woman face wrinkles before and after treatment

Today, the most searched question revolves around ‘phenol peel treatment.’ As the world advances, people are increasingly seeking fast and effective ways to enhance their appearance. The definition of looking better varies from person to person; some may be searching for temporary solutions to address specific skin problems, while others aim to shave off a few years and achieve a more youthful appearance. 

Cosmetic products, promising rapid anti-wrinkle effects, are gaining popularity for combating the visible signs of aging.”

While these products are preferred and in constant demand, they may not serve as a permanent solution for individuals dealing with more chronic problems or signs of aging. Some may claim to offer long-term results, but often, they only mitigate certain effects of the problem. In such cases, these products primarily provide partial sun damage control and temporary wrinkle minimization. 

Learn more about Korean Double Cleansing For Oily Skin here 

This limitation prompts the exploration of more enduring solutions, such as a treatment known as a phenol peel. Renowned for its permanent effects, a phenol peel instills trust in its efficacy. These deep chemical peels outperform their lighter and medium counterparts, offering a transformative experience to help you don a completely new face.

To some, the concept might initially seem too invasive, even the sound of it. However, the benefits include achieving brighter-looking skin in just a few weeks. As a permanent solution, the process does entail certain risks, emphasizing the importance of having a trained professional in the industry administer it.


What is phenol peel?

Phenol peels stand out as one of the most efficient chemical peel treatments available on the market. While most peels target the upper epidermis, phenol peels distinguish themselves by penetrating much deeper, reaching beyond the first layer and down to the dermis

The process involves agents like phenol and carbonic acid, facilitating the removal and repair of damaged sites, and allowing the skin to develop its protective barrier. The replacement of fibers within the dermis enhances the quality of the structure, resulting in a better overall look afterward.

All potent chemicals, such as those in this treatment, can lead to face peeling due to their intensity. However, the dermis that peels off often bears high levels of sun damage, acne scars, wrinkles, etc. The result is a much smoother finish with reduced scars and marks.

What is a phenol peel good for?

A phenol peel proves beneficial for individuals dealing with various health conditions, including deep wrinkles, acne scars, skin pigmentation, and unwanted growth. Over time, it can significantly enhance the overall texture of the skin

Who is a good candidate for a deep chemical peel?

Individuals who qualify for a chemical peel often have fairer skin tones. This is because individuals with darker or more sensitive skin are prone to scarring, burns, and hyperpigmentation more swiftly than those with lighter skin varieties

How does a deep chemical peel work?

Since potentially invasive or painful experiences often require sedation, phenol peels are no exception. Local anesthesia is applied to provide a relaxing effect by numbing the face. Following this, the face is cleansed in preparation for the application of a chemical solution.

The chemical solution, known as solution phenol or carbolic acid, is then brushed onto the skin surface and diluted with water. Subsequently, an ointment is applied to reduce any potential swelling or pain. Gauze bandages or tape are then used to secure the ointment in place.

Once the phenol peel is applied to the skin, it penetrates the dermal layer to address damaged skin. The healing process involves replacing weakened collagen, and strengthening the epidermis. After the removal of skin and collagen, deep lines, wrinkles, acne scarring, and other unwanted growth are significantly reduced. Welcome blemish and acne-free skin after the treatment.

The Deep Chemical Peel Risks and Side Effects

A deep chemical peel, as its name suggests, is much harsher than light or medium varieties. One primary reason for this is its deep penetration into the skin. It’s crucial to remain aware of the potential risks and side effects for future reference and understanding

One sign of a deep peel is redness, often followed by swelling and scabbing. These symptoms may persist for months after treatment. Infections, such as fungal, bacterial, or viral, can occur post-chemical peel, with herpes flare-ups being a possible result, leading to cold sores.

Read this article about “What Does Coconut Oil Do For Your Face?


Hypopigmentation, where the skin becomes lighter than usual, is a potential outcome of a deep phenol peel, especially on darker skin due to its increased sensitivity. Facial scarring is a concern, primarily observed in the lower regions, and is often treated with steroid medications and antibiotics.

Beyond skin-related issues, complications like damage to the heart can occur. Phenol peels may trigger a faster and irregular heartbeat, negatively impacting the liver and kidneys. To mitigate these effects, smaller amounts are administered for 10 to 20 minutes.

Given the normality and commonality of such complications post-treatment, honesty with estheticians is crucial. Certain individuals, like the elderly, pregnant women, those with recurring cold sores, and those with a family history of keloids (overgrown scar tissue), may need alternative treatments. Additionally, individuals taking oral acne medication should avoid phenol treatments.”

Recovery From Phenol Peel

Perhaps it does not come as a surprise to anyone that phenol peel recovery takes a longer time than the light to medium-level chemical processes. The swelling and redness after the peel likely take time to heal. Sometimes, the swelling gets enough to affect the eyelids and make it difficult to shut them. At times, a throbbing or burning sensation is also experienced. 

