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At-Home MUAC TCA Peels (12.5% - 15% - 18%)

I am 44 and trying to correct facial scarring,...

I am 44 and trying to correct facial scarring, large pores, crow's feet + sun damage. I was scarred by a dermabrasion (NOT microdermabrasion) and have paid thousands over the years for laser resurfacings with little improvement. I have been researching TCA peels and figured I'd give it a try. After reading reviews on RealSelf, I decided to try MUAC's at-home 12.5% and 15% TCA peels. I'm glad I chose MUAC because they are a reputable company and provided clear instructions. I also watched YouTube clips on how to apply this peel which I found helpful. I prepped my skin by using glycolic acid for a week prior to the peel (but do not use the day of the peel). I did a spot test with both percentages and nothing happened with the 12.5% peel so when I did the full face peel, I used the 15% peel. My skin is very tough so I already had a feeling I'd need to start with a higher percentage. I think the 12.5% peel is good for those with sensitive skin or for maintenance touch-ups. I did 2 layers of the 15% peel and felt nothing with the first layer but the second layer stung a little bit but using a handheld fan in front of my face helped. My face never turned brown but I noticed a waxy look in certain spots and those were the spots that peeled. My skin started peeling on Day 2. During all of this I felt like I could go out in public (with sunscreen, of course). After the 2 days of antibiotic ointment, I highly recommend using CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion (buy @ Walmart, etc.). I'd say my peeling was complete by Day 4 and it wasn't much.

I have now purchased the 18% TCA peel and plan to try that next since my skin did so well with the 15%. I had realistic expectations that one peel was not going to magically transform my skin overnight so I already knew I'd need 2 to 3 peels to see noticeable improvement but for now I am very pleased with the results and happy that I found something so inexpensive that I can use at-home.

Glad to hear it worked so well for you! I've been considering doing a peel, but not sure how comfortable I feel doing one at home. Do you use Retin-A by chance? I do, so I'd be curious to hear if you stopped using it a week or so before the peel.

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No, I do not use Retin-A but I'm sure you can contact MUAC with any questions. My normal skin care routine is Cetaphil cleanser for oily skin, beta hydroxy acid and a moisturizing sunscreen. The instructions said to use glycolic/alpha hydroxy acids to prep the skin so the week prior to the peel the only items I used on my face were Cetaphil cleanser, glycolic acid and sunscreen. They also recommend that you NOT use things like exfoliating grains prior to the peel. If you search YouTube for TCA peel video clips, you will see just how easy this peel is to do at home. Now that I've done this peel myself, I could never see myself paying anyone to peel my skin. To be on the safe side, I would agree with the recommendations to not start off with anything higher than 15% TCA peel. Good luck!
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Good info - thanks so much!! I use Cetaphil too, everytime I try something else I always end up going back to it. Still not sure I'm comfortable doing my own peel, but really appreciate you sharing how it went for you!

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9-1-2012: I am now on my third TCA peel. For...

9-1-2012: I am now on my third TCA peel. For this peel I used the 18% TCA peel. I applied twice to my entire face/undereye area, neck, chest and tops of hands. I have found it comparable to the 15% peel so I think the next time I purchase the TCA peel I will try the 21%. As I said, my skin is tough so I should have known I could handle a higher percentage. I am noticing that my scars and wrinkles are softer but NOT erased and it appears to be reversing the sun damage because my skin looks fresher, even younger. I am very happy I have decided to do these at-home TCA peels because I definitely see more improvement than what I got with any laser resurfacing for thousands of dollars less. I still highly recommend using CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion, it really helps keep skin moist while peeling. I am ecstactic to have found a low cost at-home skin treatment that truly improves my skin.

So glad you are seeing good results!! How long are you waiting between peels? Thank you for your review!!

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Hi - So sorry for late response, I forgot my login info! I feel comfortable peeling my skin every 3 months.
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I think it was really smart of you to start out with the lower grade peel, just to be safe. It is fantastic to hear that you are noticing nice changes even with the weaker peel solution!

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