The Truth About Chemical Peels

Lets face it, we’re not getting any younger and neither is our skin. As and aesthetician I have come across many who are after the latest “miracle cream, treatment or home remedy”, to make their skin look radiant and rejuvenated. Honestly, I have found many of these products and home remedies to be more hype than anything. No shame ladies, it’s in our nature, we want to stay beautiful—we can’t help it!

So what does work???

One treatment that does tend to work is called a chemical peel, and unlike a lot of procedures it doesn’t try to hide behind its name. A peel is just that. Chemical peels have been around for ages. Since the days of ancient Egypt, people, such as Queen Cleopatra have been using chemical exfoliation methods, also known as chemical peeling, to rejuvenate their skin. The original chemical exfoliant was lactic acid, an active ingredient of sour milk that was used in milk baths as part of an ancient skin rejuvenation regimen.

They work by taking advantage of a natural biological process that is constantly at work in our bodies; it sheds the outer layers of the skin to produce new ones.

I’m sure many of you reading this are having flash backs of Samantha from “Sex in the City” when she had her experience with chemical peels but I will just say, unless you are doing a deep peel performed by a medical professional then you have nothing to worry about (those peels are much deeper). Although I must say, despite the down time you may have, the results they deliver are beyond worth it.

The skin is the largest organ of the human body. It also happens to be the most exposed. Which means it takes a good beating daily. From the sun’s damaging rays to the pollutants in the air and other elements, our skin has it bad and it needs some loving!

“Am I a good candidate???”

There are several different types of peels to choose from making them great for most skin types. They work to improve the look of fines lines, wrinkles, acne, sun spots scars and the overall tone and texture of the skin. Peels work to promote collagen production and cell renewal as well.

Superficial peels or “Lunch time peels” are commonly known as glycolic, salicylic, lactic and fruit acid peels. These work by speeding up the renewal process on the top layer of the skin (epidermis). They are quick and easy treatments. There is usually no downtime and most people go back to work with little or no makeup. These peels gradually show great results after multiple treatments.

Medium depth peels such as TCA work a little differently in that they penetrate more deeply, getting to the dermis (bottom layer of skin) to remove the top few layers of the skin where many blemishes, sun spots and imperfections reside.
Medium peels create a “wound” (think sunburn) that allows the new skin to come through, but all this hard work your skin is doing requires some downtime from you. But trust me, the benefits are worth it. Medium depth peels do everything a superficial peel does, but is more effective at treating sun damage and because it goes deeper into the dermis, is more effective at stimulating collagen to tighten the skin.

Deep peels penetrate several layers of skin and cause a second-degree burn of the skin. They are used only on the face. Phenol is usually used for this type of peel. Deep peels may not be used on darker skin types because they can burn the skin or cause hyper or hypo-pigmentation and at times, can scar the skin. Even in lighter-skinned people, phenol peels—or any type of deep resurfacing– can damage the skin. A deep peel can be done only once in most cases and usually requires two to three weeks of down time.

Deep peels can only performed by an experienced physician (I know, that’s comforting).

There are a few things to have in mind if you are considering getting a chemical peel done. The single most important thing is you must be willing to wear sun block and avoid direct sun exposure for at least two weeks after having the peel done. Because of the exfoliation, your skin will be extra sensitive to the sun.

A few more things to keep in mind…

* You don’t have to “peel” with a peel.

* Visible exfoliation (flaking) is a symptom of the treatment. Everyone is different. Some may flake in certain areas on their face, some may flake all over and some may not flake at all.

* Cell renewal takes place in the epidermis (top layer) and dermis (second layer), regardless of the amount of visible flaking.

* Peels give best results when done in a series of multiple treatments.

* Consultation with a Skin Care Professional is a must prior to a chemical peel!!!

* Home care products are essential for providing desired results. We do the treatments; you do the maintenance– they go hand in hand.

* Be sure to discontinue any Retinol/ Rentin-A products at least one week prior to treatment.

* Wear an appropriate sun-block for your skin type daily to protect and prevent future damage.

So the truth about chemical peels is this… They are safe and effective when performed by a Skin Care Professional. They are a brilliant breakthrough in skin care since the day they were discovered. Try it for yourself; give us a call when you’re ready. We look forward to hearing from you.


The information provided is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The Aesthetic & Wellness Center is not responsible or liable for any advice, course of treatment, diagnosis or any other information, services or products that you obtain through this site. After reading articles, watching videos or reading other content from this website, you are encouraged to review the information carefully with your professional healthcare provider or skin care specialist.

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