Cosmetic Surgery Tips

What To Expect The Day After A Chemical Peel

The day after a chemical peel is the most important day. It’s when the skin is at its most vulnerable, and it’s when you can expect to see some of the most dramatic results from your treatment. You will likely have some redness, flaking, and peeling on this day. These are all normal parts of the healing process, but if you see any blistering or open wounds in your skin, call your dermatologist right away. If you see these symptoms, it means that something went wrong with your chemical peel and you might need treatment for an infection.

If your skin feels tight or dry, apply a moisturizer to keep it hydrated and soft. The best one for this purpose is Aquaphor Healing Ointment because it keeps your skin moist without clogging pores or causing breakouts later on down the road.

Read on to learn more about What To Expect The Day After A Chemical Peel, Chemical Peeling Advantages and Disadvantages

Chemical Peel Process: What to Expect Day by Day

What To Expect The Day After A Chemical Peel

Chemical peels have been around in one form or another for centuries.

They’ve maintained their popularity because they’re so effective, helping to reveal healthy, radiant, youthful-looking skin. But there still seems to be a lot of confusion surrounding how a chemical peel works and what the chemical peel process looks like day by day. 

Here’s what you can expect before, during and after your chemical peel treatment.

What is a chemical peel, exactly?

Chemical peels are non-invasive cosmetic procedures that use a combination of powerful, skin-safe acids. These acids work together to break down the top few layers of the epidermis, exfoliating the skin and leaving behind the healthier layers underneath. 

The chemical peel process takes anywhere from one to seven days, depending on how “heavy” of a peel you have performed. The chemical peel we offer at Skin Pharm is a medium-depth (or TCA) peel. This peel uses a mix of alpha and beta hydroxy acids (AHAs and BHAs, including lactic acid and salicylic acid), retinoic acid and trichloroacetic acid to achieve the final results. 

What concerns do chemical peels tackle?

Chemical peels are excellent for taking on a variety of skin care concerns, including:

  • Chronic sun damage
  • Hyperpigmentation (brown spots)
  • Melasma
  • Scarring
  • Acne
  • Fine lines and wrinkles
  • Uneven skin tone or texture
  • Large, visible pores

While you’ll start to see results after a single chemical peel, the effects are cumulative, meaning maximum benefits are noticeable after a series of peels.

What should I do to prep for my chemical peel?

The prep for a chemical peel starts with timing. We recommend that you schedule your chemical peel at least two weeks before any major events, as the expected side effects are most noticeable during that period. 

You want your skin to be as healthy as possible. A week before your appointment, you should avoid doing anything that irritates your skin. This includes tanning, laser procedures, waxing, using depilatory creams, tweezing and using skin care products with topical retinoids.

If you’re experiencing any rash or viral outbreaks on your face, you may need to reschedule your appointment. Doing a chemical peel with either of those factors can potentially worsen the issue.

How does the chemical peel application work?

Before your chemical peel day-to-day process starts, you’ll need to have your provider apply the treatment. People often have many concerns about what it will feel like to get a peel done and if it’ll hurt. We recommend scheduling a consultation before having a chemical peel to discuss what to expect and answer any questions you may have. 

When you arrive at the clinic, the first step is to wash your face. Washing your face removes any layers of dead skin cells, makeup and other debris (like skin care products) that may still be sitting on your skin. The result is a clear surface, ready to accept the peel without any barriers in its way. 

(Different skin care practices can perform different depths of chemical peels, and the “deeper” the peel, the more discomfort you are likely to feel.) Skin Pharm’s medium-depth chemical peel isn’t uncomfortable, though — most people describe the sensation as “tingling,” “warm” or “tight.” To help with any potential stinging during the treatment, we provide our patients with a handheld fan, too.

Day one post-chemical peel

After your chemical peel is complete and you leave the office, what should you expect on day one?

You’ll leave the clinic with the peel solution still on your face, and you’ll notice your complexion take on a yellow hue throughout the day. (Not to worry — this means it’s working!) After a few hours, you’ll apply the retinol crème your provider sent you home with.

You might notice some redness and sensitivity as the retinol gets to work. Many people describe the feeling as similar to having a sunburn. However, the telltale peeling that comes with a chemical peel won’t start for another day or so.


While your skin is still healing, keep a few factors in mind. Your skin is incredibly raw and sensitive, and it needs additional protection. To protect it and maximize your results, you should avoid any strenuous exercise or activities that lead to sweating. 

In addition, try to stay out of the sun as much as possible and wear sunscreen (with at least an SPF of 30) if you can’t avoid it entirely. 

You’ll also want to avoid letting your skin dry out. Although applying product to raw skin can feel uncomfortable, it needs moisture to heal. Allowing your skin to dry too much can lengthen the healing process and make it more likely that your skin will scab or even scar. 

