Cosmetic Surgery Tips

Tca chemical peel vs vi peel

In the realm of skincare, there is a constant quest for the most effective and transformative treatments that can rejuvenate and revitalize our skin. Two popular options that have gained significant attention in recent years are TCA (Trichloroacetic Acid) chemical peel and Vi Peel. Both these treatments promise remarkable results in enhancing the skin’s texture, reducing wrinkles, and improving overall complexion. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the intricacies of TCA chemical peel and Vi Peel, highlighting their similarities, differences, benefits, and potential side effects, helping you make an informed decision about the best skin rejuvenation treatment for your needs.

TCA Chemical Peel vs Vi Peel

Before we embark on comparing the two treatments, let’s familiarize ourselves with TCA chemical peel and Vi Peel individually.

TCA Chemical Peel: The Skin Refining Marvel

A TCA chemical peel is a non-invasive cosmetic procedure designed to enhance the appearance and texture of the skin. It utilizes trichloroacetic acid, a potent chemical agent, to remove the outermost layers of the skin, encouraging the growth of new, healthier skin cells. TCA chemical peel is known for its effectiveness in reducing the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, sun damage, acne scars, and hyperpigmentation.

Vi Peel: The Multitasking Skin Resurfacer

The Vi Peel is a revolutionary medical-grade chemical peel that offers a blend of powerful ingredients to rejuvenate the skin. This unique formulation consists of a synergistic blend of trichloroacetic acid (TCA), salicylic acid, phenol, retinoic acid, and vitamin C. The Vi Peel targets a myriad of skin concerns, including acne, acne scars, melasma, sunspots, and uneven skin tone. It is also suitable for various skin types and ethnicities.

What Is a Trichloroacetic Chemical Peel?

TCA is derived from acetic acid, a derivative of vinegar, and is available in concentrations ranging from 15–70%. It is applied to remove the top layer of skin from the face, neck, hands or other parts of the body.

A TCA peel chemically exfoliates the skin and reduces the appearance of fine lines, hyperpigmentation, melasma, acne scars and sun damage; it improves skin texture.

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TCA peels can be performed at a variety of strengths—from light to medium—and can be customized by the number of layers applied and any prepeel agents used. 

How Does a TCA Peel Work?

TCA  breaks up keratin, a protein found in the skin. This causes the keratin to stop functioning properly, lighten in color and peel away from the skin over the course of several days. As the layers of damaged skin are removed, healthier, smoother skin is revealed beneath.

While a light peel only affects the topmost layer of skin, the epidermis, a medium peel can penetrate the papillary dermis below to treat deeper damage.


The concentration of TCA used determines the depth of the peel. Lower concentrations provide more subtle changes in the skin, while higher concentrations significantly improve overall skin tone and texture while removing scars, wrinkles and hyperpigmentation.

Light peels of 10–15% concentrations can treat hyperpigmentation, while 20% peels treat sun-damaged or aging skin and minor scars. Medium peels of 30–35% treat deeper wrinkles, deeper scars and precancerous growths.

Although TCA in higher concentrations was used for deep full-face peels in the past, it is no longer recommended due to the risk of postprocedural complications. In concentrations up to 70%, TCA can be applied to very small areas of skin to treat individual scars or lesions. 

While peels of lower concentration can be performed on the face, neck, hands or any part of the body with sun damage, peels of 20% or higher should only be performed on the face as other parts of the body are more likely to scar. 

Tca cross chemical peel price

TCA Peel: A dermatology treatment using TCA peel may cost anywhere between Rs 5,000 and Rs 7000 per session. TCA or trichloroacetic acid peel helps undo skin damage caused due to external factors. It is especially beneficial for people having melasma and acne scars.

Tca chemical peel treatment

TCA chemical peels offers many noticeable improvements to the skin, to include a reduction in the appearance of scars, signs of aging and sun damage.

Acne and acne scars

TCA can temporarily reduce blemishes by deeply exfoliating the skin. However, it cannot address the root causes of acne such as hormones and overproduction of the skin’s natural oils. Because of this, and the long recovery time in comparison with other peels, TCA is not usually recommended to treat acne.

However, TCA is an effective treatment for post-acne scarring. It simultaneously smoothes the skin’s texture while removing postinflammatory hyperpigmentation, the dark spots of discoloration that appear after a blemish has healed. One study found that TCA was more effective than microdermabrasion, microneedling and glycolic acid at removing acne scars.

Atrophic acne scars, commonly called icepick or boxcar scars, can be effectively treated with high concentrations of TCA (70%) using the CROSS technique. In this study, patients reported they were very satisfied or satisfied in 81% of cases, with better treatment outcomes associated with more severe pretreatment scarring. 

