I had a phenol in September. It was with a board certified Plastic Surgeon and an Anesthesiologist. It was expensive. It was worth it.
Before I did it I searched all the boards for information about this procedure. All I found were not of much use. Nothing really told you what will go on the first few days after the peel.
What no one tells you is that for 24-36 hours afterward your skin burns like it is on fire. Only frozen cloths and a small fan blowing directly on my face got me through. Pain killers helped. Your lips swell. Your face swells to about 2x its normal size. Your eyes look like little slits making it hard to see. They may swell shut. The swelling reduces about 48 hours later. Your skin begins to bubble up gray all over your face and sloth off--slowly. You need to keep Aquaphor slathered on yourself to keep your skin from drying out and scarring. Have someone supporting you that can take this because it isn't pretty. Sorry, but anyone that says they can go out after 2 weeks and no one will know you had this done, didn't have a real phenol. I couldn't even go out at night to the grocery until 3 weeks, and that was iffy. You have a bright red face for weeks, probably months. The redness may be uneven, making it hard to try to cover. Makeup can only do so much and only last for so long. At 3 months I was still pink and had a very obvious red line on the left side of my face and chin. At 4 months although I am still pink,it is now starting to settle down so that I feel really comfortable in public, although the left side of my cheek still has the red line.
But--the result? Remarkable. Absolutely remarkable. There isn't a wrinkle on my face. My skin is porcelain. Everyone, but everyone comments on my skin. And yes, I would do it again, if I had it to do over.