Therefore, post-treatment, your doctor will put on a surgical dressing to keep the ointment in close touch with the skin. A prescription might also be advised for taking painkillers and ridding of the pain quicker. The treatment might also entail soaking the face repeatedly and reapplying the prescribed ointment for the following two weeks. 

After the two weeks finish, one can start developing new skin. While this happens, you might notice your skin coming off, but remember not to manually peel it off during the process. The peeling skin comes off and falls by itself. The skin might still experience redness for some months onslaught to the treatment. The skin might even appear lighter in complexion and might not tan any longer.

Since the healing progress may not look the best, some patients take to their homes during these days following treatment and recovery. You might have to take several follow-up trips to your doctor too so all comes along fine. Remember that the healing process is as important as the treatment. 

Only after 2 weeks pass, one can start applying makeup over the red patches. You should wear sunscreen always just to make sure. Only after a complete healing from the full-face phenol peel, will you be able to notice the noticeable improvement in skin condition and texture. However, over time, the sun can damage the skin and lead to newer wrinkles on the face. Skin elasticity changes regardless of the passing of time and age. 

How much would one have to pay for a phenol peel?

Generally speaking, chemical peels as the phenol type get charged at about $300, but they can range as low as $99 to above $2,800. The consultation process will allow you to set a deal with the estheticians in terms of pricing pre-treatment. 

The cost charged for such a treatment varies depending on the type of peel. Other factors are the location and standing of the clinic or the facility where you get it done. Together with this, the esthetician’s experience is another factor.


Are the Complications of Phenol Peels Worth It?

Indeed, treatments designed to penetrate through the deeper layers of the skin can create serious complications like skin damage and hyperpigmentation. However, when we look at the pros of it, the cons are far outweighed. For instance, the treatment reduces the threat of getting skin cancer because it cuts down on the several layers of damage. 

Secondly, healthy ways of maintenance and proper skin care can help fight off its effects and make the results last. However, we must remember that a chronological change will temper the skin naturally over time. Such an effect is inevitable which should make it easy to accept. 

Are Phenol Peel Masks the Only Option for Wrinkled Skin?

Perhaps phenol peels are no home-made masks which makes them prone to causing damage in the long run. It is why it’s more expensive than other, gentler chemical peels. For instance, a phenol peel from a renowned clinic and a trained practitioner will cost you about $3,000 to $6,000, while the milder glycolic peels get priced at around $500. 

Similarly, other treatments like an ablative laser treatment, such as Fraxel Repair will cost around the same but will conduce a faster healing process. The depth control of the needle penetration is easier to control with a laser as opposed to a peel. It is why most people use this form of treatment. Lasers also cut down on most of the post-treatment risks that still exist with phenol peels.

Therefore, other methods do exist and work, but phenol peels, due to their intensity of chemicals, will promise better and faster results. 

Do People Have to Prep the Skin Before Phenol Peel? 

A phenol peel never gets considered any walk in the park and that is why risk should be mitigated as much as possible. Darker skins are more prone to suffrage after treatment. Hence, pre-treatment melanin issues must be catered to. Lasers and peels can worsen such disorders.

 Therefore, follow-up on those treatments before advancing towards phenol peels. Some doctors even discourage the use of retinol for a week before using the peel. One must also not expose the skin too much to the sun before getting treated. It reduces overall damage and prevents disorders from occurring or getting worse. 

The skin also gets removed and leaves an open wound. Hence, the infection can run the risk of getting worse. It will ruin skin conditions further if the previous ones do not get resolved in time. 

Does Phenol Peel Suit All Age Groups?

People who qualify for phenol peel are those above 18 years minimum. More than the already mentioned melanin quantities in the skin and realistic expectations to keep from the treatment, one also needs to be of a certain age. This is because chemicals already have adverse effects on the skin. If the skin is too sensitive at a younger age or has yet to develop fully, it might trigger certain spots and lead to long-lasting acne conditions and problems. 

Can One Conduct a Phenol Treatment At Home? 

Phenol must only be administered professionally, at a clinic. One must keep a check on the practitioner as well because the greater the experience, the smoother the process. Moreover, the sores or redness caused after treatment is enough to freak someone out in the absence of a medical practitioner.

Can People Wash Their Face and Continue Skincare Straight After Treatment? 

Most peels require a standard time of about 5 to 7 days for recovery. Your skin will dry put post-procedure. However, drinking enough water during this time and avoiding washing the face for the next 24 hours can help mitigate potential risks. 

Other abrasive chemicals from dace washes or exfoliating sponges and face serums must also be avoided for the next 7-10 days minimum. 

These serums also include all retinol and glycolic acids, together with Vitamin C serums. However, since Vitamin C serum is a more natural product, it can be applied after the first 48 hours finish.

Last Thoughts

Phenol peels come at a cost when it comes to carefully managing and treating skin conditions. However, investing in a good clinic and practitioner will ensure reliable results that could last you for quite a long time. Even if the skin goes back to its natural chronological wrinkling, it can still help mitigate most adverse effects on the skin together with acne scarring and infections on the skin. 






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