From fish pedicures to gold facials, there are some pretty crazy beauty procedures out there. Among the ones you may have heard of lately is microneedling. More or less exactly what it sounds like it is, it’s one of the more mysterious treatments currently available. What is microneedling? Does it work? Does it hurt? Does it make your skin bleed? What kind of aftercare is involved? Those are just a few of the questions the topic of microneedling raises. That’s why, in this article, we’ll discuss what microneedling is, what the benefits of microneedling are, and microneedling aftercare. We think by the time we’re finished, you’ll have a better idea of what microneedling is and whether it might be right for you.
IN A NUTSHELL
Main Takeaways: Microneedling is a highly effective treatment with numerous benefits, but it’s absolutely crucial that you treat your skin correctly afterwards to avoid damaging it.
Good to Know: If you do nothing else after microneedling, make sure you stay out of the sun as it can really damage your newly vulnerable skin.
Recommended Products: H2 Oh Yeah Hydrating Moisturizer.
What is Microneedling?
Although you may have heard about microneedling, you may not know what it actually does for your skin. In short, microneedling is a process by which small needles are gently applied to the face with a microneedling pen, causing small punctures in the skin. (If you have it done in a medical spa, they will most likely use a numbing cream first–more on that later.) By inflicting minor trauma to the skin, the skin is essentially forced to heal itself, causing it to eventually become stronger and healthier.
To understand the benefits of microneedling, think of the phrase, “What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.” What we mean by that is although the process of microneedling may cause small, temporary wounds, in the end, it can really help strengthen and improve your skin. And whether you decide to have it done in a medical spa or want to do it at home, be sure to check with your dermatologist on whether microneedling is right for you.
Here are a few of the benefits of microneedling:
- Microneedling helps with dark spots - If you have dark spots, you know it is not easy to get rid of them. Microneedling is one way to minimize their appearance.
- Microneedling helps minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles - You know how exfoliation helps get rid of old skin to reveal healthier, less-lined skin underneath? Microneedling is similar in that it forces your skin to essentially fill in those lines, making them less noticeable. This happens because when your skin is gently injured, it’s forced to produce more collagen in order to get it to heal. That collagen is what helps tighten and firm your skin, making it look younger and more plump.
- Microneedling helps firm and tighten your look - If you feel your skin has been a big draggy lately, microneedling is one way to help restore that tight look.
- Microneedling helps heal scarring - Again, it’s the production of collagen that helps heal scar tissue caused by acne or other issues. If you have acne scars or other marks on your skin, talk to your doctor about using microneedling to help heal them.
- Microneedling helps minimize the appearance of large pores - For those of us with large pores, this is major. As you may or may not know, pores don’t actually open and close, which means that all we can really do is minimize their appearance–microneedling helps do that.
- Microneedling evens out skin tone - Even if you have great skin, it can be difficult to get your skin tone even. Microneedling can help even out uneven skin tone.
- Microneedling helps plump the skin - One reason young skin looks so healthy is that it’s so plump. The more plump skin is, the more it helps “fill in” fines lines and wrinkles and helps skin glow.
Microneedling: Home vs. Spa
Chances are, you’re probably seen microneedling pens or rollers for home use as well as at medical spas. While there’s no question it’s much cheaper to do microneedling on your own, there are benefits to going to a medical spa at least for your first treatment.
For one thing, a professional at a medical spa will know how much pressure to apply and will also be able to determine if you’re a good candidate for this procedure (some people with active skin issues won’t be able to undergo microneedling).
Also, the tools used in medical settings are much different that the tools that exist for at-home microneedling. Although there are microneedling pens for at-home use, many of the microneedling tools available to the general public are rollers and those can be very tough to use if you don’t know what you’re doing. All in all, unless you happen to have some kind of training, it’s probably better to go with microneedling at a medical facility, at least if only for the first time you try it.
Microneedling Aftercare: Tips, What To Use
Just as it is for any skin procedure, what to put on skin after microneedling is crucial in order for microneedling to be its most effective (and to make sure you don’t cause harm to your skin, either!).
Here are some tips you should know for taking care of your skin after a microneedling session, whether at home or at a medical spa.
Stay Out of the Sun
Your skin is even more vulnerable and delicate than normal after a microneedling session, so be sure to stay out of the sun for at least three days after your procedure (frankly, this is our advice in general, but you need to be especially careful after a microneedling session)
Regardless of the procedure, anytime new skin is exposed, it’s more vulnerable to sun damage and that’s true of microneedling. You need to make sure you apply — and reapply — sunscreen to your skin in the days and weeks after microneedling because it will be especially susceptible. That said, if you can stay out of the sun for 24 hours after microneedling instead of using sunscreen, that’s a much better way to go as some sunscreens are so loaded down with irritants that they can seep in the punctures made by the needles and really irritate your skin.
Wait To Use Makeup
Most makeup is full of chemicals and fragrances that can easily clog pores and irritate skin and, like sunscreen, it can get in the little holes made by the microneedles. Stay away from it until your skin heals a bit.
Stay Away From Scrubs
Remember, anything that can irritate your skin is a bad idea right now. Although your skin will eventually be stronger in the end, you need to give it a few days before you can use an exfoliant like a scrub.
Stay Away From Other Skin Care Tools
We’re big believers in skincare tools like gua sha, skin rollers, and facial brushes, but not right after a microneedling session. This is not the time to apply pressure with tools.
Stay Away From Products With Acids
Don’t get us wrong–we love acids, but because they’re exfoliants, this isn’t the time. Check your skincare products carefully to make sure you’re not using anything with strong acids right now.
Don’t Have Other Skincare Procedures Done
If you have a standing appointment for a facial or maybe have a bachelorette spa day planned, sit this one out. A second or even third skincare procedure on top of microneedling can cause trauma to the skin and you’ll be worse off than when you started.
Don’t Exercise Immediately Afterwards
Perspiration can irritate the skin even under normal circumstances but it can really cause it to go haywire after microneedling. Not only that, it can cause bacteria to cause infection in the skin so give it a day — we promise that Peloton will be there when you’re ready.
Cleanse Your Skin
As long as you use a really, really gentle cleanser like our So Clean! facial cleanser (and remember to just use your hands–no scrubbers or even washcloths), it’s OK to cleanse your skin right after microneedling. Just make sure you’re being incredibly gentle and not agitating or rubbing your skin too much.
Moisturize Your Skin
But not for at least 24 hours. Although it’s crucial to keep your skin moisturized after microneedling. A moisturizer like our H2 Oh Yeah hydrating moisturizer is a great choice to make sure you’re restoring hydration to your skin after microneedling.
So that’s the skinny on microneedling. Hopefully, if you’ve been reticent about trying it this will help you understand it better and will show you exactly how to take care of yourself afterwards!