The CROSS technique involves the targeted application of TCA into each individual depression to reconstruct scar tissue and even out the skin. This treatment is repeated every few weeks over the course of several months. 

The CROSS method is more efficient at treating atrophic scars than a full face peel because only small amounts of the chemical are applied to targeted areas, reducing the amount of recovery time needed. 

Sun damage

TCA is effective in any concentration to reduce sun damage, and does so by removing sunspots—flat, brown spots that develop due to sun exposure—and improving skin tone and texture. It has been proven particularly effective at increasing skin elasticity and hydration, two signifiers of healthy, undamaged skin.


TCA can be successfully used to lighten all types of hyperpigmentation, including freckles, age spots, dark patches and melasma. 

TCA peels vs. other chemical peels

Even at low concentrations, TCA is stronger than other common peeling agents such as salicylic acid and glycolic acid. It therefore has a greater ability to resurface skin with just one treatment. 

A single light peel brightens skin and reduces large pores, however multiple peels are usually necessary to see significant changes in the appearance of skin. Conversely, TCA can substantially reduce hyperpigmentation and sun damage with a single treatment. With multiple treatments, it can effectively treat acne scars. However, the risk of complications from a medium peel is higher and recovery time is longer than for a light peel.

Extensive skin damage can be effectively treated with deeper peels. Deep peels can be performed with TCA, but phenol is more commonly used as it carries a lower risk of complications. 

As an alternative to a single deep phenol peel, a series of medium TCA peels can significantly improve the skin without the extensive downtime, risks and permanent skin changes of a deep TCA peel. 

Are TCA Chemical Peels Right for Your Skin?

All skin types are able to tolerate TCA chemical peels, although not necessarily at high concentrations. Caution must be taken for those with very light and dark skin to mitigate the risk of permanent skin discoloration or other unwanted side effects.

Contraindications for chemical peels include the tendency to form keloid scars, taking medication that makes your skin light sensitive and any active bacterial, fungal or viral infections.

If your skin cannot tolerate a TCA chemical peel, alternatives for treating minor skin issues such as hyperpigmentation include glycolic acid or salicylic acid peels, microdermabrasion and microneedling. More severe skin damage and signs of aging can be treated with laser skin resurfacing.

What to Expect During a TCA Peel 

Although the procedure itself only lasts a few minutes, a TCA peel involves more than one appointment. A pre- and postprocedure skin care regimen is also required to obtain the best results. 


The weeks or months leading up to your procedure usually require a prepeel regimen as determined by your dermatologist, to improve the outcome of your treatment.

If you regularly use retinoid creams or medications, you will be asked to discontinue them because they can cause the TCA to penetrate too deeply into the skin. Conversely, if you do not use retinoids, you may be prescribed one for a short duration if your provider determines it will shorten your treatment time and improve your results. This same principle applies for bleaching agents such as hydroquinone.

If you experience frequent cold sores, you will be prescribed an antiviral to avoid a flare-up after treatment.

In the week before treatment, stop using hair removal products, facial scrubs and any skin lightening products on your face.


Before the procedure, the provider will clean your face and protect your hair and clothes. You may be given a sedative or painkiller depending on the depth of the treatment.

During treatment, the TCA is applied with a cotton-tipped applicator or gauze. The treated skin might begin to whiten or frost, causing a burning sensation. After about five minutes, additional layers can be applied to increase the depth of the peel.

Once the desired number of layers have been applied, the provider will remove the TCA from the skin and apply a cool compress for several minutes, followed by a protective ointment. A TCA peel does not require a neutralizing solution.

Recovery and aftercare

After your TCA peel, your skin will be red and swollen for several days. This will transition into darkening, crusting and peeling of the skin. You can take over-the-counter (OTC) pain medication to ease any discomfort. 

Your skin will take 7 to 14 days to heal, but redness can persist for several months. You’ll likely schedule a follow-up visit with your clinician to ensure the healing process goes smoothly.

Your provider will provide you with specific instructions for aftercare such as the application of ointment or a prescription for antiviral medication; during the healing process follow all instructions to avoid complications.

Use only mild cleansers and other skin care products and meticulously wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a high SPF throughout the recovery phase. Do not pick at or peel the skin, as this can lead to scarring.

Avoid vitamin C serums and moisturizers, retinoids and at-home exfoliating products until the skin has fully healed as they can damage your fragile skin.

What is a VI Peel?

A VI peel is a light chemical peel that removes the damaged outer layers of skin for a smoother texture and game-changing glow. The quick and painless treatment combines many of the best peeling ingredients (Phenol and TCA) with anti-aging ones (retinol A, vitamin C), minus any irritating hydroxy acids.

What ingredients are in a VI Peel?

