“There are many different types and depths [of peels], and they address different skin concerns and conditions,” says Dr. Neel Bector, a Mississauga, Ontario physician, in a chemical peel recovery Q&A. “A great peel with minimal downtime is a Jessner—it works well for pore size, scarring, and hyperpigmentation. You can expect some light peeling lasting approximately three days.”
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.
Your doctor may numb the area with a topical anesthetic, especially if you’re receiving a deep peel. For deep peels, your doctor may also use a regional anesthetic, which will numb large areas. They are particularly likely to do this if you’re having your face and neck treated. For deep peels, you’ll also be given an IV, and your heart rate will be closely monitored.
Thorough preparation and a proper, well-monitored recovery spent carefully following your surgeon's instructions can result in a beautiful, natural-looking enhancement that provides you with many years of comfort, satisfaction, and boosted self-esteem. Patience is a virtue in every stage of your treatment. Be ready to discuss your medical history in great detail during your pre-op evaluation, and understand that you will be dramatically reducing your physical activity immediately following surgery.
The most salient difference between chemical peels and microdermabrasion is that microdermabrasion is a non-chemical procedure, and attacks imperfections by actually "sanding" flaws from the skin surface. While treatment plans for microdermabrasion and mild chemical peels such as glycolic acid chemical peels are similar, more advanced chemical peels require only one session. However, deep chemical peels such as the phenol peel also require much more recovery time than microdermabrasion and the more mild peels. Also unlike microdermabrasion, deep chemical peels change the actual pigmentation of the skin through bleaching. Because of this, patients with naturally darker complexions may be better candidates for microdermabrasion.
Depending on the extent of your surgery, you can expect to spend anywhere from three days to a week or more limiting yourself to minimal physical activity. You certainly will not be bed ridden during this time, but you will be expected to avoid activity that is more strenuous than walking very short distances. You will also have to take very special care to avoid placing any strain on your incisions.