After your skin has been numbed, the solution is applied to your face and is left to ‘work’. The amount of time it’s left on your skin depends on the specific type of peel, and it could range from a few seconds to up to an hour for more lightweight peels. Some peels will be neutralized with water, and then a protective mask or layer of petroleum jelly is placed on your treated skin.
During recovery, follow your doctor’s postop instructions faithfully. They’ll give you specific instructions for how often to wash your face and moisturize, and which products you should use to do so. Try to stay out of the sun until your skin has healed, and avoid using makeup or other cosmetics until your doctor gives you the go-ahead. You can use ice packs for 20 minutes at a time, or a cool fan, to help relieve discomfort at home.
During the pre-op assessment, you can expect your surgeon to conduct a close evaluation of your risk of thrombosis, or the formation of blood clots inside blood vessels. Blood clotting is a natural process that is essential in healing. For example, when you experience a minor cut on your skin, the scab that forms is a result of blood clotting. In most cases, blood clots dissolve on their own. However, when a blood clot inside a blood vessel fails to dissolve, it can obstruct proper blood flow to the lungs, brain, and other areas, which can cause serious health complications.
Deep peels must be performed by a medical doctor and can take 14 to 21 days to heal. Deep peels require special aftercare including antiviral medication, ointments and follow-up visits, according to the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery. The chemical solution used for deep peels may be phenol or trichloroacetic acid, which both reach far into the middle layer of your skin and remove damaged skin cells. Phenol chemical peels may require sedation and should only be done on the face, as the skin on the hands and neck is too thin. The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery explains this procedure may only be performed one time on a patient and is not recommended for people with darker skin or freckles, as it can cause hypopigmentation. Deep peels may cost anywhere from $3,500-$5,000—not including the doctor’s fees.
The average chemical peel can cost $500–$700 for each treatment, but prices range from $150 for a mild peel up to several thousand dollars for a series of deep peels. (10) While this might seem like a steep cost for good-looking skin, chemical peels are still less expensive than superficial fractional-laser treatments, which can run up to $1,000 a session and usually require multiple treatments.
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