Emla is a popular topical and dermal anesthetic used for medical and cosmetic procedures such as tattoo and tattoo removal, laser hair removal, dermabrasion, injections, needles and shots, as well as microneedling (or dermarolling).
Emla or EMLA is actually an acronym for Eutectic Mixture of Local Anesthetics. It has two active ingredients: lidocaine and prilocaine, in a patented solution.
While Emla has pros for being effective in numbing the skin, there are also cons. One is that Emla is too expensive for most people, and you really have to apply a lot of it to be really effective. Second is that it would usually take some time for Emla to actually start working; after that, its effect wears off rather quickly.
If you are dermarolling but are still stuck with Emla, you can try other alternatives that are almost as effective as Emla but without hurting your pocket. These come in either cream or gel form:
Active ingredient: 5% lidocaine per subpart B, 346 10 (f)
Like many skin numbing agents, Ebanel Numb 520 is great in lessening discomfort. It relieves pain, soreness or burning temporarily. Since it is safe to use, the Ebanel Numb 520 can be applied as much as needed. Another good thing about Ebanel Numb 520 is that it doesn’t emit any strong odors.
Ebanel Numb 520 typically works in as little as 2-3 minutes, and its effect arrives at its peak in about 25-30 minutes. After this peak, the effect will last for an hour before gradually wearing off.
Ebanel Numb 520 has become one of the most popular over-the-counter dermal anesthetic solutions on the market today. Of course, it’s best to consult your doctor first before even considering using this product.
Active ingredient: 5% lidocaine (the maximum lidocaine strength without prescription).
Another Emla alternative that you should consider is the LMX-5 Lidocaine Pain Relief Cream. Although it says it’s for temporary anorectal relief (like relief from hemorrhoids), the LMX-5 is also ideal for preparing your skin before cosmetic procedures, such as dermarolling. It is typically described as having a long-lasting effect and it is easy to use.
While fans of this cream say that LMX-5 works for them, others say it doesn’t. Even though you can buy this without a prescription, it’s still best to consult your doctor first to know whether this product is the right one for you, to avoid any possible side effects.
Active ingredient: 4% lidocaine.
The Deeveeant Lidocaine Numbing Cream is also effective in numbing the skin for the preparation of medical and cosmetic procedures such as tattoo/tattoo removal, laser hair removal, wax hair removal, electrolysis, injections and derma procedures such as dermabrasion and dermarolling.
Deeveeant claims to have a special formula called “Triple-Dip” containing botanical substances: aloe vera, jojoba oil and tea tree oil. It guarantees reduced skin inflammation as well as skin repair and rejuvenation. With the additional of natural ingredients, you can be sure that the Deeveeant Lidocaine Numbing Cream is effective and safe for your skin.
Emla may still be the most potent numbing cream, but there are good alternatives (such as the ones shown above) that are almost as effective and safe as Emla without making large dent to your wallet. These alternatives promise a long-lasting numbing effect on your skin, enabling you to go through a dermarolling session without experiencing too much pain and soreness.
Again – even though these Emla alternatives can be bought over the counter, it’s still best to do your own research first and consult your doctor to know if these products are safe for you.