Are chemical peels bad during the summer?

Not all skincare ingredients are created equal. While some are perfectly fine to use all year round, there are some that raise some questions. One of which is the use of chemical exfoliators during the summertime, especially a popular treatment called the chemical peel—an intense exfoliation method performed by trained skin care specialists.

Chemical peel

As we know, exfoliation raises the risk of sun damage which is why a lot of people tend to skip their chemical peel for the face during the summer season. However, does skipping this proven anti-aging treatment for a few months really outweigh the benefits? If you want to know the real deal, allow us to break it down for you. 

Chemical peel: what is it?

What happens during a chemical peel?

The surface of our skin is made up of several layers that protect our skin from the external environment. Naturally, new skin cells are regenerated to replace the old ones and this process reveals healthier and brighter skin. However, the turnover rate does not occur fast enough.

To aid in quicker skin renewal, chemical peels increase the rate by which the dead cells are removed from the surface of the skin so that the newer cells can replace them. The top layer of the skin is removed through the application of chemical acids of higher strengths. This is not only helpful in brightening up the complexion but is also proven to fight the signs of aging.

Chemical peel and sun damage

It’s no secret that the biggest culprit of premature aging is the sun damage brought about by the harsh UV rays. These rays penetrate the skin and negatively impact the quality of collagen, the protein which keeps our skin looking young. This cascade of events then eventually leads to signs of premature aging such as wrinkles and age spots.

This is where things can get tricky. While the chemical peel is effective against premature aging, the newly exposed skin after exfoliation is incredibly sensitive to the UV rays. High exposure of the newly peeled skin to the sun during summer can increase the risk of chemical peel sun damage. 

Should you avoid chemical peels during summer?

Whether you should get a chemical peel or not during the peak of summer is completely up to your capability to appropriately care for your skin after the procedure. If you don’t want to skip this highly effective skin care treatment, here are some of the things you should consider:

  • Sun exposure. Do you have any summer plans in place? Do you have a beach trip coming soon? If you have any upcoming activities under direct sunlight, it’s best to skip your routine chemical peel session until you get back from that trip.
  • Severity of the peel. Chemical peels have three types: mild, medium, and deep. During summer, it’s safe to stay away from deep chemical peels because this can induce a higher level of photosensitivity.
  • Aftercare. Proper care after the peel is vital in ensuring that your newly exposed skin is protected. Make sure that you keep your skin moisturized and hydrated, especially during the first few days following the treatment. Avoid exposure to direct sunlight as much as possible and apply sunscreen every 2 hours for adequate protection.


To answer the question: NO, you don’t have to skip on that chemical peel treatment. However, this is only applicable if you don’t have any upcoming activities that require direct sunlight exposure for a long time. Additionally, you should be prepared to carefully observe the precautions discussed above. If you follow these beauty tips, you should have no problem booking that next chemical peel session with your favorite skin care specialist. 

Chemical peel

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