How long is the microdermabrasion recovery period?

I am thinking that microdermabrasion would be a good way for me to even out some dark spots that I have on my face. I have read that a bunch of treatments are needed spaced out by a few weeks. Is there a long recovery period between the sessions or does your face heal pretty quick?


F, 39, California

Tags:woman face recovery session dark spots

I've started to develop some dark age spots on my face. So, I decided to schedule a microdermabrasion treatment. During my initial consultation, I asked a lot of questions about the cosmetic procedure. I wanted to know if I needed to take time off from work to have this procedure done. As it turns out, I wouldn't need to take any days off of work. This non-invasive treatment could be scheduled during my lunch break and wouldn't require any recovery time. Considering how fantastic the results of this treatment are, it's shocking that I could return to my normal schedule immediately following the procedure. I just didn't wear makeup for a day to let my slightly pink skin return to normal.

Microdermabrasion is basically just a really intense exfoliation to remove dead skin cells. The first time I got one, the tech showed me all the dead skin it took off the surface of my skin – it was pretty crazy how much stuff was just sitting there, on my face. Anyway, while you do need to space out appointments, I don’t think you’ll see any damage to your skin unless you have really sensitive skin. I didn’t, anyway. There was a little redness that quickly went away – during the time it took to leave the spa and drive to Starbucks, I was already looking like my normal self. Well, a more glowing version of myself.

For my skin care regimen, I have been getting microdermabrasion scheduled on the first Tuesday of each month for a couple years now. I use microdermabrasion to treat acne scars that I have been dealing with for most of my life. I have been seeing success with some fine lines on my face as well. Usually, I head back to work after the procedure, and no one can even tell. The only side effect I get is a light pinkish color over my face for about a day. Sometimes my cheeks get a little itchy, so I always make sure to apply moisturizing lotion a few times a day, especially in the winter when the air is dry. For a few days, I usually switch to lotions without scents because they seem a little easier on my skin. I also sunburn easier in the sun on the days following my microdermabrasion. I am considering trying a chemical peel but the recovery time isn't as easy as microdermabrasion so I will try and do it on a Friday to have some extra time to heal.

My face is usually sensitive for a few days after I have a microdermabrasion treatment, but it's nothing too severe as long as I don't irritate my skin. I just make sure to have moisturizing lotion available at all times and apply it regularly to prevent dry skin. It's also important not to get any sunburn, so either avoid the sun for a few days or make sure to apply and reapply sunscreen. After a couple of my first sessions, my face was sorer than usual, and I realized I had been using a harsher soap. Even at its worst, though, the pain is nothing an aspirin can't fix.

I started getting treatments for the same problem – dark spots from sun damage – but I never really had any side effects. After a few minutes, any redness died down and people couldn’t even tell that I’d slipped out to the spa during my lunch break. Once you get rid of any problem spots, Depending on your skin type, I think you’re supposed to let your skin recover for about 30 days before you go for another microdermabrasion session. But that recovery period isn’t because you have any visible damage to the skin – it’s just to let the skin regenerate. Microdermabrasion can also help with skin conditions like hyperpigmentation and can help with any noticeable scarring you have on your face.