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What to Put On Skin After Microneedling

 Woman laying down having her forehead microneedled with the Dr Pen A1-W microneedling pen

It can be confusing knowing which serums to use after microneedling, and exactly when to use them to see maximum benefits.

In this article, we explain the science behind the healing process as well as which products you can use after your microneedling treatment and when for the most effective outcome.

The Haemorrhage Phase - 1 to 10 Minutes After Microneedling

1-10 minutes after your microneedling treatment, your skin experiences what is called the ‘Haemorrhage Phase’.

During this phase, your nutrient-rich blood is rushing to reach all of the new microchannels you’ve created. Inflammatory factors like adrenaline, prostaglandin, and serotonin are released to support skin healing and coagulation, otherwise known as clotting, which occurs thanks to the blood’s proteins and platelets.

Products you can use during this phase:

You don’t want to put anything other than tepid water or a medium to high molecular weight hyaluronic acid on the skin.

Our Femvy Hyaluronic Acid Serum is medium weight, making it perfect for both microneedling and everyday use.

You can also use a red LED light to soothe inflammation. It’s best to use a device that doesn’t sit directly on the skin to avoid cross-contamination (check Dr. Pen LED Light Therapy Collection to find out more).

The Inflammatory Phase - 1 to 4 Days After Microneedling

During this phase, the platelets in your blood release growth factors and Cytokines. These cells are responsible for our skin’s natural healing and regulating inflammation.

In this phase, neutrophils and Macrophages are also attracted to the microchannels you’ve created in your skin. They are in charge of keeping the area free of infection and destroying any harmful bacteria; they work hard to keep you safe from contamination and other complications.

Our favourite cells of all are also attracted to these microchannels. They are called fibroblasts which are responsible for the production of collagen.

It’s normal to experience mild swelling, flaking, and peeling after microneedling. Keeping the skin hydrated is key during this phase and will help to alleviate any tightness or flaking you may experience.

If you are experiencing discomfort you should always check in with your doctor. Complications are rare, but it’s always best to err on the side of caution and get a professional opinion if you have any concerns.

Products you can use during this phase:

Topically you can apply Vitamin E, hyaluronic acid, alcohol-free toners, or moisturisers with a base of green tea extract, kiwi oil, and linseed oil.

For deep hydration that feels beautiful and soothing to the skin, you may opt to use a hyaluronic acid sheet mask. Our Eaoron Hyaluronic Acid Sheet Mask is a great option that comes in a pack of 5 and can be put in the fridge before use for an extra soothing experience.

You can also apply products that contain resveratrol; this is a stable antioxidant found in grapes, berries, peanuts, and dark chocolate.

In all phases following microneedling, apply a healthy layer of broad-spectrum physical SPF is a must. Microneedling increases the skin's photosensitivity; this can cause unwanted pigmentation if your skin is damaged by the sun after your microneedling treatment when the skin is still healing.

If you are experiencing flaking of the skin, you are able to gently exfoliate however you should steer clear of chemical exfoliants, physical scrubs and grainy creams. Instead, opt for a wet washcloth to buff the dead skin away gently.

The Proliferation and Fibroblastic Phase - Days 4 to 14 After Microneedling

By this phase, the fibroblasts, (i.e. the cells responsible for the production of collagen) are producing growth factors and new skin cells.

Whilst the fibroblasts are busy sending new collagen to your skin; other cells are healing the microchannels, regenerating tissue and repairing the layers of the dermis. Your cells are super busy during this phase, healing your skin and sending new collagen to the surface.

Products you can use during this phase:

Topically, you can apply kiwi oil, linseed oil, hyaluronic acid, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, copper peptides, azelaic acid, and broad-spectrum sun protection. You can also go back to using cleansers and cleansing oils but skip any harsh exfoliating treatments both physical and chemical.

You can use Vitamin C and Vitamin A, otherwise referred to as retinol or retinoids, during this phase.

But we do recommend waiting until at least day 7 post microneedling to ensure you don’t interrupt all of the healing and repair happening at a cellular level in your skin.

If your retinol is particularly strong, i.e. equal to or higher than 0.25 %, wait until 14 days post microneedling before applying.

Remember to stay out of direct sunlight for as long as possible, ideally until day 7 post microneedling treatment.

The Maturative Phase - Day 14 and Onwards

During this phase, those hard-working, collagen-producing fibroblast cells produce the structures to support your new collagen.

Supporting the collagen with a robust structural network is vital, as it helps your skin maintain a regular cycle of repairing itself and remodelling tissue. This is when you’ll see a serious glow!

Products you can use during this phase:

You can now go back to your entire routine of cleansers, toners, serums, moisturisers, and active ingredients. Continue using broad-spectrum SPF to protect your skin from any sun damage.

If you wish to support your skin nutritionally, you can take vitamins A, C, E along with calcium and omega 3 in the form of a multivitamin. This will ensure your skin has everything it needs from the inside out.

