TCA (Trichloroacetic Acid) Peel Treatment and My Personal Experience

After I couldn’t continue with more sessions of Fractional laser for my acne scars, I decided to go for TCA peel. As with all peels, this just removes the superficial scars and does nothing to pits. But I decided to get it done nevertheless for a smooth texture prior to my wedding as I had decided not to wear anything on my face except lipstick and kajal. And I was very happy with the results. 🙂

TCA Trichloroacetic acid Peel


What is it for?
Trichloroacetic acid, or TCA, chemical peels are used to treat fine lines and wrinkles, hyperpigmentation and blemishes on the skin. TCA peels penetrate through the epidermis, or outer layer of skin, to the dermis, or middle layer of skin. TCA peels remove the outer layer of skin, and a portion of the middle layer of skin. They treat unwanted skin conditions by removing damaged skin so that healthy skin can grow in its place. TCA is a close relative of the acetic acid used in vinegars.

Glycolic Acid is one of the mildest acids used for chemical skin peels. TCA is the next step for a deeper peel.

TCA Trichloroacetic acid Peel

My Experience with TCA (Trichloroacetic Acid) Peel Treatment:

I have tried both the 30% and 50% concentration. The 30% costs 600 INR per session and the 50% costs 900 INR per session.

The face is wiped with water first. A brush is used to apply the acid onto the face. The doctor then asked me to tell him when I start feeling a burning sensation. After about 1 minute my skin started burning. When I informed the doctor, he did the following:-

  1. For 30%, he neutralized it with a counter base.
  2. For 50%, he wiped it off with water. Apparently the solution has the necessary neutralizer.

This was followed by application of an icepack. I was asked to not use any cleansers for about 5 hours so that the acid (whatever is left) can continue its work. My skin was pink (not red) and was extremely shiny (not in a good way!). The next few days I had to be extremely diligent about using sunscreen because the skin is very raw.

TCA Trichloroacetic acid Peel

After 6-7 days, my skin started peeling from my forehead and sides of the mouth. The peels were coloured dark and I am assuming that is the excess melanin from the epidermis. This increased over the next 2 days and I was shedding from all over my face (my friends used to call me a snake because I used to leave skin on chairs 😛 ). Then it was back to normal. This had to be repeated after 14 days. After the second session I noticed a massive, massive improvement in my skin texture. It was extremely smooth and even. Before my wedding I had taken about 8 sessions and that helped lighten my scars to a big extent (not the pits though) and imparted a wonderful radiant glow overall!

I have heard that many doctors are not ready to do TCA because it requires proper knowledge and practice owing to being a much stronger peel than glycolic acid. But if you do find a dermatologist who does it, please go for it and you will be pleasantly surprised at what it does to your skin!

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3.

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12 thoughts on “TCA (Trichloroacetic Acid) Peel Treatment and My Personal Experience

  1. Hey Anjana..
    Wonderful post and very well reviewed (y) 🙂
    At which place and Clinic you got it done? I stay in Pune and will look for such expert dermatologist in this Zone.

  2. Hey girl..u dint wear any base makeup on your wedding day? Woww..hats off darling! You were glowing and gleaming to say the least.

  3. this was suuuch a good article anjana. never heard of it!!! i so want try out a good peel now. 🙂 the snake thing is so funny. loll!!

    thanks for sharing 🙂

  4. Please do experience post on laser treatment for scar (pitted) treatment. I do not have scars but suffer from few pitted scars left by traumatic cystic acne.

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