So you just got a chemical peel, now how do you take care of your dry flaking skin? The detail of post-care can be a lot, but it’s important to take care of your skin the right way after a more aggressive treatment. Let’s go over what the best skin healing treatment plan is.
Whether you’re just thinking of getting a chemical peel or you just got one, it’s vital to know how to take care of your skin an hour, day, and week after your treatment. Since the strength of chemical peels can vary greatly your downtime and post-care will too. Therefore, you should always follow the instructions that your provider gives you. With that being said, we should go over a few things to know about chemical peels.
Professionally applied chemical peel solutions exfoliate dead skin cells and help healthy skin cells rise to the surface. These treatments allow deeper layers of fresh and untouched skin to be revealed. Chemical peels can use a combination of AHAs (alpha hydroxy acid), BHAs (beta hydroxy acid), and/or TCA (trichloroacetic acid) to improve the tone and texture of your skin. We specifically carry the Fire & Ice “peel”, Obagi Blue Radiance Chemical Peel, and the VI Peel. IS Clinical’s Fire & Ice Peel is “more than a regular facial” but “less than a light chemical peel” – an elevated facial if you will. Obagi Blue Radiance Chemical Peel is the next step up. A superficial chemical peel where you may only flake for a day or two. The last in the line is the VI Peel. It’s a medium depth peel that entails 7 days of sheet peeling. So as you can see, chemical peel strengths vary greatly!
When choosing a chemical peel, it’s best to consider your specific skin concern and how much downtime you can handle. A deeper peel such as the VI Peel is amazing for acne, fine lines and wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation. However, some people can’t commit to 7 days of downtime. A lighter the peel like the Fire & Ice or Obagi Blue Radiance is best for dull, tired skin and general anti-aging.
How often you get peels done is ultimately up to your age and your skin concerns. Skin concerns aside, we recommend getting chemical peels about 2-3 times a year when you’re in your 20s and 30s, 6-8 times a year in your 40s and 50s, and monthly or bimonthly in your 60s.
Okay, so know that we know what chemical peels are, how to choose one and how often to get them – lets discuss what you should do after them.
In general, you’re going to want to use lots of hydrating products! Not only will you want to use them because your skin will be dry but also because hydrated skin heals faster. You’ll want to use a gentle cleanser that has no acids, alcohol, or medicated ingredients. As well as a super hydrating moisturizer. You will need to stay away from any “treatment” skincare products such as vitamin c, retinol, Hydroquinone, and so on until you are completely done peeling/flaking.
Perhaps the most important thing you can do after a chemical peel is NOT PEEL or PICK the peeling skin. It will leave you with painful burns and potential hyperpigmentation. Actively avoiding the sun is also super important. We’re talking hat and sunglasses status and, of course, religiously applied SPF. You’ll also want to stay away from heat, including the sun, sauna, hot shower, Jacuzzi, and hairdryer. This also means no exercise. Chemical and physical exfoliation should be avoided until all peeling is gone.
Makeup should also be avoided, while your skin is peeling and flaking off it brings new fresh skin to the surface, you don’t want to be wearing makeup already clogging it.
Once your skin is back to normal! Which is usually about a week. Just make sure you are no more peeling/flaking, and you’ll be fine! Weekly usage of a mild exfoliant, along with consistent moisturizing and SPF, will help prolong the effects of your professional peel and keep your skin glowing and beautiful.