Microneedling Healing Stages - A General Timeline
Although non-invasive, microneedling healing stages still exist. They alter quickly with overlapping symptoms. Let’s see what those are.
Microneedling is a minimally invasive skincare treatment. However, it does cause injury to the skin – that’s kind of the whole point!
Creating controlled injuries to the skin, microneedling triggers the body’s natural wound-healing process which stimulates collagen production and increases skin cell turnover. Improving the skin’s resilience, it helps treat uneven skin tone, brightening it and providing anti-aging effects and improving a bunch of other skin concerns like hyperpigmentation, scars, enlarged pores, etc.
So, even though it doesn’t require a long downtime, it still requires some healing. Microneedling healing process is quite simple but we’ve prepared a guide for those who want to know exactly what to expect. Let’s walk you through microneedling healing stages.
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Microneedling Healing Time
Microneedling healing time is very short, especially compared to other skincare treatments, like chemical peels. Microneedling healing process usually only takes 24 hours, but depending on the extent of the treatment, microneedling healing process can last up to a week.
That is, the visible part of it. What you don’t see is what’s going on under the surface. Regeneration takes up to a month or two to be complete. The most important part is not to interrupt the healing so you avoid extensive inflammation. But more on that later.
What Can I Expect From Microneedling Healing Stages?
Microneedling healing process is very short, which means that microneedling healing stages are also very short and they alter quickly.
Microneedling healing day by day is very hard to pinpoint because everyone has a different skin reaction. Besides, the symptoms overlap and there’s not really much of a benchmark that marks any stage specifically.
Still, let’s try to categorize microneedling healing stages according to the time passed after the treatment. Here’s what to expect in each of the microneedling healing stages:
During the Treatment
Let’s start with the very first minute of the microneedling healing process. Seeing as the whole point of treatment is to induce the body’s natural regeneration process, the microneedling healing process starts immediately after the injury’s been caused – as soon as halfway through the treatment.
During the treatment, you can experience a slightly uncomfortable sensation, but it shouldn’t be pain (if it hurts, tell the practitioner). There might be some pinpoint bleeding but that depends on several factors – whether you’ve been taking some blood thinning medication, how sensitive your skin is, whether you’ve been working out, taking alcohol, etc.
Your skin starts turning red, which is the first side effect signaling the first healing stage has begun.
Some skin experts use red light therapy after microneedling to accelerate the healing process and minimize the side effects. This can be useful but it’s not a must.
Immediately After the Treatment
Immediately after the procedure, you can expect to experience some side effects.
Since there isn’t any serious downtime, you can continue with your day but you have to keep in mind that your skin was just repeatedly punctured hundreds of times. You can expect it to be red and tender for the rest of that day. Some slight swelling and bruising are also normal.
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Your skin will be red for several hours after the procedure, after which the redness will slowly start to subside, but it can take about a day or so.
In the meantime, it will turn various shades of pink. Depending on the area of the body treated, the redness might last up to a week. Along with being flushed, your skin will also feel hot.
1 Day After the Treatment
Hours after the treatment, the skin might feel hot and irritated, and still look red. Because of that, this one of the microneedling healing stages is most often compared to a sunburn.
The sunburnt feel can last up to several days after the treatment. Then you might start experiencing other symptoms that are also similar to a sunburn. Your skin will feel tight and dry.
You can minimize these side effects using moisturizers and gentler cleansers. This will help with the discomfort but it will not work on redness.
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Several Days After the Treatment
It’s hard to describe the aftermath of microneedling day by day because it’s different for everybody. It all depends on your individual skin type and the condition you’re treating.
For the majority, after the 48-hour mark, the redness will have faded. If you’ve experienced some swelling and bruising, these side effects should also subside by then.
Within a day or two after the procedure, some people may experience other symptoms such as flaking and peeling. Breakouts, bumps, and dry skin are also relatively common. These can take a bit more time to resolve
Several Weeks After the Treatment
Most microneedle healing that is visible happens in the first day or two after the treatment. But under the surface (which is already looking better), recovery is still happening. Even up to 2 months after the procedure!
As mentioned, this recovery isn’t visible so if your skin is still flushed, swallowed, bruised, etc., that can be a sign that something is wrong. In that case, you should see a doctor so as not to make permanent damage to your skin.
Important Additional Info – Follow Ups & Aftercare
If you’re doing microneedling to treat a specific skin issue, you need to do several sessions. Most people need 2-3 sessions to achieve desired results, but some problems require up to 6-8. In that case, microneedling healing process is actually a loop – as soon as one healing process is over, another one begins.
Follow-up treatments need to be spaced out about a month apart. Between each session, a certain amount of time has to pass – at least 3 weeks, but 4-6 weeks between each session is ideal.
It can’t be sooner than that because your skin needs time to heal internally. Interrupting the microneedling healing process will make your skin more inflamed. Making the treatment safe means reducing the unnecessary inflammation, hence reducing the chance of other problems (like hyperpigmentation and granuloma) from happening.
Read more about microneedling gone wrong here.
In the meantime, between the sessions, you need to focus on the aftercare. Aftercare is an important part of the microneedling healing process. It lasts for several weeks.
Caring for the skin the way you were instructed promotes collagen health and speeds up its production. In other words, adhering to the instructions ensures you get the best results from each treatment. Aftercare is often overlooked because the microneedling healing time is minimal, but it’s one of the most important factors to help you get desired results.
Another important thing to note is that during the healing process you shouldn’t be using your regular skincare products. Some of them aren’t formulated to penetrate that deep into the skin and can cause more harm than good – granulomas can form. Consult with your technician about what you should be using.
Microneedling Healing Stages – Main Takeaways
Microneedling healing process is short and simple, making the treatment a very good choice for treating various skin issues. Microneedling healing stages are altered quickly and the visible part of the skin healing is done within a few days. Not interrupting the microneedling healing process and keeping up with proper aftercare should be the main priority for achieving the desired results