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Microneedling 101: Tips From a Licensed Acupuncturist

In 2023, effective skincare doesn’t come in just one form. Luckily, there is a wide variety of treatments that work well for preventing and treating unwanted skin conditions. This is great news for those of us with fine lines, wrinkles, cellulite…the list goes on and on!

One unique skin treatment that’s having a moment right now is microneedling. Yes, it’s becoming more popular among modern Hollywood stars, but this treatment has always been the real deal. It’s been around since the early 1900s!

Why Should I Try Microneedling?

We highly recommend microneedling, as it requires little downtime while remaining low-risk and effective. Microneedling is an effective alternative to expensive injections. Plus, if you already get dermal fillers, microneedling will enhance the overall effect, as long as you wait for two weeks after your filler (or botox).

Microneedling is known to address these skin conditions:

  • Fine lines

  • Acne scars

  • Skin laxity

  • Enlarged pores

  • Crow’s feet

  • Lip wrinkles

  • Dark spots caused by melasma

How Does Microneedling Work?

Microneedling is a treatment that uses an electronic pen that contains tiny needles. The tiny needles move in a stamp motion across the skin to create thousands of micro-injuries. The micro-injuries stimulate growth factors deep within the skin, allowing new collagen cells to grow without the fear of scarring.

Who Should Not Use Microneedling?

You might be wondering, “Are there any contraindications for microneedling?” So glad you asked!

You should avoid microneedling if these scenarios apply to you:

  • Pregnancy

  • Taking blood thinners

  • Undergoing chemotherapy or radiation

  • Used Accutane within the past 3 months

  • Experiencing moderate to severe skin conditions:

    • Psoriasis

    • Rosacea

    • Eczema

    • Active acne or infection

    • Warts

    • Prone to keloid scarring

How Often Should I Schedule Microneedling Sessions?

For the best possible outcome, you should schedule your microneedling appointments 4-6 weeks apart. On average, you’ll want to schedule 3-6 sessions total.

What Should I Expect After the Treatment?

Results typically take up to two weeks to become obvious. Here’s how you’ll know the microneedling treatment is taking effect:

  • Skincare products will absorb faster than usual

  • Your face will show redness 8-24 hours after ( possibly longer, depending on skin sensitivity)

  • Itching

  • Burning / warm sensation

  • Skin irritation

  • Pigmentation changes

  • Light peeling

  • Skin tightness

  • Skin dryness

  • Possible mild breakout as skin may purge

Here’s another way to break down the effects of microneedling:

  • Day 1: Your skin will be erythematous (red and look like you have a sunburn). You may experience pinpoint bleeding. You will want to avoid working out and applying makeup for 24 hours.

  • Day 2: Your skin will still have a red/pink hue to it. Swelling and slight bruising may occur, but this depends on the intensity of the treatment. Apply your aftercare products as suggested.

  • Day 3-5: Redness will start to subside, and your skin may have a slight pink hue. The swelling will subside. Your skin will feel tight and taut. Light peeling may occur, but this varies from client to client.

Remember that these side effects are temporary, and they pay off as long as you schedule your appointments regularly and follow through with your aftercare.

What Is the Aftercare for Microneedling?

To make the most of each treatment there are some slight lifestyle adjustments you should make after leaving your microneedling appointment:

  • No exercise on the day of treatment (since sweat can irritate the face and may introduce bacteria to the treated area)

  • No sun exposure on the day of treatment

  • No makeup up to 48 hours after treatment

  • No use of actives or exfoliants (retinol, vitamin C) on the day of treatment

  • Use sunscreen on the day of treatment

  • Avoid direct and extended sunlight 3-5 days after treatment

How Should I Prepare for My Microneedling Treatment?

Just as important as aftercare are your lifestyle habits leading up to your appointment. Here’s how you can properly prepare 3 days before your microneedling treatment:

  • Avoid taking anti-inflammatory medications

  • Avoid drinking alcohol

  • Avoid taking fish oil

Following those guidelines will minimize the bleeding that occurs during microneedling.


At Peel Simply Skin, we are super lucky to have California-licensed acupuncturist Shawna Galicia every Thursday. Shawna has been in private practice for over 10 years, and she loves helping clients reach their skin goals through microneedling.

Not sure if microneedling is right for you? Feel free to email Shawna or book your free consultation today.


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