Tretinoin After Microneedling – When & How to Use

Tretinoin After Microneedling - When & How to Use
Tretinoin After Microneedling – When & How to Use

Tretinoin and other retinol products are sometimes a staple of many skin care routines. So, after a procedure like microneedling, a common concern is how soon you can start using your retinol products again.

Since tretinoin is much stronger than retinol and other vitamin A derivatives, this needs to be done with caution. 

Can You Use Tretinoin After Microneedling

Yes, you can use tretinoin after microneedling, but it is best to wait for at least 72 hours or longer. 

Some experts recommend waiting up to 1-2 weeks if you can. 

Microneedling makes your skin much more absorbent by creating microchannels through the layers of your skin. After microneedling your skin is better able to absorb more of your products.

Additionally, tretinoin is a more potent formula that will have more intense effects when absorbed deeply into your skin. 

Therefore, it is best to wait a little while before using tretinoin on your skin just after microneedling. 

Click here to read about Retinol after Microneedling – Everything You Need To Know

Related Article – Tretinoin for Stretch Marks: Does it Really Work & Risks

How to Use Tretinoin After Microneedling

If you need to resume the use of your tretinoin after microneedling, here is how to do it:

  1. Wait at least 72 hours before using tretinoin after microneedling. Give your skin time to heal while only using calming products (some only use moisturizer and SPF!) and stay away from makeup. 
  2. Always test-patch your skin. Even if you have used tretinoin before, still test patch a small area of your skin before you apply it again to your whole face. 
  3. When you are ready to restart your tretinoin, do so gradually. Start with a very small amount, one time a day (at night), a few times a week at first. Then, gradually build your way up until you can use it every night. 
  4. A little goes a long way. Since your skin will now be in a position to absorb more product, you only need a small amount to get the job done. 
  5. Make sure that you use SPF. Every day, regardless of if you are inside or outside, always use an SPF. This will protect your more sensitive skin. 
  6. Remember that tretinoin will make your skin slightly thinner through its resurfacing properties. Try not to use too many other resurfacing treatments, especially if you have recently done microneedling. This will be too much for your skin. 

Related Articles:

How & When to Safely Wash Face after Microneedling

When & How to Wear Makeup After Microneedling – Must Read

5 Best Oils to Use with Tretinoin & How to Use Correctly

Side Effects Of Using Tretinoin Too Soon

Possible side effects of using tretinoin too soon after microneedling includes:

  • Excess, Prolonged Redness
  • Excess Irritation
  • Itching
  • Bumps (can be itchy or painful or resemble hives)
  • Peeling
  • Dryness
  • Increased photosensitivity

If you develop a fever, swelling or pain in the area, you should seek medical attention right away. 

Click here to read about Microneedling Healing Stages & Aftercare Tips to Heal Fast 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How long after microneedling can I use tretinoin?

You can safely use tretinoin at least 72 hours after microneedling. 

The 3 days or more will give your skin time to regenerate and heal enough to be able to withstand treatments like tretinoin that have an intense effect on all the layers of the skin when absorbed deeply. 

Related Article: Acne & Breakouts After Microneedling – How to Treat

Can I use tretinoin after RF microneedling?

You cannot immediately use tretinoin after RF microneedling. Instead, you should wait at least 48-72 hours. 

The radio-frequency remodeling of the skin makes it all the more sensitive to products that are harsh. Tretinoin will be too harsh on the skin after such a procedure. 

Related Article: When & How to Moisturize After Microneedling & What to Use 

Can you use Tretinoin after derma rolling?

You can use tretinoin after derm rolling, but you will need to wait at least 48 hours. 

Even though derma rolling is less invasive than microneedling, it still makes your skin very sensitive. Your skin will still need time to heal and it will still be more sensitive and absorbent when it comes to skincare products. 

Related Article: 9 Best Oils to Use After Microneedling Or Derma Rolling

Should you stop using tretinoin before microneedling?

Most skincare experts recommend that you stop using tretinoin and other active ingredients 5-7 days before microneedling is done. 

Tretinoin is a resurfacing agent. It makes your skin more sensitive and absorptive. Doing a procedure like microneedling on already sensitive skin might prove too much for your skin. 

Related Article – 5 Best Oils to Use with Tretinoin & How to Use Correctly

Can you use tretinoin together with microneedling?

Some skincare professionals have been known to use tretinoin while microneedling. However, this should only be done by a trained professional after a thorough consultation. 

Microneedling increases the absorption of tretinoin into the skin. Therefore, it can be helpful for people with deep (atrophic) scars. However, whether this will work for you will depend on your skin itself. You should only do this with a dermatologist after discussing your skin and potential risks in detail. 

Did you know that you can use Tretinoin for Oily Skin – click here to learn How to Use, Benefits & Risks

Related Article – How to Moisturize When Using Tretinoin – What to Do & Use


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