Chemical peeling is a non-surgical, cosmetic facial procedure used to improve the appearance of the skin and is typically performed on the face, neck or hands. In this treatment, a chemical solution is applied to the skin that causes it to possibly “blister” and eventually peels off.
Peels have made a resurgence in esthetics. Patients and physicians alike have recognized that they can play a major role in improving the texture and quality of the skin, giving it a glow, and a more even texture. They offer very little downtime, are not painful, and are easy to incorporate in a maintenance schedule. As well, for patients who want to ease their way into esthetic procedures, peels are a nice way to start, to keep skin healthy looking.
Benefits of Chemical peels
- Ideal for wrinkles and fine lines around the mouth and eyes
- Used to treat wrinkles caused by sun damage, aging, and hereditary factorsImproves active acne or acne scarring
- Reduces hyperpigmentation
- Softens the look of melasma spots, age spots, brown spots, sun spots, liver spots, freckles, and splotching due to birth control
- Improves skin texture and color
Glycolic Acid Peels
Glycolic acid is well known for its anti-aging benefits, as well as treatment for acne. It can improve skin tone, decrease hyperpigmentation or brown spots, and improve fine lines. Glycolic acid is safe to use on darker colored skin, including black skin. Usually a series of peels (3 or 4) are required to reach the desired effect, although this number can vary from person to person. To maintain the effect, most patients then come for a peel every 3 to 4 months. There may be some redness and peeling the day after, but this is usually mild and transient.
Retinoic Acid Peels
Retinoic acid (RA) is a derivative of Vitamin A. RA has many uses, including treating photodamaged skin, and acne. A form of retinoic acid (tretinoin) is a commonly used medication to treat acne, by unblocking blocked follicles (treating comedones). Retinoic acid peels can speed up this process, removing the blackheads and whiteheads, decreasing the redness or erythema of the skin, and fading the hyperpigmentation caused by acne. A series of peels are required to obtain the benefits. Some redness and peeling can occur for a couple of days after the peel, but there is no pain or sensitivity to this peel. The RA peel can be combined with other treatments, including Blu-U, (can you highlight this, and link it to Blu-U therapy?) and other prescribed medications to keep control of acne, and remove the marks that acne can leave on your skin.
Different forms of retinoic acid are also used in the treatment of photodamaged skin, which includes brown spots (lentigos), wrinkles, roughness, and coarseness. RA peels can also help reverse these changes. Again, a series of peels, performed every 2 weeks, are required to achieve full benefit.