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A TCA peel is a type of chemical peel used to improve one’s skin. It involves the application of the solution trichloroacetic acid (TCA) which effectively removes the outer layer on the skin through the process of exfoliation. It is considered to be a light to medium strength peel. The concentration of the peel will ultimately be determined by your particular skin issues.

TCA Peel

What Can A TCA Peel Do For Me?

TCA peels can treat a number of skin problems, including:

  • Skin that has been damaged by the sun (including brown spots)
  • Wrinkles (smile lines, crow’s feet, wrinkling of the upper eyelids and under eye wrinkles)
  • Uneven or blotchy skin tone and issues with the pigment of your skin
  • Facial scars
  • Blemished skin, including those with acne or scars from the chicken pox.

How Is the Treatment Administered?

Local anesthesia is commonly administered before a TCA peel. After the plastic surgeon has determined the strength of the solution, it will be applied to your face in the areas that need specific treatment via a sponge or brush. It can also be applied to the entire face with the exception of the eyes, lips and eyebrows. Once your treatment is complete, you may have a petroleum jelly or similar protective cream applied to your skin. Some patients can experience slight pain or discomfort, but medication alleviates these symptoms easily.

What is the Recovery Period Like?

You can expect redness and some swelling after your TCA peel. Most patients will experience some peeling of the skin the days after their surgery. In addition, your skin can turn a pink colour as the new skin begins to form, but makeup can easily hide this. Depending on the strength of your peel, down time will be different for every individual. However, overall, it will be minimal.

Post-operative care instructions during this time will include: avoiding direct exposure to sunlight, wearing sunscreen, wearing a hat with a wide brim and sunglasses until the redness or pinkness in your skin goes away. Keep in mind that your skin will be sensitive to the effects of the sun during this time. You will also likely be advised to apply an antibacterial cream in the days following your treatment. It is also recommended that patients avoid strong products for several days.

Dr. Cameron Bowman is a Royal College Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. If you are interested in a TCA peel, contact us today for a complimentary consultation.


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