Trichloroacetic acid

Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) is used in chemical peels to improve signs of sun damage, fine lines and wrinkles and pigmentation. It can also be used to treat deep ice pick acne scars and large pores with a process called TCA CROSS (trichloroacetic acid chemical reconstitution of skin scars). Concentrations of 10-30% are used for superficial peels, and concentrations of up to 50% are used for medium depth peels. Treatment with TCA should always be under the supervision of a trained professional. 

Evidence base: Strong


Soleymani T, Lanoue J, Rahman Z. A Practical Approach to Chemical Peels: A Review of Fundamentals and Step-by-step Algorithmic Protocol for Treatment. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2018;11(8):21-28.


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Spotlight on Skin was created by award-winning Melbourne-based dermatologist, Dr Julia Rhodes.

Julia knows first-hand how overwhelming the skincare world can be, and that’s with over 10 years of experience practicing dermatology. Given that even she gets overwhelmed, she appreciates how hard it can be for those of you without a scientific background to make sense of all the information available, and choose products that are right for your skin…