Day two post-chemical peel

Day two of the chemical peel process day to day is where you’ll likely start to see your skin peel. The top layers of your skin are beginning to dehydrate and slough off, and you’ll see this more often start between the eyes and in the corners of the nose and mouth. 

Although it may be tempting, resist the urge to help your skin peel manually. Wash your skin gently and follow up with a stronger moisturizer, like Recovery Lotion.

For many people, the redness they experience in the first few days is enough to keep them home from work and social events. Expect that your skin will react this way, and don’t schedule anything significant in the few days directly after your chemical peel. 

If you deal with breakouts, you may experience some “purging” of any blemishes present under the surface before your peel. While this isn’t common, it is possible to start with a new retinol skin care product. 

Day three and four post-chemical peel

Day three and four are when you will likely experience the worst peeling and flaking. Your skin is most likely to feel uncomfortable these days — and it’s also at its most vulnerable. Follow your provider’s skin care recommendations carefully, as they are designed to help protect your skin and assist it with its natural healing process.

Now, more than ever, your skin needs to be protected. You may even want to wear a sun protective hat along with your sunscreen to make sure your skin stays safe and doesn’t burn. Doing that keeps your healing process moving forward.

Don’t be surprised if you notice more peeling in certain areas of your face than in others. This is normal and doesn’t indicate any problem with your skin’s healing process. 

Day seven post-chemical peel

A week after your chemical peel is performed, you’ll finally be able to start seeing your results. This is where all of the flaking, peeling and redness starts to pay off. (Professionals consider the results of a chemical peel permanent, so enjoy that new skin you’re starting to see!)

Depending on how well or quickly your skin is healing, you can usually return to your normal skincare routine a week or so after your chemical peel. 

Make sure that your skin is completely done peeling before using any harsher or more abrasive skin care products, as the skin may still be sensitive. When your skin stops feeling as tight and dry, you should be ok to switch back. 

Our post-chemical peel skin care routine is excellent for helping your skin to heal, but it isn’t meant for long-term use for most of our patients. Unless you have dry, sensitive skin, prolonged use can lead to breakouts or oily-looking skin. 

One week post-chemical peel (and beyond!)

Your skin is far less flaky and sensitive by this point in your chemical peel journey. However, because your skin has gone through a process meant to safely “damage” your skin so that it looks better than ever, there may still be some noticeable healing going on. 

More sensitive areas of your skin may start to crust and scab or even have a noticeable color change. Usually, this process is complete around two weeks after your chemical peel. However, some redness may persist for months, especially in hotter weather or when you exercise. 

How soon can I get another chemical peel?

Once you start to see results from your chemical peel, you’ll probably be ready to book your next appointment! However, you need to make sure to give your skin enough time to heal before you subject it to other chemical peels. If you have another peel too soon, you risk damaging your skin instead of helping it look its best. 

We recommend waiting at least four to six weeks between treatments. On average, most of our patients need between four and six treatments total for optimal results. 

To wrap things up…

Knowing the chemical peel process day to day can help you understand what to expect if you decide to perform this game-changing cosmetic treatment. While it may take slightly longer to heal than other cosmetic treatments, the results are permanent and often even more impressive than people expect! 

Chemical Peeling Advantages and Disadvantages

A chemical peel is a mixture of chemicals that forms gel-like consistency. It’s applied to the face in order to smooth the surface of the skin, remove the appearance of fine lines and remove blemishes. There are three types of chemical peels: mild, medium-depth and deep. Each have their advantages and serve different purposes.

What Are the Advantages of a Mild Chemical Peel?

  • Chemical peels help to smooth dry skin
  • Can help with pigmentation problems
  • Controls acne
  • Removes blemishes
  • Less recovery time
  • Helps with mild sun-damage
  • Reduces mild blotchiness
  • Fresher and younger looking appearance

What Are the Advantages of a Medium-Depth Chemical Peel?

  • Thin facial lines are removed or the appearance is less noticeable
  • The medium-depth reduces facial birthmarks
  • The pigmentation in the skin is improved
  • Helps with dry skin and old acne scarring
  • Helps with sun-damaged skin
  • Improves blotchy skin
  • Younger looking overall appearance

What Are the Advantages of a Deep Chemical Peel?

  • Ability to remove pre-cancerous growths
  • Deeper acne scar emanation
  • Long lasting effect
  • Eliminates deeper lines on the face??
  • Controls acne
  • Helps with deep or course wrinkles
  • Age spot removal
  • Only a single treatment is necessary
  • Smoother skin, younger appearance
  • Long-term results are very good when the peel is specifically for acne scarring

The advantages of chemical peels are many, and all three help with different issues. The deep chemical peels are reserved for those with the worst types of skin problems, including serious acne, scarring and birthmarks. Some disadvantages of chemical peels need mentioning.

