How Soon After a Chemical Peel Can I Wear Makeup?

Whenever you get a chemical peel, always ask your doctor when you can wear makeup again.

The answer you get will depend on the depth and strength of the chemical peel you received, since your skin will peel to varying degrees after a chemical cosmetic treatment, and it’s essential for your skin’s full and safe recovery – as well as to the effectiveness of your chemical peel – to be kept clean while old layers of skin are peeling away and bare skin is exposed as it heals. Applying makeup too soon can cause infections and other complications like irritation.

Again, it all depends on which type of chemical peel you get. If you have a light chemical peel, also known as a ‘lunchtime peel’ with a low-strength glycolic acid, your doctor may say it’s okay to apply your makeup the very next day. Always ask first, though. Your skin may have extra sensitivity that the doctor will see during your treatment, and perhaps advise you to wait an extra few days just to be safe.

With a medium or deep peel, your skin will need extra time to complete the treatment processing – because treatment continues to occur beneath the skin’s surface for some time after your procedure. You’ll need a few days for your skin to complete the peeling and recovering process, and applying makeup while skin is peeling will hinder the effectiveness of the peel you just received. Also, as skin is peeling, that bare skin starting to reveal beneath the old, dead layers the peel is removing must be kept ultra-clean and free of anything that can cause irritation, discoloration, scarring, infection and a delay in seeing those beautiful, fresh results of your chemical peel.

Each individual heals from a chemical peel at a different rate, given skin sensitivity, and also the different chemical peel medications that may be used as part of the treatment. Your doctor may advise you to steer clear of cosmetics for 7 to 10 days after your chemical peel, and you might also be advised to wait even longer. Your skin can only benefit from having extra time to heal and breathe.

Makeup, after all, isn’t very sterile. Your foundation or face powder likely has some bacteria in it, if you’ve been using in for a few weeks or months. Exposing your bare skin to this bacteria can be an infection sure to happen. And makeup with minerals or metals in it also can do harm to healing skin. Even lip gloss which you might think it harmless and essential to your ‘going out of the house’ face can cause an infection in bare, treated skin around your lip line. And don’t forget that the rubbing and tugging of removing makeup from your face also can cause damage to healing skin post- chemical peel.

So be extra-cautious and extra-adherent to your doctor’s orders, to avoid the pain of inflamed skin, as well as the need for additional peels or bleaching cream treatments to fix any discoloration, scarring or damage caused by premature makeup application. Bare skin is very vulnerable. Handle it with care.

That means using makeup with sunscreen in it, which your doctor will recommend. Your doctor may suggest a high SPF factor to keep protecting your face, and also to lengthen the amount of time that your chemical peel results will last.

You can make it through without makeup for a few days, or even perhaps for some treatments up to two weeks. Just make room in your schedule for a good amount of healing time, and perhaps adjust your social schedule to allow you private time to heal. It’s essential to your skin that you create and stick to a no-makeup rule for as long as your doctor prescribes.

Recommended Posts