There have been many reports of changes in the pigmentation of African or dark Indian skin due to ablative cosmetic treatments. Ablative cosmetic treatments such as chemical peels and microdermabrasion remove the surface layers of the skin. This trauma then stimulates new collagen growth in the remaining skin.
These treatments are no longer recommended for individuals with darker skin due to their ability to cause hyperpigmentation on black skin. Derma rollers or skin needling on the other hand do not remove the surface layers of the skin, but rather create micro channels through the skin. These tiny channels cause slight trauma in the deeper layers of the skin which naturally increases collagen production.
One study has shown that it can increase collagen induction by up to 1,000% (1). Recent research has now shown that this highly effective therapy is safe to be used as part of black skin care regimes. The study showed that using a derma roller does not result in any loss of melanocytes.
This makes it safe for all skin types (2). It has also been reported that using the derma roller may in fact help regulate the signalling between melanocytes and other cells. This may make it a useful treatment for hyperpigmentation for black skin in the future. We will wait for future research to confirm this.
4-Schwartz et al, 2006, internet paper. Abstract reflections about COLLAGEN-INDUCTION-THERAPY (CIT) A Hypothesis for the Mechanism of Action of Collagen Induction Therapy (CIT) using Micro-Needles; 1st edition February 2006. 2nd revision January 2007 Horst Liebl
Aust, M.C., Reimers, K., Repenning, C., Stahl, F., Jahn, S., Guggenheim, M., Schwaiger, N., Gohritz, A. & Vogt, P. M. (2008). Percutaneous collagen induction: minimally invasive skin rejuvenation without risk of hyperpigmentation-fact or fiction? Plast Reconstr Surg. 122(5), 1553-63.