Last year at an event, I overheard Nadine Jolie telling someone about this fantastic facial peel she had done—and I welcomed myself into the conversation, inquiring about it. It’s called the VI Peel, and it’s only performed by licensed professionals. The benefits of this medical grade chemical peel are many—it helps reverse sun damage, minimizes fine lines, evens out skin tone, reduces acne scarring, and more. Imagine having one virtually painless procedure done, and seven days later…it has accomplished what all of the current over-the-counter skincare products in your cabinet couldn’t do on their own, EVER. So you know I was game for this challenge.
My biggest concerns are with sun damage and enlarged pores, but mainly it’s the uneven skin tone I have that drives me nuts. So in a perfect world, if a VI Peel could help me in any of those areas, it would be amazing.
The peel procedure…
I met with Dr. Kalil, the creator of the peel, since he happened to be in town—and he performed the peel on me. (You’ll need to find a licensed provider in your area if you’d like to find out more about having it done as well, and you can use the provider locator here.) I was in and out of there within 25 minutes—it’s a super quick application with minimal downtime. With a peel of this nature, it would normally be extremely painful (burning), but with the way it’s been formulated by Dr. Kalil, there’s a topical numbing agent within the peel when it’s activated. So as intense as it is, it’s actually not bad at all after the initial sting (which was also cooled by a fan) when he’s rubbing it on the skin with a gauze pad. In all honesty, the skin on my face was uncomfortable for mere seconds before the topical anesthetic took over. And when it was all said and done, I left the office just a little pink. No big deal! I went home and went on about my business. You leave the office with the peel on, but it’s not really visible to the eye. If you had to, you could go back to work—but people might tell you that you look flushed (and you can’t wear makeup while it’s still on). It might be best to schedule it for a day off (or take the rest of the afternoon off).
Day 1 aftercare…
You are supposed to leave the peel on for at least four hours before rinsing it off, and I’d say by the second hour, my skin started to feel like I had a sunburn—but nothing too terrible. Dr. Kalil assured me that everything I was going to experience was normal, but that if I ever got too uncomfortable, to feel free to wash it off. He sent me home with clear and easy-to-follow aftercare instructions that also included a moisturizer, two cleansing towelettes (for nights 1 & 2) and a sunscreen. After four hours, I rinsed it off as directed—and one hour before bed I used the first cleansing towelette. WHOA. That’s when the REAL sunburn feeling set in. My face was very red (which was completely normal) and I popped a few ibuprofen and went to bed.
Day two was very similar, more of the sunburn feeling after I washed my face very gently in the morning and applied the VI Derm SPF 30 that was given to me in the aftercare pack. Throughout the day, I soothed my skin any time it felt uncomfortable with the VI Derm Moisturizer that was also included in the aftercare pack. Again, it was just as if I had a sunburn. At night, I cleansed my face as directed an hour before bedtime, and applied the second towelette. Off to bed I went.
I woke up on the morning of day three and my skin was starting to peel around my mouth…right on schedule. Dr. Kalil told me all of the old skin would start shedding on day three, and boy was he right! For the next three days, my skin peeled like crazy and I took special care not to peel it or pull on it. I kept my skin moisturized with the VI Derm Moisturizer whenever it felt too itchy, and made sure my skin was protected with the VI Derm SPF 30 sunscreen. Why go ruin all that hard work, right?
Day 7 and the results with photos…
As the skin was peeling away during days 3-6, I tried not to get too excited when I saw some of the discolored skin peeling away. But I wasn’t really prepared for what I saw when I took my “after” photos. I was FLOORED.
One of the best results I can show you via photographs would have to be around my eyes. These photos have not been altered in ANY way other than cropping and resizing. There is a definite lightening of the age spots around my eyes, and some of my fine lines are visibly lessened. I’m 35 years-old, and I have years of sun damage to my pale Irish skin that the VI Peel has remarkably improved. The peel was also applied to my eyelids, and I hope you’re able to notice how the yellow cast that was on my lids is now gone, it’s now just nice and bright fresh skin. The freckles on my eyelids are almost diminished. The crepey-ness on my lids and under my eyes is also visibly lessened.
Another area of improvement was on my upper left cheek. The peel did a great job at reducing some of the drastic hyper-pigmentation here as well. My skin looks pinker and healthier here than it has in years.
This was a remarkable improvement on my right cheek. My pores are more refined, the texture is smoother, and the color is lacking some of the hyper-pigmentation.
You may not be able to see much difference in this set of photos due to their size, but hopefully you’ll agree with me that the overall yellow-cast from the hyper-pigmentation has been reduced, that my skin looks brighter, and more luminous. You may even notice some of the larger age spots appear to be much smaller.
Would I do this again? IN A HEART BEAT. (For most patients, it can be done 3 to 4 times a year.) This peel did things to my skin in a week that I could never accomplish with the products I own—and I own some of the most heralded products on the market today. My blackheads are almost completely gone, my pores appear smaller, the texture of my skin is smooth, it has the clarity it hasn’t had since my early 20′s, and the discoloration it helped remove rocks my world! I’m currently using the VI Derm Cleanser For All Skin Types, the VI Derm SPF 30, and VI Derm Ultra A to keep my results going before I have to start testing out new products for reviews. As a side note, I will tell you that over the past two weeks, my skin tone has evened out even MORE than in the photos I took after 7 days, so I’m very happy with the results.
A VI Peel will vary in price from $300-$500 per provider (see locator here), and also read the FAQ’s, they can answer a lot of questions you might have that I didn’t share with my experience. Also please consult with a licensed professional to see if the VI Peel is a good fit for you prior to having one performed.