What Are the Disadvantages of a Chemical Peel?

  • Excessive peeling normally happens more with the medium-depth peel and particularly with the deep peel
  • Stinging sensation when initially applied
  • Redness appears. Again, this is particularly so with the deep and medium peels. The light peel normally results in peeling like a sunburn.
  • Temporarily may feel a bit of numbness
  • Deep chemical peels can cause a crusting or scabbing after the treatment, as the deep dead skin cells are sleuthing off. This is temporary.
  • Sensitivity to the sun ? you will need to stay out of the sun for a short time after the peel as your skin is more sensitive
  • Costs can also be a disadvantage for some, since the average chemical peel cost $500 for each treatment

While some disadvantages do exist for chemical peels, the advantages do outweigh them particularly for those suffering from severe skin problems, such as acne or acne scarring. Even with the disadvantages, most people that have had them report they would have it again because of the overall improvement of their skin’s surface and the younger fresher look the entire chemical peels bring about. The discomforts often associated with a chemical peel are temporary and subside rather quickly.

What to expect after a chemical peel

A chemical peel is a cosmetic treatment that uses a chemical solution to peel away old and damaged skin cells, allowing healthier and more youthful skin to emerge. It can help address a number of issues including wrinkles, acne scars, and hyperpigmentation. 

Some of the great benefits of this skin rejuvenation treatment include: 

  • Improves the efficacy of your skin care products 
  • Heals discolouration and scars on the skin 
  • Exfoliates away dead cells and increases cell turnover for healthy, glowing skin 
  • Results in a more even-toned complexion

7 Reasons to Consider a Chemical Peel

Chemical peels come in varying strengths and they can accomplish a great deal — whether you simply want a gentle exfoliation or you require treatment for more ingrained dermal problems. During a consultation, your skin care specialist can assess your concerns and skin type to determine which type of chemical peel is safest for you. 

Customized Chemical Peels at our Edmonton Medical Spa 

At our Edmonton med spa, our highly trained team of aestheticians creates customized chemical peel treatments to eliminate fine lines, wrinkles, and even acne scars. We also offer minimally invasive anti-aging treatments including Botox, Juvederm, and IPL photorejuvenation to address any skin concerns you might have and help you achieve all your aesthetic goals. 

Want to know how we can help you achieve healthy, glowing, and more youthful-looking skin? Contact Our Edmonton Medical Spa

What to Expect Following Your Chemical Peel Treatment 

A chemical peel works to peel away tired and dull skin cells while stimulating the growth of fresh and healthy skin. In addition to this, chemical peels will result in accelerated cell turnover and encourage the production of collagen. How to Prepare Your Skin for a Chemical Peel

If you are undergoing a chemical peel treatment, here’s what you can expect after your procedure and some tips on how to take care of your skin for the best results. 

What Happens After a Chemical Peel? 

The recovery period following a chemical peel will vary depending on the type of peel you opted for. However, in general, here’s what you can expect: 

  1. The duration of the recovery period can range from three to 14 days, depending on the type of chemical peel. 
  2. For most peels, patients can expect a recovery time of five to seven days. 
  3. Following the procedure, your skin will dry out. During this time, you must drink plenty of water
  4. Avoid washing your face for at least 24 hours following your peel. 
  5. Over the next few days, your skin will begin to peel. The most intense peeling will occur during the middle days of your recovery
  6. You may also experience some irritation, crusting, or skin redness. However, if you notice any bleeding or oozing, you must contact your skin specialist straight away

4 Tips to Take Care of Your Skin After a Chemical Peel 

When performed by a highly-skilled aesthetician, a chemical peel is a safe and effective way to rejuvenate your appearance and eliminate any scars or signs of aging. However, in order to get the best results, you must look after your skin properly following your treatment. 

Here are some tips to follow: 

  1. Avoid using hot water for at least one week: For the first week following your chemical peel, avoid washing your face or showering with hot water. This is because hot water can cause post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. In addition to this, the steam will open up your pores which can significantly increase your risk of infection. 
  2. Let your skin peel naturally. The most important thing to keep in mind following your chemical peel is to avoid touching your face. Picking and pulling your skin can result in scarring. The best course of action is to allow your skin to peel off naturally. 
  3. Be gentle with your skin and avoid exfoliation. Following your chemical peel, the skin’s protective barrier will be temporarily compromised. This means that you should avoid any cleansing products with exfoliators such as facial scrubs until your skin has completely healed. When drying your skin, do not rub it. Instead, pat it dry gently with a soft towel. 
  4. Always use sunscreen and limit your exposure to the sun. Your face is at its most sensitive post-peel, so you want to avoid the sun for at least a few days. When you do go outdoors, make sure to use sunscreen and stick to shady spots. Use the sunscreen for a minimum of six weeks after your chemical peel. 

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