A bearded dragon, dirtball gets her glow on

I am still (procrastination) in the midst of digging up some old photos from my distant past to post on this blog.  While doing so I couldn’t help but notice how young and ultimately perfect my skin was (these photos were taken prior to the whole photo shop cult revolution.)  I became distracted (procrastination) and focused on the lack of lines and wrinkles in my 20-year-old skin.  So I did what any reasonable 40 some-year-old woman on a budget would do.  I stopped digging up pictures (procrastination) and scheduled a chemical peel.

Yes. I. did.

Have you ever had one?

I never did, that is, until last week.  I called my friend who is a Nurse Practitioner in a cosmetic Med Spa practice and blubbered on and on about looking more like a hyperpigmentated (thanks to years of sun worshiping) road map than a human.  She talked me off of my delusional, dementia cliff and scheduled me for a chemical peel.

I didn’t know what to expect.  I am a virgin when it comes to any type of cosmetic intervention.  But I trust this woman.  She is extremely skilled and I knew that my aging face, which was about to have the top layer fried off, was in talented hands.

The peel itself was pretty benign.  She painted a few items on the skin to prepare it for the peel.  Of these, the acetone was the most awkward (as in sucking my breath away) and I had to breathe through my mouth.  Then came the application of the chemical to peel the skin.  A burning sensation occurred (similar to a skin burn) but it was alleviated by her convenient little hand-held fan and as long as the fan was on my face, all was good.  If the fan were to get repositioned off of my face….yeeeouch, it burned!

The entire ordeal was over pretty quickly.  Not like a wham, bam, thank-you old, aging skin ma’am deal but not hours and hours either.

She told me I would shed my skin layers and the under skin would be beautiful and glowing.  I thanked my talented friend and went on my way to await my shed.

Shed?!?  Well, molting like a reptile is more like it.  I had skin hanging off of my face like a bearded dragon.  I turned all sorts of colors (mainly red) and peeled like a banana.  In fact, I was a dermatillomania’s (skin pickers) ultimate dream come true!!  I don’t have any abnormal neurotic tendencies (shut up, I don’t!) but man, I couldn’t stop peeling myself.  Each layer that came off was irresistible and unbelievably soothing!  And I could see the GLOW of the SMOOTH skin below.

I admit that I had to call my friend a time or two in semi-panic mode because my FACE was FALLING OFF! She reassured me that I had a load of stuck on sebaceous cells, oil and other crud (nice, I’m a dirtball) that was reacting to the peel and being removed.

Because my skin reacted so well, I looked like a freak.  And this freak had to go out in public with my patchy, scaly, red, pavement kissed looking skin.  By the third day I was sick beyond vomiting of the gawking and rubber necking that occurred each time my face graced the public.

Mr. Pavlov was amused and humored by the situation I found myself in – with no one to blame but myself.  It was day 3 post peel and we went out to lunch.  HEY, food is my weakness.  I will do anything, look anyway, and go anywhere for food.  Don’t judge.  Our waitress approached the table and the encounter went something like this:

Waitress looking down at her pad:Hello, my name is….can I get you something to dri…(now looking up) OH MY GOSH, honey WHAT happened to your face?!?”  

Me (very serious): “He (pointing to Mr. Pavlov) beats me.”

Waitress: gasp. silence. looks toward Mr. Pavlov

Mr. Pavlov (drinking water): sputters. chokes then regains composure. smiles and replies “Yes I do. I beat her.”

I laughed and the waitress, who is breathing again, realized that I was teasing.  I know, I know.  Abuse is not something to joke about.  I get it.  BUT I just couldn’t help it.  Besides, she (very loudly) ASKED!!!

It is a week later and I have healed and although it is not the face I wore in my 20’s, I am totally loving it.  The lines are less noticeable and my skin looks smooth like a baby’s non-soiled butt.  The sun-scorched, hyperpigmentated areas crusted and peeled off much like I imagine it would if I could use Mr. Clean’s magic eraser (the chemical peel for your house) on my face.

I will fight age.  I will kick and scream.  I will not give in.  And I have decided that from time to time I am ok with becoming a bearded dragon and being called a dirtball as long as I can get my glow on!

And if any of you aging locals want to get your own glow on without breaking the bank….hit me up and I’ll give you my friend’s practice information.  ‘Cause when you’re having your face blow torched, you want to be in skilled hands!!

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16 responses to “A bearded dragon, dirtball gets her glow on

  1. I am 43 and DYING for this treatment.

    Can you believe my friend just sent me an invitation to a peel party at her house in two weeks? (And no, she’s not a Real Housewife of Beverly Hills, even!)

    So actually, this post’s timing couldn’t be better.

    Still, I’ll admit I’m scared I won’t be able to leave the house for a week.
    How long and how bad was it? Really?

    I kind of dig the idea of peeling skin off myself.
    But I have to be out in public. So.

    • Yep it was really a week for me but it depends on the strength of the peel. I was bad for a few days (red, splotchy and patchy – like my face collided with pavement) but I still had to go in public. Making a public spectacle of myself was so much fun (lying). That part was by far the worst but I didn’t have a choice so I held my head up high and took the gawks.

      I had a Jessners peel, which is more intense than a light peel. A light peel (alpha hydroxyacid or glycolic peel low strength) should be fine with just mild peeling (like dry skin) but make sure the person knows what they are doing! I can’t stress this enough.

      You don’t want a House Wife of anywhere putting anything other than cucumbers on your face! If she’s bringing someone in then get their credentials! Seriously.

      Chemical peel gone bad? Think Freddy Krueger. Nuff said.

      If the person is skilled, trained and qualified….DO it and Have fun!

  2. Wow, sounded intense! Glad it was worth it in the end though.

  3. This is a wonderful post, and you succeeded in making me laugh out loud.

    Gorgeous you!

  4. I am so totally not going there! OH MY! No, you have put me off the concept for life. I’ll live with my face just as it is.

  5. I want to do this so bad, but I would have to lock myself up for a week. I’m not good at pealing in public.

  6. Oh you are a braver woman than I am…I just mosturize the HELL out of myself…

  7. Yikes! That sounds fairly traumatic, but you seemed to handle it with aplomb. I’m glad the results were worth it – you are either far more cavalier than I am or those must be some seriously good results!

    I once got a sunburn on my back so bad that I molted for a solid month through several layers of skin. It was pretty terrible and I thought my skin would never be the same again. (I’m sure a dermatologist would tell me it never was.) But at least I could cover up through the molting process.

  8. your story had me laughing out loud for sure. I really miss my 20s face and if I had the money would love to get the treatment. Maybe I will add it to the dream list. What did she say was the upkeep? How frequently should you go?
    Thanks for sharing, I am glad to have found you!

    • Hello Zolemia! Nice to meet you. You need at least 4-5 mild-moderate peels to get a good result or so I’m told. Most places sell them in packages. Then after the initial blow torching series (spaced at 4-6 weeks apart) you just do the upkeep peel as needed. I’m learning as I go so I’m sure I’ll keep posting my trials and errors!

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