Microneedling Aftercare 101

Before and after image of acne and acne scarring improvement

Last updated on October 25th, 2023

We all know microneedling yields amazing results, but what about the time between procedure and visible results? What can you and your clients truly expect post-microneedling? 

Downtime and aftercare following a procedure are important pieces of information for you and your patient to be aware of. Typically, visible skin recovery following a Dermapen procedure is typically 3-5 days but can be unnoticeable as soon as 24 hours post-procedure in a large number of clients. It is recommended that providers use both a topical numbing cream as well as a post-procedure cooling mask to ensure maximum comfort, healing, and results for the client throughout the treatment process. Patients may resume work and other normal activities immediately post procedure, it is also recommended to increase water intake for hydration as well as avoid excessive sweating for 24 hours post procedure to kick start your microneedling aftercare.

Immediately following a Dermapen procedure, puncture channels will begin to close and typically constrict within 15 minutes, kickstarting the skin’s wound healing response. ​​(The potential of pinpoint bleeding during a Dermapen procedure creates the addition of Haemorrhage / Haemostasis as the processional starting point for the wound healing process).

Wound healing, as a normal biological process in the human body, is achieved through four precisely and highly programmed phases: hemostasis, inflammation, proliferation, and remodeling. Guo S, Dipietro LA. Factors affecting wound healing. J Dent Res. 2010  Each of these phases overlap and integrate together, resulting in increased collagen and elastin production and the appearance of smooth, firm skin. 

Day 1: Microneedling Aftercare

During the procedure and first 24 hours of the recovery process clients will experience Erythema and Petechiae, commonly referred to as redness of the skin and pinpoint bleeding, as well as potential for slight swelling of the skin. Areas with thinner, more delicate skin such as the periorbital area (tissue and skin surrounding the eye) as well as patients using anticoagulant medications or supplements may see increased erythema and petechiae. 

Following the Dermapen procedure (night or morning after), patients are safe to begin microneedling aftercare steps by washing their face thoroughly using a mild, soap free, pH balanced cleanser ensuring all remaining serum and other debris, such as dried blood, is removed. 

Follow with non-active, non-occlusive and non-comedogenic serums that are safe for microneedling, as needed to restore moisture, skin comfort, and accelerate the healing process. Avoid makeup and any other non recommended products for the remainder of the first 24 hours following the procedure to avoid skin contamination and possible infections. Skin channels are still open and recovering throughout this time period and tools such as makeup brushes can contain bacteria and may cause unwanted skin reactions.

Day 2: Microneedling Aftercare

On day 2 a red or pink hue of the skin is to be expected and swelling may be somewhat more noticeable. Resume use of a physical block sunscreen at this time. The skin will most likely feel slightly tightened, dry, or itchy- this is the perfect time to increase your serum use, giving your skin the nutrients and moisture it needs. Continue utilizing mild cleansers, hydrating serums, and moisturizing topicals. 

Days 3-5: Microneedling Aftercare

After the first 48 hours have passed, Erythema and Petechiae will start to fade and skin will begin to return to full recovery with normalized function around day 4-5. From this point on, skin should start to look normal and signs of successful treatment will begin to appear. We recommend daily use of a physical block sunscreen to protect your skin from environmental damage

Avoid direct sun exposure as well as alcohol based toners for at least 10 days post procedure if possible. Microneedling aftercare is patient specific and should be discussed with trusted professional prior to procedure.

*This is not a comprehensive guide to microneedling post care- as always, please consult your provider prior to any procedure as to what will work best for you and your skin. These are suggestions and are not recommended for all. Procedure post care plans should be determined on a case by case basis by a trusted provider*

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