At Home Chemical Peel?

I cannot afford to do all of the things I want to do in the salons/doctor's offices. I purchased a 12.5% TCA chemical peel but have not yet used it. I'm afraid to. I am caucasion, reddish facial skin, sun damage and lines/wrinkles, 40 yrs of age and I want a more youthful look. Can you advise me how to do this? If I do it right, is it safe for me? I certainly don't want to make things worse. Please let me know what you think. If you have directions/suggestions pls give them to me. Thanks.

Doctor Answers 5

Chemical peels

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I do not recommend using at home peels, it can be unsafe to use a product on yourself without having the training. I would recommend going to see a plastic surgeon or aesthetician for this type of a treatment. In my experience you will end up spending more money in the long run to correct problems caused by an incorrect application then you would to go see a licensed professional.

Avoid at home chemical peel

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I agree with my colleagues and do not think it is a good idea to do a chemical peel at home.  A chemical peel should be done by an experienced and licensed aesthetician, nurse or doctor due to potential risks.  These include but are not limited to: burns, scars, redness, poor cosmetic outcome, hyperpigmentation, hypopigmentation.  If a nurse or aesthetician performs the chemical peel, they should be supervised by a physician who is knowledgeable with chemical peels.  I hope this answers helps. 

Do not do a home peel.

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You have reason to be afraid of doing a home peel.  You may end up with scarring that would be much more costly to repair than a peel in a doctor's office, not to mention the emotional effects of scarring.

Martie Gidon, MD, FRCPC
Toronto Dermatologist

TCA can be a dangerous chemical if used inappropriatelyl

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Just not a good idea even with 12% TCA solution.  You have very fair skin and you may sustain more damage to your skin than without the peel.  These chemicals when used properly by an experienced physician work very well.  I have seen some horrific burns and even corneal ulceration from the use of these chemicals by untrained individuals.   Selling these chemicals over the internet is definitely dangerous and should be condemned.  My suggestion is to get your money back and do it the right way or do not do it at all.     

Not a good idea

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Home peels can be dangerous for several reasons:

1)  Are you sure you have purchased what you think you have?  Where was it made?  Who sold it to you?   Was it genuine?  Are you sure?

2)  Do you know how to apply it?  Are you sure?

3)  Do you know how to neutralize it?


When I apply peels I closely watch the skin for changes.  As the skin reacts, I add more to certain areas and limit in other areas.  There is actually an art to doing a peel well.  


I would highly suggest against doing something to your face with an acid that you are not trained in.  I saw a lady with burns all over her face just last week from a "home peel."  The idea scares me....  Good luck!

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.