If you haven’t yet heard of or tried a facial chemical peel, you’re missing out on an impressive anti-aging tool for your skincare toolkit. Many people use chemical peels for pedicures and for help in removing calluses, mainly on the feet一 but they’re also great for your face as well! Here at Academic Alliance in Dermatology, we love the chemical peel technique for revealing new, fresh skin and reversing the signs of aging.
What Is A Chemical Peel?
A chemical peel does precisely what the name suggests一 it uses chemicals like salicylic acid, glycolic acid, lactic acid, mandelic acid to exfoliate, kill, and remove the top layer of facial skin. There are a variety of combinations and inactive ingredients that can be added to a chemical peel, breaking them down into three categories: superficial, medium-depth, and deep peels.
Are Chemical Peels Safe?
The chemical peels our dermatologists use are FDA-approved, medical-grade chemicals; your dermatologist will speak directly with you to discuss your skin type and help you determine which peel will be best. If your dermatologist thinks that you should not have a chemical peel treatment, they will let you know. Generally, people with increased risk for developing keloid scarring, patients with open facial wounds, or those who have used intense acne medication within the last year should not have facial chemical peels.
How Often Should You Get A Chemical Peel?
The answer to this question will depend on two things: the type of peel you last had performed (superficial, medium-depth, or deep, or none) and your skin type. If you have sensitive skin, for example, you may need to wait longer than the recommended four to six weeks. At Academic Alliance in Dermatology, we also recommend that people of darker skin tones use caution with deeper chemical peels, as they are more likely to cause dark and light spots (hyper/hypopigmentation).
What Are The Different Types Of Chemical Peels?
Superficial Chemical Peels
As mentioned above, chemical peels are graded based on their ability to permeate the lower layers of facial tissue. Superficial peels will target only the very surface of your skin, leading to a quicker recovery time and less extensive peeling. Depending on your skincare needs, a superficial peel may be enough for you; it is important that you do not subject your skin to a more intense peel than necessary as this can cause scarring and pigmentation issues.
Medium-Depth Chemical Peels
Medium-depth peels are extremely common for patients who struggle with keeping acne at bay. At AAD, we recommend the medium-depth facial peel for moderate lines and wrinkles, acne scars, and many other cosmetic imperfections.
Deep Chemical Peels
Deep chemical peels should only be used when other peels have not reached far enough to supply results. These peels use a powerful chemical, phenol, to lighten dark spots and reduce or eliminate pre-cancerous growths. People with heart disease should disclose that information to their dermatologist, as it might affect which peel they recommend for you.
What Should You Expect After a Chemical Peel?
The most important thing to expect after your chemical peel is一 you guessed it一 peeling. The acidic components of the chemical peel solution will destroy the top layer (or more) of your face, resulting in a sunburn-like peeling effect. It is extremely important that you keep your skin moisturized and protected from the sun’s UV light during your recovery period. Failure to comply with these recommendations can result in scarring and pigmentation issues.
As you look into booking a chemical peel consultation here in Florida, remember to plan your skin protection if you are out in the sun after your appointment. The sun here in Florida can be intense, and it’s important to keep your skin protected一 especially after a peel. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation and to book your chemical peel today!