Why Do you Get Blackheads After A Chemical Peel?

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So you’ve had your chemical peel. But now you’re wondering if you’ve done the right thing. This is because your skin feels tight, swollen, and raw. And it’s barely even peeling!

But even worse, it looks red and inflamed, and you’ve noticed a breakout of blackheads appearing. Yikes!

Well, rest assured that this post-chemical peel appearance is completely normal.

Yet, you thought your blackheads would disappear afterward. So you may be wondering why do you get blackheads after a chemical peel? If that’s the case, then read on to find out why…


What Happens After A Chemical Peel?

The main job of a chemical peel is to remove the top layers of your skin. This will help to boost the production of collagen. It also reveals the healthier skin underneath.

The process involves a chemical solution being applied to your skin. It causes it to exfoliate and eventually peel away. It is like the skin peels off after a sunburn.

And just like the after-effects of a sunburn, your skin will need time to heal after this treatment.

The chemical peel procedure will leave your skin looking and feeling as if it has been burned for up to five days. But, the result of this process will leave your skin looking and feeling smoother. It also makes healthier and younger. This is exactly the reason why you probably decided to do the treatment in the first place.

But, during the healing process, you may find that blackheads will start appearing.

And this may surprise you, especially if your chemical peel contains salicylic acid. It is the beta-hydroxy acid that works by diving deep into pores to dissolve blackheads.

So Why Do You Get Blackheads After a Chemical Peel?

If you’ve been using a retinol product before your chemical peel, then this has the potential to cause blackheads. This usually appears in the days following the treatment.

If your skin’s pores are really deep and/or enlarged, then the chemical peel wouldn’t be able to flush them out. It would also be difficult to dissolve them if the product only contained salicylic acid.

If notice blackheads appearing on your face after your treatment, the first thing you should do is not panic.


Well, because it just means that your skin is reacting as it should to the chemical peel. Basically, your skin just has some extra purging to do.

If notice blackheads appearing on your face after your treatment, the first thing you should do is not panic.

What Is Skin Purging?

Your skin has a purging breakout after a chemical peel. It occurs once the outer layer of skin heals, which can even look healthier than it did before. Small red bumps can appear, and you may experience dry skin. Along with this bumpy texture, you may also find some whiteheads and blackheads.

And they can all be very painful to the touch.

This is because the chemical peel wasn’t able to remove the underlying bacteria and pigmentation. These were lying deeper than the surface layers of your skin.

And because the chemical peel will have accelerated the cell turnover of these layers, it’s normal for this purging to happen.

This will especially be true if this is the first time you’ve done a chemical peel on your skin.

Luckily, you’ll be pleased to hear that this will only be a temporary challenge for your skin. It won’t last forever, and you can speed it up somewhat.

If you continue on your chemical peeling journey, then depending on your skin type, the purging will stop eventually.

Thus, long as you do a chemical peel treatment on your skin every six to eight weeks, your skin will clear up.

And once it does, you’ll be able to extend the time between your chemical peels. as part of your healthy skincare routine.

Taking Care of Your Skin After Chemical Peel

Your skin is obviously much more delicate after a chemical peel. So give it some extra love and attention while it heals!

For starters, you’ll need to avoid any direct sun exposure. And try to stay out of the sun while the sun is at its strongest, from about 11am to 4pm.

You should also steer clear of anything that can cause you to sweat excessively. This is important while your skin is healing from your chemical peel.

This means you should definitely avoid working out as well as not using steam rooms, saunas, or indoor tanning beds. All these activities will irritate your skin even further.

As far as cleansing your skin while it’s healing, you want to avoid using any products that will sting and cause more irritation.

Therefore, you’ll have to use more gentle products while your skin is raw. Avoid any medicated cleansers, like those that have ingredients like benzoyl peroxide.

What To Do For Your Next Chemical Peel

The next time you decide to do a chemical peel, opt for a formulation that includes glycolic acid. This is a more effective ingredient for removing blackheads than salicylic acid.

That’s because glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (as opposed to a beta hydroxy acid). It means that it is a smaller sized molecule.

This means glycolic acid is able to penetrate deeper into the pores to dissolve blackheads.

contains both glycolic acid and salicylic acid to extend the functionality of both ingredients. This solution will not only deeply exfoliate the skin, but also work harder to clear congestion in the pores.

It also fights blemishes, including blackheads.

This popular chemical peel will improve your skin’s texture and reduce fine lines and wrinkles with regular use.

The formulation also includes Tasmanian pepperberry. This helps to control skin irritation.

On the other hand, Vitamin B5 aids in the skin’s healing process. Because of the product’s high concentration of acids, it is recommended you don’t use it if you suffer from sensitive skin.

The Ordinary Peeling Solution 30ml AHA 30% + BHA 2%, 1 Fl Oz (Pack of 1)
  • This product has NO safety seal
  • Size: 30ml
  • Gender: Unisex
  • Country of origin is United States


Now you know the possible reasons why you got blackheads after your chemical peel. You can make an informed decision as to what to do the next time you choose a rejuvenating treatment. to promote healthier and younger-looking skin.

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Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).