If the words Chemical Peel make you break out in a cold sweat, they shouldn’t.
Of course we all saw that episode of Sex and the City where Samantha had a peel and spent the rest of the afternoon hiding her red face under a veil – but the reality is far less dramatic.
Peels give great results, and though there are some that can leave quite a bit of redness, the good news is there are lots of less invasive ways to peel your skin with equally good results – and no down time!
Here are some of the benefits of having peeling treatments:
- Lighten and brighten your skin.
- Remove dead cell build up from the within your pores and the surface of your skin.
- Help to stimulate collagen which will soften lines and wrinkles.
- Improve acne and acne scarring.
- Speed up cell turnover, so healthy cells come to the surface of your skin faster giving a more youthful glow.
- Improve pigmentation.
- Improve the look and feel of the skin.
Ok, so now you know how good they are, what are your options? It’s important to choose the type of peel that’s most suitable for you and your skin. A skin therapist will of course guide you in the right direction, but the basic recommendation is to start with a light peel, and work your way up to a stronger one if that’s what’s required for your skin.
The types of peel available are light peel, medium peel and deeper peel. The most common types of light peel (also known as the lunchtime peel) would be glycolic, salicylic or lactic acid. These have little or no down time, and usually it’ll be recommended that you have a series of them. This type of peel can achieve the same results as the deeper peels with none of the downtime, which makes them such a popular option! However results can be a little slower.
Often peels are done by combining two different peel types, or they can be combined with other treatments such as microdermabrasion, laser or IPL for maximum impact.
A medium peel uses trichloroacetic acid with down time of 5-7 days. A deep peel uses Phenol, and downtime with this one is anything from 2 weeks -2 months. Deeper peels such as these can achieve some amazing results, however they can be painful and the recovery is slow. They are generally used to treat deep lines and scarring, and while light peels can be performed by skin therapists, the deeper peels should always be performed by a dermatologist or surgeon.
That’s the basics, but peels also vary in terms of strength. The Ph and percentage of a peel can have a big impact on results. For example, a 30% glycolic peel is very different to a 70% glycolic peel and will have different outcomes. The varying Ph level of a peel will determine how deep the peel penetrates the skin – the lower the Ph, the deeper it will penetrate.
It all depends on your own specific needs and concerns. Some peels work better for acne and scarring, some work better for pigmentation or aging, so it’s always worth finding a skin therapist with experience across a range of different peels.
So don’t fear the peel! It’s a great treatment that can achieve fantastic results across a range of different skin conditions. If you’re concerned with aging skin, lines, wrinkles, scarring or pigmentation, think about making peels part of your in-salon programme. You’ll like what they can do!
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