Can a TCA Chemical Peel Get Rid of Under-eye Fine Lines and Blood Vessels?

Hi. I would like to get rid of some visible blood vessels and fine lines (pigmentation) that I seem to get even if I mostly keep out of the sun. I am 19 years of age, with very light skin, and I've had laser done to remove these dark lines before. Sadly though, they keep coming back, and I was thinking of getting a TCA Peel. Would it be more effective?

If so, what TCA % would you recommend for fair-skinned individuals. I am confident in your knowledge in this area as well as the suggestions I'd get. Thank u very much.


Doctor Answers 4

Benefits of TCA peel on wrinkles

A TCA peel would help correct static wrinkles and skin atrophy around the lower eyelids.  It will not correct dynamic wrinkles, as Botox is the best treatment for laugh lines. 

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

TCA chemical peels, what it does and cannot do

TCA chemical peelsas well as laser resurfacing can rejuvenate by sloughing off layers of sun damaged skin and lessen fine lines. However, it does not result in as much tissue collagen remodeling or skin tightening as fractional CO2 laser. Broken capillaries (small blood vessels) will require a vascular laser, e.g. 532nm Diode laser and would not be amenable to TCA chemical peels.

William Ting, MD
Bay Area Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Fine Wrinkles Yes, Blood Vessels No

Hello in Jo-Burg,

TCA peels are a very effective way to improve skine tone, fine wrinkles and discolorations. They are not as effective with blood vessels below the skin for the simple fact they do not penetrate deep enough to do so (nor should they!).

TCA 20-30% combined with Jessner's solution is very effective and based on the degree of wrinkling you have very well may eleminate them. Prepping with Retin-A before and after the peel really enhances the results. The peel takes a week for all the skin to peel off and you will need to be very careful with sun exposure as you heal (sounds like you are already doing that).

Based on your description of the blood vessels, I would advise exploring lasers further with an expert who does facial lasering as one their primary areas of expertise.

It is possible that with the toning effects of the peel on your skin the blood vessels will become less visible - hard to predict without actually seeing you.

Other potential considerations are intradermal Botox or fillers to enhance the eye area and minimize the appearance of the blood vessels.

Hope this helps, Dr. J

Kamran Jafri, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

TCA or Lasers can help fine lines

TCA peels are a great option for improving fine lines and pigmentation, though they do not work well at improving blood vessels.  If your concerns are mainly in regards to the dark lines, a 20-30% TCA peel would be ideal.  But, if you want to improve both the fine lines and blood vessels, you are better off with laser treatments such as IPL.  It would be worthwhile to see a dermatologist or plastic surgeon to determine the best treatment for you.

I would also suggest using Retin A to maintain your skin between treatments.  Several studies show that regular use of Retin A helps with fine lines and wrinkles. They also help build collagen over time. They are safe, FDA approved and have been studied for over 40 years.  Regular use of Retin A may help you space out laser and TCA treatments.


Dr. Mann

Margaret Mann, MD
Cleveland Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.