture
  • Reduces acne scars and stretch marks

What Are the Cons of Sublative RF?

Sublative RF involves minimal downtime and can be performed in the clinic in less than an hour. After the procedure, the treated area may appear “pink” and feel sensitive and hot. Many clients compare the sensation to the effects of mild sunburn. You can apply makeup 12 hours after the procedure. 

As with all collagen induction therapies, the results of sublative RF can take time. You won’t see a huge difference immediately after treatment. Over time, your body produces more collagen and elastin, and results become more noticeable.

Do Dermatologists Recommend Sublative RF?

Yes. The Journal of Drugs in Dermatology recommends sublative RF as an effective, non-invasive treatment for:

  • Wrinkles
  • Glabellar wrinkles
  • Skin laxity
  • Stretch marks
  • Acne scars 
  • Sun-damaged skin

Is Sublative RF Good For Ageing Skin?

Sublative RF is an effective treatment for ageing skin. By applying radiofrequency energy to the dermis, sublative RF kickstarts the body’s natural healing process. As the body produces more collagen and elastin, fine lines, wrinkles, age spots, and other visible signs of ageing are improved. 

Many clients report that their skin not only appears younger but that it also feels firmer and smoother to touch.

What Is Micro-Needling?

Micro-needling is a collagen boosting procedure that stimulates the body’s natural healing process to improve the appearance of a range of skin concerns. The procedure is also known as “collagen induction therapy”.

Here at b clinic, our clinicians use DermaPen technology for all micro-needling treatments. DermaPen uses Advanced Oscillating Vertical Needling (AOVN™) to penetrate the skin with tiny needles and create micro-wounds that encourage the body to produce new collagen and skin cells.

The DermPen also creates micro-channels that allow topical skin care products to penetrate to the deeper layers of the dermis where the active ingredients can be more effective.

Over time, skin appears more even-toned, smoother, and younger-looking as fine lines, wrinkles, and scarring naturally fade. 

Micro-Needling Results:

Results typically become noticeable 6 weeks after treatment. It takes time for the body to produce more collagen and elastin during the wound healing process. Over the following weeks, you should notice a more visible improvement. Your practitioner may recommend a series of treatments to achieve your desired results. 

What Are the Benefits of DermaPen Micro-Needling?

DermaPen micro-needling provides a range of skin rejuvenation benefits, including:

  • Reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Improved skin texture and tone
  • Increased product absorption
  • Minimise pore size
  • Repair sun-damaged skin
  • Improved appearance of stretch marks and scarring
  • Prevent visible signs of ageing

What Are the Cons of DermaPen Micro-Needling?

Micro-needling is a lunchtime rejuvenation treatment with little to no downtime. You may experience mild redness and swelling for a couple of days post-treatment. 

The most significant disadvantage of micro-needling is that it takes 6 weeks to see noticeable results. You may require multiple sessions over several months to achieve your desired results. 

Do Dermatologists Recommend Micro-Needling?

Yes. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends micro-needling for several skin concerns, including:

  • Fine lines and wrinkles
  • Acne scarring
  • Uneven skin texture
  • Stretch marks
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Enlarged pores

Is Micro-Needling Good For Ageing Skin?

By stimulating elastin and collagen production, micro-needling uses the body’ natural healing process to improve the appearance of ageing skin. There’s little to no downtime involved, and many clients use micro-needling as a regular maintenance treatment to combat visible signs of ageing. 

Which Is Better, Sublative RF or Micro-Needling?

Both procedures are excellent for stimulating collagen and elastin and treating superficial skin discolourations for a smoother, brighter appearance.

But there are some key micro-needling vs sublative RF differences that you should keep in mind when deciding on which treatment is right for you.

Sublative RF uses radiofrequency energy to stimulate the healing of the dermis. For more stubborn skin concerns like acne scarring and stretch marks, your clinician may recommend sublative RF as it initiates a stronger response than micro-needling. The RF heat accelerates the healing and thickening of the skin resulting in a more rejuvenated appearance. You may require several sessions to achieve your desired results. 

Micro-needling is better suited for more superficial skin concerns, including fine lines and uneven skin tone. You may require several sessions, and results become noticeable in the weeks following treatment as the body produces more collagen and elastin. If you want to take a preventative approach to keep your skin looking younger for longer, micro-needling is an effective anti-ageing treatment with no downtime.

The best way to determine which procedure is right for you is to schedule a free consultation with one of our friendly clinicians here at b clinic. You’ll receive a personalised recommendation based on your skin concerns, lifestyle, and aesthetic goals. 


Can I Do Micro-Needling and Sublative RF?

Yes. Your clinician may even recommend a combination of micro-needling and sublative RF treatments to help you achieve smoother skin and a younger-looking complexion. 

Micro-Needling vs. Home Rollers: Is Micro-Needling Worth It?

There is a range of home rollers available, but these devices do not puncture the skin to the level required to stimulate collagen and elastin production. 

To achieve noticeable, long-lasting skin rejuvenation results, you will need professional micro-needling. DermaPen micro-needling technology can only be used by a trained practitioner in a professional setting.

How Long Does It Take to See Micro-Needling Results?

You will see noticeable improvement around 4-8 weeks after your micro-needling treatment. The DermaPen skin-needling process creates tiny micro-wounds in the deeper layers of the dermis. These micro-wounds kickstarts the body’s healing process. It takes time for the body to produce collagen to heal the micro-wounds and rejuvenate the surrounding tissue.

How Soon After Micro-Needling Can I Dermaplane?

The skin in the treated area will be more sensitive after a micro-needling treatment. Your clinician will usually recommend that you wait a minimum of 24-48 hours before having any other cosmetic procedures in the same area or using any exfoliating skin care products. 

Are Dermapen and Micro-Needling the Same?

DermaPen is the brand name of a micro-needling tool. While skin needling used to be performed using a derma roller technique, DermaPen technology allows the clinician to precisely target areas and achieve more impressive results with less downtime and risk of side effects. 

Can You Use Micro-Needling for Back Acne Scars?

Yes. While micro-needling is primarily used to treat the face and neck, it can also improve skin concerns and acne scars on other areas of the body, including the back.