This Is What Really Happens To Your Skin When You Try Microneedling

You're scrolling through Instagram and you see yet another influencer swear by their latest microneedling session. But what is microneedling, and what actually happens to your skin? 

Microneedling is a cosmetic procedure that is done in order to promote an increase in blood circulation (via Healthline). The procedure includes pricking the skin with tiny sterilized needles to trigger the body's natural healing process. If you're wondering why someone would purposely do this to their own skin, it's because when those small wounds heal, the extra collagen your body makes can help you look younger (via WebMD).

There are many side effects to microneedling, and bleeding isn't uncommon (via NewBeauty). Topical numbing is used to alleviate any minor pain, but when needles are inserted into the skin, some bleeding is normal. According to Medical News Today, bleeding is more common after a deeper treatment. It's advised that people who have bleeding disorders or take blood-thinners inform their doctors before treatment as these pre-existing conditions could lead to more bleeding as well.

The many side effects of microneedling

Of course, most side effects of microneedling aren't as extreme. One of the most common aftereffects from microneedling is red skin. While it generally takes 24 hours for the majority of the redness to let up, your skin may stay pink for another few days after (via NewBeauty).

This may look like an average and mild sunburn, but it's important to be very mindful about sun sensitivity. Healthline advises that you should be vigilant in applying sunscreen for the next two weeks after microneedling. In addition to your skin feeling irritated, it is more susceptible to sun damage than it usually is.

Another reaction to look out for is some slight peeling or shedding, according to NewBeauty. This reaction is not only completely normal, but a positive sign since it shows that new skin is forming. The skin peeling away is likely to feel tight and dry, and in some cases, rough to the touch. After microneedling, you'll want to avoid your everyday skin care products that can contain exfoliates, but if your skin is feeling dry you can safely use coconut oil to moisturize and hydrate your face. 

Overall, while there are many side effects, most of these reactions seem pretty mild for the short 10-20 minute procedure. According to WebMD, most people need to sit for 4-6 treatments before they will start to see any difference in their skin.