Microneedling, a cutting-edge skin rejuvenation technique, is an increasingly popular treatment that’s effective across a range of skin conditions, including wrinkles, sun damage, stretch marks and scarring. As such, microneedling is safe and effective across all skin types, and across any part of the body.
As transformative as microneedling can be, it’s essential to understand the proper skin care regimen both before and after the procedure. This guide aims to provide you with essential tips for pre-treatment preparation, insights into what to expect during your appointment, post-treatment care, which face care products to avoid, and how to adapt your skincare routine for a successful microneedling aftercare.
Microneedling Pre-Treatment Tips
Before beginning your microneedling journey, it’s crucial to prepare your skin to maximise the treatment’s efficacy. Start by ensuring you are well hydrated and maintain a balanced diet, rich in vitamins and antioxidants, which are vital for skin health. It’s advisable to avoid direct sun exposure, tanning treatments, and any form of exfoliation or harsh skin treatments at least a week before your appointment to prevent any undue irritation.
We would advise against using anti-inflammatory medications such as Ibuprofen 2-3 days prior to treatment as these can interfere with the natural inflammatory process, thus hindering the skin’s ability to naturally rejuvenate post-treatment. Also, refrain from using any blood-thinning medications and supplements like aspirin and fish oil, as these can increase your risk of bruising.
There are also things to avoid which are specific to the skin region going under treatment in the days prior to treatment, which include waxing, depilatory creams, electrolysis and laser procedures. Also, be sure to shave the affected area the day prior to treatment, and not the day of.
What to Expect at Your Appointment
Microneedling involves a minimally invasive procedure that uses a Dermapen microneedling device, which has fine needles that create tiny punctures in the top layer of the skin. These micro-injuries stimulate the body’s natural wound healing processes, resulting in cell turnover and increased collagen and elastin production. This process is proven to be effective for improving skin texture and firmness, and is equally beneficial for individuals with skin conditions (as previously discussed).
Prior to your treatment, the skin undergoing treatment will be cleaned of any oils or makeup, and the skin care specialist will discuss recent changes to medical history with you. If you have any tattoos in the affected area, be sure to bring this to the specialist at this stage. Lastly, numbing cream will be applied to the skin, to ensure the process is as pain-free as possible. The treatment typically lasts about 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the treatment area. While it’s generally well-tolerated, some patients may experience slight discomfort, akin to a mild pricking sensation.
Following your microneedling session, it’s typical for the skin to appear red and feel slightly sensitive, akin to sunburn. During this time, it’s essential to protect your skin from direct sunlight and avoid sun tanning. If you are going outside, be sure to use at least SPF 30 24 hours after treatment, and wear a hat. Keeping your skin well moisturised is crucial; opt for a gentle, hydrating product to soothe and nurture the skin. Lastly, continue to refrain from using anti-inflammatory medications in order to allow the skin to rejuvenate. Also avoid using ice on the affected area and arnica/bromelain, as these also hinder the skin’s ability to rejuvenate. If you are experiencing pain, be sure to use painkillers.
1-3 Days After Treatment
In the first few days post-treatment, your skin may be particularly sensitive, tight and dry. It’s crucial to avoid any harsh skincare products, including makeup (with the exception of mineraml makeup 24 hours after treatment), during this period. Opt for a gentle, non-foaming cleanser and hydrating serums or creams to soothe the skin. Your skin can also exhibit mild-swelling. If so, products containing aloe vera or hyaluronic acid can be particularly beneficial in providing the necessary hydration and calming effects.
5-7 Days After Treatment
Around this time, you might start to notice some skin peeling or flaking, which is a normal part of the healing process as your skin sheds its older layer to reveal new, rejuvenated skin. It’s important to continue using gentle skincare products and to avoid any form of mechanical or chemical exfoliation. Picking at peeling skin should be avoided to prevent scarring. If this is becoming a nuisance, contact your skin specialist, who will recommend products to use.
7 Days and Beyond
After a week, the immediate post-treatment effects like redness and sensitivity should have diminished substantially. This is generally when it’s safe to reintroduce your regular skincare products and makeup, depending on your skin’s sensitivity and recovery rate. However, it’s important to note that the time frame for when to wear makeup after microneedling can vary based on individual skin types and healing processes. If in doubt, contact your skin specialist. At the Laser Skin Group, we provide quality care pre, during and post microneedling treatment.
Face Care Products to Avoid
After microneedling, your skin will be sensitive and more susceptible to irritation. To ensure proper healing and avoid adverse reactions, certain products should be avoided. These include retinoids, exfoliating acids such as alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), alcohol-based toners, and abrasive facial scrubs. Additionally, products containing ingredients like fragrances, which can potentially irritate the skin, should also be avoided.
Changing Your Face Care Routine
Adjusting your skincare routine post-microneedling is essential to support the healing process and enhance the benefits of the treatment. Opt for mild, fragrance-free products that focus on hydration and soothing the skin. Ingredients like hyaluronic acid, ceramides, and niacinamide can offer deep hydration, aid in skin barrier repair, and provide anti-inflammatory benefits.
Long-Term Care and Maintenance
To maintain and enhance the results of your microneedling treatment, consider scheduling follow-up sessions as advised by your skincare professional. Regular treatments can further improve skin texture and firmness and aid skin conditions. Additionally, maintaining a healthy skincare routine, including consistent use of sunscreen, can extend the benefits and keep your skin looking its best.