From day 14 onwards, you can resume nano needling treatments which is a non-invasive treatment that involves more shallow penetration into the skin than microneedling.

What Happens if You Don’t Follow the Protocols?

If you don’t follow the post-microneedling protocol listed above, you can potentially cause more damage to your skin.

Using active ingredients like Vitamins A and C too early in the healing process can cause chemical burns or granulomas.

A chemical burn is when your skin comes into contact with an irritant, either an acid or a base, causing an adverse reaction. These irritants can cause a reaction on the skin's surface or deeper in the body. You can avoid chemical burns by not using your Vitamins A, C, and other active ingredients, too early in the healing process.

A granuloma is a response to chronic inflammation and is caused by infection. Granulomas are essentially a permanent rash, and in the context of microneedling are caused when ingredients enter the skin too early into the healing process. Depending on the way the granuloma forms, it’s possible it can be removed.

Whilst creating granulomas is extremely rare, it is worth noting that by deviating from post microneedling aftercare protocols, you could cause permanent skin damage.

Most reputable sources will recommend using a hyaluronic acid, or HA serum, during and after microneedling. This is because hyaluronic acid is naturally occurring in our bodies already and is less likely to be rejected or trigger an adverse reaction.

Woman laying down about to receive microneedling with the Dr Pen M5 microneedling pen

Let’s Answer the Common Questions

The most common thing microneedling lovers want to know is “when can I use vitamin C?”, “when can I use retinol?” and when every other serum, cream, lotion, moisturiser, mask, and active can be reintroduced. We’ve answered the common questions below.

What Serum Should I Use After Microneedling?

Hyaluronic acid serums should be used post-microneedling. Use this from days 1 to 14 after microneedling to hydrate and replenish the skin.

After 1 to 4 days, you can apply hyaluronic acid, toners, or moisturisers with a base of green tea extract, Vitamin E, kiwi oil, and linseed oil to the skin.

Can I Use Vitamin C After Microneedling?

You can begin applying Vitamin C again at least 7 days after your microneedling treatment. It’s also preferred to use a diluted Vitamin C at this time, to ensure the skin doesn’t react as it’s a strong, active ingredient.

Our Vitamin C Serum is a good example of a diluted Vitamin C, as it is half Vitamin C and half hyaluronic acid. This combination is both brightening and hydrating.

Can I Use Almond Oil After Microneedling?

Yes, you can technically use almond oil starting from 4 days after your microneedling treatment.

If you’re using oil for hydration and nourishment, we do recommend sticking to a hyaluronic acid during the Inflammatory and Proliferation phases instead. Using a HA serum supports the natural HA that your body is producing in the healing phase, meaning your body is less likely to react to it adversely.

Can I Use Aloe Vera Gel After Microneedling?

Yes, you can technically use aloe vera gel starting from 4 days after your microneedling treatment. Again, if you’re looking for hydration and soothing any inflammation, a HA serum will help and is preferred.

How Do You Wash Your Face After Microneedling?

About 4 days after your microneedling treatment, you can go back to using a gentle cleanser to clean your skin.

From 1 to 4 days after your treatment, we recommend using tepid water only to wash. This is to avoid your skin reacting to any possible irritants.

A Safe Microneedling Schedule

Microneedling can be performed safely every 4 to 6 weeks. In between microneedling sessions, you can nanoneedle.

Nano needling can be done weekly and can be done one week after your last microneedling treatment.

It can get a little confusing when derma rolling is added to the mix. If your derma roller is over 0.5mm in-depth, it is classified as microneedling, which follows the 4 to 6 week rule given above.

If it is under 0.5mm in-depth, it can be used safely once every 2 weeks.

In Summary

Below is a table to summarise the information given above. Screenshot this and save it for your microneedling sessions!

What to Put on Skin After Microneedling


Days After Treatment

What Happens

Topical Products That Can Be Used

The Haemorrhage Phase

1 to 10 minutes after

Blood is clotting and inflammation occurs

Tepid water, hyaluronic acid

The Inflammatory Phase

1 to 4 days after

Microchannels begin to heal, harmful bacteria is destroyed, and collagen production begins

Vitamin E, hyaluronic acid, toners, or moisturisers that have a base of green tea extract, kiwi oil, and linseed oil

The Proliferation & Fibroblastic Phase

4 to 14 days after

Collagen and growth factors are made whilst the skin heals further

Kiwi oil, linseed oil, hyaluronic acid, Vitamin E, copper peptides, azelaic acid, broad-spectrum sun protection, cleansers, and cleansing oil.

Use Vitamin A and Vitamin C 7 days after.

The Maturation Phase

14 days after and beyond

Cell structures to support the new collagen are formed

Use all of your usual cleansers, toners, acids, actives, serums, and moisturisers.


If you have any questions about microneedling and post microneedling aftercare, don’t hesitate to contact our customer service team. Our in-house Beauty Advisor will share her expertise to help you with your microneedling journey.

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