Surgical Artistry is run by Dr. Tammy Wu and Dr. Calvin Lee.  Located in Modesto, California, we offer services in Plastic Surgery, Botox, Acupuncture, and Veins (facial veins and leg veins)

Tammy Wu, MD  |  Calvin Lee, MD  |  (209) 551-1888  | 

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Obagi Blue Peel (the original)

written by Dr. Calvin Lee, Surgeon at Surgical Artistry

Dr. Lee applying the Blue Peel.  Permission given for picture usage.

Lasers vs. Obagi Blue Peel (Original - deep version):  Both are involved in skin resurfacing

Results from peels and lasers come from similar mechanisms of skin resurfacing.  There are many arguments regarding which is better because they both treat similar aspects of aging skin.  The blue coloring of the Blue Peel helps the practitioner gauge the depth and consistency of the peel.  Lasers have dials that increase/decrease the strength of the energy.  At Surgical Artistry, we currently only have a vein laser.  Thus our experience is greater with chemical peels for facial skin resurfacing.  There are also so many different lasers and there are also so many different chemical peels.  The comparison is difficult.  There's also differences in pricing - yet another consideration.  Lasers (and other energy based devices such as RF) usually cost more than chemical peels due to the cost of the equipment and maintenance.

Room for Confusion:  Two different Blue Peels.

Obagi makes two peels with the name "blue peel" in it.  They make the Obagi Blue Peel RADIANCE, and the Obagi Blue Peel.  I'll refer to the Obagi Blue Peel as the Original Obagi Blue Peel.  Radiance peel we consider a medium level peel for non-sedated patients.  The Original Blue Peel is a deep level peel for non-sedated patients.  There are peels as well where the patients get sedation.  Those peels are covered elsewhere.  This link leads to more information about the Blue Peel Radiance at Surgical Artistry. 

Another point of confusion.  Obagi makes many different skin care products and lines, along with different peel offerings.  Obagi is a skin care company, not one particular product.  Hope that clarifies things a bit.

Regarding "deep" and "medium" level peels.  I'm using these words to describe the peels relative to each other on awake patients.  There are even deeper peels that could be used, but we'll save that for another discussion, and another webpage, and another level of consciousness (patients are sedated for those peels).

Comparison of the two Obagi Blue Peels: 

Blue Peel RADIANCE (medium level)

Blue Peel ORIGINAL (deep level)

How many Blue Peels (Original-deep) can a person receive

Everyone is different.  One could get a second peel as soon as 1-2 months after the first peel, and subsequent peels could be considered a year later.  In between, maintenance with the Obagi Nu-derm system works well.

How about the Neck or chest?

The Blue Peel (Original-deep) could be used for the neck and chest, but we would use a lighter application of the material.  More of the peel would usually be needed.  It could be used for other areas of the body as well.

Preparation for the Blue Peel (Original-deep) Chemical Peel

After your Obagi Blue Peel

Click here for after-peel instructions (very similar to above but written in a different way).

Meanwhile, we will be available to see you and guide you on your progress over the first 2 weeks.  You can see us every day after the peel if need be for frequent check-ups.

Every patient is different and every practitioner does the peel slightly differently.  These are our generalized directions.  Please see your Obagi Blue Peel specialist for specific guidance.

Pictures from a Blue Peel (Original-deep) session

Pictures used with permission (actual Blue Peel patient).  Thank you.

On the left is the blue color added to the facial peel acid that helps to keep the peel even, and allows for lightening / feathering of the peel near areas of skin that aren't receiving the peel such as the skin right around the eyes.

On the right is 4 days after the peel where the skin peeling and some redness can be seen.

Above is an original picture by Dr. Lee, used with permission.

I have seen some patients peel worse than this.  My purpose of putting this picture up is so that potential Blue Peel patients can get an idea of what to expect.  I think the peeling is worst around day 4.


Picture from the Obagi company regarding before and after for Blue Peel (original)

The following pictures are from the Obagi advertising material.  The small print on the advertising material states that she has been on the Obagi Nu-derm system before and after the Blue Peel.  We feel the same way - that it is important to be on the Obagi Nu-derm skin care system before and after the peel.  Even without the Blue Peel, we feel that the Obagi Nu-derm skin care line is amazing.

Before Obagi Blue Peel multi layers is on the left, after is on the right.  She continues
to use Obagi Nu-derm skin care system.  Picture is from Obagi (not our patient)



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Blue Peel Radiance (not as deep as Blue Peel Original)  |  What to do after Blue Peel (original - deep)

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Surgical Artistry webpage is for information only, not medical advice. homemade website by Calvin Lee, MD and Tzuying Tammy Wu, MD, Modesto, CA
Obagi Blue Peel in Modesto, ca  Date of edit: 07/28/2019