The definitive guide to cosmetic chemical peels
This post was written by Dr Adil Sarwar on May 29, 2019
Struggling with acne, hyperpigmentation or dull skin? One of our chemical peels treatments could be the perfect solution for you.
Problems with the skin on our face can have a far more profound effect on our self-esteem than cosmetic issues elsewhere. No-one’s skin is perfect, but when it comes to conditions like acne, hyperpigmentation or large pores, it’s not enough to simply attempt to cover those flaws with makeup.
For those struggling with visible skin issues or flaws as a result of pigmentation or acne, there are solutions available that are designed to manage and improve your skin. Choosing a chemical face peel as a treatment can soon bring you new-found self-confidence, transforming your problem skin into a smoother, more consistent visage that you’ll love.
Does an acne scar chemical peel, or even a chemical peel for hyperpigmentation or pore size sound like the right fit for you? If you’re curious about how the process works, or you’d like more insight into the effects of this treatment, read on for a definitive guide to cosmetic chemical peels, and what exactly they can do for you.
What is a chemical face peel?
In effect, a chemical face peel involves a trained beauty technician removing the outer layers of skin on the face. This is done using an acidic solution that is applied directly onto the problem areas, the ‘chemical’ part of the peeling process. The effect that this application provides is similar to the process our skin goes through when it comes to shedding and removing dead or damaged cells in exchange for fresh, new skin.
In addition to functioning as a way to remove dead, dull or damaged skin, allowing the body to develop a healthy and clear complexion, chemical facial peels also work with your skin to provide a smoother and brighter finish. Once a chemical face peel is complete, and you’ve recovered fully, you’ll find that your skin has a healthy glow and will feel softer and smoother overall.
Considered one of the oldest aesthetic procedures in the world, chemical peels have been used in some form or other for thousands of years. The fact that we still use it today shows just how effective this treatment is when it comes to the management of conditions such as acne and hyperpigmentation.
There are different levels of chemical peel that your aesthetician may choose to use with you; light, medium and deep. Deeper levels of chemical peel are often used following a light chemical peel if the primary treatment does not go deep enough into the skin to resolve issues with acne, pigmentation or any other skin complaint.
Am I a suitable candidate for chemical peels?
If you’ve decided that trying an acne scar chemical peel is right for you, then consulting with an aesthetic professional can give you the guidance you need. In the majority of cases, chemical peeling treatment is a suitable solution. However, for immunocompromised individuals, or those who smoke regularly, this treatment may not be appropriate, or as effective.
It’s also worth noting that chemical peels are most effective for patients with lighter skin tones and hair, though the treatment does still work on those with darker skin or pigmentation. If you have a darker skin tone, extra precautions may be required to avoid damage to your skin over time. If a chemical peel isn’t suitable for you, Skin Science Clinic also carries a range of skincare products to help manage conditions such as acne.
If you’re unsure if your skin is suitable for a chemical peel, or you have other health concerns, it’s crucial to speak to a medical professional to ensure that treatments like this are safe for you.
How often are chemical peels recommended?
Because of the way our skin regenerates, especially on the face, it’s essential to keep up a routine when it comes to any form of cosmetic treatments or aesthetic care. In the case of chemical peels, multiple applications are recommended to maintain the desired effect of the skin over time, as one session does not provide the consistency needed to improve the skin permanently.
In the majority of cases, weekly or bi-weekly sessions over six to eight weeks can provide long-term benefits to the appearance and feel of your skin. The number of sessions will depend on the severity of depth of the skin problems you are trying to resolve. Speaking to a professional will provide you with better insight into the requirements for your particular skin type.
Aestheticians will often recommend starting the process in-clinic and then will follow up the treatment with at-home exfoliants to be used at least once per month. This provides the optimal results and leaves the patient with longer-term effects.
What effects can you achieve with a chemical peel?
A chemical peel is a highly effective way to achieve smoother, more even and blemish-free skin, and has a wide range of benefits for all kinds of different skin types or common complaints. These include:
In addition to the above specific purposes for skin chemical peels, this acid-based treatment can also provide a smoother and brighter effect overall, which is especially beneficial for dull-looking skin. If you struggle with impurities on your face, a chemical peel may be one of the best solutions for you. Combined with other skincare and aesthetic treatments, such as dermal fillers, you can create a youthful and attractive appearance without the use of invasive plastic surgery or intense skincare regimes.
What are the side effects of chemical peels?
As a non-invasive procedure, chemical peels carry far fewer side effects than many of the other aesthetic treatments available. However, due to the use of acid-based formulas on the skin, it’s likely that you will experience redness, as well as some stinging, within 48 hours of your initial treatment. Should you experience any other side-effects, such as swelling or burning that lasts longer than 48 hours, it’s essential to consult a medical professional.
During the process of applying your skin chemical peel, local sedation will likely be used due to the acidic chemicals used in the process. You will experience little discomfort during the procedure itself and will be given all the information you need to care for your skin immediately following your chemical peel to ensure the results are the best they can be.
If you follow the self-care advice provided by your aesthetician, including keeping the skin clean and clear, then you are unlikely to experience any severe side effects. This is one of the significant benefits of choosing chemical peels, especially with conditions such as acne, where other treatments can lead to more serious issues or effects.
Recovering from a chemical peel
The recovery time from a typical chemical peel varies depending on the depth of the treatment you are given. In the case of light chemical peels, minimal recovery is required, though the skin may appear irritated for the first few days. For deeper chemical peels, recovery may take a little longer, due to the number of skin cells that need to regenerate. Deep chemical peels often have a trademark ‘shine’ to the skin for the first few weeks to a few months, but this is a normal part of the healing process.
Where can I receive a chemical peel?
At Skin Science Clinic, we work with three different types of peels to provide you with the best possible effect for your specific skin needs. From the 3 Step ZO Peel, designed for the treatment of dull skin and acne, to the Vi Peel formulated explicitly for ageing skin, we’ve got a treatment that’s the ideal match for you. We also use the glycolic peel from Jan Marini for fast recovery chemical peels with no downtime, ideal for those on the go.
Interested in trying a chemical peel for your skin condition? Contact us today to book an appointment for your first consultation. We’d be happy to help you have clear, fresh skin in no time with our state-of-the-art treatments designed to make you glow.