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What to Expect After a Chemical Peel

The results of a successful chemical peel will leave your skin tone looking more even and with a reduced number of spots. A deeper chemical peel will have a stronger effect, increasing the chances of spot-removal, while a lighter peel will have a more subtle effect. Which procedure is more appropriate for your skin will depend on your skin tone, the intensity of your spots and the health of your skin.

The immediate after-effects of a chemical peel can vary depending on the strength of the procedure; light, medium and deep chemical peels will take different lengths of time to heal and may cause higher or lower levels of discomfort. 

To ensure you best understand how to take care of your skin during the healing process, the experts at Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors have written this guide to explain what to expect following a chemical peel. Read more to find out how to help your body to heal properly, the symptoms that can indicate a problem, and what to do if things do not go according to plan.

What is the healing process following a chemical peel?

Due to the nature of the process, your skin will feel tight and sore after a chemical peel. You may experience swelling and slight crusting on the areas where the chemical was applied. This is all normal, and the severity of these aspects of the healing process will vary depending on the depth of the chemical peel.

A medium-strength chemical peel will usually take around two weeks of healing before your skin returns to normal. A light chemical peel will heal more quickly, while a deep peel will take longer, but it is difficult to provide an accurate estimate because the procedure will affect each person differently. Your doctor should provide more information about the healing process before you undergo a chemical peel.

To ensure your skin heals quickly and completely, there are a number of activities you should avoid. These include:

  • Flexing your face muscles too strongly - avoid making large movements with your face, for example, expressive smiling or frowning. 

  • Strenuous exercise - running, stretching or moving the affected area in any way that may apply pressure.

  • Bathing - avoid taking baths and submerging the affected area for the duration of the healing process.

  • Laying on the affected area - prop yourself up in bed so you will be less likely to roll over.

  • Sunbathing - even after the skin has fully healed, you should avoid exposing it to harsh sun. Always use suncream when out in sunny weather.

If you neglect to meet any of these criteria, your skin could become damaged or infected, which could lead to extra pain, a longer healing process and an undesired effect on your appearance.

Other things you should consider to facilitate the best chance of successful healing include:

  • Drinking lots of water and eating healthily

  • Getting lots of rest

  • Light exercise, such as taking short walks in the shade

Your cosmetic surgeon should provide you with details on how to best care for yourself following your procedure. If they fail to do so, and there is a problem during the healing process, they may be found to have committed negligence and in such cases, you may be owed compensation.

What should I do if I think my chemical peel procedure has gone wrong?

If you notice symptoms such as pain that lasts more than a few days, swelling, or numbness, it may be that your face has not healed properly following your chemical peel. If you believe your skin may have become infected, you should speak to your cosmetic surgeon as soon as possible.

There are a few reasons your procedure may have gone wrong. The body can sometimes naturally reject cosmetic surgery. If you have not taken the recommended steps during the healing process, this can also affect your likelihood of infection or problems with healing.

Alternatively, something may have gone wrong during your procedure. Your surgeon may have acted negligently or made a mistake which led to the side effects you are experiencing. If you believe this may have happened, you should contact a different medical practitioner for advice about your health. You should also consider speaking to a professional solicitor.

All medical professionals are required to uphold a duty of care to their patients. This demands that they perform their work to a standard that will not lead the patient to suffer harm. If your cosmetic surgeon did not uphold their duty of care to you, and you have suffered because of it, you may be able to claim compensation. 

It is important to consider claiming compensation, as it can help you to pay for any corrective surgery, recovery time and support you may require. To do so, you will have to prove the following:

  • That your surgeon acted negligently

  • That your surgeon’s actions affected you, either causing pain or injury, or due to a loss of earnings while you recovered

Making a legal claim can be complicated, and many people who have suffered due to clinical negligence avoid claiming for this reason. However, pursuing compensation could remove any financial burden you incurred as a result of your procedure going wrong, and enable you to make a proper recovery.

At Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors, we are experts in our field. We can guide you through the entire process and explain everything you will need to know in easy-to-understand language to give you the best chance at success with your compensation claim. Additionally, we operate on a no win, no fee basis, meaning you will not have to pay your legal fees if we are unsuccessful, so there is no risk of a further financial burden when pursuing a claim.

Speak to us

If you have suffered due to a poorly performed chemical peel, we want to hear from you and support your recovery to help you return to your normal life. Call us today on 0808 291 5053, or fill out an online contact form.

Visit our Chemical Peel Claims page for more information.

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Mike Saul


Michael Saul is a partner at Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors, where he brings his extensive specialist legal expertise and passion for helping people to the forefront of his work. With a proven track record of success in cosmetic surgery negligence cases, Michael has dedicated his career to providing clients with the highest level of representation and achieving favourable outcomes.

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