To protect your health and find out what results you want, a dermatologist always offers a consultation before performing a chemical peel. To help you get the most benefit from this consultation, dermatologists recommends that you:
- Ask questions.
- Gather important information before your consultation.
This page tells you what to ask and what information to gather.
Questions to ask before getting a chemical peel
You should ask the following questions before getting a chemical peel:
- Will a board-certified dermatologist perform the chemical peel?
- How many chemical peels has the doctor performed on people with my skin coloring?
- What will I need to do before and after the peel to get the best results?
- What results can I expect?
- What are the potential side effects?
- Do I have a higher risk for any complications?
- Will I have downtime?
- May I see before-and-after photos or speak with patients you treated with a chemical peel?
- How much will the treatment cost?
During the consultation, your dermatologist also can tell you whether another treatment would be a better option for you. You may find that your dermatologist recommends using more than one treatment. Results from many research studies show that combining treatments can lead to better, longer-lasting results. Tip: Be sure to bring a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses with you on the day of your peel. You’ll want to put these on before you leave the office. Having a chemical peel makes your skin more sensitive to the sun.
Information to tell your dermatologist before getting a chemical peel
Before you get a chemical peel, be sure to tell your dermatologist the following information:
- If you are taking or have ever taken isotretinoin, a medicine prescribed for severe acne.
- All other medicines you take — or have recently taken. Be sure your dermatologist knows about antibiotics, acne medicines, and medicines that you buy without a prescription, such as aspirin.
- If you frequently get cold sores or have had cold sores in the past.
- If your skin scars easily.
- All herbs, vitamins, and minerals you take. Even if you haven’t taken these for a while, be sure to mention them.
- All surgeries and cosmetic treatments you have had. While some patients feel embarrassed talking about this, the information you share can make a difference in the results you see. Don’t omit anything — even if it seems unimportant.
If you are considering any cosmetic treatment, be sure to watch this AAD video: Who should be providing your cosmetic treatment?
Learn more about chemical peels: