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How will I feel during a chemical peel procedure?

Patricia Farris, MD
Dermatology

Patients who have chemical peels feel a burning or stinging sensation.  We use a small hand held fan to make patients feel more comfortable.  This discomfort only lasts a few minutes but it can be quite intense with peels like TCA. 

Dr. Ellen Marmur, MD
Dermatology

The sensation during a 30% TCA type of peel (which is moderate to more extreme) rises like a crescendo - like going up a roller coaster, getting to the top, and then making a dramatic descent. The peel has a slow onset; then you begin to feel pinprick tingles, which intensify more and more into thousands of tiny, sharp stings for about six minutes until it gradually calms down. At its worst point, people describe it as feeling like a hot curling iron hitting your face repeatedly.

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Simple Skin Beauty: Every Woman's Guide to a Lifetime of Healthy, Gorgeous Skin

What if a leading dermatologist just happened to be your best friend and you could ask her anything? DR. ELLEN MARMUR, a world-renowned New York City dermatologist, answers all your questions with...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.