In order to provide you with the best possible service, we ask that you carefully review these general post-care treatment instructions for a chemical peel treatment so that you fully understand them. If you have any questions about these instructions, please discuss them with your esthetician. To obtain maximum benefits from your treatment, it is crucial that you understand and adhere to these instructions. Failure to comply with these instructions may affect your treatment outcome and increase the likelihood or severity of complications. Depending on your individual needs, additional post-care treatment instructions may be given to you by your esthetician.
- The peeling may take anywhere from 7-10 days on average or longer depending on internal and external factors such as skin type, age, weather, lifestyle, and hormones. Slight redness and skin sensitivity and flaking can occur as your treatment eliminates dead surface skin cells. Each treatment may vary. Other areas of the body will react differently because your skin has a different texture on your face and scalp than on your chest, back, arms, and legs. The healing process may take longer in those areas.
- Your skin may take on a rough, patchy, darkened quality a few days after this treatment. This is normal and expected and it will resolve on its own. The first areas to peel are usually around the nose and mouth, but can begin anywhere. Most people begin peeling on the 3rd or 4th day after treatment. It is also possible to not peel at all. If this occurs, you will still benefit from the treatment because the skin has exfoliated microscopically.
- Possible side effects include but are not limited to: mild to extreme redness, temporary tightness, itching, swelling, and dryness of the skin similar to a sunburn or windburn. This will usually subside in 2-3 days. A prescription of hydrocortisone, or over-the-counter hydrocortisone (Vanicream HCⓇ) may be recommended if the skin is inflamed or irritated.
- You may GENTLY apply a cold compress to the treated area(s) as needed for any burning or irritation associated with your treatment.
- Make sure to avoid excessive heat on the treated area and direct sun exposure of any kind, as well as tanning beds and self-tanners to the treated areas for 4 weeks after treatment.
- Do NOT engage in strenuous exercise for 2-3 days after treatment because it may exacerbate the inflammatory and can cause your skin to become extremely inflamed.
- Sweating excessively after treatment can irritate the skin or cause blistering due to the sweat being unable to escape through the top layer of dead skin. Try to avoid sweating until after you have stopped peeling to avoid lifting the skin prematurely, as this can cause scarring.
- Do NOT use any acidic products such as retinoids or tretinoins, acne medication products such as Retin-AⓇ, TazoracⓇ, RenovaⓇ, AtralinⓇ, ZianaⓇ, VeltinⓇ, DifferinⓇ, the antibiotic Doxycycline, AHAs (lactic, glycolic, tartaric, etc.), BHAs (salicylic), benzoyl peroxide, vitamin C products, lightening agents such as hydroquinone or any exfoliative products including loofahs or coarse sponges to your skin for 2 weeks after your chemical peel, or more if you notice your skin becomes sensitive to application. These medications and products increase your photosensitivity, which can significantly increase the likelihood of complications.
- Do NOT tweeze, pick, rub, exfoliate, wax, use a depilatory, undergo electrolysis, or schedule a facial or cosmetic service such as laser resurfacing, or IPL on a treated area(s) for 4 weeks after your treatment. To reduce the risk of scarring, you do not want to remove the dry, rough, dead skin faster than your body wants to.
- Do NOT get your hair dyed until a week after you have finished peeling, if your treatment was performed on the face or neck. For most people, week 3 post-peel is the best time to have your hair color treated.
- This procedure can stimulate cold sores. If you have an outbreak after your treatment, please call the office to inquire about obtaining a prescription. Please ask to speak with the esthetician, Alli.
How to Care for your Skin Post-Peel
- Cleanse Gently: Your skin may be fragile for 5-7 days. Cleanse your skin with COOL water (hot water will cause inflammation to the skin) using only your fingertips – no washcloths, loofahs, buff puffs, sponges, ClarisonicⓇ, etc. We recommend using the Revision Gentle Cleanser. Other mild cleansers such as Dove Unscented Bar Soap for Sensitive SkinⓇ, AveenoⓇ, CetaphilⓇ, CeraVeⓇ, or VanicreamⓇ may be recommended by your esthetician, depending on your specific needs.
- Moisturize Often: Letting the skin dry out may cause discomfort. We recommend using SkinCeuticals Phyto Corrective GelⓇ and SkinCeuticals Epidermal RepairⓇ to help your skin recover. For strong peels, you may use petroleum jelly for the first few days or as needed on sensitive areas that are peeling. When you start to peel, use a non-comedogenic moisturizer such as AveenoⓇ, VanicreamⓇ, CetaphilⓇ, or CeraVeⓇ, until the skin feels back to normal. This will promote the healing process by locking in moisture and reducing the chance of a bacterial infection, redness, and irritation. Use these products several times per day or as needed. Topical hydrocortisone may be recommended, depending on your specific needs.
- Protect Your Skin: Heat and sun exposure can cause inflammation to the skin. Remember to avoid excessive heat on the treated area and direct sun exposure of any kind, as well as tanning bed sand self-tanners to the planned treatment areas for 4 weeks after treatment. If you need to be outdoors, make sure to use an umbrella or wear a large-brimmed hat, a pair of sunglasses, and use a physical sunblock (containing zinc oxide and titanium dioxide). We recommend using SkinCeuticals Sheer Physical UV Defense SPF 50Ⓡ or Colorescience SunforgettableⓇ. Both of these products provide broad-spectrum protection from both UVA and UVB rays with no chemical sun filters. Apply 30 minutes before exposure and reapply often (about every 2 hours) when exposed to the sun. Other sunscreen products may be recommended depending on your specific needs.