What’s it like to get a chemical peel?

By Dr Martina Pirklova

Dip Imp Dent RCS (Eng). Level 7 Certificate in Injectable Aesthetic Non-Surgical Interventions

Just like my clients, I too have areas of my face and skin that I am less than happy with. And just as I advise my patients, I look to the latest scientific developments in facial aesthetics to help me subtly alter my appearance so that I feel happier and more confident.

One of the treatments I turn to regularly for longer-lasting skin regeneration is the medium-depth ‘Perfect Peel’ by Medica Forte. For my latest blog I thought I’d capture the process in a ‘chemical peel diary’ to share with you what it felt like and, in glorious technicolour, what it looks like!

First things first though… here’s the science bit.

What is a chemical peel?

Chemical peels are an advanced form of skin care that help stimulate new skin growth, improve surface texture and can be used to treat multiple skin concerns, such as open pores, acne and acne scarring, hyperpigmentation, sun damage, age sports, fine lines and wrinkles.

At REclinic, we offer two types of chemical peel. The first is a ‘Superficial Peel’ which we use as a preventative and skin improving treatment. We use the AlumierMD

chemical peel products which give an immediate boost to your skin, helping it look dewier, glowing and refreshed. There is little to no downtime with a superficial peel and treatments can be carried out every 2 weeks to treat acne, every 3 weeks for skin pigmentation and every 4 weeks for skin rejuvenation.

The second chemical peel treatment option is the medium depth Perfect Peel® by Medica Forte. It’s great for all skin types and requires no pre-peel skin preparation. The Perfect Peel® founds itself on a key anti-aging ingredient - Glutathione. Glutathione is the ultimate antioxidant, penetrating deep into the cellular level of the skin to fight oxidant damage and is the anti-aging answer to premature wrinkling. This medium-depth peel can be performed once a month for specific skin complaints, or at six-to-twelve-month intervals for ongoing maintenance. In most cases this peel causes shedding of the skin from days 3-7 post procedure and you can normally expect around seven days of social downtime.

My Perfect Peel® diary

Day 1

I apply the peel treatment at the clinic in the afternoon. There is a tingling sensation on my skin and a very mild burning feeling as I apply the peel that lasts for a few minutes. It doesn’t hurt but I can feel my skin responding.

Following the guidance, I give my patients after every peel, I avoid putting anything on my skin and use the post-peel towelette just before bed. These are a really important part of the process and do cause a bit of mild stinging which can be treated with ordinary pain relief tablets or an antihistamine (the kind you might take for hayfever).

I take the guidance to avoid excessive sweating very seriously and lay on the sofa for the entire evening!

Day 2

Over the course of day two my skin develops some visible redness and feels quite tight in places, particularly around my mouth and chin.

Following the guidance closely I avoid using any products or make-up and simply wash my face with water and gently dry.

Day 3

The zombie effect kicks in today! The skin starts to peel around my mouth, nose and chin which is totally normal but still seems strange when I catch a glimpse of my face in the mirror.

When this starts to happen it’s time to crack open the Perfect Peel moisturiser and apply 3 times a day. It’s very soothing and really helps to control the peeling and relieve tightness and irritation.

I must not pick at the peeling skin. I must not pick at the peeling skin. I must not pick…

Day 4

Today is definitely not a day to leave the house! The peeling is quite intense with flakes of skin feeling off. The rest of my household are starting to make comments and pull faces when I walk in the room. However, the moisturising 3 times a day is definitely helping.

My fiancé has just asked if he’s marrying someone from ‘Night of the Living Dead’.

Day 5

‘The Great Peel’, as it’s been amusingly coined in my house, continues but now it’s spread to the rest of face - forehead, cheeks and neck.

It’s so tempting to pull and pick at the loose bits of skin but I resist! Rubbing, picking or pulling may cause scarring or pigmentation changes which I definitely don’t want. Larger flaps of dead skin can be removed with small scissors but generally I just try to keep my hands busy with cups of tea and biscuits!

This newly exposed skin feels a bit sensitive but the moisturiser is a great help and very soothing.

Day 6 & 7

Ok, I’m over the worse of the peeling. My skin is still quite red and ‘patchy’ looking but my fiancé has stopped called my Frankenstein’s bride and I feel confident enough to do a few zoom calls.

I can resume my normal skincare routine but avoid wearing make up and make sure I apply a strong SPF sunscreen if I leave the house (yep, even in February/March!).

2 weeks later

My skin feels and looks lovely - younger, fresher, revived! The Perfect Peel® by Medica Forte has certainly lived up to expectations.

The process is pretty pain free, although a little uncomfortable at times due to skin tightness and sensitivity. I definitely recommend blocking out the 5-6 days after the peel as you won’t feel like being seen in public but it does pass relatively quickly.

It’s been great to share this experience and I hope it answers some of the questions you might have around what it’s like to undergo a medium-depth chemical peel.

Would you like to find out more?

You can find further information about chemical skin peels on our website.

If you would like to book a FREE consultation with Dr Martina please get in touch via our contact page.

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