Microneedling is one of the most effective minimally invasive cosmetic procedures out there.
However, it’s also one of the most frequently misunderstood. To help clear that up, Skin Pharm wanted to give you all of the information that you need to decide whether it’s right for you.
We also want you to know what to expect during your microneedling before and after. That way, you can feel confident when you schedule your appointment.
Okay, so what exactly is microneedling?
If you haven’t heard of microneedling before, let us introduce you! Often, people hear needles and stop considering it as a cosmetic procedure. The truth is, the fear of needles is real for a lot of people. But don’t let that prevent you from potentially undergoing a treatment that can really make a difference in your skin.
Microneedling is performed in a sterile environment by one of our advanced practice providers. It involves a device with tiny needles. After a topical numbing cream is applied to the face, your provider targets any areas of concern to help create a controlled “wound.”
The reason for this is to trick the skin into thinking it’s being damaged, so that it will trigger a skin response to build it back up. That involves incredibly essential components like collagen and elastin, which repair the skin and help it look brighter, younger and more even.
The process can be made even more effective by adding platelet-rich plasma (or PRP therapy). PRP is a natural component of your own blood and is full of things that help to improve your skin and speed up the healing process.
It has been studied for various issues and has been proven to show even better results than beneficial ingredients, likevitamin C.
Before your treatment, you’ll have your blood drawn by your provider. It will then be centrifuged and applied to your face with the microneedling device. That allows it to be needled deeper into the skin, making as big a difference as possible.
Overall, microneedling is minimally invasive and, with the addition of a topical numbing cream, non-painful. Instead of going through invasive and expensive cosmetic surgery that can also have unexpected results, microneedling offers consistent results without all of the downtime associated with a lot of other procedures.
Potential side effects of microneedling
Knowing what side effects you can expect with microneedling can help you be realistic about what to expect, both before and after your procedure.
The most common side effects that people experience after microneedling are redness and sensitivity. Normally, these results are only present for a few days afterward and go away on their own.
You may also experience some peeling, which can start to show up between three to five days after your procedure. This is due to the increased cell turnover rate, as the old, dead skin at the surface begins to slough off to make way for newer, healthier, more radiant skin.
The microneedling before-and-after
Understanding the process behind how microneedling works is just as important as understanding the benefits. After all, if you’re going to experience the many benefits of microneedling, you have to go through the process to get there.
Anything new can be intimidating, so to help take some of the mystery away, we wanted to lay it all out there to know what you’re getting yourself into.
At Skin Pharm, we have a few recommendations for anyone who will be undergoing microneedling. Each of these was designed to help you achieve your best results and minimize any potential side effects.
For instance, we recommend planning your microneedling appointment at least two weeks before any special occasion, like a wedding or a vacation. That gives you plenty of time to allow the side effects to fade.
It’s also important to be honest with your provider about any skin-related issues you may be experiencing, like cold sores or rashes. There are also a few things that you should avoid prior to your microneedling appointment.
If you’ve been on Accutane, which is a common oral medication that is prescribed for severe cystic acne, you’ll need to be off of it for at least six months prior to treatment.
Other cosmetic treatments, like IPL/BBL laser procedures or waxing of any areas that you plan to have microneedling, should be avoided for at least a week prior, as well.
A week before your appointment, with the permission of your primary care provider, we also recommend discontinuing the use of aspirin, NSAIDs like ibuprofen and naproxen, garlic, Ginkgo Biloba, ginseng, flaxseed oil, vitamin A and E, cod liver oil and/or any other essential fatty acids.
This should help minimize your potential for bruising or bleeding. Starting on an Arnica supplement at least two days before may be able to help, as well.
24 hours before your microneedling appointment, you’ll need to discontinue topical retinoids, as this will help to reduce the potential for sensitivity. It is also important to avoid certain dietary and lifestyle choices like smoking, drinking alcohol, eating foods high in sugar, sodium, refined carbs or anything spicy.
You may also want to discontinue a niacin supplement if you’re taking one. Each of these factors may increase the risk of swelling or bruising after your procedure, as well. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you may still be able to schedule your microneedling appointment – we just recommend receiving clearance from your OBGYN first!
After your microneedling appointment is over, there are also a few tips and tricks that we have to share that can help your healing process.
If you have any soreness, avoid using anything else but Tylenol if necessary. You’ll also want to avoid picking at or even touching the skin until it is fully healed. Touching the skin can increase the risk of infection, as you may transfer bacteria from your skin into what are essentially open wounds.
In addition, avoid any activity that can cause sweating for 24 hours. This includes strenuous exercise or direct sunlight. If you must go out in the sun, make sure that you’re wearing (and reapplying) sunscreen every two hours. Use a sunscreen protectant that has at least 30 SPF and is broad-spectrum (protection against both UVA and UVB radiation).
We also provide you with a post-treatment skin care routine that you can use in place of your regular routine as your skin is healing. You’ll use our foaming cleanser both morning and evening, and keep your skin moisturized with our specialized Recovery Lotion. Continue using it until your skin is fully healed and no longer feels tight.
Within one to three days later, you may restart wearing makeup and using the majority of your regular skin care routine (like exfoliants, including glycolic acid and retinol).
When can I expect to see results?
All of the talk about microneedling before and after tips is really meant to get you to the place where you can experience the most benefits from the procedure.
When you follow all of the guidelines, you should expect to see results about one to two weeks after treatment. If you’re working toward treating larger issues, such as melasma, scarring or age-related concerns, you may need between four to six treatments to see the optimal results that you’re looking for.
The best part about the microneedling process is that the results you experience are considered to be permanent. However, those results also need to be followed up with a diligent focus on supportive skin care and other lifestyle measures.
Always practice sun safety, drink plenty of water and eat a healthy diet. Remember, your skin is also a reflection of what is happening on the inside. Treat your body as a whole system, instead of focusing on it as separate parts.
What you do to one part of your body will always have repercussions on the rest of it. It’s just as important to feel good on the inside as to look good on the outside.
To sum things up...
Knowing what to expect when you schedule your first microneedling session is important. Instead of going in blind, knowing more about microneedling before and after can help you know what to look for. It can also help you be realistic about what results you may see, and how long it can take for you to really see them.
At Skin Pharm, we love being able to offering microneedling to our patients. (And we love adding PRP, of course!) At the end of the day, we love your skin – and we think you should, too.
You might recognize Caroline Arapoglou as Rose Cameron on cult-favorite Netflix series Outer Banks.
With a hectic travel schedule and long days on set, the actress (and Atlantan) sought out Skin Pharm for acne management — and quickly became a fan of our BBL photofacial, a quick and easy light therapy treatment that treats breakouts, lightens sun spots and removes redness, too.