chemical peel aftercare
Photo by Anna Shvets

Chemical Peel Aftercare – Dos and Don’ts for Healthy Skin

Chemical peels are great for smoothing and tightening the skin, but only if you know how to take care of it properly afterward. It is essential to cleanse the skin always with lukewarm water and avoid picking or rubbing it.

Also, avoid saunas, hot tubs, and extreme exercise, as excessive sweating can irritate the skin and delay recovery.


The best way to avoid unwanted side effects from a chemical peel is to follow your skin care professional’s instructions for aftercare. These steps help your skin heal properly and reduce the risk of complications.

It’s also important to avoid picking at flakes or peeling skin. This could cause hyperpigmentation issues or leave permanent blemishes.

Another thing is to use a gentle moisturizer every time you wash your face. This will help improve your skin’s natural protective barrier and prevent dryness. You should avoid using a moisturizer with exfoliation ingredients, which can irritate your skin. Instead, look for one that is fragrance-free and dye-free.

Two standard cosmetic procedures that can help improve the appearance of the skin are chemical peels and microneedling in Memphis Tennessee.


It’s important to let your skin heal naturally after a chemical peel. Picking at flaking or peeling skin can lead to permanent scarring, hyperpigmentation, and other undesirable side effects.

It is also a good idea to avoid exfoliating for three days after a light chemical peel and up to 2 weeks for medium or deep chemical peels. Exfoliation can irritate freshly healed skin, causing redness and inflammation.

It is also recommended not to use face wipes as they contain harsh ingredients that could irritate freshly healed skin and increase the risk of infection. Instead, rinse your face with cool water and pat dry – don’t rub!

Don’t Exfoliate

Using scrubs and loofahs on the skin is tempting after a peel. However, the skin must rest after a chemical peel; exfoliating can cause damage. The skin can become irritated and may develop permanent hyperpigmentation.

Touching, picking, and pulling at loose and peeling skin is also wrong. This interrupts the skin’s natural healing process and can cause infections or scarring.

It is essential to follow all aftercare instructions provided by your skincare professional. Using gentle cleansers free of harsh chemicals will help your skin heal quickly and effectively. Also, rinse with cool water – hot water can cause scalds, and ice water can lead to numbness.

Don’t Use Soap

Using soap on your face after a chemical peel can clog pores and interfere with healing. It’s also important not to touch, rub, or pick at the skin. This can cause irritation and infection.

Attempting to self-exfoliate can also irritate; picking at flaking skin can lead to scarring. Instead, wash your skin gently with cool to lukewarm water (without rubbing) twice daily and apply a moisturizer and broad-spectrum sunscreen daily.

Listen to your practitioner’s advice and follow their instructions after a chemical peel. They will be able to give you tailored instructions suited to your skin and the type of peel you’ve done.

Don’t Excessively Moisturize

For the first few days after a chemical peel, it is recommended that you only apply a light skin product with antioxidants to keep the skin hydrated and comfortable. Avoid using deep lotions or anything that may irritate the skin.

Once the skin has stopped feeling extra sensitive, you can continue with your regular moisturizer regimen. Following the specific day and night regimen your skincare professional recommends is essential.

It would help to avoid hot shower spray, saunas, swimming pools, strenuous workouts, and steam rooms. These activities cause excessive sweating, irritate the skin, and extend the peeling process. Touching the face or rubbing the skin can also lead to irritation.

Don’t Apply Sunscreen

A peel is meant to pull up and slough away dead skin cells, revealing healthy new skin beneath. It is essential to leave this natural process to take its course. Touching, scratching, or picking at flaking skin can lead to irritation and a breakout.

Avoiding other skincare treatments following a chemical peel for a couple of weeks is also a good idea. Any other abrasive treatment can irritate the skin, leading to redness and inflammation.

Finally, always apply sunscreen that contains a physical blocker. It is the best way to protect your sensitive skin from UV rays. Remember to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen every day, even on cloudy days.