Access Patient Portal Book an Appointment


What Is a Chemical Peel and How Does It Work?

What Is a Chemical Peel and How Does It Work?

February 19, 2018 in Chemical Peel

For anyone looking to improve the look and feel of skin, a chemical peel can be a good option.

Designed to make the top layers of skin blister and eventually fall off, a chemical peel is an outpatient procedure that delivers beautiful, smooth, less-wrinkled skin in just a few days. Ideal for the face, neck and hands, chemical peels are some of the most sought-after skin care tactics in the modern world of dermatology.

Types of Chemical Peels

While many people think of a chemical peel as a singular process, meaning there’s only one way to do it, the truth is that chemical peels come in many different shapes and sizes.
Here are some of the most popular types:

  • The Glycolic Chemical Peel
    This peel offers the smallest molecular size, which allows it to penetrate skin most deeply. Ideal for exfoliation and rejuvenation, glycolic peels are available in different strengths to suit various skin types.
  • The Lactic Peel
    The lactic peel is derived from milk, hence its name. Unlike other types of chemical peels, the lactic peel is perfect for skin that is either dry or sensitive to active ingredients such as retinol. While chemical peels are typically thought of as tough on the skin, the lactic peel provides a gentle alternative.
  • The Beta Peel
    The beta peel is a peel designed for acne-prone teenagers and adults. Made from salicylic acid, this peel exfoliates skin, regulates oil production and targets bacteria that causes acne.
  • Pigment-Balancing Peels
    Designed to treat blotchy skin, pigment-balancing peels lighten the skin’s natural pigment and improve the quality and tone of skin. Comprised of a selection of citric, lactic and salicylic acids, along with retinol, this peel works well for most skin types.
  • The Vitalizing Peel
    This peel includes citric, salicylic and lactic acids, which improve the quality of skin and lighten its tone. These peels are relatively superficial and cause minimal peeling, so they’re the perfect place to start for people who have never had a chemical peel before.

Chemical Peel Process

Chemical peels are generally done in a series of 3-6 peel sessions. Because chemical peels cause some skin damage, it’s wise not to do them too quickly or too close together. As a general rule, professionals recommend chemical peels be conducted three weeks apart, in a total of six peels.

When a client goes in for his or her first chemical peel appointment, the attending dermatologist will apply a chemical mixture to the patient’s skin. This mixture will be smoothed on gently to the skin and will create blistering and peeling shortly after treatment.

As the skin peels away, it will reveal a new layer of skin, which will showcase improved tone, texture and pigmentation. Ideal for treating skin that has dark spots or similar issues, chemical peels can also be effective for wrinkles or acne.

Getting the Right Chemical Peel for Your Skin Type

When it comes to choosing the right chemical peel, taking your skin type into consideration is essential. While the chemical peel is one of the oldest and one of the most popular dermatological procedures, it’s also not right for everyone, and even people who want to undergo it must find the right option for them.

Since there are so many types of chemical peels on the market, it can be tough to figure out which is right for you. One of the first things you’ll want to consider is the condition of your skin. While most people see the best result with a glycolic peel, people with oily or acne-prone skin will see great results with retinol peels and salicylic acid peels.

Last but not least, you’ll also want to consider your skin tone. If you have a darker skin type, you’ll want to stay away from glycolic acid peels, which can cause adverse reactions on dark skin.

Is a Chemical Peel Right for You?

While chemical peels can be incredibly effective, they’re not right for every skin type or for every customer. Before you undergo the chemical peel, it pays to consider a few things. These are as follows:

  • The condition of your skin. Skin that’s healthy when it starts the chemical peel will enjoy better results. With this in mind, wear sunblock, and wash and moisturize your face frequently before you book your peel.
  • Consider your goals. Do you want to lessen dark spots? Decrease wrinkles and fine lines? Combat acne? The decision of whether a chemical peel is right for you will come down, in large part, to what your skin care goals are. Defining these ahead of time helps ensure outstanding results and create a fantastic look and feel.
  • Your skin tone. Because a chemical peel boosts your skin’s production of melanin in the days and weeks following the procedure, it can cause dark spots and blotches for people with darker skin tones. As such, you may want to talk to your dermatologist before undergoing the procedure.

The chemical peel is a great tool for people who want a clear, well-toned complexion, but it does come with its set of risks and drawbacks. With this in mind, be sure to consult your dermatologist and prepare your skin before you undergo the procedure.

To learn more about the chemical peel or to schedule your appointment, contact Agave Laser & Aesthetic Clinic today.