Recovery for each of the three types of skin resurfacing procedures depends on the severity of your issue. Superficial peels can heal up in a matter of hours and your skin will go from a light pink back to its regular color. The deeper the peel, the longer it takes to blister and heal. Medium peels take about a week, while deep peels can take from two weeks to a month or more. Dermabrasion will take longer to recover from than peels, and is somewhat like recovering from a burn. Laser resurfacing recovery can be likened to a medium to deep chemical peel or dermabrasion.
For each treatment option, you'll be asked to care for your skin in very specific ways. There will likely be some kind of gel or cream you need to apply and some procedures will require bandages. In each case, you're also going to be forbidden from getting direct sunlight on the treated area for a period of time. And since too much sun is likely one of the reasons you're there to begin with, you might want to roll up the beach towel for a while.