VI Peel is a blend of TCA or trichloroacetic acid, retinoic acid, salicylic acid, phenol, and vitamin C which work together to safely remove the damaged layers of the skin. Depending on which Vi Peel is used other ingredients may include hydroquinone, kojic acid, benzoyl peroxide and hydrocortisone. VI Peel promotes cellular turnover and refines the surface layer of the skin for a smoother, firmer, clearer and more youthful appearance. 

Benefits of the VI Peel

VI peels are perfect for those looking for a painless pre-wedding treatment that will yield immediate results. Depending on your skin’s needs, there are several different versions of the VI peel to choose from. During your initial skin consultation, an esthetician can help you determine which one is the best match for you. “The VI peel helps to improve the tone, texture, and clarity of the skin while reducing age spots, sun damage, and hyperpigmentation,” Doft explains. “It also softens fine lines and acne scars while stimulating collagen production for firmer, more youthful skin.”

Benefits of each of the components of a VI Peel

Retinoic Acid – inhibits melanin (pigment) production and increases cell turnover and exfoliation.

Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA) – acts by boosting collagen and exfoliates the skin.

Salicylic Acid – acts to reduce the bacteria that cause acne by cleansing the pores, reducing inflammation.

Phenol – numbs the skin to allow for a pain free chemical peel application. 

Ascorbic Acid – a powerful antioxidant that reverses free radicals, evens skin tone and helps prevent future damage. 

Hydroquinone -helps to reduce pigment helping to both lighten and brighten the skin.

Kojic Acid – inhibits the production of pigment.

Side Effects of the VI Peel

The VI peel is suitable for all skin types and requires little downtime, but each patient responds differently. You may experience quite a bit of itchiness on night one (have a Benadryl handy and a Claritin or other non-drowsy antihistamine for the following day, just in case).

It’s best to schedule your peel for the end of the day Thursday, so you can go to work on Friday with only minor dryness and then hibernate over the weekend since the majority of peeling takes place on days two and three. The peeling isn’t totally gross, but it’s not exactly cute (and you’re not allowed to pick at the skin, it has to fall off naturally), so if you’re uncomfortable appearing in public, limit your plans.

  • Swelling
  • Temporary red, brown or yellow tone to the skin.
  • Peeling of the skin typically lasts 4-7 days however in some individuals peeling may take longer or be more extensive.
  • Although generally a painless procedure some patients will experience discomfort after the peel that may last a few days.
  • Those prone to acne may note a temporary acne breakout.
  • Scarring. (Although scarring is rare, it is important not to pick or pull at the skin as it is peeling and adhere to the pre and post treatment instructions and to refrain from sun exposure during the course of your treatments)
  • Hyper or hypopigmentation changes  (It is not uncommon for age spots, hyperpigmentation and melasma that you are treating to become a little darker.  Typically this is temporary, however in rare instances it can be permanent.  It is important to adhere to the pre and post treatment instructions and to refrain from sun exposure during the course of your treatments).
  • Cold sores/shingles.  It is possible to reactive cold sores or shingles as result of treatment.  If you are predisposed to cold sores or shingles in or around the treatment area you should discuss this with your provider so an anti-viral medication can be prescribed prior to treatment.

What to Expect During the VI Peel

Truth be told, chemical peels sound much scarier than they actually are. Your technician will cleanse your skin and wipe the chemical solution all over your face. It’s a fast treatment that will last about 30 minutes from start to finish.

Following the office visit, you’re sent home with a handy kit that includes specific instructions for the next 72 hours. You’re allowed to remove the solution using a post-peel towelette four hours after the initial application; one hour before bed, another towelette, and gentle face washing with the VI cleanser. You’re also given a hydrocortisone cream to relieve any itching or discomfort, plus an SPF 50 sunscreen to wear over the course of the week to protect the new layer of skin.

After just one peel, you should expect to see an improvement in your skin’s appearance. Dark spots and fine lines diminish immediately upon completion of the treatment, and months later you will still be able to see the effects of the peel.

What contraindications are there to VI Peel?

  • Pregnancy
  • Breastfeeding
  • Aspirin Allergy
  • Use of Isotretinoin (Accutane) in the past 6 months.
  • Active cold sores or herpes or shingles in or around the treatment area.
  • Allergy to hydroquinone
  • Immune disorders
  • Phenol allergy
  • Inflamed skin with open wounds in the treatment area.
  • Liver conditions
  • Chemotherapy or radiation in the past 6-12 months.

VI Peel Cost

Price varies depending upon the practice, but Dr. Doft charges $400 for the peel and $250 for the facial. In some instances, a VI peel may be combined with similar skin treatment methods to improve your skin’s texture—however, the peel itself can also be a standalone treatment. On average, most VI peels cost between $400-$500 a session. It’s best to consult a dermatologist to evaluate how many treatments you’ll need to address your skin concerns. If multiple sessions are needed, then that will impact the final cost. For many brides, one treatment may be enough to reduce surface damage and restore your youthful glow.

