One of the most recent treatments in non-surgical aesthetics is the Morpheus8, which combines microneedling with radiofrequency therapy.
You may be familiar with both techniques: microneedling uses a device to make small pricks across the skin (the small trauma this causes triggers regeneration and can help with wrinkles and scarring). Radiofrequency (RF), on the other hand, usually applied on top of the skin, heats the cells below, which causes the skin to produce more collagen and tighten.
What is a Morpheus8 facial?
With 24 microneedles, the Morpheus8 technology reaches up to 4mm deep into skin and the RF is emitted through the tips of the needles. This means none of the electric current is lost in the top layers of skin but can permeate the dermis (where collagen and elastin are produced) and the fatty subcutaneous tissue below — which can also lead to fat reduction and contouring.
The procedure can be used all over the face and body, but one particular reason for its popularity in the past year has been the results achieved under the chin, an area notoriously difficult to treat effectively and permanently without cosmetic surgery.
Morpheus8 treatment: step-by-step
I visited Dr David Jack’s clinic on London’s Harley Street to put it to the test. An hour before, I’d had Morpheus8 numbing cream applied to the area being treated, as without it the procedure can be painful. My treatment covered an area from my cheekbones down to the top of my neck, and, for the most part, it felt fine, However, where the skin is thin, such as on the lips and under the chin, it was a little painful but nothing unmanageable. And it was all over in 10 minutes — until next time, that is, as at least two treatments are needed.
I left with half a tomato-red face, as if I’d just had a beard waxed off (I certainly was grateful to be able to cover it with a mask as I hopped on the train home). It was a little sore afterwards, but as the numbing faded this subsided with it.
For the next two days I had to keep it dry, and not apply any skincare products (SPF was permitted on day two). It stayed slightly red and patchy for a couple of days, with teeny tiny scabs from the needle pricks, but nothing to warrant staying inside or covering up, which meant I could carry on life as normal.
My cheekbones were the first to appear noticeably improved — they looked more defined and the skin across my cheeks looked younger and healthier. Results can take up to six months to be fully realised, so while I wait to see if the skin under my chin tightens up, I can say without a doubt that my face appears lifted and the skin across my cheeks looks healthier. In terms of the ‘non-surgical facelift’ effects, I don’t have skin loose enough to really see such an effect, however, my smile lines (nasolabial folds) have reduced.
Does morpheus8 really work?
I think for mature skin the effects can be amazing. But — depending on the condition of your skin — if you’re below 40 and you’re looking for some tightening and rejuvenation then this probably isn’t for you. If you’re looking to tighten the skin around your chin, I prefer the strawberry lift, and if you’re looking for better skin across your face I’d invest in profhilo treatments — they’re a great way to maintain skin elasticity and fullness.
If you’re a little older or have aged prematurely, and your skin is noticeably loose or “crepey”, then without a doubt you’ll see a difference (like I did on my smile lines) and it is worth investing.
At the Dr David Jack Clinic on London’s Harley Street, where I reviewed the treatment (for my job as a journalist, not as an influencer), one treatment on the face costs £650 and if you’re doing face and neck it becomes two treatments cost £2,900 — two will be needed for a successful result, which increases to three on the stomach, at a cost of £3,500. This is why I think, especially if you’re under 40, other treatments will be better — because they’ll also be a lot more cost-effective. Profhilo at the Skin and Sanctuary Clinic costs £800 for two treatments and I saw superior results that were equally long lasting.
Again, I don’t have loose or “crepey” skin so it was always unlikely I’d see a huge difference. While Profhilo can help improve and maintain, it can’t undo ageing in the same way that Morpheu8 can on older skin.
The only thing to note, is that you need to keep the area dry for 24-48 hours after the treatment. So, you can’t wash your face or do any skincare for at least 24 hours, and then on the next day only a gentle cleanse and hydrating serum.
You can exercise on the second day, but because you don’t want to sweat and get the area wet, it’s best to keep it light.
The treatment may leave you with some tiny scabs where the needles entered the skin, but these are barely noticeable. Sometimes you might be left with a bruise — I had one on the side of my jaw — but this can easily be covered up.
What I’m trying to say is: there’s no recovery time as such, because there’s no drastic damage done to the skin. Just a few little things that aren’t very noticeable, so you can live your life as normal.
In summary, here’s my verdict: If you have loose skin on your face, or around your chin and neck, then you will benefit from this treatment and likely see dramatic results. But you’ll need to be willing and able to invest in at least two treatments.
If you’re looking to rejuvenate your skin and prevent ageing, or deal with a few wrinkles and fine lines, this probably isn’t the best option for you.