Is the VI Peel a TCA Peel?

Many individuals inquire whether the VI Peel is a TCA Peel due to certain similarities between the two treatments. However, the VI Peel and TCA Peel are not the same. While both are chemical peels, they contain different active ingredients and have distinct formulations.

The VI Peel is a proprietary blend of powerful ingredients, including trichloroacetic acid (TCA), salicylic acid, retinoic acid, phenol, and vitamin C. Although TCA is an ingredient in the VI Peel, it is combined with other components to create a unique formula that provides remarkable results with minimal downtime.

On the other hand, the TCA Peel is a standalone treatment that primarily utilizes trichloroacetic acid as the main active ingredient. It is available in varying strengths, allowing skincare professionals to customize the treatment based on the individual’s skin type and desired outcome.

Is VI Peel Better Than Chemical Peel?

The VI Peel has gained immense popularity in the skincare industry and is often compared to other chemical peels, including the TCA Peel. While it’s difficult to definitively state whether the VI Peel is better than a chemical peel, it is undoubtedly a highly effective treatment with several advantages.

One of the key benefits of the VI Peel is its versatility. It can address a wide range of skin concerns, including hyperpigmentation, acne, fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven texture. Additionally, the VI Peel is suitable for all skin types, making it accessible to a broader audience seeking skin rejuvenation.

The VI Peel also stands out due to its unique formulation that combines multiple active ingredients. This combination allows for a synergistic effect, enhancing the peel’s efficacy and delivering exceptional results. Furthermore, the VI Peel is associated with minimal discomfort and downtime, making it a convenient option for those with busy lifestyles.

What Peel Is Stronger Than VI Peel?

While the VI Peel is a potent and effective treatment, some individuals may require a stronger peel to address specific skin concerns. In such cases, a deep chemical peel, such as the Phenol Peel, might be a suitable option.

The Phenol Peel is a strong chemical peel that penetrates deep into the skin layers to address severe wrinkles, sun damage, and deep scars. This peel typically contains a high concentration of phenol, a powerful exfoliating agent. Due to its strength, the Phenol Peel often requires longer recovery time and is generally performed under anesthesia.

However, it is important to note that the Phenol Peel is not suitable for all skin types and may carry a higher risk of complications. Therefore, it is crucial to consult with a qualified skincare professional to determine if this peel is appropriate for your specific needs.

How Much TCA Is in VI Peel?

The VI Peel contains trichloroacetic acid (TCA) as one of its active ingredients, contributing to its exfoliating and rejuvenating effects. However, the exact concentration of TCA in the VI Peel may vary based on the specific formulation.

While the specific percentage of TCA in the VI Peel is not publicly disclosed, it is important to note that the VI Peel is designed to provide significant results with minimal downtime and discomfort. The proprietary blend of ingredients in the VI Peel ensures a safe and effective treatment, and the skincare professional administering the peel will determine the appropriate strength based on the individual’s skin type and desired outcome.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Is the VI Peel suitable for all skin types?

  • Yes, the VI Peel is formulated to be safe and effective for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

2. How long does it take to recover from a VI Peel?

  • The recovery time for a VI Peel varies from person to person but typically ranges from 5 to 7 days.

3. Can the VI Peel treat acne scars?

  • Yes, the VI Peel can help improve the appearance of acne scars by promoting skin cell turnover and stimulating collagen production.

4. Are there any side effects associated with the VI Peel?

  • Like any chemical peel, the VI Peel may cause temporary side effects such as redness, peeling, and mild discomfort. These effects typically subside within a few days.

5. Can I undergo a VI Peel during the summer months?

  • While it is generally recommended to undergo chemical peels when sun exposure is minimal, the VI Peel can be performed throughout the year, including the summer months. However, it is crucial to follow proper sun protection measures and avoid direct sun exposure after the treatment.

6. How many VI Peel treatments are required to see optimal results?

  • The number of VI Peel treatments required to achieve optimal results may vary depending on the individual’s specific skin concerns. However, most people experience significant improvements after a single treatment, while a series of treatments may be recommended for more pronounced results.


In conclusion, the VI Peel and TCA Peel are both effective treatments for skin rejuvenation, but they have distinct differences. While the VI Peel contains trichloroacetic acid (TCA) as one of its active ingredients, it is not solely a TCA Peel. The VI Peel offers versatility, convenience, and remarkable results with minimal downtime, making it a popular choice among individuals seeking skin rejuvenation.

It is essential to consult with a qualified skincare professional to determine the most suitable treatment for your specific skin concerns. Whether you opt for the VI Peel, a TCA Peel, or another chemical peel, proper evaluation and personalized recommendations will ensure the best outcome for your skin.

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